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Insects, Volume 14, Issue 10 (October 2023) – 54 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris, is a polyphagous pest that causes severe economic damage to cotton crops. Managing weedy field edges is important in preventing early season infestations of L. lineolaris in cotton. Scouting the fields for L. lineolaris is time- and labor-intensive, and individual variability can lead to inaccuracies. Insect traps combining visual cues and pheromones are more accurate, sustainable, and economically feasible. We investigated the application of red or white sticky cards baited with a female-produced sex pheromone to monitor overwintering L. lineolaris populations in early spring. The field experiments demonstrated that the red sticky cards baited with the pheromone are highly effective in trapping L. lineolaris adults in early spring before the row crops were planted and in monitoring their movement in cotton crops. View this paper
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14 pages, 1335 KiB  
Article
Two Distinct Genotypes of Spissistilus festinus (Say, 1830) Reproduce and Differentially Transmit Grapevine Red Blotch Virus
by Madison T. Flasco and Marc F. Fuchs
Insects 2023, 14(10), 831; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100831 - 23 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1625
Abstract
Two phenotypically similar but genetically distinct genotypes of Spissistilus festinus (Say, 1830) (Hemiptera: Membracidae), a pest of legume crops in Southern United States and a vector of grapevine red blotch virus (GRBV) in California vineyards, exist. No information is available on whether the [...] Read more.
Two phenotypically similar but genetically distinct genotypes of Spissistilus festinus (Say, 1830) (Hemiptera: Membracidae), a pest of legume crops in Southern United States and a vector of grapevine red blotch virus (GRBV) in California vineyards, exist. No information is available on whether the two S. festinus genotypes, i.e., California (CA) and Southeastern (SE), are sexually compatible or whether the SE genotype can transmit GRBV. In this study, we established mixed mating S. festinus pairs for which the F1 offspring varied phenotypically compared with the offspring of same genotype pairs but acquired GRBV isolate NY175 at similar rates (p = 0.96) and with a similar viral genome copy number (p = 0.34). Likewise, rates of GRBV acquisition were alike for the two parental CA (58%, 61/105) and SE (61%, 65/106) genotypes (p = 0.74), though the GRBV copy number in the salivary glands was overall significantly higher for SE than CA individuals (p = 0.02). Furthermore, the GRBV transmission rate was significantly higher for the SE genotype (89%, 16/18) than the CA genotype (50%, 8/16) (p = 0.04). These results revealed the existence of two sexually compatible S. festinus genotypes with distinct GRBV transmission abilities, suggesting the need to study GRBV ecology in Southeastern United States and areas where the two genotypes might co-exist. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Hemiptera: Ecology, Physiology, and Economic Importance)
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15 pages, 4792 KiB  
Article
Biotechnical Control of Varroa in Honey Bee Colonies: A Trade-Off between Sustainable Beekeeping and Profitability?
by Monica Vercelli, Luca Croce and Teresina Mancuso
Insects 2023, 14(10), 830; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100830 - 23 Oct 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2363
Abstract
Beekeeping faces several challenges, such as the Varroa mite. Few studies have measured the economic performance of farms in relation to the practices used for Varroa control. Our study analyzed various biotechniques (total brood removal, TBR; queen caging, QC; royal cell insertion, CI) [...] Read more.
Beekeeping faces several challenges, such as the Varroa mite. Few studies have measured the economic performance of farms in relation to the practices used for Varroa control. Our study analyzed various biotechniques (total brood removal, TBR; queen caging, QC; royal cell insertion, CI) and other methods (chemical treatments, CT; thymol use, THY) adopted by Italian beekeepers to show whether the adoption of biotechniques leads to farm profitability or a necessary trade-off between sustainability and profitability. Beekeepers were interviewed about the methods and operations conducted on their farms. The net incomes (NIs) of the farms were calculated and inter- and intrafarm comparisons were performed. A detailed schema of each practice was designed. The net income derived from TBR was the highest in eight out of the nine case studies, followed by CI and then QC. The NI calculated for farms using CT was lower than that for farms using other methods in two of the case studies. We also analyzed different biotechniques applied by the same farm and found that the NI resulting from TBR was higher than that achieved from the use of QC and CI. Our study suggests that use of biotechniques represents a long-term sustainable solution for reducing the level of Varroa infestation, which affects farm net income. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Biology of Social Insect Diseases)
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13 pages, 1372 KiB  
Article
Large Male Caterpillars Are the Primary Builders: Exploring Tent Construction and Foraging Behaviour in Gregarious Pine Processionary Caterpillar
by Mizuki Uemura, Myron P. Zalucki and Andrea Battisti
Insects 2023, 14(10), 829; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100829 - 21 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1347
Abstract
As a social organism, living in a communal structure is one of the most important physical barriers against environmental elements and natural enemies. Thaumetopoea pityocampa (Notodontidae, Thaumetopoeinae) caterpillars are conifer pests that spend most of their larval stage in winter. Although T. pityocampa [...] Read more.
As a social organism, living in a communal structure is one of the most important physical barriers against environmental elements and natural enemies. Thaumetopoea pityocampa (Notodontidae, Thaumetopoeinae) caterpillars are conifer pests that spend most of their larval stage in winter. Although T. pityocampa holds economic and medical significance, the tent construction and foraging behaviour are poorly understood. We observed the tent construction behaviour in autumn (October and November) when third- and fourth-instar T. pityocampa caterpillars build the ‘winter tent’ that can withstand winter conditions. Just before sunset, with no rain and temperatures over 12 °C, tent construction was undertaken by early active individuals, primarily larger male caterpillars. Early active caterpillars emerge from the tent first and spin silk on the tent for expansion and strength. Once temperatures dropped below 12 °C and twilight had passed, the early active caterpillars went out to forage and were later joined by the late active caterpillars, which were predominantly smaller females that had remained inside the tent. Foraging behaviour was continuously monitored for the first to fourth larval instars in the field. Foraging was more frequent in younger instars when environmental temperatures were warmer and became continuous and prolonged in later instar caterpillars as temperatures dropped. The final tent structure built by later instar caterpillars had the thickest layer of silk on the southern side of the tent compared to other orientations to receive maximum solar radiation during the winter. Our study provided additional insights into the collective nest building, foraging and social behaviours observed in Lepidoptera, as well as the roles of individuals within non-eusocial insect colonies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Arthropod Biodiversity: Ecological and Functional Aspects)
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12 pages, 2228 KiB  
Article
Optimization of Brewer’s Yeast Quantity in Liquid and Gel Larval Diets for the Mediterranean Fruit Fly
by Paraschos N. Prekas, Vasilis G. Rodovitis, Evmorfia P. Bataka, David Nestel, Christos T. Nakas and Nikos T. Papadopoulos
Insects 2023, 14(10), 828; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100828 - 21 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1751
Abstract
Several artificial larval diets have been developed, evaluated and used for mass-rearing of the Mediterranean fruit fly (medfly), Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann) (Diptera: Teprhitidae). There are several efforts to reduce the cost of rearing and optimize the quality of the produced sterile males that [...] Read more.
