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Insects, Volume 9, Issue 2 (June 2018)

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Open AccessReview Transmission Success of Entomopathogenic Nematodes Used in Pest Control
Received: 24 May 2018 / Revised: 15 June 2018 / Accepted: 18 June 2018 / Published: 20 June 2018
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Abstract
Entomopathogenic nematodes from the two genera Steinernema and Heterorhabditis are widely used as biological agents against various insect pests and represent a promising alternative to replace pesticides. Efficacy and biocontrol success can be enhanced through improved understanding of their biology and ecology. Many
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Entomopathogenic nematodes from the two genera Steinernema and Heterorhabditis are widely used as biological agents against various insect pests and represent a promising alternative to replace pesticides. Efficacy and biocontrol success can be enhanced through improved understanding of their biology and ecology. Many endogenous and environmental factors influence the survival of nematodes following application, as well as their transmission success to the target species. The aim of this paper is to give an overview of the major topics currently considered to affect transmission success of these biological control agents, including interactions with insects, plants and other members of the soil biota including conspecifics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle Spatial Distribution of Bactrocera dorsalis and Thaumatotibia leucotreta in Smallholder Avocado Orchards along Altitudinal Gradient of Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro
Received: 10 May 2018 / Revised: 8 June 2018 / Accepted: 14 June 2018 / Published: 19 June 2018
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Abstract
Avocado (Persea americana) fruits are an important source of income and a nutritious food for small-scale growers and other stakeholders involved in farming along the Afrotropical highlands of Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya and Tanzania, respectively. Avocado fruits are
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Avocado (Persea americana) fruits are an important source of income and a nutritious food for small-scale growers and other stakeholders involved in farming along the Afrotropical highlands of Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya and Tanzania, respectively. Avocado fruits are infested by several insect pests, namely the Asian invasive fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel) (Diptera: Tephritidae), and the false codling moth, Thaumatotibia leucotreta Meyrick (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae). However, there is inadequate information on the distribution patterns of these pests in small-scale avocado cropping systems in the East African highlands. This study was initiated to generate a spatial distribution map of B. dorsalis and T. leucotreta in avocado orchards at Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya and Tanzania, respectively. The two pests were monitored by using their respective parapheromone lures for two years between August 2012 and July 2014. Fruit damage was assessed by computing the proportion of infested fruits for B. dorsalis, whereas the damage score was used for T. leucotreta. Our results indicated that the mean number of B. dorsalis per trap per day differed significantly across elevation, being highest in lowland zone for both Taita Hills (15.90) and Mount Kilimanjaro (24.45). Similarly, the percentage infestation of ground collected fruits by B. dorsalis varied with altitude, being lowest at highlands above 1500 m.a.s.l. (0.66% and 0.83% for Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro, respectively). Conversely, the mean number of T. leucotreta did not vary with altitude in either study area. However, the damage score for T. leucotreta infestation was significantly lower in the highlands of both transects (7.0% and11.1% for Taita Hills and Mount Kilimanjaro, respectively). These findings describe spatial trends that are important in formulating strategies aimed at suppressing the populations of B. dorsalis and T. leucotreta in East African avocado cropping systems. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Susceptibility of Duponchelia fovealis Zeller (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) to Soil-Borne Entomopathogenic Fungi
Received: 1 May 2018 / Revised: 8 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 19 June 2018
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Abstract
Duponchelia fovealis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) is an invasive species that has had a large impact on strawberry crops in Brazil. Pesticides have had limited effectiveness and the use of biological control agents to improve its management is the most appropriate approach. The aim of
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Duponchelia fovealis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) is an invasive species that has had a large impact on strawberry crops in Brazil. Pesticides have had limited effectiveness and the use of biological control agents to improve its management is the most appropriate approach. The aim of this study was to evaluate the pathogenicity and virulence of entomopathogenic fungi—isolated from soil—against Duponchelia fovealis larvae under laboratory and greenhouse conditions. Pathogenicity screenings were performed for twenty isolates from Beauveria bassiana, Beauveria caledonica, Isaria javanica, Metarhizium anisopliae, and Lecanicillium sp. against third instar larvae of D. fovealis at the concentration of 109 conidia·mL−1. Lethal concentration (LC50) and lethal time (LT50) were determined for the most pathogenic isolates and for one commercial mycoinsecticide. Mortality rates varied from 10 to 89%. The isolates B. bassiana Bea1, Bea110, Bea111 and I. javanica Isa340 were the most pathogenic. The most virulent isolates were B. bassiana Bea111 and I. javanica Isa340 with LC50 values of 2.33 × 106 and 9.69 × 105 conidia·mL−1, respectively. Under greenhouse conditions, the efficacy of LC50 of the isolates I. javanica Isa340 and B. bassiana Bea111 were 45% and 52%, respectively. Our results indicate that these isolates are strong candidates for application in the control of D. fovealis. This study is the first evaluation of soil-borne entomopathogenic fungi against D. fovealis. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Prediction of Sporulation and Germination by the Spider Mite Pathogenic Fungus Neozygites floridana (Neozygitomycetes: Neozygitales: Neozygitaceae) Based on Temperature, Humidity and Time
Received: 11 May 2018 / Revised: 7 June 2018 / Accepted: 14 June 2018 / Published: 19 June 2018
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Abstract
Neozygites floridana is a pathogenic fungus and natural enemy of the two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae), which is an important polyphagous plant pest. The aim of this study was to reveal and predict what combination of temperature, relative humidity (RH), and
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Neozygites floridana is a pathogenic fungus and natural enemy of the two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae (Acari: Tetranychidae), which is an important polyphagous plant pest. The aim of this study was to reveal and predict what combination of temperature, relative humidity (RH), and time that enables and promotes primary conidia production and capilliconidia formation in N. floridana (Brazilian isolate ESALQ 1420), in both a detached leaf assay mimicking climatic conditions in the leaf boundary layer and in a semi-field experiment. In the detached leaf assay, a significant number of conidia were produced at 90% RH but the highest total number of primary conidia and proportion of capilliconidia was found at 95 and 100% RH at 25 °C. Positive temperature and RH effects were observed and conidia production was highest in the 8 to 12 h interval. The semi-field experiment showed that for a >90% probability of N. floridana sporulation, a minimum of 6 h with RH >90% and 10 h with temperatures >21 °C, or 6 h with temperatures >21 °C and 15 h with RH >90% was needed. Our study identified suitable conditions for primary- and capilliconidia production in this Brazilian N. floridana isolate. This information provides an important base for building models of a Decision Support System (DSS) where this natural enemy may be used as a tool in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and a base for developing in vivo production systems of N. floridana. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview Secretion Systems and Secreted Proteins in Gram-Negative Entomopathogenic Bacteria: Their Roles in Insect Virulence and Beyond
