Effect of trap size, placement, and age on captures of blueberry maggot flies (Diptera: Tephritidae)

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Ammonium acetate and protein hydrolysate baited and unbaited green spheres (3.6, 9.0, and 15.6 cm diameter) were evaluated for effectiveness in capturing blueberry maggot flies, Rhagoletis mendax Curran. Early in the season, baited spheres (9.0 cm diameter) captured significantly more R. mendax flies than spheres of 3.6 and 15.6 cm diameter. As the season progressed, the differences in trap captures became less pronounced among the 3.6-, 9.0-, and 15.6-cm-diameter spheres. In other experiments, the effects of trap positions and age on captures of blueberry maggot flies were assessed. Traps were positioned 15 cm above the bush canopy, 15 cm inside the canopy (from top of the bush), and 45 cm from the ground. Traps placed within the canopy captured 2.5 and 1.5 times as many flies compared with traps placed above the canopy and 45 cm from the ground, respectively. When sticky yellow Pherocon AM boards and green sphere traps were allowed to age in field cages, freshly baited (0 d) yellow sticky boards captured significantly more blueberry maggot flies than boards aged for 11, 28, and 40 d, respectively. No significant differences were observed among boards aged for 11, 28, and 40 d. However, when baited 9-cm sticky spheres were aged in field cages, there were no significant differences between freshly baited spheres and spheres aged for 11 and 28 d, respectively. Spheres aged for 40 d differed significantly from freshly baited ones. The study demonstrated that the baited 9-cm-diameter sphere was more effective in capturing blueberry maggot flies than spheres of 3.6 and 15.6 cm diameter. When this trap is deployed in the center of the bush canopy ≈15 cm from the top of the bush, it is attractive and accessible to R. mendax flies. The data also indicated that a baited 9-cm sphere has a longer effective life span than Pherocon AM boards when deployed under the same field conditions. © 2000 Entomological Society of America.

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Journal of Economic Entomology