Several artificial larval diets have been developed, evaluated and used for mass-rearing of the Mediterranean fruit fly (medfly), Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann) (Diptera: Teprhitidae). There are several efforts to reduce the cost of rearing and optimize the quality of the produced sterile males that are destined for release in sterile insect release programs. Survival, growth, longevity and reproductive capacity of sterile males are strongly connected with the most expensive ingredient, the brewer’s yeast (protein), in the larval diet. The current study focused on settling the optimal content of brewer’s yeast in a liquid diet and a gel diet. Egg hatch rates, developmental duration of immatures, pupation rate, pupae and adult survival were recorded as indicators of quantity and quality of the produced adults. Egg hatch was higher and larval developmental duration longer in the gel diet. In contrast to the liquid diet, an increase in brewer’s yeast concentration was correlated with increased pupation rate and pupae survival in the gel diet. Reducing brewer’s yeast up to 50% of its initial quantity had no significant effect on the survival of the emerging adults regardless of the diet type. Our findings may contribute to the production of low-cost and effective diets for use in mass-rearing facilities of medflies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Physiology, Reproduction and Development)
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12 pages, 1688 KiB  
Article
Exploring a Potential Avenue for Beekeeping in Ireland: Safeguarding Locally Adapted Honeybees for Breeding Varroa-Resistant Lines
by Stephen Smith, Arrigo Moro and Grace P. McCormack
Insects 2023, 14(10), 827; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100827 - 20 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1665
Abstract
Beekeeping in Ireland has been strongly impacted by the parasitic mite Varroa destructor, whose introduction caused alarming honeybee colony losses. If unmitigated, these losses could lead to the disappearance of the native honeybee subspecies, Apis mellifera mellifera, with severe consequences for [...] Read more.
Beekeeping in Ireland has been strongly impacted by the parasitic mite Varroa destructor, whose introduction caused alarming honeybee colony losses. If unmitigated, these losses could lead to the disappearance of the native honeybee subspecies, Apis mellifera mellifera, with severe consequences for local biodiversity. Although beekeepers play a pivotal role in mitigating this crisis, beekeeping in Ireland is less intensive compared to other European regions, lacking significant infrastructure or support. These circumstances offer a unique opportunity for the development of national programmes that promote sustainable beekeeping practices for varroa control. Notably, local accounts highlight an increasing number of beekeepers successfully managing colonies in the absence of treatments, indicating a potential avenue for developing varroa-resistant stocks through selection of local colonies. Through a survey, we explored beekeeper’s opinions and attitudes towards future national projects focused on the development of sustainable beekeeping practices and selection for varroa resistance. The findings confirm the hobbyist nature of Irish beekeepers and their preference for the native honey bee. Some beekeepers were reported to be effectively controlling varroa without treatment, yielding comparable survivals to those using treatments. The majority expressed preference towards a varroa-resistant line if it were of native origin; a few were open to importing non-Irish lines. Overall, a strong willingness to participate in a national breeding programme was expressed. These findings highlight a prime opportunity for Ireland to establish a community-driven strategy based on sustainable beekeeping practices for safeguarding native honeybees and local biodiversity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Healthy and Sustainable Beekeeping)
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13 pages, 1422 KiB  
Article
Diapause Induction, Color Changes, and Supercooling Point of Diapause Larvae of Tetrastichus septentrionalis Yang (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae)
by Zhixin Li, Junrui Shi, Liyuan Yang, Yiran Cheng, Xudan Liu and Shouhui Sun
Insects 2023, 14(10), 826; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100826 - 20 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1231
Abstract
The chalcid wasp Tetrastichus septentrionalis Yang (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) is one of the dominant pupal parasitoids of Hyphantria cunea (Drury) (Lepidoptera: Erebidae). In this study, the photoperiod’s effect on diapause induction in T. septentrionalis using the alternative host Tenebrio molitor was measured, revealing that [...] Read more.
The chalcid wasp Tetrastichus septentrionalis Yang (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) is one of the dominant pupal parasitoids of Hyphantria cunea (Drury) (Lepidoptera: Erebidae). In this study, the photoperiod’s effect on diapause induction in T. septentrionalis using the alternative host Tenebrio molitor was measured, revealing that T. septentrionalis is of the long-day type. The critical photoperiods for diapause induction in T. septentrionalis were estimated to be between photoperiods of 13:11 and 14:10 (L:D) h at 18 °C, and between photoperiods of 12:12 and 13:11 (L:D) h at 21 °C and 24 °C. We also found that T. septentrionalis diapausing larvae were grey-brown, while normally developed (non-diapausing) individuals were light yellow. The diapause-sensitive insect state was the larval stage, and the short light exposure treatment had a significant cumulative effect on diapause induction. The least squares method was used to calculate a lower developmental threshold of 13.34 ± 0.50 °C and an effective cumulative temperature of 184.46 ± 11.46 d·°C for post-diapause development. The average supercooling point of diapausing mature larvae was significantly lower than that of non-diapausing ones. Our research on T. septentrionalis provides a reference for the biological control of H. cunea and other leaf-eating pests. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Physiology, Reproduction and Development)
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12 pages, 1412 KiB  
Article
Evolution of MALDI-TOF MS Profiles from Lice and Fleas Preserved in Alcohol over Time
by Hanene Benyahia, Philippe Parola and Lionel Almeras
Insects 2023, 14(10), 825; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100825 - 20 Oct 2023
Viewed by 895
Abstract
MALDI-TOF is now considered a relevant tool for the identification of arthropods, including lice and fleas. However, the duration and conditions of storage, such as in ethanol, which is frequently used to preserve these ectoparasites, could impede their classification. The purpose of the [...] Read more.
MALDI-TOF is now considered a relevant tool for the identification of arthropods, including lice and fleas. However, the duration and conditions of storage, such as in ethanol, which is frequently used to preserve these ectoparasites, could impede their classification. The purpose of the present study was to assess the stability of MS profiles from Pediculus humanus corporis lice and Ctenocephalides felis fleas preserved in alcohol from one to four years and kinetically submitted to MALDI-TOF MS. A total of 469 cephalothoraxes from lice (n = 170) and fleas (n = 299) were tested. The reproducibility of the MS profiles was estimated based on the log score values (LSVs) obtained for query profiles compared to the reference profiles included in the MS database. Only MS spectra from P. humanus corporis and C. felis stored in alcohol for less than one year were included in the reference MS database. Approximately 75% of MS spectra from lice (75.2%, 94/125) and fleas (74.4%, 122/164) specimens stored in alcohol for 12 to 48 months, queried against the reference MS database, obtained relevant identification. An accurate analysis revealed a significant decrease in the proportion of identification for both species stored for more than 22 months in alcohol. It was hypothesized that incomplete drying was responsible for MS spectra variations. Then, 45 lice and 60 fleas were subjected to longer drying periods from 12 to 24 h. The increase in the drying period improved the proportion of relevant identification for lice (95%) and fleas (80%). This study highlighted that a correct rate of identification by MS could be obtained for lice and fleas preserved in alcohol for up to four years on the condition that the drying period was sufficiently long for accurate identification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Medical and Livestock Entomology)
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13 pages, 1313 KiB  
Article
Growth Performance, Diet Digestibility, and Chemical Composition of Mealworm (Tenebrio molitor L.) Fed Agricultural By-Products
by Ana Montalbán, Silvia Martínez-Miró, Achille Schiavone, Josefa Madrid and Fuensanta Hernández
Insects 2023, 14(10), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100824 - 20 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1397
Abstract
Humanity’s growing demand for animal protein exceeds the capacity of traditional protein sources to support growing livestock production. Insects offer promising partial substitutes, converting low-nutritional quality materials into high-value biomass. Hence, the bioconversion ability of Tenebrio molitor larvae was assessed by using three [...] Read more.