Received: 13 May 2018 / Revised: 11 June 2018 / Accepted: 13 June 2018 / Published: 19 June 2018
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Abstract
Many Gram-negative bacteria have evolved insect pathogenic lifestyles. In all cases, the ability to cause disease in insects involves specific bacterial proteins exported either to the surface, the extracellular environment, or the cytoplasm of the host cell. They also have several distinct mechanisms
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Many Gram-negative bacteria have evolved insect pathogenic lifestyles. In all cases, the ability to cause disease in insects involves specific bacterial proteins exported either to the surface, the extracellular environment, or the cytoplasm of the host cell. They also have several distinct mechanisms for secreting such proteins. In this review, we summarize the major protein secretion systems and discuss examples of secreted proteins that contribute to the virulence of a variety of Gram-negative entomopathogenic bacteria, including Photorhabdus, Xenorhabdus, Serratia, Yersinia, and Pseudomonas species. We also briefly summarize two classes of exported protein complexes, the PVC-like elements, and the Tc toxin complexes that were first described in entomopathogenic bacteria. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
Open AccessArticle Influence of Elytral Color Pattern, Size, and Sex of Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera, Coccinellidae) on Parasite Prevalence and Intensity of Hesperomyces virescens (Ascomycota, Laboulbeniales)
Received: 20 May 2018 / Revised: 12 June 2018 / Accepted: 12 June 2018 / Published: 15 June 2018
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Abstract
Harmonia axyridis is an invasive ladybird (Coleoptera, Coccinellidae) with the potential to outcompete native ladybird species in its invasive distribution area. It was introduced as a biological control agent in many countries but has also spread unintentionally in many others. Hesperomyces virescens (Ascomycota,
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Harmonia axyridis is an invasive ladybird (Coleoptera, Coccinellidae) with the potential to outcompete native ladybird species in its invasive distribution area. It was introduced as a biological control agent in many countries but has also spread unintentionally in many others. Hesperomyces virescens (Ascomycota, Laboulbeniales) is a minute (200–400 µm in size) biotrophic fungus that infects over 30 species of ladybirds. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether the elytral color pattern, size, and sex of Ha. axyridis affect infection by H. virescens. Coloration in Ha. axyridis has been linked to the presence of an antimicrobial alkaloid (harmonine). In fall 2016, we collected 763 Ha. axyridis individuals in Cambridge, Massaschusetts, of which 119 (16%) bore H. virescens fruiting bodies. We analyzed 160 individuals (80 infected, 80 uninfected) concerning the intensity of infection by H. virescens. Elytral sizes and coloration patterns were quantified using digital photography and analytical methods. Smaller ladybirds had a higher prevalence and higher intensity of parasitism. Additionally, male ladybirds bore more thalli compared to female ladybirds. Elytral color patterns had an effect on neither prevalence nor intensity of infection by Laboulbeniales in our dataset, although we found a slight trend to higher intensity of parasitism in more melanic males. This suggests that the development of Laboulbeniales might be affected by certain insect alkaloids. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle Research on Vegetable Pest Warning System Based on Multidimensional Big Data
Received: 20 April 2018 / Revised: 10 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 13 June 2018
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Abstract
Pest early warning technology is part of the prerequisite for the timely and effective control of pest outbreaks. Traditional pest warning system with artificial mathematical statistics, radar, and remote sensing has some deficiency in many aspects, such as higher cost, weakness of accuracy,
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Pest early warning technology is part of the prerequisite for the timely and effective control of pest outbreaks. Traditional pest warning system with artificial mathematical statistics, radar, and remote sensing has some deficiency in many aspects, such as higher cost, weakness of accuracy, low efficiency, and so on. In this study, Pest image data was collected and information about four major vegetable pests (Bemisia tabaci (Gennadius), Phyllotreta striolata (Fabricius), Plutella xylostella (Linnaeus), and Frankliniella occidentalis (Pergande) (Thysanoptera, Thripidae)) in southern China was extracted. A multi-sensor network system was constructed to collect small-scale environmental data on vegetable production sites. The key factors affecting the distribution of pests were discovered by multi-dimensional information, such as soil, environment, eco-climate, and meteorology of vegetable fields, and finally, the vegetable pest warning system that is based on multidimensional big data (VPWS-MBD) was implemented. Pest and environmental data from Guangzhou Dongsheng Bio-Park were collected from June 2017 to February 2018. The number of pests is classified as level I (0–56), level II (57–131), level III (132–299), and level IV (above 300) by K-Means algorithm. The Pearson correlation coefficient and the grey relational analysis algorithm were used to calculate the five key influence factors of rainfall, soil temperature, air temperature, leaf surface humidity, and soil moisture. Finally, Back Propagation (BP) Neural Network was used for classification prediction. The result shows: I-level warning accuracy was 96.14%, recall rate was 97.56%; II-level pest warning accuracy was 95.34%, the recall rate was 96.45%; III-level pest warning accuracy of 100%, the recall rate was 96.28%; IV-level pest warning accuracy of 100%, recall rate was 100%. It proves that the early warning system can effectively predict vegetable pests and achieve the early warning of vegetable pest’s requirements, with high availability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect Monitoring and Trapping in Agricultural Systems)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Honey Bee Survival and Pathogen Prevalence: From the Perspective of Landscape and Exposure to Pesticides
Received: 23 March 2018 / Revised: 1 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 13 June 2018
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Abstract
In order to study the in situ effects of the agricultural landscape and exposure to pesticides on honey bee health, sixteen honey bee colonies were placed in four different agricultural landscapes. Those landscapes were three agricultural areas with varying levels of agricultural intensity
