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Do I need to use attractants with a tsetse trap?
It depends which species of tsetse you are trying to catch.
The benefit of baiting traps with other attractants varies between species. On the one hand, the catch of palpalis-group species, such as G. fuscipes, is not increased by odour attractants and so there is little point in using them. On the other hand, the morstans group of flies, such as G. pallidipes, are very responsive to odours, and catches can be increased fourfold by baiting traps with a blend of acetone, 1-octen-3-ol, 4-methylphenol and 3-n-propylphenol. Between these two extremes lie species that only respond to certain chemicals (see Table 2, Gibson & Torr, 1999).
There has not been a thorough test of the responses of all species of tsetse to the various attractants. If there is no information on what chemicals you should be using for your local species of tsetse, then it's probably best to bait survey traps with the complete blend that is effective against G. pallidipes.
If you are thinking of using large numbers of odour-baited targets to control tsetse then you will need to be sure which chemical you should be using; you wouldn't want to waste money on unnecessary chemicals. So if this is the case, then you should think about carrying out experiments to test which attractants are effective for tsetse in your area. Tsetse Plan provides advice on how to plan and analyse experiments to do these simple investigations.
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