Identification of feeding stimulants for Pacific Coast wireworm by use of a filter paper assay (Coleoptera: Elateridae)


  • David Horton USDA-ARS 5230 Konnowac Pass Road Wapato, WA 98951 USA


Limonius canus, feeding assay, phagostimulants, sugars


Sugars and several plant essential oils were evaluated as feeding stimulants for larvae of Pacific coast wireworm, Limonius canus (Coleoptera: Elateridae).  Compounds were evaluated by quantifying biting rates of wireworms on treated filter paper disks, modifying a method used previously in assays with Agriotes wireworms.  Independent counts of the same disk showed that the method led to repeatable estimates of biting rate.  Higher rates of biting were obtained on filter paper disks if those disks had been treated with sucrose, fructose, glucose, maltose, and galactose, than if the disks were left untreated.  Sucrose and fructose were more stimulatory than the other 3 sugars.  Biting rates declined with decreasing concentrations of sugars in water.  Combining a highly stimulatory sugar (sucrose) with certain plant essential oils in some cases led to non-additive (both synergistic and antagonistic) effects on biting rates.  We discuss the possible role for this type of assay in developing insecticide-laced baits for attract-and-kill programs.


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