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In order to study the in situ effects of the agricultural landscape and exposure to pesticides on honey bee health, sixteen honey bee colonies were placed in four different agricultural landscapes. Those landscapes were three agricultural areas with varying levels of agricultural intensity (AG areas) and one non-agricultural area (NAG area). Colonies were monitored for different pathogen prevalence and pesticide residues over a period of one year. RT-qPCR was used to study the prevalence of seven different honey bee viruses as well as Nosema sp. in colonies located in different agricultural systems with various intensities of soybean, corn, sorghum, and cotton production. Populations of the parasitic mite Varroa destructor were also extensively monitored. Comprehensive MS-LC pesticide residue analyses were performed on samples of wax, honey, foragers, winter bees, dead bees, and crop flowers for each apiary and location. A significantly higher level of varroa loads were recorded in colonies of the AG areas, but this at least partly correlated with increased colony size and did not necessarily result from exposure to pesticides. Infections of two viruses (deformed wing virus genotype a (DWVa) and acute bee paralysis virus (ABPV)) and Nosema sp. varied among the four studied locations. The urban location significantly elevated colony pathogen loads, while AG locations significantly benefited and increased the colony weight gain. Cotton and sorghum flowers contained high concentrations of insecticide including neonicotinoids, while soybean and corn had less pesticide residues. Several events of pesticide toxicity were recorded in the AG areas, and high concentrations of neonicotinoid insecticides were detected in dead bees. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Stressors on Bee Health)
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Open AccessArticle Within-Host Competition between Two Entomopathogenic Fungi and a Granulovirus in Diatraea saccharalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae)
Received: 2 May 2018 / Revised: 30 May 2018 / Accepted: 1 June 2018 / Published: 13 June 2018
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Abstract
We provide insights into how the interactions of two entomopathogenic fungi and a virus play a role in virulence, disease development, and pathogen reproduction for an economically important insect crop pest, the sugarcane borer Diatraea saccharalis (Fabricius) (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). In our model system,
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We provide insights into how the interactions of two entomopathogenic fungi and a virus play a role in virulence, disease development, and pathogen reproduction for an economically important insect crop pest, the sugarcane borer Diatraea saccharalis (Fabricius) (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). In our model system, we highlight the antagonistic effects of the co-inoculation of Beauveria bassiana and granulovirus (DisaGV) on virulence, compared to their single counterparts. By contrast, combinations of Metarhizium anisopliae and B. bassiana, or M. anisopliae and DisaGV, have resulted in additive effects against the insect. Intriguingly, most cadavers that were derived from dual or triple infections, produced signs/symptoms of only one species after the death of the infected host. In the combination of fungi and DisaGV, there was a trend where a higher proportion of viral infection bearing conspicuous symptoms occurred, except when the larvae were inoculated with M. anisopliae and DisaGV at the two highest inoculum rates. Co-infections with B. bassiana and M. anisopliae did not affect pathogen reproduction, since the sporulation from co-inoculated larvae did not differ from their single counterparts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle Resistance to Permethrin, β-cyfluthrin, and Diazinon in Florida Horn Fly Populations
Received: 10 April 2018 / Revised: 25 May 2018 / Accepted: 7 June 2018 / Published: 12 June 2018
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Abstract
Horn flies, Haematobia irritans, a major cattle pest in the USA, cause substantial economic losses and current control methods rely heavily on insecticides. Three horn fly populations were evaluated for insecticide susceptibility to permethrin, β-cyfluthrin, and diazinon. Susceptibility was variable by population,
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Horn flies, Haematobia irritans, a major cattle pest in the USA, cause substantial economic losses and current control methods rely heavily on insecticides. Three horn fly populations were evaluated for insecticide susceptibility to permethrin, β-cyfluthrin, and diazinon. Susceptibility was variable by population, with the greatest resistance exhibited by a 66-fold resistance ratio (RR) to permethrin and >14-fold RR to diazinon. Mechanisms of resistance were determined using molecular techniques and enzymatic assays. The knockdown resistance (kdr) genotype (L150F) associated with pyrethroid resistance, and a G262A mutation in acetylcholinesterase, previously associated with organophosphate resistance, were found in all field populations evaluated. Insensitivity of diazoxon at the acetylcholinesterase (AChE) target site was significantly different in horn flies from one of the field sites. For metabolic detoxifying enzymes, cytochrome P450 nor general esterases showed a significant difference between field strains and a laboratory susceptible strain. Pyrethroid resistance was likely due to the presence of the L150F mutation in the population. In vitro studies targeting the AChE enzyme did not support the notion that the G262A mutation was the sole cause of resistance to organophosphates, and, therefore, the exact resistance mechanism to diazinon was not able to be confirmed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Expression of Resistance in Amaranthus spp. (Caryophyllales: Amaranthaceae): Effects of Selected Accessions on the Behaviour and Biology of the Amaranth Leaf-Webber, Spoladea recurvalis (Lepidoptera: Crambidae)
Received: 16 April 2018 / Revised: 4 June 2018 / Accepted: 6 June 2018 / Published: 8 June 2018
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Abstract
Spoladea recurvalis F. is a major pest moth of amaranth (Amaranthus spp.) flowers worldwide, with a potential of causing complete foliage loss under severe outbreaks. Chemical insecticides are uneconomical for resource-poor farmers and pose health and environmental risks. Host plant resistance (HPR)
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Spoladea recurvalis F. is a major pest moth of amaranth (Amaranthus spp.) flowers worldwide, with a potential of causing complete foliage loss under severe outbreaks. Chemical insecticides are uneconomical for resource-poor farmers and pose health and environmental risks. Host plant resistance (HPR) to insects is an effective, economical and environmentally friendly alternative that is poorly understood and largely unexploited among traditional leafy vegetables. A total of 35 amaranth accessions were evaluated for the expression of their antixenotic and antibiotic traits against S. recurvalis, focusing on their effects on the biology of the pest in comparison with a susceptible accession. The accession VI036227 was found to be highly resistant against the pest, exhibiting exemplary antibiosis by causing 100% larval mortality within the first 36 h, despite not being deterrent for oviposition. The accessions VI048076, VI056563 and VI047555-B demonstrated moderate resistance against the pest for specific parameters including low oviposition, moderate early stage larval mortality and reduced adult longevity. Total mortality and weight gain in these three accessions were, however, not significantly different from the susceptible control. Higher numbers of eggs were laid in no-choice compared to choice situations. The implications of these findings in the management of S. recurvalis on amaranths are discussed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Frequent Insect Visitors Are Not Always Pollen Carriers in Hybrid Carrot Pollination
Received: 11 April 2018 / Revised: 22 May 2018 / Accepted: 1 June 2018 / Published: 7 June 2018
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Abstract
Insect crop visitations do not necessarily translate to carriage or transfer of pollen. To evaluate the potential of the various insects visiting hybrid carrot flowers to facilitate pollen transfer, this study examines insect visitation rates to hybrid carrot seed crops in relation to
