Breakthrough in the Fight Against Spruce Bark Beetles
Published:17 Feb.2021    Source:Lund University

For the first time, a research team led by Lund University in Sweden has mapped out exactly what happens when spruce bark beetles use their sense of smell to find trees and partners to reproduce with. The hope is that the results will lead to better pest control and protection of the forest in the future.

The Eurasian spruce bark beetle uses its sense of smell to locate trees and partners. The odours are captured via odorant receptors (proteins) in their antennae. Researchers have long understood the connection, but so far they have not known exactly which receptors bind to what pheromones. This is key knowledge for the long-term development of more effective and environmentally friendly pesticides and bark beetle traps used to protect the forest.