Contact Pheromones as Mate Recognition Cues of Four Species of Longhorned Beetles (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae)

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We tested the hypothesis that contact phermones mediate mate recognition for four species of longhorned beetles, Neoclytus mucronatus mucronatus (F.), Megacyllene caryae (Gahan), Megacyllene robiniae (Forster), and Plectrodera scalator (F.). All tested males of all four species attempted to mate with females only after contacting them with their antennae. From 66.7 to 80% of tested males attempted to mate with hexane-extracted dead females treated with 0.1–1.0 female equivalents of conspecific female extracts, confirming that nonpolar compounds on the cuticle of females are essential for mate recognition in all four species. These findings are further evidence of the critical role of contact pheromones in mating systems of longhorned beetles.

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