Humanity’s growing demand for animal protein exceeds the capacity of traditional protein sources to support growing livestock production. Insects offer promising partial substitutes, converting low-nutritional quality materials into high-value biomass. Hence, the bioconversion ability of Tenebrio molitor larvae was assessed by using three types of agricultural by-products (broccoli by-product, tigernut pulp, and grape pomace) at different inclusion levels (0%, 25%, 50%, and 100%) in a carbohydrate-based diet. Ten diets were formulated to assess their impact on the growth, diet digestibility, and nutritional composition of the larvae. For each treatment, eight replicates were employed: five for the growth-performance-digestibility trial and three for the complementary test of uric acid determination. The growth was influenced by the type of diet administered. The broccoli by-product resulted in higher larvae weight and a better feed conversion ratio. However, diets based solely on a single by-product (100%) compromised the productivity and diet digestibility. The larvae changed their nutritional composition depending on the rearing substrate, although the amino acid profile remained consistent. In conclusion, the studied by-products have the potential for use in T. molitor rearing as part of the diet but not as the exclusive ingredients, indicating promising opportunities for using agricultural by-products in T. molitor rearing and production. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Role of Insects in Human Society)
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14 pages, 17595 KiB  
Article
Uridine Diphosphate Glycosyltransferases (UGTs) Involved in the Carotenoid-Based Body Color Difference between Tetranychus cinnabarinus (Red) and Tetranychus urticae (Green)
by Zhifeng Xu, Ting Lin, Tongyang Wang, Yuan Hu, Guangmao Shen, Kaiyang Feng, Ping Zhang and Lin He
Insects 2023, 14(10), 823; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100823 - 18 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1090
Abstract
It has long been disputed whether Tetranychus cinnabarinus and Tetranychus urticae belong to the same genus, with T. cinnabarinus regarded as a red form of T. urticae. However, it is unclear why T. urticae and T. cinnabarinus have different body colors. Since [...] Read more.
It has long been disputed whether Tetranychus cinnabarinus and Tetranychus urticae belong to the same genus, with T. cinnabarinus regarded as a red form of T. urticae. However, it is unclear why T. urticae and T. cinnabarinus have different body colors. Since carotenoids are responsible for the color of many organisms, the carotenoid profiles of T. cinnabarinus and T. urticae were compared by HPLC. There was no difference in carotenoid type, but T. cinnabarinus contained significantly more neoxanthin, astaxanthin, α-carotene, β-carotene, and γ-carotene, which may contribute to the deep red color. The transcriptome sequencing of both species identified 4079 differentially expressed genes (DEGs), of which 12 were related to carotenoid metabolism. RNA interference (RNAi) experiments demonstrated that silencing seven of these DEGs resulted in the different accumulation of carotenoid compounds in T. cinnabarinus and T. urticae. In addition, the body of T. urticae turned yellow after two days of feeding with UGT double-stranded RNAs and β-UGT small interfering RNAs. In conclusion, differences in the carotenoid profiles of T. urticae and T. cinnabarinus may be responsible for the different body colors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Other Arthropods and General Topics)
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21 pages, 3904 KiB  
Article
Vertical Distribution of Fruit Flies (Diptera: Drosophilidae) in Deciduous Forests in the Center of European Russia
by Nikolai G. Gornostaev, Alexander B. Ruchin, Mikhail N. Esin, Oleg E. Lazebny and Alex M. Kulikov
Insects 2023, 14(10), 822; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100822 - 18 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1310
Abstract
Research of Diptera in temperate forests has demonstrated uneven vertical distributions of insects. In this study, we examined the vertical distribution, seasonal fluctuations, and species diversity of Drosophilidae species in the Mordovia State Reserve. This research marks the first exploration of drosophilid vertical [...] Read more.
Research of Diptera in temperate forests has demonstrated uneven vertical distributions of insects. In this study, we examined the vertical distribution, seasonal fluctuations, and species diversity of Drosophilidae species in the Mordovia State Reserve. This research marks the first exploration of drosophilid vertical stratification in the European part of Russia. Using traps, we collected flies in four deciduous forest sites between early June and mid-September in 2020. A total of 27,151 individuals from 10 genera and 34 drosophilid species were identified, with 6 species from 4 genera being new to the Republic of Mordovia. Drosophila obscura Fll. and Scaptodrosophila rufifrons Lw. were the most abundant species in traps. The total highest number of drosophilid flies (10,429 individuals) was captured at a height of 1.5 m, while the lowest number (5086 individuals) was recorded at 12 m. The average number of flies was 6240 and 5387 individuals at heights of 7.5 m and 3.5 m, respectively. However, the prevalence of drosophilid numbers at the 1.5-m height was not constant during the season. We found that in the second part of July the total fly counts at heights of 7.5 m and 12 m exceeded those at 1.5 m. We have described five different types of vertical distribution of drosophilids throughout the season, which differs markedly in mycetobionts and xylosaprobionts ecological groups. Species diversity demonstrated variations across different sites and tiers during the season, with peak diversity observed in June and September. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Arthropod Biodiversity: Ecological and Functional Aspects)
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14 pages, 2380 KiB  
Article
Rapid Evolutionary Adaptation to Diet Composition in the Black Soldier Fly (Hermetia illucens)
by Anton Gligorescu, Long Chen, Kim Jensen, Neda Nasiri Moghadam, Torsten Nygaard Kristensen and Jesper Givskov Sørensen
Insects 2023, 14(10), 821; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100821 - 18 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1853
Abstract
Genetic adaptation of Hermetia illucens (BSF) to suboptimal single sourced waste streams can open new perspectives for insect production. Here, four BSF lines were maintained on a single sourced, low-quality wheat bran diet (WB) or on a high-quality chicken feed diet (CF) for [...] Read more.
