Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Chemistry and Pharmacology
Abstract Previous experiments demonstrated an oviposition-deterring effect of larval frass in the Egyptian cotton leaf worm,Spodoptera littoralis (Boisd.). In this study, females were shown to perceive the oviposition-deterring substance(s) with their antennae. During dark, airtight, and cold (−10 °C) storage, the deterrent was persistent for at least 395 days. On the other hand, larval frass retained its activity for only two days when applied to cotton leaves. The deterrent activity of frass was independent of larval density. Frass of larvae reared at high densities deterred oviposition as well as frass of larvae feeding separately or in small groups. For significant oviposition deterrence, the minimum amount of frass was in the range of 5–10 mg frass per cotton leaf. An acetone extract of larval frass was highly deterrent, in contrast to extracts prepared with water, ethanol, chloroform, or pentane.
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