A species of lichen moth, Miltochrista striata (Bremer & Grey, 1852), feeds on lichens in Chinese tea plantations (Camellia sinensis (L.) O. Kuntze (Ericales:Theaceae)). A previous sex attractant screening test showed that male moths of M. striata were attracted by a mixture of (Z,Z,Z)-3,6,9-octadecatriene (Z3,Z6,Z9–18:H), (Z,Z,Z)-3,6,9nonadecatriene (Z3,Z6,Z9–19:H), and their monoepoxy derivatives. To determine which of the component is an effective sex attractant for M. striata, the sex pheromone glands of female moths were excised and extracted with n-hexane. By comparison with the retention time and mass spectra of synthetic chemicals, two compounds in the crude extracts were identified as Z3,Z6,Z9–18:H and (Z,Z)-3,6-cis-9,10-epoxy-octadecadiene (Z3,Z6,epo9–18:H) using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. The results of electroantennographic tests showed that the electrophysiological activities of Z3,Z6,Z9–18:H and Z3,Z6,epo9–18:H were distinctly higher than those of (Z,Z)-6,9cis-3,4-epoxy-octadecadiene, (Z,Z)-3,9-cis-6,7-epoxy-octadecadiene, (Z,Z,Z)-3,6,9-nonadecatriene, (Z,Z)-6,9-cis-3,4epoxy-nonadecatriene, (Z,Z)-3,9-cis-6,7-epoxy-nonadecatriene, and (Z,Z)-3,6-cis-9,10-epoxy-nonadecatriene. Field trapping showed that only a mixture of Z3,Z6,Z9–18:H and Z3,Z6,epo9–18:H attracted male moths, and the optimal mixture of these compounds was the ratio of 4:6 at 1.0-mg dosage. The results represent the first determination of the sex pheromone of a lichen moth in a tea plantation and provide a scientific basis to develop an effective protocol using sex pheromone to monitor populations of M. striata.
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Vol. 112 • No. 2