Genetic adaptation of Hermetia illucens (BSF) to suboptimal single sourced waste streams can open new perspectives for insect production. Here, four BSF lines were maintained on a single sourced, low-quality wheat bran diet (WB) or on a high-quality chicken feed diet (CF) for 13 generations. We continuously evaluated presumed evolutionary responses in several performance traits to rearing on the two diets. Subsequently, we tested responses to interchanged diets, i.e., of larvae that had been reared on low-quality feed and tested on high-quality feed and vice versa to evaluate costs associated with adaptation to different diets. BSF were found to experience rapid adaptation to the diet composition. While performances on the WB diet were always inferior to the CF diet, the adaptive responses were stronger to the former diet. This stronger response was likely due to stronger selection pressure experienced by BSF fed on the low-quality single sourced diet. The interchanged diet experiment found no costs associated with diet adaptation, but revealed cross generational gain associated with the parental CF diet treatment. Our results revealed that BSF can rapidly respond adaptively to diet, although the mechanisms are yet to be determined. This has potential to be utilized in commercial insect breeding to produce lines tailored to specific diets. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Physiology, Reproduction and Development)
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21 pages, 2055 KiB  
Review
True Parthenogenesis and Female-Biased Sex Ratios in Cicadomorpha and Fulgoromorpha (Hemiptera, Auchenorrhyncha)
by Dora Aguín-Pombo and Valentina G. Kuznetsova
Insects 2023, 14(10), 820; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100820 - 17 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1432
Abstract
Insects are renowned for their remarkable diversity of reproductive modes. Among these, the largest non-holometabolous order, Hemiptera, stands out with one of the most diversified arrays of parthenogenesis modes observed among insects. Although there are extensive reviews on reproduction without fertilization in some [...] Read more.
Insects are renowned for their remarkable diversity of reproductive modes. Among these, the largest non-holometabolous order, Hemiptera, stands out with one of the most diversified arrays of parthenogenesis modes observed among insects. Although there are extensive reviews on reproduction without fertilization in some hemipteran higher taxa, no such analysis has been conducted for the large suborders Fulgoromorpha (planthoppers) and Cicadomorpha (leafhoppers). In both groups, there are species that reproduce by true parthenogenesis, specifically thelytoky, and in Fulgoromorpha, there are species that reproduce by pseudogamy or, more specifically, sperm-dependent parthenogenesis. In this review paper, we give and discuss the only currently known examples of true parthenogenesis in Fulgoromorpha and Cicadomorpha, mainly from the planthopper family Delphacidae and the leafhopper family Cicadellidae. We analyze patterns of distribution, ecology, mating behavior, acoustic communication, and cytogenetic and genetic diversity of parthenoforms and discuss hypotheses about the origin of parthenogenesis in each case. We also highlight examples in which natural populations show a shift in sex ratio toward females and discuss possible causes of this phenomenon, primarily the influence of endosymbiotic bacteria capable of altering the reproductive strategies of the hosts. Our review is mainly based on studies in which the authors have participated. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Physiology, Reproduction and Development)
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18 pages, 12418 KiB  
Article
Feature Refinement Method Based on the Two-Stage Detection Framework for Similar Pest Detection in the Field
by Hongbo Chen, Rujing Wang, Jianming Du, Tianjiao Chen, Haiyun Liu, Jie Zhang, Rui Li and Guotao Zhou
Insects 2023, 14(10), 819; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100819 - 16 Oct 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1232
Abstract
Efficient pest identification and control is critical for ensuring food safety. Therefore, automatic detection of pests has high practical value for Integrated Pest Management (IPM). However, complex field environments and the similarity in appearance among pests can pose a significant challenge to the [...] Read more.
Efficient pest identification and control is critical for ensuring food safety. Therefore, automatic detection of pests has high practical value for Integrated Pest Management (IPM). However, complex field environments and the similarity in appearance among pests can pose a significant challenge to the accurate identification of pests. In this paper, a feature refinement method designed for similar pest detection in the field based on the two-stage detection framework is proposed. Firstly, we designed a context feature enhancement module to enhance the feature expression ability of the network for different pests. Secondly, the adaptive feature fusion network was proposed to avoid the suboptimal problem of feature selection on a single scale. Finally, we designed a novel task separation network with different fusion features constructed for the classification task and the localization task. Our method was evaluated on the proposed dataset of similar pests named SimilarPest5 and achieved a mean average precision (mAP) of 72.7%, which was better than other advanced object detection methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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26 pages, 40636 KiB  
Article
Review of the Narrow-Banded Hawkmoth, Neogurelca montana (Rothschild & Jordan, 1915) (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae) in China, with Morphological and Phylogenetic Analysis
by Zhen-Bang Xu, Ji-Bai He, Nan Yang, Ian J. Kitching and Shao-Ji Hu
Insects 2023, 14(10), 818; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100818 - 16 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1144
Abstract
Neogurelca montana (Rothschild & Jordan, 1915) is a species of the genus Neogurelca Hogenes & Treadaway, 1993, that was previously known from Sichuan, Yunnan, and Tibet, China. Recently, however, this species was also found in Beijing and Hebei. These populations differ from those [...] Read more.
Neogurelca montana (Rothschild & Jordan, 1915) is a species of the genus Neogurelca Hogenes & Treadaway, 1993, that was previously known from Sichuan, Yunnan, and Tibet, China. Recently, however, this species was also found in Beijing and Hebei. These populations differ from those in southwest China in body colour and the shape of the yellow patches of the hindwing—a paler body colour and triangular patches in the former and darker body colour and fan-like patches in the latter. Wing morphology, male and female genitalia, and molecular evidence (DNA barcodes) were analysed for the different localities of this species and three other Neogurelca species—N. hyas, N. himachala, and N. masuriensis. Our molecular data support the Beijing population of montana as a valid subspecies, which we describe as N. montana taihangensis ssp. nov. Wing and genital morphology confirm the molecular conclusions. We also collected larvae of the new subspecies in the Beijing suburbs and describe its life history and larval hosts and compare them with those of N. himachala. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Systematics, Phylogeny and Evolution)
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22 pages, 8621 KiB  
Article
Multi-Channel Time-Domain Boring-Vibration-Enhancement Method Using RNN Networks
by Xiaolin Xu, Juhu Li and Huarong Zhang
Insects 2023, 14(10), 817; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100817 - 16 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1239
Abstract
The larvae of certain wood-boring beetles typically inhabit the interior of trees and feed on the wood, leaving almost no external traces during the early stages of infestation. Acoustic techniques are commonly employed to detect the vibrations produced by these larvae while they [...] Read more.
