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Title:Host plant relationships and chemical communication in the cerambycidae
Author(s):Graham, Elizabeth E.
Director of Research:Hanks, Lawrence M.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Hanks, Lawrence M.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Berenbaum, May R.; Suarez, Andrew V.; Ginzel, Matthew D.; Alleyne, Marianne
Department / Program:Entomology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
chemical ecology
Abstract:The beetle family Cerambycidae is one of the largest groups of insects. Commonly referred to as longhorned beetles, the larvae of cerambycids usually feed on the tissues of woody plants and can be important insect pests, damaging and even killing trees in managed and natural landscapes. In this dissertation, I revise a historical database on associations between the adult beetles and the plant species whose flowers they visited, and determine that beetles were commonly found on plants in the Asteraceae. However, the umbellifer Pastinaca sativa L. and the rose Aruncus dioicus (Walter) Fernald var. vulgaris (Maxim) were visited by the greatest number of beetle species. I conducted an experiment to explore the relationship between environmental stress of woody host plants and susceptibility to attack by cerambycid beetles, and found that the number of beetles completing development was positively associated with growth rate of the larval host tree. I also studied cross-attraction between beetles of different species and discovered that live male beetles in traps produced an aggregation pheromone that attracted adults of both sexes of a different cerambycid species. Finally, I conducted a field study that showed that the efficiency with which pheromone traps captured cerambycid beetles was greatly improved by treating trap surfaces with the polymer Fluon®. This information can be applied to improve methods for determining the geographic distribution and local abundance of species.
Issue Date:2010-05-19
Rights Information:Copyright 2010 Elizabeth E. Graham
Date Available in IDEALS:2010-05-19
Date Deposited:May 2010

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