Treating panel traps with a fluoropolymer enhances their efficiency in capturing cerambycid beetles

Elizabeth E. Graham, Robert F. Mitchell, Peter F. Reagel, James D. Barbour, Jocelyn G. Millar, Lawrence M. Hanks

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The most effective traps for capturing cerambycids and other saproxylic beetles are intercept designs such as funnel traps and cross-vane panel traps. We have observed that adult cerambycids of many species often alight and walk upon panel traps, and few are actually captured. In an effort to improve trap capture and retention, researchers have treated intercept traps with Rain-X, a polysiloxane formulation that renders surfaces more slippery. Here, we summarize experiments that compared the efficacies of Rain-X and Fluon, a PTFE fluoropolymer dispersion, as surface treatments for panel traps that are deployed to capture cerambycid beetles, using untreated traps as controls. Fluon-treated traps captured on average >14× the total number of beetles, and many more cerambycid species, than were captured by Rain-X-treated or control traps. Beetles captured by Fluon-treated traps ranged in body length by 350%. They could not walk on vertical panels treated with Fluon but easily walked on those treated with Rain-X and on untreated traps. Moreover, a single Fluon treatment remained effective for the entire field season, even in inclement weather. We conclude that treating panel traps with Fluon greatly improves their efficiency in capturing cerambycid beetles. This increased efficacy will be particularly important when traps are deployed to detect very low-density populations, such as incursions of exotic species, or remnant communities of rare and endangered species. The influence of Fluon on trap efficiency may vary with product formulation and its source and also with climatic conditions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-647
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of economic entomology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Cerambycidae
  • Fluon
  • Pheromone
  • Trap
  • Wood-boring insect

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology
  • Insect Science


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