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Insect crop visitations do not necessarily translate to carriage or transfer of pollen. To evaluate the potential of the various insects visiting hybrid carrot flowers to facilitate pollen transfer, this study examines insect visitation rates to hybrid carrot seed crops in relation to weather, time of day and season, pollen carrying capacity, inter-row movement, and visitation frequency to male-fertile and male-sterile umbels. The highest pollen loads were carried by nectar scarabs, honey bees, and the hover fly Eristalis tenax (Linnaeus). Honey bees and muscoid flies were observed to forage mostly within the male fertile carrot row while nectar scarabs and E. tenax foraged across rows, carrying equal pollen loads regardless of their distance from the pollen source. All observed insect taxa were more frequently seen visiting male-fertile than male-sterile umbels. In contrast to other visiting insects, honey bees were abundant and frequent visitors and were observed carrying high pollen loads. Consequently, we suggest both optimizing honey bee management and improving the attraction of carrot lines to honey bees to improve pollination rates for hybrid carrot seed crops. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effect of the Topical Repellent para-Menthane-3,8-diol on Blood Feeding Behavior and Fecundity of the Dengue Virus Vector Aedes aegypti
Received: 13 April 2018 / Revised: 23 May 2018 / Accepted: 25 May 2018 / Published: 4 June 2018
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Abstract
Dengue fever is an acute disease caused by the dengue virus and transmitted primarily by the mosquito Aedes aegypti. The current strategy for dengue prevention is vector control including the use of topical repellents to reduce mosquito biting. Although N,N
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Dengue fever is an acute disease caused by the dengue virus and transmitted primarily by the mosquito Aedes aegypti. The current strategy for dengue prevention is vector control including the use of topical repellents to reduce mosquito biting. Although N,N-diethyl-m-methylbenzamide (DEET) is the most common active ingredient in topical repellent products, para-menthane-3,8-diol (PMD) is also used commercially. Studies have indicated PMD reduced biting by 90–95% for up to 6–8 h, similar to the efficacy of DEET, depending on the testing environment. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the behavioral effects of PMD on Ae. aegypti blood feeding and fecundity to explore the potential impact of PMD on downstream mosquito life-history traits. Two experiments were performed. In both experiments, cohorts of female Ae. aegypti (Belize strain) were exposed to 20% PMD or ethanol for 10 min in a closed system and introduced to an artificial membrane feeding system. Following a 30min feed time, mosquitoes of Experiment 1 were killed and weighed as a proxy measure of blood meal, whereas mosquitoes of Experiment 2 were monitored for oviposition, a measure of fecundity. Results showed a statistically significant reduction (p < 0.001) in the percentage of Ae. aegypti that blood-fed when exposed to PMD (38%) compared to those non-exposed (49%). No significant difference in fecundity between test populations was indicated. These findings suggest that exposure of Ae. aegypti to 20% PMD may influence the probability of subsequent blood feeding but of those mosquitoes that do blood feed, egg-lay density is not affected. Further studies are warranted to investigate the full range of effects of PMD exposure on other Ae. aegypti life-history traits such as mating, to continue characterizing the potential effects of PMD to impact overall vector population dynamics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Integrated Pest Management)
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Open AccessArticle Host-Specific Activation of Entomopathogenic Nematode Infective Juveniles
Received: 1 May 2018 / Revised: 28 May 2018 / Accepted: 1 June 2018 / Published: 2 June 2018
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Abstract
Entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) are potent insect parasites and have been used for pest control in agriculture. Despite the complexity of the EPN infection process, hosts are typically killed within 5 days of initial infection. When free-living infective juveniles (IJs) infect a host, they
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Entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) are potent insect parasites and have been used for pest control in agriculture. Despite the complexity of the EPN infection process, hosts are typically killed within 5 days of initial infection. When free-living infective juveniles (IJs) infect a host, they release their bacterial symbiont, secrete toxic products, and undergo notable morphological changes. Collectively, this process is referred to as “activation” and represents the point in a nematode’s life cycle when it becomes actively parasitic. The effect of different host tissues and IJ age on activation, and how activation itself is related to virulence, are not well understood. Here, we employed a recently developed bioassay, which quantifies IJ activation, as a tool to address these matters. Appreciating that activation is a key part of the EPN infection process, we hypothesized that activation would positively correlate to virulence. Using the EPNs Steinernema carpocapsae and S. feltiae we found that EPN activation is host-specific and influenced by infective juvenile age. Additionally, our data suggest that activation has a context-dependent influence on virulence and could be predictive of virulence in some cases such as when IJ activation is especially low. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessFeature PaperCommunication Camponotus floridanus Ants Incur a Trade-Off between Phenotypic Development and Pathogen Susceptibility from Their Mutualistic Endosymbiont Blochmannia
Received: 30 April 2018 / Revised: 23 May 2018 / Accepted: 30 May 2018 / Published: 1 June 2018
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Abstract
Various insects engage in microbial mutualisms in which the reciprocal benefits exceed the costs. Ants of the genus Camponotus benefit from nutrient supplementation by their mutualistic endosymbiotic bacteria, Blochmannia, but suffer a cost in tolerating and regulating the symbiont. This cost suggests
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Various insects engage in microbial mutualisms in which the reciprocal benefits exceed the costs. Ants of the genus Camponotus benefit from nutrient supplementation by their mutualistic endosymbiotic bacteria, Blochmannia, but suffer a cost in tolerating and regulating the symbiont. This cost suggests that the ants face secondary consequences such as susceptibility to pathogenic infection and transmission. In order to elucidate the symbiont’s effects on development and disease defence, Blochmannia floridanus was reduced in colonies of Camponotus floridanus using antibiotics. Colonies with reduced symbiont levels exhibited workers of smaller body size, smaller colony size, and a lower major-to-minor worker caste ratio, indicating the symbiont’s crucial role in development. Moreover, these ants had decreased cuticular melanisation, yet higher resistance to the entomopathogen Metarhizium brunneum, suggesting that the symbiont reduces the ants’ ability to fight infection, despite the availability of melanin to aid in mounting an immune response. While the benefits of improved growth and development likely drive the mutualism, the symbiont imposes a critical trade-off. The ants’ increased susceptibility to infection exacerbates the danger of pathogen transmission, a significant risk given ants’ social lifestyle. Thus, the results warrant research into potential adaptations of the ants and pathogens that remedy and exploit the described disease vulnerability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mechanisms Underlying Transmission of Insect Pathogens)
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Open AccessArticle Species Composition, Abundance and Seasonal Phenology of Social Wasps (Hymenoptera: Vespidae) in Wisconsin Vineyards
Received: 14 February 2018 / Revised: 23 May 2018 / Accepted: 24 May 2018 / Published: 31 May 2018
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Abstract
Social wasps can be serious pests in fruit growing plantings and are becoming increasingly problematic for grape growers. In this study, we conducted two experiments to assess the species composition and seasonal phenology of social wasps in Wisconsin vineyards in 2015 and 2017.
