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Open AccessArticle

Larger is Better in the Parasitoid Eretmocerus warrae (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae)

by Tao Wang 1,2,* and Michael A. Keller 2
1
Guangdong Public Laboratory of Wild Animal Conservation and Utilization, Guangdong Key Laboratory of Animal Conservation and Resource Utilization, Guangdong Institute of Applied Biological Resources, Guangzhou 510260, China
2
School of Agriculture, Food and Wine, Waite Campus, University of Adelaide, Adelaide 5005, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Insects 2020, 11(1), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11010039
Received: 28 November 2019 / Revised: 31 December 2019 / Accepted: 31 December 2019 / Published: 3 January 2020
Eretmocerus warrae (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae) is a specialist parasitoid that is used for the control of the greenhouse whitefly, Trialeurodes vaporariorum (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae). We investigated how temperature affects the body-size, life-time oviposition, and longevity of E. warrae at different stages of life. The body-sizes of both this parasitoid and its host are influenced by temperature. Body-volume indices that reflect body-sizes fell by 47.7 % in T. vaporariorum compared with 57.6% in E. warrae when temperature increased from 20 to 32 °C. The life-time oviposition of female adults of E. warrae that grew at the immature developmental temperature of 20 °C was 86 ± 22 eggs, more than 66 ± 11 eggs at 26 °C, and 65 ± 23 eggs at 32 °C. Besides the influence on fecundity, temperature also influences the oviposition behaviour at the adult stage. More eggs were oviposited at 20 and 26 °C than at 32 °C. Higher temperatures reduced survival in the immature developmental stages and longevity in adults. Adult females lived for a maximum of 8.9 ± 1.8 days at 20 °C and laid a maximum of 97.4 ± 23.2 eggs when reared at 20 °C and maintained at 26 °C as adults. Adult body-size is positively correlated with life-time oviposition but not adult longevity. The results imply that temperature influences the nature of interactions between a parasitoid and its host. Larger wasps can live longer and parasitise more hosts, which should improve their performance as biological control agents. View Full-Text
Keywords: body-size; daily oviposition; longevity; parasitoid; Eretmocerus warrae; Trialeurodes vaporariorum; immature developmental temperature body-size; daily oviposition; longevity; parasitoid; Eretmocerus warrae; Trialeurodes vaporariorum; immature developmental temperature
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wang, T.; Keller, M.A. Larger is Better in the Parasitoid Eretmocerus warrae (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae). Insects 2020, 11, 39.

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