The larvae of certain wood-boring beetles typically inhabit the interior of trees and feed on the wood, leaving almost no external traces during the early stages of infestation. Acoustic techniques are commonly employed to detect the vibrations produced by these larvae while they feed on wood, significantly increasing detection efficiency compared to traditional methods. However, this method’s accuracy is greatly affected by environmental noise interference. To address the impact of environmental noise, this paper introduces a signal separation system based on a multi-channel attention mechanism. The system utilizes multiple sensors to receive wood-boring vibration signals and employs the attention mechanism to adjust the weights of relevant channels. By utilizing beamforming techniques, the system successfully removes noise from the wood-boring vibration signals and separates the clean wood-boring vibration signals from the noisy ones. The data used in this study were collected from both field and laboratory environments, ensuring the authenticity of the dataset. Experimental results demonstrate that this system can efficiently separate the wood-boring vibration signals from the mixed noisy signals. Full article
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18 pages, 2866 KiB  
Article
A New Perspective to Understand the Late Season Abundance of Delia antiqua (Diptera: Anthomyiidae): A Modeling Approach for the Hot Summer Effect
by Yong Kyun Shin, Subin Kim, Chung Gyoo Park and Dong-Soon Kim
Insects 2023, 14(10), 816; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100816 - 16 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1033
Abstract
The onion maggot, Delia antiqua (Meigen), is one of the most important insect pests to agricultural crops within Allium genus, such as onions and garlic, worldwide. This study was conducted to understand the seasonal abundance of this pest, with special reference to the [...] Read more.
The onion maggot, Delia antiqua (Meigen), is one of the most important insect pests to agricultural crops within Allium genus, such as onions and garlic, worldwide. This study was conducted to understand the seasonal abundance of this pest, with special reference to the hot summer effect (HSE), which was incorporated into the model of summer diapause termination (SDT). We assumed that hot summer temperatures arrested the development of pupae during summer diapause. The estimated SDT curve showed that it occurred below a high-temperature limit of 22.1 °C and peaked at 16 °C. Accordingly, HSE resulted in delaying the late season fly abundance after summer, namely impacting the third generation. In Jinju, South Korea, the activity of D. antiqua was observed to cease for more than two months in the hot summer and this pattern was well described by model outputs. In the warmer Jeju Island region, Korea, the late season emergence was predicted to be greatly delayed, and D. antiqua did not exhibit a specific peak in the late season in the field. The abundance patterns observed in Korea were very different from those in countries such as the United States, Canada, and Germany. These regions are located at a much higher latitude (42° N to 53° N) than Korea (33° N to 35° N), and their HSE was less intense, showing overlapped or slightly separated second and third generation peaks. Consequently, our modeling approach for the summer diapause termination effectively explained the abundance patterns of D. antiqua in the late season. Also, the model will be useful for determining spray timing for emerging adults in late summer as onion and garlic are sown in the autumn in Korea. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Ecology, Diversity and Conservation)
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14 pages, 3345 KiB  
Article
Gut Bacteria Promote Phosphine Susceptibility of Tribolium castaneum by Aggravating Oxidative Stress and Fitness Costs
by Zhengyan Wang, Shan Zhang, Zhiyuan Liu, Zhenzhen Chang and Haisheng Hu
Insects 2023, 14(10), 815; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100815 - 15 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1224
Abstract
Knowledge about resistance mechanisms can provide ideas for pesticide resistance management. Although several studies have unveiled the positive or negative impacts of gut microbes on host pesticide resistance, minimal research is available regarding the association between gut microbes and host phosphine resistance. To [...] Read more.
Knowledge about resistance mechanisms can provide ideas for pesticide resistance management. Although several studies have unveiled the positive or negative impacts of gut microbes on host pesticide resistance, minimal research is available regarding the association between gut microbes and host phosphine resistance. To explore the influence of gut bacteria on host phosphine susceptibility and its molecular basis, mortality, fitness, redox responses, and immune responses of adult Tribolium castaneum were determined when it was challenged by phosphine exposure and/or gut bacteria inoculation. Five cultivable gut bacteria were excised from a population of phosphine-resistant T. castaneum. Among them, only Enterococcus sp. inoculation significantly promoted host susceptibility to phosphine, while inoculation of any other gut bacteria had no significant effect on host phosphine susceptibility. Furthermore, when T. castaneum was exposed to phosphine, Enterococcus sp. inoculation decreased the female fecundity, promoted host oxidative stress, and suppressed the expression and activity of host superoxide dismutase, catalase, and peroxidase. In the absence of phosphine, Enterococcus sp. inoculation also elicited overactive immune responses in T. castaneum, including the immune deficiency and Toll signaling pathways and the dual oxidase–reactive oxygen species system. These results indicate that Enterococcus sp. likely promotes host phosphine susceptibility by aggravating oxidative stress and fitness costs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Behavior and Pathology)
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14 pages, 4503 KiB  
Article
Laboratory Insecticide Efficacy Trials of Lethal Harborages for Control of the Common Bed Bug, Cimex lectularius (Hemiptera: Cimicidae)
by Jutamas Kerdsawang, Kai Dang, Theeraphap Chareonviriyaphap and Stephen L. Doggett
Insects 2023, 14(10), 814; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100814 - 14 Oct 2023
Viewed by 3994
Abstract
Over the past two decades, there has been a worldwide resurgence in the bed bugs Cimex lectularius L. and Cimex hemipterus (F.). This is primarily due to insecticide resistance, making bed bug management and eradication challenging and expensive. To address the need for [...] Read more.
Over the past two decades, there has been a worldwide resurgence in the bed bugs Cimex lectularius L. and Cimex hemipterus (F.). This is primarily due to insecticide resistance, making bed bug management and eradication challenging and expensive. To address the need for more affordable control solutions, “lethal harborages” were explored. Cardboard squares were treated using insecticidal dusts at different dosage levels, including silica dioxide, diatomaceous earth, deltamethrin, permethrin, and fipronil. Two strains of C. lectularius, one susceptible and one resistant, were allowed to enter the treated harborages, and mortality rates were recorded daily. The silica dioxide products proved to be the most efficacious, consistently achieving 100% mortality between 14–17 d at the highest dose. An artificial environment trial using the “new ChinChex®” formulation of silica dioxide resulted in the complete elimination of bed bugs in the treated harborages within 21 d. These findings suggest that lethal harborages, especially those impregnated with silica dioxide, offer a cost-effective solution that could be incorporated into broader integrated bed bug management strategies. This approach may help alleviate the burden of bed bug infestations in economically disadvantaged communities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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16 pages, 2101 KiB  
Article
The Effect of Wood Ash and Soil Applications on the Behavior and Survival of Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) Larvae on Maize
by Nozibusiso Maphumulo, Hannalene du Plessis and Johnnie Van den Berg
Insects 2023, 14(10), 813; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100813 - 13 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1504
Abstract
Cryptic feeding inside maize whorls makes it difficult to control fall armyworm (FAW). Smallholder farmers use alternative methods of control, of which the efficacy is uncertain. We determined the efficacy of wood ash and soil for the control of FAW and recorded its [...] Read more.