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Social wasps can be serious pests in fruit growing plantings and are becoming increasingly problematic for grape growers. In this study, we conducted two experiments to assess the species composition and seasonal phenology of social wasps in Wisconsin vineyards in 2015 and 2017. In 2015, three attractants were used: (1) wine; (2) heptyl butyrate (HB); and (3) acetic acid and isobutanol (AAIB) and in 2017, two attractants were used: HB and AAIB. In both years, the same eight species were trapped from the genera Vespula, Dolichovespula, and Polistes. The predominant wasp species trapped were Vespula maculifrons, Vespula vidua, Vespula flavopilosa, and Vespula germanica in 2015 and V. maculifrons, V. flavopilosa, V. germanica, and Dolichovespula maculata in 2017, in order of total abundance. The populations of V. vidua decreased in 2017 compared to 2015, indicating large inter-annual variation. In both years, AAIB lures trapped significantly more V. flavopilosa, V. maculifrons, and V. germanica, the three most prevalent species during grape harvest, than HB, whereas HB lures trapped more V. vidua than AAIB. Wine was generally attractive to all species in 2015. This study identifies for the first time the wasp species present in Wisconsin commercial vineyards using chemical attractants. This knowledge, along with the seasonal phenology of these pest species, will help facilitate the development of management strategies for social wasps in commercial vineyards. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect-Plant Interactions)
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Open AccessArticle Local Insect Damage Reduces Fluctuating Asymmetry in Next-year’s Leaves of Downy Birch
Received: 5 February 2018 / Revised: 8 May 2018 / Accepted: 8 May 2018 / Published: 11 May 2018
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Abstract
Insect herbivory imposes stress on host plants. This stress may cause an increase in leaf fluctuating asymmetry (FA), which is defined as the magnitude of the random deviations from a symmetrical leaf shape. We tested the hypothesis that differences in leaf FA among
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Insect herbivory imposes stress on host plants. This stress may cause an increase in leaf fluctuating asymmetry (FA), which is defined as the magnitude of the random deviations from a symmetrical leaf shape. We tested the hypothesis that differences in leaf FA among individual shoots of downy birch, Betula pubescens, are at least partly explained by local damage caused by insects in the previous year. Unexpectedly, we found that in the year following the damage imposed by miners, leafrollers and defoliators, damaged birch shoots produced leaves with lower FAs compared to shoots from the same tree that had not been damaged by insects. This effect was consistent among the different groups of insects investigated, but intra-species comparisons showed that statistical significance was reached only in shoots that had been damaged by the birch leaf roller, Deporaus betulae. The detected decrease in leaf FA in the year following the damage agrees with the increases in shoot performance and in antiherbivore defence. The present results indicate that within-plant variation in leaf FA may have its origin in previous-year damage by insects, and that FA may influence the current-year’s distribution of herbivory. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Insect-Plant Interactions)
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Open AccessArticle Toxicity of Selected Acaricides to Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) and Varroa (Varroa destructor Anderson and Trueman) and Their Use in Controlling Varroa within Honey Bee Colonies
Received: 7 February 2018 / Revised: 30 April 2018 / Accepted: 9 May 2018 / Published: 10 May 2018
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Abstract
The efficacies of various acaricides in order to control a parasitic mite, the Varroa mite, Varroa destructor, of honey bees, were measured in two different settings, namely, in laboratory caged honey bees and in queen-right honey bee colonies. The Varroa infestation levels
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The efficacies of various acaricides in order to control a parasitic mite, the Varroa mite, Varroa destructor, of honey bees, were measured in two different settings, namely, in laboratory caged honey bees and in queen-right honey bee colonies. The Varroa infestation levels before, during, and after the acaricide treatments were determined in two ways, namely: (1) using the sugar shake protocol to count mites on bees and (2) directly counting the dead mites on the hive bottom inserts. The acaricides that were evaluated were coumaphos, tau-fluvalinate, amitraz, thymol, and natural plant compounds (hop acids), which were the active ingredients. The acaricide efficacies in the colonies were evaluated in conjunction with the final coumaphos applications. All of the tested acaricides significantly increased the overall Varroa mortality in the laboratory experiment. Their highest efficiencies were recorded at 6 h post-treatment, except for coumaphos and thymol, which exhibited longer and more consistent activity. In the honey bee colonies, a higher Varroa mortality was recorded in all of the treatments, compared with the natural Varroa mortality during the pretreatment period. The acaricide toxicity to the Varroa mites was consistent in both the caged adult honey bees and workers in the queen-right colonies, although, two of these acaricides, coumaphos at the highest doses and hop acids, were comparatively more toxic to the worker bees. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Organochlorine Pesticides in Honey and Pollen Samples from Managed Colonies of the Honey Bee Apis mellifera Linnaeus and the Stingless Bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin from Southern, Mexico
Received: 15 March 2018 / Revised: 25 April 2018 / Accepted: 3 May 2018 / Published: 10 May 2018
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Abstract
In this paper, we show the results of investigating the presence of organochlorine pesticides in honey and pollen samples from managed colonies of the honey bee, Apis mellifera L. and of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin. Three colonies of each species were
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In this paper, we show the results of investigating the presence of organochlorine pesticides in honey and pollen samples from managed colonies of the honey bee, Apis mellifera L. and of the stingless bee Scaptotrigona mexicana Guérin. Three colonies of each species were moved into each of two sites. Three samples of pollen and three samples of honey were collected from each colony: the first collection occurred at the beginning of the study and the following ones at every six months during a year. Thus the total number of samples collected was 36 for honey (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana) and 36 for pollen (18 for A. mellifera and 18 for S. mexicana). We found that 88.44% and 93.33% of honey samples, and 22.22% and 100% of pollen samples of S. mexicana and A. mellifera, respectively, resulted positive to at least one organochlorine. The most abundant pesticides were Heptaclor (44% of the samples), γ-HCH (36%), DDT (19%), Endrin (18%) and DDE (11%). Despite the short foraging range of S. mexicana, the number of pesticides quantified in the honey samples was similar to that of A. mellifera. Paradoxically we found a small number of organochlorines in pollen samples of S. mexicana in comparison to A. mellifera, perhaps indicating a low abundance of pollen sources within the foraging range of this species. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Stressors on Bee Health)
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Open AccessArticle Rapid Cold Hardening Confers a Transient Increase in Low Temperature Survival in Diapausing Chilo suppressalis Larvae
Received: 31 March 2018 / Revised: 1 May 2018 / Accepted: 7 May 2018 / Published: 9 May 2018
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Abstract
The striped stem borer, Chilo suppressalis (Walker), overwinters as a diapausing larva. The diapausing larvae were tested for a rapid cold hardening (RCH) response and its role in the insect’s survival of sub-zero temperatures. When laboratory-reared diapausing larvae were transferred directly from the
