Mass trapping

Mass trapping, as its name implies, is the use of large numbers of pheromone traps to catch a large proportion of the pest population. This technique has proved unsuccessful for a whole range of lepidopteran and coleopteran pests (Campion, 1989; Jones and Langley, 1998). Lepidopteran sex pheromones only attract the males, hence to be successful, highly efficient traps are needed in order to catch a high enough proportion of the male population to prevent mating with females. Mass trapping is more appropriate with aggregation pheromones, since these attract both males and females. As part of an IPM programme, mass trapping has proved useful in the control of the cotton boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis; Dickerson, 1986) and the spruce bark beetle Ips typographus (Raty et al., 1995; Grégoire et al., 1997). In a large mass trapping programme aimed at the control of I. typographus in Norway (1979-1980), the aggregation pheromone component 2-methyl-3-buten-1-ol was dispensed in over 600,000 traps and captured 7.4 billion beetles in 2 years (Bakke et al., 1983). Damage caused by the beetle was significantly reduced in the forest around the traps.

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