Abstract: Cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs) are traditionally considered to be one of the most important chemical cues used in the nestmate recognitionprocess of social hymenopterans. However, it has been suggested that in the leafcutter ant genus Atta,it is not the CHCs, but the alarm pheromone that is involved in the nestmate recognition process. In this study we used a laboratory population of Atta sexdens to explore the association between their CHC profile variation and intraspecific aggression. In the first part of the experiment, four colonies were divided into two groups with distinct diets to stimulate differentiation of their CHC profiles. In the second part of the experiment, all colonies received the same diet to examine resemblance of chemical profiles. At the end of each part of the experiment we extracted the CHCs from workers. The results demonstrated that colonies that shared the same food resource had similar cuticular hydrocarbon profiles. Furthermore, colonies were significantly more aggressive towards conspecifics that used a different foliar substrate and consequently had greater differences in their cuticular chemical composition. This study suggests thatthe CHC profiles of A. sexdens can be affected by the foliar substrates used, and that the CHCs are used in the nestmate recognition process of this species.
Abstract: The sweetpotato whitefly Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) is a pest of global importance on both outdoor and glasshouse crops. To date, B. tabaci has not become established in the UK. The UK holds Protected Zone status against this pest and, as a result, B. tabaci entering on plant material is subjected to a policy of eradication. Mediterranean species is now the most prevalent Bemisia species entering the UK. Increasing neonicotinoid resistance is becoming increasingly widespread and problematic with this species. As a result, this continues to pose problems for eradication strategies. The current study investigates the efficacy of Tri-Tek (a petroleum horticultural oil awaiting UK registration) and the fungus Beauveria bassiana to act as control agents against Mediterranean species in UK glasshouses. Tri-Tek provided 100% egg mortality compared to 74% for B. bassiana. When tested against second instar larvae, mortalities of 69% and 65% respectively were achieved. Both products can be successfully “tank-mixed”. A tank-mix application provided 95.5% mortality of second instar larvae under glasshouse conditions. The potential integration of both products into current Bemisia eradication strategies in UK glasshouses is discussed.
Abstract: Two strains of the common bed bug, Cimex lectularius L., eggs and first instars collected from pyrethroid-resistant adults were evaluated for insecticide resistance and compared to a susceptible strain. Dose-response bioassays were conducted using two insecticide formulations (Temprid: imidacloprid/β-cyfluthrin, and Transport: acetamiprid/ bifenthrin). The lethal concentration (LC50) for the two resistant egg strains exposed to imidacloprid/β-cyfluthrin ranged from 3 to 5-fold higher than susceptible strain eggs. Resistant strain eggs dipped into formulations of acetamiprid/bifenthrin had LC50 values which were significantly greater (39 to 1,080-fold) than susceptible strain eggs. Similar to eggs, resistant strain first instars exposed to residual applications of imidacloprid/β-cyfluthrin had LC50 values ranging from 121 to 493-fold greater than susceptible strain first instars. When resistant strain first instars were treated with acetamiprid/bifenthrin, they had LC50 values that were 99 to >1,900-fold greater than susceptible strain first instars. To determine differences between egg and first instar resistance, stage resistance ratios (SRR) were compared between the two stages. There was little difference between the egg and first instar stages, indicated by small SRR values ranging from 1.1 to 10.0. This study suggests that insecticide resistance is expressed early during bed bug development.
Abstract: White spruce (Picea glauca (Moench) Voss) trees that are resistant or susceptible to spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) attack were identified in a southern Quebec plantation. Due to high mortality-induced selective pressures imposed by resistant trees on spruce budworm larvae, insects that survive on resistant trees exhibited greater biological performance than those on susceptible trees. We tested the hypothesis that this better biological performance is maintained across generations when progeny were subjected to nutritional stress. We collected pupae from resistant and susceptible trees (phenotype). Adults were reared under controlled laboratory conditions. Progeny were subsequently reared on two types of artificial diet (high vs. low quality). Low quality diet simulated food quality deterioration during outbreak conditions. Results confirmed that surviving insects collected from resistant trees have better performance than those from susceptible trees. Offspring performance (pupal mass, developmental time) was affected only by diet quality. These results suggest that adaptive advantages that would be acquired from parents fed on resistant trees are lost when progeny are exposed to nutritionally-imbalanced food, but the effects persist when larvae are fed a balanced diet. Offspring mortality, fecundity and fertility were positively influenced by parental origin (tree phenotype).
Abstract: Bed bugs, Cimex lectularius L., are a major pest in the urban environment. Their presence often results in physical, psychological, and financial distress of homeowners and apartment dwellers. Although many insecticide bioassays have been performed on this pest, little attention has been paid to bed bug feeding status, which is closely linked to metabolism, molting, and mass. Therefore, we evaluated the toxicity of topically applied deltamethrin on insecticide susceptible adult male bed bugs fed 2 d, 9 d, and 21 d prior to testing. When toxicity was evaluated on a “per-bug” basis, there was no difference between 2 d [LD50 = 0.498 (0.316 − 0.692) ng·bug−1] and 9 d [LD50 = 0.572 (0.436 − 0.724) ng·bug−1] starved bugs, while 21 d starved bugs had a significantly lower LD50 [0.221 (0.075 − 0.386) ng·bug−1]. When toxicity was evaluated in terms of body mass, 9 d starved bugs had the highest LD50 values [0.138 (0.102 − 0.176) ng·mg−1], followed by 2 d starved bugs [0.095 (0.060 − 0.134) ng·mg−1], and then 21 d starved bugs [0.058 (0.019–0.102) ng·mg−1]; the LD50 values of 2 d and 9 d starved bugs were significantly different from 21 d starved bugs. These results indicate that feeding status plays an important role in the toxicity of deltamethrin. In addition, the lack of differences between 2 d and 9 d starved bugs indicate that the blood meal itself has little impact on tolerance, but rather it is some physiological change following feeding that confers increased tolerance to bed bugs.