Male-produced sex attractant pheromone of the green stink bug, Acrosternum hilare (Say)

Heather L. Mcbrien, Jocelyn G. Millar, Levi Gottlieb, Xin Chen, Richard E. Rice

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12 Scopus citations


Sexually mature virgin adult males of the green stink bug, Acrosternum hilare attracted sexually mature virgin adult females in laboratory bioassays using a vertical Y-tube. There was no indication that males attracted other males, or that females attracted either sex. These results suggested that A. hilare males produce a sex pheromone. Extracts of odors collected from sexually mature males contained compounds that were not present in extracts from females or sexually immature males. (4S)-Cis-(Z)-bisabolene epoxide ((4S)-cis-Z-BAE) was the major sex-specific component of the extract. The crude extract was attractive to female A. hilare, but when separated into four fractions, only the portion containing (4S)-cis-Z-BAE and the minor component (4S)-trans-Z-BAE was attractive to females. This fraction was as attractive as the crude extract, suggesting that the former contained all the pheromone components. Neither synthetic (4S)-cis-Z-BAE nor (4S)-trans-Z-BAE alone was attractive to females, but a 95:5 cis:trans blend, mimicing the ratio naturally produced by males, was attractive to females in Y-tube bioassays. Bioassays in a field cage showed that significantly more A. hilare females were attracted to cotton string lures treated with 1 mg of a 95:5 blend of (4S)-cis-Z-BAE and (4S)-trans-Z-BAE placed inside a bouquet of alfalfa than to an alfalfa bouquet containing a pentane-treated control. In field cage studies, attraction of females was greatest during the late afternoon and evening hours, and female A. hilare approached the synthetic pheromone source almost exclusively by walking.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1821-1839
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Chemical Ecology
Issue number9
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments—We gratefully acknowledge financial support from the California Pistachio Commission, the Washington State Tree Fruit Commission, the California Pear Pest Management Fund, the University of California IPM project, and the USDA Areawide Codling Moth Project. We also thank J. S. McElfresh for assistance in the laboratory, J. R. Aldrich for archived chromatograms and mass spectra of A. hilare extracts, and Berje Chemical Products Inc. (Bloomfield NJ) for a gift of Opoponax oil.


  • (Z)-(1R,2S,4S)-4-(1′,5′-dimethyl-1′,4′- hexadienyl)-1,2-epoxy-1-methylcyclo-hexane
  • (Z)-(1S,2R,4S)-4- (1′,5′-dimethyl-1′,4′-hexadienyl)-1,2-epoxy-1- methylcyclohexane
  • Acrosternum hilare
  • Bisabolene epoxide
  • Nezara viridula
  • Sex pheromone


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