Determination of Oviposition Preference of <i>Tuta absoluta</i> to Tomato, Pepper and Eggplant
Keywords:Tuta absoluta, Tomato leafminer, host preference, olfactometer, Solanaceae
AbstractTuta absoluta (Meyrick, 1917) (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae) which is originated from South America is an oligophagous pest on cultivars and weeds from Solanaceae family. The study found out the oviposition preference of the pest to tomato, pepper and eggplant in a restricted flight area, and tendency of the pest to host plants through olfactometer. T. absoluta laid average 19.82, 0.03 and 8.03 eggs on tomato, pepper and eggplant in a restricted flight area, respectively. The average number of larvae counted on these host plants were 14.68, 0.03 and 5.15, respectively. These larvae caused total 28.03 mines on leaves of host plants, including 21.53 mines on tomato, 0.03 mines on pepper and 6.47 mines on eggplant. The egg-laid preference ranking of T. absoluta on host plants in olfactometer system was determined as tomatoes (average 18.20 eggs), eggplant (average 6.93 eggs) and pepper (average 0.53 eggs) from more to less. Consequently, tomato plant was more preferred by T. absoluta among all host plants, including tomato, pepper and eggplant. Also, the pest showed tendency to eggplant more than pepper. In addition, it was concluded that the attractive feature of black color can be used in biotechnical control against the pest.
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