Volatiles from Botrytis cinerea-infected and healthy berries of Vitis vinifera influence the oviposition behaviour of Epiphyas postvittana

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Interactions among plants, plant‐feeding insects, and plant–pathogenic fungi are partially mediated by volatile compounds. Herbivorous insects use sensory cues to choose host plants for feeding and/or oviposition that are likely to support survival and development of progeny. It is known that some fungus‐induced alterations in plants can modify plant volatiles, which are recognized by the olfactory receptors of the insect, either as an attractant or as a deterrent. We tested for the presence of behaviour‐modifying volatiles emanating from the berries of Vitis vinifera L. (Vitaceae) infected with Botrytis cinerea Pers. (Helotiales). We tested the olfactory behaviour of adults of Epiphyas postvittana Walker (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae) to these volatiles using two‐choice and wind‐tunnel experiments. We hypothesized that olfactory cues influence E. postvittana's oviposition behaviour. We found that volatiles emanating from B. cinerea‐infected berries did not significantly attract the gravid females of E. postvittana; consequently, they laid significantly fewer eggs on infected berries. Furthermore, significantly fewer females of E. postvittana were found attracted to infected berries in the wind tunnel assay. Ethanol and 3‐methyl‐1‐butanol were abundant in B. cinerea‐infected berries. Oviposition assays made with laboratory standards of ethanol and 3‐methyl‐1‐butanol confirmed their role in regulating the olfactory behaviour of E. postvittana site selection.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-56
Number of pages10
JournalEntomologia Experimentalis et Applicata
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


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