Methoprene-induced matings of young Queensland fruit fly males are effective at inducing sexual inhibition in females

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Abstract

Pre-release dietary treatment with methoprene, a juvenile hormone analogue, decreases the age at which male Queensland fruit flies mature and hence may decrease the post-release delay until released sterile flies participate in sterile insect technique (SIT) programmes. However, if matings of young methoprene-treated males are not effective at inducing sexual inhibition in their mates, then this treatment may not enhance SIT. The present study investigates efficacy of matings of methoprene-treated males at inducing sexual inhibition in their mates. Methoprene incorporated into a diet of sugar and yeast hydrolysate (w/w 3:1) for 48 hr after emergence resulted in significantly increased male mating propensity when flies were <10 days of age, but not when older, and longer copulations. Copula latency did not vary with methoprene treatment but did decrease with age. The matings of young methoprene-treated males were effective at inducing sexual inhibition in their mates, matching the efficacy of untreated mature males. Regardless of treatment, females had reduced tendency to remate if their first mate was 15 days of age than if their first mate was younger (6, 8 days) or older (20, 25, 30 days). Females mated by methoprene-treated males that did remate tended to remate later in the day than females mated by untreated males. Also, second copula durations of females first mated by a 6- to 10-day-old male were shorter if the male was methoprene treated. These patterns in remating females may indicate greater efficacy of the initial mating of methoprene-treated males. Overall, we find that the additional matings of young methoprene-treated male Queensland fruit flies are effective at inducing sexual inhibition in their mates. This finding supports the incorporation of methoprene into pre-release diet for SIT.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)500-508
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Applied Entomology
Volume144
Issue number6
Early online date5 Apr 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2020

Keywords

  • Bactrocera tryoni
  • development
  • Juvenile hormone
  • sterile insect technique

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