Verbenone Inhibits Attraction of Ips pini (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) to Pheromone-Baited Traps in Northern Arizona

Monica L. Gaylord, Stephen R. McKelvey, Christopher J. Fettig, Joel D. McMillin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Recent outbreaks of engraver beetles, Ips spp. De Geer (Coleoptera: Curculionidae; Scolytinae), in ponderosa pine, Pinus ponderosa var. scopulorum Engelm. (Pinales: Pinaceae), forests of northern Arizona have resulted in widespread tree mortality. Current treatment options, such as spraying individual P. ponderosa with insecticides or deep watering of P. ponderosa in urban and periurban settings, are limited in applicability and scale. Thinning stands to increase tree vigor is also recommended, but appropriate timing is crucial. Antiaggregation pheromones, widely used to protect high-value trees or areas against attacks by several species of Dendroctonus Erichson (Coleoptera: Curculionidae; Scolytinae), would provide a feasible alternative with less environmental impacts than current treatments. We evaluated the efficacy of the antiaggregation pheromone verbenone (4,6,6-trimethylbicyclo[3.1.1]hept-3-en-2-one) in reducing attraction of pine engraver, I. pini (Say), to funnel traps baited with their aggregation pheromone in two trapping assays. Treatments included 1) unbaited control, 2) aggregation pheromone (bait), 3) bait with verbenone deployed from a pouch, and 4) bait with verbenone deployed from a flowable and biodegradable formulation (SPLAT Verb, ISCA Technologies Inc., Riverside, CA). Unbaited traps caught no beetles. In both assays, baited traps caught significantly more I. pini than traps with either formulation of verbenone, and no significant difference was observed between the verbenone pouch and SPLAT Verb. In the second assay, we also examined responses of Temnochila chlorodia (Mannerheim) (Coleoptera: Trogositidae), a common bark beetle predator. Traps containing verbenone pouches caught significantly fewer T. chlorodia than the baited control and SPLAT Verb treatments. We conclude that verbenone shows promise for reducing tree mortality from I. pini.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3017-3020
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of economic entomology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020


  • 4,6,6-trimethylbicyclo[3.1.1]hept-3-en-2-one
  • pine engraver
  • repellent
  • tree protection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Insect Science


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