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The striped stem borer, Chilo suppressalis (Walker), overwinters as a diapausing larva. The diapausing larvae were tested for a rapid cold hardening (RCH) response and its role in the insect’s survival of sub-zero temperatures. When laboratory-reared diapausing larvae were transferred directly from the rearing temperature of 25 °C to −14 °C and maintained there for 2 h, 21% survived. Acclimation of diapausing larvae for 4 h at 5 °C before their exposure for 2 h to −14 °C increased survival to approximately 41%, indicating an RCH response. Durability of RCH effects on low temperature survival was less than 1 h. Although transient in the test, the increased survival acquired through rapid cold hardening may play a role in preparing the diapausing larvae for abrupt temperature drops in the field that would otherwise be lethal. Full article
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Open AccessArticle A New Alien Invasive Longhorn Beetle, Xylotrechus chinensis (Cerambycidae), Is Infesting Mulberries in Catalonia (Spain)
Received: 12 March 2018 / Revised: 3 May 2018 / Accepted: 4 May 2018 / Published: 9 May 2018
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Abstract
In this paper, the invasion of a new alien beetle species to Europe, the longhorn Xylotrechus chinensis (Chevrolat) (Cerambycidae), originating from East Asia, is revealed. It has settled in Catalonia (Spain), occupying at present an area of at least 44.1 km2,
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In this paper, the invasion of a new alien beetle species to Europe, the longhorn Xylotrechus chinensis (Chevrolat) (Cerambycidae), originating from East Asia, is revealed. It has settled in Catalonia (Spain), occupying at present an area of at least 44.1 km2, where it has been shown to severely infest (ca. 10 to 45%) and eventually kill mulberry trees in private and public grounds. The main objective of this study was to evaluate its impact and provide new significant insights into its life history, seasonality, reproductive capacity (females produce an average of 83.4 ± 9.02 eggs) and the type of damage produced to mulberries. Such damage was thoroughly described to facilitate inspection by others. At least in laboratory conditions, X. chinensis has not used common grape vines as an alternative hostplant. Both plants, mulberries and grape vines, are important in Catalonia and Spain, the former providing shade and ornament to many streets and avenues, and the latter having great economic significance in Mediterranean wine production areas. Possible control methods to hinder its spread are suggested and one local wasp, Stephanus serrator (Stephanidae), was identified as a likely parasitoid. We believe the risk of this beetle widely spreading in Europe is very real. Full article
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Open AccessReview Cyanogenesis in Arthropods: From Chemical Warfare to Nuptial Gifts
Received: 7 March 2018 / Revised: 23 April 2018 / Accepted: 24 April 2018 / Published: 3 May 2018
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Abstract
Chemical defences are key components in insect–plant interactions, as insects continuously learn to overcome plant defence systems by, e.g., detoxification, excretion or sequestration. Cyanogenic glucosides are natural products widespread in the plant kingdom, and also known to be present in arthropods. They are
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Chemical defences are key components in insect–plant interactions, as insects continuously learn to overcome plant defence systems by, e.g., detoxification, excretion or sequestration. Cyanogenic glucosides are natural products widespread in the plant kingdom, and also known to be present in arthropods. They are stabilised by a glucoside linkage, which is hydrolysed by the action of β-glucosidase enzymes, resulting in the release of toxic hydrogen cyanide and deterrent aldehydes or ketones. Such a binary system of components that are chemically inert when spatially separated provides an immediate defence against predators that cause tissue damage. Further roles in nitrogen metabolism and inter- and intraspecific communication has also been suggested for cyanogenic glucosides. In arthropods, cyanogenic glucosides are found in millipedes, centipedes, mites, beetles and bugs, and particularly within butterflies and moths. Cyanogenic glucosides may be even more widespread since many arthropod taxa have not yet been analysed for the presence of this class of natural products. In many instances, arthropods sequester cyanogenic glucosides or their precursors from food plants, thereby avoiding the demand for de novo biosynthesis and minimising the energy spent for defence. Nevertheless, several species of butterflies, moths and millipedes have been shown to biosynthesise cyanogenic glucosides de novo, and even more species have been hypothesised to do so. As for higher plant species, the specific steps in the pathway is catalysed by three enzymes, two cytochromes P450, a glycosyl transferase, and a general P450 oxidoreductase providing electrons to the P450s. The pathway for biosynthesis of cyanogenic glucosides in arthropods has most likely been assembled by recruitment of enzymes, which could most easily be adapted to acquire the required catalytic properties for manufacturing these compounds. The scattered phylogenetic distribution of cyanogenic glucosides in arthropods indicates that the ability to biosynthesise this class of natural products has evolved independently several times. This is corroborated by the characterised enzymes from the pathway in moths and millipedes. Since the biosynthetic pathway is hypothesised to have evolved convergently in plants as well, this would suggest that there is only one universal series of unique intermediates by which amino acids are efficiently converted into CNglcs in different Kingdoms of Life. For arthropods to handle ingestion of cyanogenic glucosides, an effective detoxification system is required. In butterflies and moths, hydrogen cyanide released from hydrolysis of cyanogenic glucosides is mainly detoxified by β-cyanoalanine synthase, while other arthropods use the enzyme rhodanese. The storage of cyanogenic glucosides and spatially separated hydrolytic enzymes (β-glucosidases and α-hydroxynitrile lyases) are important for an effective hydrogen cyanide release for defensive purposes. Accordingly, such hydrolytic enzymes are also present in many cyanogenic arthropods, and spatial separation has been shown in a few species. Although much knowledge regarding presence, biosynthesis, hydrolysis and detoxification of cyanogenic glucosides in arthropods has emerged in recent years, many exciting unanswered questions remain regarding the distribution, roles apart from defence, and convergent evolution of the metabolic pathways involved. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chemical Ecology)
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Open AccessArticle Field Trapping Bactrocera latifrons (Diptera: Tephritidae) with Select Eugenol Analogs That Have Been Found to Attract Other ‘Non-Responsive’ Fruit Fly Species
Received: 24 March 2018 / Revised: 15 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 1 May 2018
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Abstract
Bactrocera latifrons (Hendel) (Diptera: Tephritidae) is a pest fruit fly species native to Oriental Asia which has invaded and established in Hawaii and Tanzania and has been recovered in detection trapping in California. It is largely non-responsive to the male lures cuelure and
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Bactrocera latifrons (Hendel) (Diptera: Tephritidae) is a pest fruit fly species native to Oriental Asia which has invaded and established in Hawaii and Tanzania and has been recovered in detection trapping in California. It is largely non-responsive to the male lures cuelure and methyl eugenol. Alpha-ionol + cade oil is a moderately effective male B. latifrons attractant, but is not as attractive as cuelure or methyl eugenol are to other fruit fly species. An improved attractant is therefore desired. With the recent success in finding other non-responsive fruit fly species attracted to isoeugenol, methyl-isoeugenol, or dihydroeugenol in Australia and other countries, we wanted to assess whether B. latifrons might also respond to these “eugenol analogs.” Working with wild B. latifrons populations in Hawaii, we assessed the relative catch of B. latifrons in traps baited with the eugenol analogs with catch in traps baited with alpha-ionol, alpha-ionol + cade oil, or alpha-ionol + eugenol. Catch was significantly higher in traps baited with alpha-ionol + cade oil relative to traps with any of the other baits. There was, though, some male B. latifrons catch in traps baited with dihydroeugenol or isoeugenol but none in traps baited with methyl-isoeugenol. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chemical Ecology)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Spore Acquisition and Survival of Ambrosia Beetles Associated with the Laurel Wilt Pathogen in Avocados after Exposure to Entomopathogenic Fungi
