Abstract: Laboratory and field trials were performed to evaluate the attractiveness and efficacy of commercial baits (cyantraniliprole; methomyl + (Z)-9-tricosene; dinotefuran + (Z)-9-tricosene; imidacloprid granular + (Z)-9-tricosene; and imidacloprid liquid + (Z)-9-tricosene). In choice tests; flies were most attracted to cyantraniliprole bait > dinotefuran + (Z)-9 > methomyl + (Z)-9 bait > imidacloprid granular + (Z)-9 bait > imidacloprid liquid + (Z)-9 bait. Significant degradation in bait efficacy was observed after two weeks of aging excluding imidacloprid granular; which began to degrade in field conditions after one week. Cyantraniliprole; the new fly bait active ingredient in Zyrox®; had the longest time to knockdown in the laboratory tests; but on susceptible flies; achieved 95%–100% knockdown within an hour of exposure. Zyrox® was resistant to weathering for a week; and was more attractive to flies in the field when compared to methomyl + (Z)-9 bait.
Abstract: Vector control remains the most effective measure to prevent the transmission of mosquito-borne diseases. However, the classical entomo-parasitological methods used to evaluate the human exposure to mosquito bites and the effectiveness of control strategies are indirect, labor intensive, and lack sensitivity in low exposure/transmission areas. Therefore, they are limited in their accuracy and widespread use. Studying the human antibody response against the mosquito salivary proteins has provided new biomarkers for a direct and accurate evaluation of the human exposure to mosquito bites, at community and individual levels. In this review, we discuss the development, applications and limits of these biomarkers applied to Aedes-and Anopheles-borne diseases.
Abstract: Insect resistance to population control methodologies is a widespread problem. The development of effective resistance management programs is often dependent on detailed knowledge regarding the biology of individual species and changes in that biology associated with resistance evolution. This study examined the reproductive behavior and biology of western corn rootworm beetles of known body size from lines resistant and susceptible to the Cry3Bb1 protein toxin expressed in transgenic Bacillusthuringiensis maize. In crosses between, and within, the resistant and susceptible genotypes, no differences occurred in mating frequency, copulation duration, courtship duration, or fertility; however, females mated with resistant males showed reduced longevity. Body size did not vary with genotype. Larger males and females were not more likely to mate than smaller males and females, but larger females laid more eggs. Moderately strong, positive correlation occurred between the body sizes of successfully mated males and females; however, weak correlation also existed for pairs that did not mate. Our study provided only limited evidence for fitness costs associated with the Cry3Bb1-resistant genotype that might reduce the persistence in populations of the resistant genotype but provided additional evidence for size-based, assortative mating, which could favor the persistence of resistant genotypes affecting body size.
Abstract: The Nicrophorus genus lives and breeds in a microbe rich environment. As such, it would be expected that strategies should be in place to counter potentially negative effects of the microbes common to this environment. In this study, we show the response of Nicrophorus vespilloides to the common soil bacterium, Bacillus subtilis. Phenoloxidase (PO) levels are not upregulated in response to the challenge and the bacteria are observed to multiply within the haemolymph of the host. Despite the growth of B. subtilis, survival is not affected, either in virgin or in breeding beetles. Some limit on bacterial growth in the haemolymph does seem to be occurring, suggesting mechanisms of resistance, in addition to tolerance mechanisms. Despite limited detrimental effects on the individual, the challenge by Bacillus subtilis appears to act as a cue to increase reproductive investment. The challenge may indicate a suite of negative environmental conditions that could compromise future breeding opportunities. This could act as a cue to increase parental investment in the current bout.
Abstract: Urbanization has the potential to dramatically affect insect populations worldwide, although its effects on pollinator populations are just beginning to be understood. We compared the immunocompetency of honey bees sampled from feral (wild-living) and managed (beekeeper-owned) honey bee colonies. We sampled foragers from feral and managed colonies in rural, suburban, and urban landscapes in and around Raleigh, NC, USA. We then analyzed adult workers using two standard bioassays for insect immune function (encapsulation response and phenoloxidase activity). We found that there was far more variation within colonies for encapsulation response or phenoloxidase activity than among rural to urban landscapes, and we did not observe any significant difference in immune response between feral and managed bees. These findings suggest that social pollinators, like honey bees, may be sufficiently robust or variable in their immune responses to obscure any subtle effects of urbanization. Additional studies of immune physiology and disease ecology of social and solitary bees in urban, suburban, and natural ecosystems will provide insights into the relative effects of changing urban environments on several important factors that influence pollinator productivity and health.
Abstract: Drosophila yakuba is widespread in Africa. Here we compare the cuticular hydrocarbon (CHC) profiles and mating behavior of mainland (Kounden, Cameroon) and island (Mayotte, Sao-Tome, Bioko) populations. The strains each had different CHC profiles: Bioko and Kounden were the most similar, while Mayotte and Sao-Tome contained significant amounts of 7-heptacosene. The CHC profile of the Sao-Tome population differed the most, with half the 7-tricosene of the other populations and more 7-heptacosene and 7-nonacosene. We also studied the characteristics of the mating behavior of the four strains: copulation duration was similar but latency times were higher in Mayotte and Sao-Tome populations. We found partial reproductive isolation between populations, especially in male-choice experiments with Sao-Tome females.