Cerambycid Beetle Species with Similar Pheromones are Segregated by Phenology and Minor Pheromone Components
Mitchell, R.F.; Reagel, P.F.; Wong, J.C.H.; Meier, L.R.; Silva, W.Dias.; Mongold-Diers, J.; Millar, J.G.; Hanks, L.M.
Journal of Chemical Ecology 41(5): 431-440
Recent research has shown that volatile sex and aggregation-sex pheromones of many species of cerambycid beetles are highly conserved, with sympatric and synchronic species that are closely related (i.e., congeners), and even more distantly related (different subfamilies), using the same or similar pheromones. Here, we investigated mechanisms by which cross attraction is averted among seven cerambycid species that are native to eastern North America and active as adults in spring: Anelaphus pumilus (Newman), Cyrtophorus verrucosus (Olivier), Euderces pini (Olivier), Neoclytus caprea (Say), and the congeners Phymatodes aereus (Newman), P. amoenus (Say), and P. varius (F.). Males of these species produce (R)-3-hydroxyhexan-2-one as their dominant or sole pheromone component. Our field bioassays support the hypothesis that cross attraction between species is averted or at least minimized by differences among species in seasonal phenology and circadian flight periods of adults, and/or by minor pheromone components that act as synergists for conspecifics and antagonists for heterospecifics.