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 3 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 25 April 2018
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Abstract
Laurel wilt is a disease threatening the avocado industry in Florida. The causative agent of the disease is a fungus vectored by ambrosia beetles that bore into the trees. Until recently, management strategies for the vectors of the laurel wilt fungus relied solely
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Laurel wilt is a disease threatening the avocado industry in Florida. The causative agent of the disease is a fungus vectored by ambrosia beetles that bore into the trees. Until recently, management strategies for the vectors of the laurel wilt fungus relied solely on chemical control and sanitation practices. Beneficial entomopathogenic fungi (EPF) are the most common and prevalent natural enemies of pathogen vectors. Laboratory experiments demonstrated that commercial strains of EPF can increase the mortality of the primary vector, Xyleborus glabratus, and potential alternative vectors, Xylosandrus crassiusculus, Xyleborus volvulus and Xyleborus bispinatus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). Our study provides baseline data for three formulated commercially-available entomopathogenic fungi used as potential biocontrol agents against X. crassiusculus, X. volvulus and X. bispinatus. The specific objectives were to determine: (1) the mean number of viable spores acquired per beetle species adult after being exposed to formulated fungal products containing different strains of EPF (Isaria fumosorosea, Metarhizium brunneum and Beauveria bassiana); and (2) the median and mean survival times using paper disk bioassays. Prior to being used in experiments, all fungal suspensions were adjusted to 2.4 × 106 viable spores/mL. The number of spores acquired by X. crassiusculus was significantly higher after exposure to B. bassiana, compared to the other fungal treatments. For X. volvulus, the numbers of spores acquired per beetle were significantly different amongst the different fungal treatments, and the sequence of spore acquisition rates on X. volvulus from highest to lowest was I. fumosorosea > M. brunneum > B. bassiana. After X. bispinatus beetles were exposed to the different suspensions, the rates of acquisition of spores per beetle amongst the different fungal treatments were similar. Survival estimates (data pooled across two tests) indicated an impact for each entomopathogenic fungus per beetle species after exposure to a filter paper disk treated at the same fungal suspension concentration. Kaplan–Meier analysis (censored at day 7) revealed that each beetle species survived significantly shorter in bioassays containing disks treated with EPF compared to water only. This study demonstrated that ambrosia beetles associated with the laurel wilt pathogen in avocados are susceptible to infection by EPF under laboratory conditions. However, the EPF needs to be tested under field conditions to confirm their efficacy against the beetles. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Parasite-Insect Interactions)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Mating Behavior of Rosalia batesi (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) Is Mediated by Male-Produced Sex Pheromones
Received: 1 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 23 April 2018
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Abstract
Rosalia batesi Harold (Cerambycidae) is a hardwood boring species endemic to Japan. We investigated the adult mating behavior of this species in the field and laboratory. Most males appeared on mating sites before noon, significantly earlier than females did, in field observations. The
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Rosalia batesi Harold (Cerambycidae) is a hardwood boring species endemic to Japan. We investigated the adult mating behavior of this species in the field and laboratory. Most males appeared on mating sites before noon, significantly earlier than females did, in field observations. The female approached and contacted the male; the male responded and started the successive mating sequence, comprising mounting, copulation, and appeasement behavior. Before the encounter, the male raised its fore and mid legs and bent the abdominal tip ventrally. Next, a peculiarly structured bifurcate tip was exposed with opening and closing motion, which can be observed in the entire family Cerambycidae and is thought to be associated with the emission of volatile male sex pheromones. Male and female orientation toward conspecifics was examined using T-shaped olfactometers in four combinations (male–male, female–male, female–female, male–female). Males exclusively attracted females, indicating the existence of male-produced sex pheromones. A laboratory bioassay with three temperature regimes revealed the temperature dependence of this calling behavior. The calling behavior occurred only when the air temperature and male body surface temperature, which are associated with light intensity, were within the range of 26–33 °C and 26–28 °C, respectively. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Elevated CO2 Concentrations Impact the Semiochemistry of Aphid Honeydew without Having a Cascade Effect on an Aphid Predator
Received: 16 March 2018 / Revised: 16 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 20 April 2018
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Abstract
Honeydew is considered a cornerstone of the interactions between aphids and their natural enemies. Bacteria activity occurring in aphid honeydew typically results in the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are used by the natural enemies of aphids to locate their prey.
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Honeydew is considered a cornerstone of the interactions between aphids and their natural enemies. Bacteria activity occurring in aphid honeydew typically results in the release of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that are used by the natural enemies of aphids to locate their prey. Because atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration directly impacts the physiology of plants, we raise the hypothesis that elevated CO2 concentrations impact the quantity of honeydew produced by aphids, as well as the diversity and quantity of honeydew VOCs, leading to cascade effects on the foraging behavior of aphids’ natural enemies. Using solid-phase microextraction, we analyzed the VOCs emitted by honeydew from pea aphids (Acyrthosiphon pisum Harris) reared under 450 ± 50 ppm of CO2 (aCO2) or 800 ± 50 ppm CO2 (eCO2). While the total amount of honeydew excreted was only slightly reduced by eCO2 concentrations, we detected qualitative and quantitative differences in the semiochemistry of aphid honeydew between CO2 conditions. Three VOCs were not found in the honeydew of eCO2 aphids: 3-methyl-2-buten-1-ol, 2-methyl-1-butanol, and isobutanol. However, no difference was observed in the searching and oviposition behaviors of hoverfly (Episyrphus balteatus (De Geer)) females exposed to plants covered with honeydew originating from the different CO2 conditions. The present work showed the effect of a particular aspect of atmospheric changes, and should be extended to other abiotic parameters, such as temperature. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Chemical Ecology)
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Open AccessArticle Entomofauna Associated with Agroforestry Systems of Timber Species and Cacao in the Southern Region of the Maracaibo Lake Basin (Mérida, Venezuela)
Received: 19 February 2018 / Revised: 16 April 2018 / Accepted: 17 April 2018 / Published: 20 April 2018
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Abstract
Agroforestry systems are environment-friendly production systems which help to preserve biodiversity while providing people with a way of earning a living. Cacao is a historically important crop in Venezuela that traditionally has been produced in agroforestry systems. However, few studies have evaluated how