Cryptic feeding inside maize whorls makes it difficult to control fall armyworm (FAW). Smallholder farmers use alternative methods of control, of which the efficacy is uncertain. We determined the efficacy of wood ash and soil for the control of FAW and recorded its effect on larval preference and ballooning. Maize plants were artificially infested with larvae of different instars and treatments were either soil, wet ash, or dry ash, applied as single preventative or curative applications. Larvae exhibited non-preference for treated leaves in choice tests. The efficacy of treatments varied largely between experiments. Under laboratory conditions, ash treatments resulted in significant mortality of 1st and 5th instars. Dry and wet ash as curative applications for 1st instars resulted in 67 and 66% mortality, respectively, compared to mortality recorded in the control (22%). Under field conditions, survival of 3rd instars on treated plants was low (21–34%), compared to 70% on untreated plants. Due to the high variability in efficacy, the use of these alternative methods does not guarantee effective control. They do, however, have a place in IPM systems if applied as soon as infestations are observed and when larvae as still small. Recommendations on the use of ash and soil as spot treatments against FAW are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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16 pages, 2984 KiB  
Article
How Effective Are Push–Pull Semiochemicals as Deterrents for Bark Beetles? A Global Meta-Analysis of Thirty Years of Research
by Somia Afzal, Helen F. Nahrung, Simon A. Lawson and Richard Andrew Hayes
Insects 2023, 14(10), 812; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100812 - 13 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1480
Abstract
Bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) are among the most damaging tree pests globally. Rising temperatures, drought, fire, storms, cyclones, and poor forest management cause stress and loss of vigour in trees, and these conditions favour bark beetle outbreaks. While research has been conducted [...] Read more.
Bark beetles (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae) are among the most damaging tree pests globally. Rising temperatures, drought, fire, storms, cyclones, and poor forest management cause stress and loss of vigour in trees, and these conditions favour bark beetle outbreaks. While research has been conducted on push–pull strategies to deter bark beetles, using attractive and deterrent semiochemicals, the potential of this strategy to reduce bark beetle populations, particularly in the genera Dendroctonus and Ips, remains uncertain. Here, we conducted a global meta-analysis of 52 research articles to quantify the effects of semiochemical treatments on managing different species of Dendroctonus and Ips for forest protection. Based on this analysis, we found that push–pull semiochemicals can significantly reduce Dendroctonus and Ips populations measured by a reduction in the attraction to lure/trap catches, tree mortality, and attacks on trees. The overall efficacy of the push–pull semiochemical treatment shows a 66% reduction for Ips compared to control and a 54% reduction compared to control for Dendroctonus, while, at the species level, there was a 69% reduction for Dendroctonus ponderosae (Hopkins) and a 94% reduction in Ips perturbatus (Eichhoff), and a 93% reduction in Ips latidens (LeConte). Interestingly, among different treatment sources, the efficacy of conspecific semiochemicals in combination with heterospecific semiochemicals and non-host volatiles showed a 92% reduction in Dendroctonus spp., and conspecific semiochemicals in combination with non-host volatiles showed a 77% significant reduction in Ips spp., while the efficacy of heterospecific semiochemicals in reducing Ips population was about 69%, and 20% in Dendroctonus. Among different ecological regions, the use of a push–pull strategy showed a 70% reduction in Dendroctonus in central-west North America, and Ips showed a 75% reduction in southwest North America. Our results demonstrate that semiochemical-based push–pull techniques have the potential to reduce Dendroctonus and Ips bark beetle populations. Furthermore, based on our analysis, the efficacy of such eco-friendly interventions could be further improved and provide a good tool for forest managers to control these pests, at least under some circumstances. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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12 pages, 1471 KiB  
Article
Dactylopius opuntiae [Cockerell] Could Be a Source of Antioxidants for the Preservation of Beef Patties
by Othoniel H. Aragon-Martinez, Flavio Martinez-Morales, Marco M. González-Chávez, Santiago de J. Méndez-Gallegos, Rodolfo González-Chávez, Juan C. Posadas-Hurtado and Mario A. Isiordia-Espinoza
Insects 2023, 14(10), 811; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100811 - 13 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1423
Abstract
Dactylopius opuntiae is an insect pest that contains at least carminic acid, which has antioxidant properties. Since there is a relationship between the antioxidant ability and preservative action of compounds applied to meat products, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the [...] Read more.
Dactylopius opuntiae is an insect pest that contains at least carminic acid, which has antioxidant properties. Since there is a relationship between the antioxidant ability and preservative action of compounds applied to meat products, the purpose of this study was to evaluate the antioxidant activity and usefulness of a D. opuntiae extract for beef patty preservation. The insects were bred and processed to obtain a liquid extract. For the extract, its carminic acid content, antioxidant activity against two free radicals, and actions on food quality parameters were determined. The D. opuntiae dry powder contained 2.91% w/w carminic acid, while the liquid extract exhibited an IC50 value of 3437.8 ± 67.8 and 19633.0 ± 674.5 µg/mL against the DPPH and ABTS radicals. Nevertheless, these antioxidant actions were lower than those found in a D. coccus extract. The D. opuntiae extract improved in a short time the redness and yellowness, eliminated the unfavorable effect of their vehicle on the MetMb level, and greatly reduced the TBARS formation. For the first time, an extract of D. opuntiae was applied to beef patties, and its beneficial antioxidant action on meat acceptance parameters was confirmed, which has potential commercial applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insects and Their Derivatives for Human Practical Uses 2nd Edition)
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19 pages, 2549 KiB  
Article
Niche and Range Shifts of Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus Suggest That the Latecomer Shows a Greater Invasiveness
by Peixiao Nie and Jianmeng Feng
Insects 2023, 14(10), 810; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100810 - 13 Oct 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1347
Abstract
The yellow fever (Aedes aegypti) and Asian tiger (Ae. albopictus) mosquitos are major vectors of global mosquito-borne pathogens. However, their niche and range shifts, the underlying mechanisms, and related relative invasion rates remain scarcely known. We examined the niche [...] Read more.
The yellow fever (Aedes aegypti) and Asian tiger (Ae. albopictus) mosquitos are major vectors of global mosquito-borne pathogens. However, their niche and range shifts, the underlying mechanisms, and related relative invasion rates remain scarcely known. We examined the niche and range shifts between the native and invasive Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus populations through dynamic niche and range models and the largest occurrence record datasets to date. We detected substantial niche and range expansions in both species, probably because the introduced populations have more opportunities to acclimate to diverse environmental conditions than their native counterparts. Mitigating climate change could effectively control their future invasions, given that future climate changes could promote their invasiveness. Additionally, compared to the introduced Ae. aegypti, the more recent invader Ae. albopictus had greater niche and range expansion over its shorter invasion history. In terms of the range shifts, Ae. albopictus had an invasion rate approximately 13.3 times faster than that of Ae. aegypti, making it a more invasive vector of global mosquito-borne pathogens. Therefore, considering its higher invasion rate, much more attention should be paid to Ae. albopictus in devising our strategies against prevailing global mosquito-borne pathogens than Ae. aegypti. Since small niche shifts could result in their large range shifts, niche shifts might be a more important indicator for biological invasion assessments. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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12 pages, 1928 KiB  
Article
Deciphering the Chemical Fingerprint of Astragalus membranaceus: Volatile Components Attractive to Bruchophagus huonchili Wasps
by Chaoran Zhang, Penghua Bai, Jie Kang, Tian Dong, Haixia Zheng and Xianhong Zhang
Insects 2023, 14(10), 809; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100809 - 12 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1328
Abstract
Bruchophagus huonchili is a pest that poses a serious threat to the yield and quality of Astragalus membranaceus seeds. In this study, we employed solid-phase microextraction (SPME) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to identify volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in A. membranaceus pods during [...] Read more.
