Hylobius abietis L. feeding on the novel host Pinus brutia Ten. increases emission of volatile organic compounds
Abstract Plants respond to feeding by herbivorous insects by producing volatile organic chemicals, which mediate interactions between herbivores and plants. Yet, few studies investigated whether such plant responses to herbivory differ between historical host and novel plants. Here, we investigated whether herbivory by the pine weevil Hylobius abietis causes a release of volatile organic chemicals from a novel tree Pinus brutia and compared the relative amounts of volatiles released from herbivore's historical hosts and P. brutia . We collected volatiles emitted from P. brutia seedlings that were either subjected to feeding by H. abietis or no feeding. Our results indicated that feeding increased emission of volatile compounds, composed of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes, and that the emission was several fold higher in the damaged seedlings than in undamaged seedlings. In particular, emission of monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes increased by 4.4‐and 10‐fold in the damaged plants, respectively. Strikingly, individual monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes showed much greater dissimilarity between damaged and undamaged seedlings. Furthermore, several minor monoterpenes showed negative relationships with the weevil gnawed area. We discussed these results with the results of previous studies focused on historical host plants of H. abietis and hypothesized the ecological relevance and importance of our results pertaining relevance to the plant–herbivory interactions.
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