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Agroforestry systems are environment-friendly production systems which help to preserve biodiversity while providing people with a way of earning a living. Cacao is a historically important crop in Venezuela that traditionally has been produced in agroforestry systems. However, few studies have evaluated how different trees used in those systems affect the dynamics and abundance of insects. The present study evaluated the entomofauna assemblages associated with different combinations of four timber-yielding trees and four Criollo cacao cultivars established in a lowland tropical ecosystem in Venezuela. A randomized block design with two replicates was used, each block having 16 plots which included all 16 possible combinations of four native timber trees (Cordia thaisiana, Cedrela odorata, Swietenia macrophylla, and Tabebuia rosea) and four Criollo cacao cultivars (Porcelana, Guasare, Lobatera and Criollo Merideño). Insects were collected with yellow pan traps and sorted to order. Coleoptera and parasitoid Hymenoptera were determined to the family level. In total, 49,538 individuals of seven orders were collected, with Hymenoptera, Diptera, and Hemiptera being the most abundant, although only Lepidoptera and Coleoptera abundances were significantly influenced by the timber tree species. Twenty-three families of parasitoid Hymenoptera and 26 of Coleoptera were found. Significant differences in insects’ assemblages were found both in parasitoid Hymenoptera and Coleoptera families associated to every shade tree, with the families Eulophidae and Lycidae being indicators for Cordia, and Chalcididae for Swietenia. The entomofauna relationship with the cacao cultivar was barely significant, although Scydmaenidae and Scarabaeidae were indicators for Lobatera and Merideño, respectively. No significant effects were found for interaction with cacao cultivars and native trees. We concluded that the particular insect assemblages found in Cedrela odorata and Cordia thaisiana, together with their high growing rates, make these two species an optimal choice for cacao agroforestry systems. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Oxygen Consumption and Acoustic Activity of Adult Callosobruchus maculatus (F.) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae: Bruchinae) during Hermetic Storage
Received: 29 March 2018 / Revised: 18 April 2018 / Accepted: 19 April 2018 / Published: 20 April 2018
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Abstract
Acoustic monitoring was applied to consider hermetic exposure durations and oxygen levels required to stop adult Callosobruchus maculatus activity and economic damage on cowpea. A 15-d study was conducted with six treatments of 25, 50, and 100 C. maculatus adults in 500 and
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Acoustic monitoring was applied to consider hermetic exposure durations and oxygen levels required to stop adult Callosobruchus maculatus activity and economic damage on cowpea. A 15-d study was conducted with six treatments of 25, 50, and 100 C. maculatus adults in 500 and 1000 mL jars using acoustic probes inserted through stoppers sealing the jars. Acoustic activity as a result of locomotion, mating, and egg-laying was measured by identifying sound impulses with frequency spectra representative of known insect sounds, and counting trains (bursts) of impulses separated by intervals of <200 ms, that typically are produced only by insects. By the end of the first week of storage in all treatments, oxygen levels declined to levels below 4%, which has been demonstrated to cause mortality in previous studies. Concomitantly, insect sound burst rates dropped below an acoustic detection threshold of 0.02 bursts s−1, indicating that the insects had ceased feeding. Statistically significant relationships were obtained between two different measures of the acoustic activity and the residual oxygen level. Based on the experimental results, a simple equation can be used to estimate the time needed for oxygen to decline to levels that limit insect feeding damage and thus grain losses in hermetic storage containers of different insect population levels and various volumes. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Australian Consumers’ Awareness and Acceptance of Insects as Food
Received: 22 February 2018 / Revised: 12 April 2018 / Accepted: 12 April 2018 / Published: 19 April 2018
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Abstract
Insects have long been consumed as part of the diets of many Asian, African, and South American cultures. However, despite international agencies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations advocating the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of entomophagy, attitudinal
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Insects have long been consumed as part of the diets of many Asian, African, and South American cultures. However, despite international agencies such as the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations advocating the nutritional, environmental, and economic benefits of entomophagy, attitudinal barriers persist in Western societies. In Australia, the indigenous ‘bush tucker’ diet comprising witchetty grubs, honey ants, and Bogong moths is quite well known; however, in most Australian locales, the consumption of insects tends to occur only as a novelty. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the awareness and acceptance of insects as food. An online survey of 820 consumers found that 68% of participants had heard of entomophagy, but only 21% had previously eaten insects; witchetty grubs, ants, grasshoppers, and crickets were the most commonly tasted insects. Taste, appearance, safety, and quality were identified as the factors that were most likely to influence consumer willingness to try eating insects, but consumer attitudes towards entomophagy were underpinned by both food neophobia (i.e., reluctance to eat new or novel foods) and prior consumption of insects. Neophobic consumers were far less accepting of entomophagy than neophilic consumers, while consumers who had previously eaten insects were most accepting of insects as food. Incorporating insects into familiar products (e.g., biscuits) or cooked meals also improved their appeal. Collectively, these findings can be used by the food industry to devise production and/or marketing strategies that overcome barriers to insect consumption in Australia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Edible Insects—Future Prospects for Food and Feed Security)
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Open AccessArticle Susceptibility Status and Resistance Mechanisms in Permethrin-Selected, Laboratory Susceptible and Field-Collected Aedes aegypti from Malaysia
Received: 15 December 2017 / Revised: 19 March 2018 / Accepted: 26 March 2018 / Published: 18 April 2018
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Abstract
This study is intended to provide a comprehensive characterization of the resistance mechanisms in the permethrin-selected (IMR-PSS) and laboratory susceptible (IMR-LS) Aedes aegypti strain from Malaysia. Both IMR-PSS and IMR-LS provide a standard model for use in assessing the pyrethroid resistance in field-collected
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This study is intended to provide a comprehensive characterization of the resistance mechanisms in the permethrin-selected (IMR-PSS) and laboratory susceptible (IMR-LS) Aedes aegypti strain from Malaysia. Both IMR-PSS and IMR-LS provide a standard model for use in assessing the pyrethroid resistance in field-collected strains collected from three dengue hotspots: the Taman Seri Bayu (TSB), the Flat Camar (FC), and the Taman Dahlia (TD). Two established methods for determining the resistance mechanisms of the pyrethroid are the quantification of detoxification enzymes via enzyme microassay and the nucleotide sequencing of the domain 2 region from segment 1 to 6 via classical polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification—were employed. Enzyme activities in IMR-LS served as the resistance threshold reference, providing a significant standard for comparison with IMR-PSS and other field-collected strains. The amino acids in the domain 2 region of voltage-gated sodium channel (Vgsc) of IMR-LS were served as the reference for detection of any changes of the knockdown resistance (kdr) alleles in IMR-PSS and field-collected strains. Studies clearly indicated that the IMR-LS was highly susceptible to insecticides, whilst the IMR-PSS was highly resistant to pyrethroids and conferred with two resistance mechanisms: the elevated oxidase enzyme activity and the altered target-site mutations. Mutations of V1023G alone, and the combination mutations of V1023G with S996P in IMR-PSS, as well as the in field-collected Aedes aegypti strain, indicate the spread of the (kdr) gene in Aedes aegypti, particularly in dengue-endemic areas in Malaysia. Full article
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