Water traps most effective on moth Duponchelia fovealis

Scientists in Holland have found that water traps are the best method of dealing with the moth Duponchelia fovealis, which causes damage to many ornamental glasshouse crops.

Peter van Deventer at Plant Research International in Wageningen found that found that six times as many male moths were attracted to water traps as the most commonly used pheromone trap.

Since 2006, Peter van Deventer at Plant Research International in Wageningen has been comparing the success of three types of pheromone trap: 

  • Widely used Delta traps, which have a sticky insert
  • Funnel traps, into which insects fall and are trapped in a pot from which they cannot escape
  • Water traps consisting of a water and soap reservoir covered by a roof

Initial studies during 2006 found that catches in funnel traps were much smaller than those in Delta traps.

Van Deventer's follow-up research during an eight-week period in August-September 2007 saw 46 male moths trapped in five Delta traps, against 316 male moths in five water traps.

Van Deventer concluded that water traps are most suitable to attract males of Duponchelia fovealis.

He said: "The water traps are most suitable for monitoring and mass-trapping of Duponchelia fovealis. Another advantage is the little maintenance required by this trap."

The caterpillars of the Duponchelia fovealis moth cause damage in a range of glasshouse crops grown including kalanchoe, begonia, cyclamen, gerbera, and rose.


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