Bruchophagus huonchili is a pest that poses a serious threat to the yield and quality of Astragalus membranaceus seeds. In this study, we employed solid-phase microextraction (SPME) and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) to identify volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in A. membranaceus pods during the pod-filled period. Additionally, we utilized a Y-tube olfactometer to measure the behavioral response of B. huonchili to different individual VOCs and specific VOC-based formulations. The most effective formulations were further evaluated for their effectiveness in attracting wasps in the field. Our findings revealed that A. membranaceus pods emit 25 VOCs, including green leaf volatiles (GLVs) and terpenoid and aromatic compounds. Among these compounds, five were found to be most attractive to B. huonchili at the following concentrations: 10 µg/µL cis-β-ocimene, 500 µg/µL hexyl acetate, 100 µg/µL hexanal, 1 µg/µL decanal, and 10 µg/µL β-caryophyllene, with respective response rates of 67.65%, 67.74%, 65.12%, 67.57%, and 66.67%. In addition, we evaluated 26 mixed VOC formulations, and three of them were effective at attracting B. huonchili. Furthermore, field experiments showed that one of the formulations was significantly more effective than the others, which could be used for monitoring B. huonchili populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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15 pages, 1732 KiB  
Article
The Susceptibility of Bemisia tabaci Mediterranean (MED) Species to Attack by a Parasitoid Wasp Changes between Two Whitefly Strains with Different Facultative Endosymbiotic Bacteria
by Massimo Giorgini, Giorgio Formisano, Rosalía García-García, Saúl Bernat-Ponce and Francisco Beitia
Insects 2023, 14(10), 808; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100808 - 11 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1324
Abstract
In this study, two strains of the mitochondrial lineage Q1 of Bemisia tabaci MED species, characterized by a different complement of facultative bacterial endosymbionts, were tested for their susceptibility to be attacked by the parasitoid wasp Eretmocerus mundus, a widespread natural enemy [...] Read more.
In this study, two strains of the mitochondrial lineage Q1 of Bemisia tabaci MED species, characterized by a different complement of facultative bacterial endosymbionts, were tested for their susceptibility to be attacked by the parasitoid wasp Eretmocerus mundus, a widespread natural enemy of B. tabaci. Notably, the BtHC strain infected with Hamiltonella and Cardinium was more resistant to parasitization than the BtHR strain infected with Hamiltonella and Rickettsia. The resistant phenotype consisted of fewer nymphs successfully parasitized (containing the parasitoid mature larva or pupa) and in a lower percentage of adult wasps emerging from parasitized nymphs. Interestingly, the resistance traits were not evident when E. mundus parasitism was compared between BtHC and BtHR using parasitoids originating from a colony maintained on BtHC. However, when we moved the parasitoid colony on BtHR and tested E. mundus after it was reared on BtHR for four and seven generations, we saw then that BtHC was less susceptible to parasitization than BtHR. On the other hand, we did not detect any difference in the parasitization of the BtHR strain between the three generations of E. mundus tested. Our findings showed that host strain is a factor affecting the ability of E. mundus to parasitize B. tabaci and lay the basis for further studies aimed at disentangling the role of the facultative endosymbiont Cardinium and of the genetic background in the resistance of B. tabaci MED to parasitoid attack. Furthermore, they highlight that counteradaptations to the variation of B. tabaci defence mechanisms may be rapidly selected in E. mundus to maximize the parasitoid fitness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Host–Parasite Interactions)
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12 pages, 1476 KiB  
Article
The Characterization of Melanaphis sacchari Microbiota and Antibiotic Treatment Effect on Insects
by Beatriz Xoconostle-Cázares, José Abrahán Ramírez-Pool, Leandro Alberto Núñez-Muñoz, Berenice Calderón-Pérez, Brenda Yazmín Vargas-Hernández, Rafael Bujanos-Muñiz and Roberto Ruiz-Medrano
Insects 2023, 14(10), 807; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100807 - 11 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1285
Abstract
Insects are under constant selective pressure, which has resulted in adaptations to novel niches such as crops. This is the case of the pest Melanaphis sacchari, the sugarcane aphid, native to Africa and currently spreading worldwide. The aphid undergoes successful parthenogenesis, causing [...] Read more.
Insects are under constant selective pressure, which has resulted in adaptations to novel niches such as crops. This is the case of the pest Melanaphis sacchari, the sugarcane aphid, native to Africa and currently spreading worldwide. The aphid undergoes successful parthenogenesis, causing important damage to a variety of crops and leading to important economic losses for farmers. A natural M. sacchari population grown in sorghum was studied to identify its microbiome through the sequencing of its 16S rDNA metagenome. A high proportion of Proteobacteria, followed by Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, and Actinobacteria, was observed. We also detected Wolbachia, which correlates with the asexual reproduction of its host. M. sacchari was challenged in a bioassay with the antibiotics oxytetracycline and streptomycin, resulting in a dose-dependent decay of its survival rate. The possibility of controlling this pest by altering its microbiota is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biology and Molecular Mechanisms of Plant-Aphid Interactions)
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12 pages, 2498 KiB  
Article
Lateralized Movements during the Mating Behavior, Which Are Associated with Sex and Sexual Experience, Increase the Mating Success in Alphitobius diaperinus (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae)
by Erika Calla-Quispe, Esperanza Irigoin, Madina Mansurova, Carlos Martel and Alfredo J. Ibáñez
Insects 2023, 14(10), 806; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100806 - 10 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1260
Abstract
In the present study, we explored the effects of displacement directionality in mating behavior (i.e., lateralized and non-lateralized movements) on mating success (i.e., copulation occurs) and efficiency (i.e., time length at which copulation is achieved), and its association with sex and sexual experience [...] Read more.
