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Flight directionality of Tribolium castaneum soon after take-off under glasshouse and field conditions

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Rafter, M. A., Ridley, A. W., Daglish, G. J., Burrill, P. R. and Walter, G. H. (2015) Flight directionality of Tribolium castaneum soon after take-off under glasshouse and field conditions. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 156 (2). pp. 178-186. ISSN 1570-7458

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Article Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/eea.12320

Publisher URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/eea.12320


Flight directionality of the rust-red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum (Herbst) (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae), was investigated under glasshouse and field conditions using sticky traps placed around dense experimental infestations of T. castaneum derived from field-collected samples. Although beetles of this species are known to fly quite readily, information on flight of beetles away from grain resources is limited. Under still glasshouse conditions, T. castaneum does not demonstrate strong horizontal or vertical trajectories in their initial flight behaviour. Flight was significantly directional in half of the replicates, but trapped beetles were only weakly concentrated around the mean direction of flight. In the field, by contrast, emigration of T. castaneum was strongly directional soon after flight initiation. The mean vector lengths were generally >0.5 which indicates that trapped beetles were strongly concentrated around the calculated mean flight direction. A circular-circular regression of mean flight vs. mean downwind direction suggested that flight direction was generally correlated with downwind direction. The mean height at which T. castaneum individuals initially flew was 115.4 ± 7.0 cm, with 58.3% of beetles caught no more than 1 m above the ground. The height at which beetles were trapped did not correlate with wind speed at the time of sampling, but the data do indicate that wind speed significantly affected T. castaneum flight initiation, because no beetles (or very few; no more than three) were trapped in the field when the mean wind speed was above 3 m s−1. This study thus demonstrates that wind speed and direction are both important aspects of flight behaviour of T. castaneum, and therefore of the spatio-temporal dynamics of this species.

Item Type:Article
Business groups:Crop and Food Science
Keywords:flight initiation emigration spatial patterns dispersal flight orientation wind direction circular statistics Coleoptera Tenebrionidae
Subjects:Science > Entomology
Plant pests and diseases > Pest control and treatment of diseases. Plant protection
Live Archive:01 Feb 2016 06:54
Last Modified:03 Sep 2021 16:50

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