Using odour traps for population monitoring and dispersal analysis of the threatened saproxylic beetles Osmoderma eremita and Elater ferrugineus in central Italy

Forskningsoutput: TidskriftsbidragArtikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift


Pheromone-based monitoring could be a very
efficient method to assess the conservation status of rare
and elusive insect species, but there are still few studies for
which pheromone traps have been used to obtain information
on presence, abundance, phenology and movements
of such insects. We performed a mark-recapture study of
two threatened saproxylic beetles, Osmoderma eremita
(Scarabaeidae) and its predator Elater ferrugineus (Elateridae),
in two beech forests of central Italy using pheromone
baited window traps and unbaited pitfall traps. Two
lures were used: (1) the male-produced sex pheromone of
O. eremita (racemic c-decalactone) to attract females of
both species, and (2) the female-produced sex pheromone
of E. ferrugineus (7-methyloctyl (Z)-4-decenoate), to
attract conspecific males. In total, 13 O. eremita and 1,247
E. ferrugineus individuals were trapped. For E. ferrugineus,
males were detected earlier than females, and
7-methyloctyl (Z)-4-decenoate was much more efficient
lure compared to racemic c-decalactone in detecting its
presence. The population size at the two sites were estimated
to 520 and 1,369 individuals, respectively. Our
model suggests a sampling effort of ten traps checked for
3 days being sufficient to detect the presence of E. ferrugineus
at a given site. The distribution of dispersal distances
for the predator was best described by the negative
exponential function with 1 % of the individuals dispersing
farther than 1,600 m from their natal site. In contrast to
studies on these beetles in Northern Europe, the activity
pattern of the two beetle species was not influenced by
variation in temperature during the season.


  • Agnese Zauli
  • Stefano Chiari
  • Erik Hedenström
  • Glenn Svensson
  • Guiseppe M Carpaneto
Enheter & grupper

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ) – OBLIGATORISK

  • Zoologi


Sidor (från-till)801-813
TidskriftJournal of Insect Conservation
Utgåva nummer5
StatusPublished - 2014
Peer review utfördJa

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Glenn Svensson


Projekt: Forskning

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