In the present study, we explored the effects of displacement directionality in mating behavior (i.e., lateralized and non-lateralized movements) on mating success (i.e., copulation occurs) and efficiency (i.e., time length at which copulation is achieved), and its association with sex and sexual experience in A. diaperinus. To do so, we carried out mating experiments and recorded the behavior of the mating pair during the whole mating sequence (i.e., precopulatory and copulatory phases). During the precopulatory phase, independently of sex and sexual experience, all beetles performed non-lateralized (i.e., backside or frontside) approaches; however, only sexually experienced beetles showed lateralized approaches (i.e., right-side and left-side). Notably, experienced males exhibited greater mating success than virgin males. After the approach, both virgin and experienced males displayed lateralized and non-lateralized mounts on the females with distinct mating success. Regardless of their sexual experience, 100% of successful mating attempts were achieved when males mounted from the females’ right side. Furthermore, the development of lateralized approaches and mounts reduces the time of mating sequence span compared with non-lateralized behaviors. We highlight the importance of lateralization in mating behavior and sexual experience to achieve higher mating success, addressing a potential learning ability of beetles based on experience. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Biocontrol and Behavioral Approaches to Manage Invasive Insects)
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10 pages, 2835 KiB  
Article
Early Season Monitoring of Tarnished Plant Bug, Lygus lineolaris, in Wild Hosts Using Pheromone Traps
by Justin George, James P. Glover, Gadi V. P. Reddy, Chris Johnson and David R. Hall
Insects 2023, 14(10), 805; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100805 - 7 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1610
Abstract
The tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Hemiptera: Miridae), has a wide host range of over 700 plant species, including 130 crops of economic importance. During early spring, managing the field edges with weeds and other wild hosts is important in preventing early-season infestations [...] Read more.
The tarnished plant bug, Lygus lineolaris (Hemiptera: Miridae), has a wide host range of over 700 plant species, including 130 crops of economic importance. During early spring, managing the field edges with weeds and other wild hosts is important in preventing early-season infestations of L. lineolaris in cotton to prevent damage to the squares and other fruiting structures. Scouting fields for L. lineolaris is time- and labor-intensive, and end-user variability associated with field sampling can lead to inaccuracies. Insect traps that combine visual cues and pheromones are more accurate, sustainable, and economically feasible in contrast to traditional insect detection methods. In this study, we investigated the application of red or white sticky cards baited with the female-produced sex pheromone to monitor overwintering L. lineolaris populations in early spring. Field experiments demonstrated that the red sticky cards baited with a pheromone blend containing hexyl butyrate, (E)-2-hexenyl butyrate, and (E)-4-oxo-2-hexenal in 4:10:7 ratio are highly effective in trapping L. lineolaris adults in early spring before the row crops are planted, and in monitoring their movement into a cotton crop. The monitoring of L. lineolaris should help growers to make judicious decisions on insecticide applications to control early pest infestations, thereby reducing economic damage to cotton. Full article
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11 pages, 788 KiB  
Article
Prediction of the Overseas Migration of the Fall Armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda, to Japan
by Akira Otuka
Insects 2023, 14(10), 804; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100804 - 6 Oct 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1284
Abstract
(1) Background: The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda, is an invasive migratory insect pest that first arrived in Japan in early July 2019. Since then, the species has immigrated to Japan mainly in the summer monsoon season and inflicted damage mainly on the [...] Read more.
(1) Background: The fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda, is an invasive migratory insect pest that first arrived in Japan in early July 2019. Since then, the species has immigrated to Japan mainly in the summer monsoon season and inflicted damage mainly on the maize used as animal feed in the western region, where major immigrations occur. In this study, to know the precise arrival timing and area of S. frugiperda for purposes of pest management, a prediction method for its overseas migration from neighboring source areas was developed. (2) Methods: The method uses the Weather Research and Forecast model to give numerical weather predictions and the GEARN-insect model to predict migration. Emigration source areas on the Chinese mainland and the island of Taiwan and the insect’s take-off and flight behaviors were input to the GEARN-insect model to calculate the daily migration prediction figures. (3) Results: In a prediction evaluation using 2-year six-point trapping data in Japan, the prediction method achieved an average hitting ratio of 78%. (4) Conclusions: The method has sufficient prediction quality for operational use. The technique may be applicable to other migratory moths immigrating to Japan, such as the oriental armyworm, Mythimna separata. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Insect Pest and Vector Management)
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11 pages, 3699 KiB  
Article
Engineered Expression of Vip3A in Green Tissues as a Feasible Approach for the Control of Insect Pests in Maize
by Guangsheng Yuan, Cheng Zeng, Haoya Shi, Yong Yang, Juan Du, Chaoying Zou, Langlang Ma, Guangtang Pan and Yaou Shen
Insects 2023, 14(10), 803; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100803 - 6 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1138
Abstract
Genetic engineering technology offers opportunities to improve many important agronomic traits in crops, including insect-resistance. However, genetically modified (GM) exogenous proteins in edible tissues of transgenic crops has become an issue of intense public concern. To advance the application of GM techniques in [...] Read more.
Genetic engineering technology offers opportunities to improve many important agronomic traits in crops, including insect-resistance. However, genetically modified (GM) exogenous proteins in edible tissues of transgenic crops has become an issue of intense public concern. To advance the application of GM techniques in maize, a Cre/loxP-based strategy was developed for manipulating the transgenes in green tissues while locking them in non-green tissues. In the strategy, the site-specific excision can be used to switch on or off the expression of transgenes at specific tissues. In this work, two basic transgenic maize, named KEY, carrying the Cre gene, and LOCK, containing the Vip3A gene with a blocked element, were obtained based on their separate fusion gene cassettes. The expression level and concentration of Vip3A were observed with a high specific accumulation in the green tissues (leaf and stem), and only a small amount was observed in the root and kernel tissues in the KEY × LOCK hybrids. The insect resistance of transgenic maize against two common lepidopteran pests, Ostrinia furnacalis and Spodoptera frugiperda, was assessed in the laboratory and field. The results indicate that the hybrids possessed high resistance levels against the two pests, with mortality rates above 73.6% and damage scales below 2.4 compared with the control group. Our results suggest that the Cre/loxP-mediated genetic engineering approach has a competitive advantage in GM maize. Overall, the findings from this study are significant for providing a feasible strategy for transgenes avoiding expression in edible parts and exploring novel techniques toward the biosafety of GM plants. Full article
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21 pages, 791 KiB  
Review
Current Status of Omics Studies Elucidating the Features of Reproductive Biology in Blood-Feeding Insects
by Aditi Kulkarni, Frida M. Delgadillo, Sharan Gayathrinathan, Brian I. Grajeda and Sourav Roy
Insects 2023, 14(10), 802; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects14100802 - 6 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1836
Abstract
Female insects belonging to the genera Anopheles, Aedes, Glossina, and Rhodnius account for the majority of global vector-borne disease mortality. In response to mating, these female insects undergo several molecular, physiological, and behavioral changes. Studying the dynamic post-mating molecular responses in these insects [...] Read more.
Female insects belonging to the genera Anopheles, Aedes, Glossina, and Rhodnius account for the majority of global vector-borne disease mortality. In response to mating, these female insects undergo several molecular, physiological, and behavioral changes. Studying the dynamic post-mating molecular responses in these insects that transmit human diseases can lead to the identification of potential targets for the development of novel vector control methods. With the continued advancements in bioinformatics tools, we now have the capability to delve into various physiological processes in these insects. Here, we discuss the availability of multiple datasets describing the reproductive physiology of the common blood-feeding insects at the molecular level. Additionally, we compare the male-derived triggers transferred during mating to females, examining both shared and species-specific factors. These triggers initiate post-mating genetic responses in female vectors, affecting not only their reproductive success but also disease transmission. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect Bioinformatics)
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