Western Pine Beetle: Field Response to Its Sex Pheromone and a Synergistic Host Terpene, Myrcene

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  13 Jun 1969:
Vol. 164, Issue 3885, pp. 1284-1285
DOI: 10.1126/science.164.3885.1284


In the field, both sexes of the western pine beetle, Dendroctonus brevicomis, are attracted by the female-produced bicyclic ketal exo-brevicomin; this response is enhanced by myrcene (a constituent of the beetle's host, ponderosapine), which is not an attractant by itself. This synergism may be part of the phenomenon of the mass attack on its host. Temnochila virescens chlorodia, one of the principal insectan predators of this beetle, is attracted by exo-brevicomin alone.

Stay Connected to Science