Topical Collection "Improving IPM of Specialty Crop Pests and Global Food Security"

A topical collection in Insects (ISSN 2075-4450). This collection belongs to the section "Insect Pest and Vector Management".

Editors

Dr. Muhammad Haseeb
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Center for Biological Control, College of Agriculture and Food Sciences, Florida A&M University, Tallahassee, FL 32307, USA
Interests: develop pest management strategies for effective management of invasive and established pest insects in specialty crops; impart training to stakeholders and clientele with respect to crop productivity and profitability; develop and offer graduate and undergraduate courses in the entomology discipline
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Ashfaq Ahmad Sial
E-Mail Website
Co-Guest Editor
Department of Entomology, College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602, USA
Interests: specialty crops; small fruits; entomology; invasive species; insecticide toxicology; insecticide resistance; integrated pest management
Dr. Jawwad A. Qureshi
E-Mail Website
Co-Guest Editor
Southwest Florida Research and Education Center, University of Florida 2685 SR 29 North Immokalee, FL 34142, USA
Interests: entomology; biology; ecology; IPM; biological control
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Youichi Kobori
E-Mail Website
Co-Guest Editor
Crop, Livestock and Environment Division, Japan International Research Center for Agricultural Sciences, Tsukuba, Ibaraki 305-8686, Japan
Interests: Integrated pest management; vector insect; side effect of agrochemicals to natural enemy; epidemiology

Topical Collection Information

Dear Colleagues,

Insects, weeds, and diseases are posing ever-evolving challenges to global agriculture and food security. Indeed, due to the increasing global population, investments are being made around the world to improve and develop sound scientific approaches to sustain specialty crop production and to provide continued food security in the face of these threats. Integrated pest management (IPM) is the practice of managing invasive and established pests to minimize pest injury using methods that are safe for the environment, humans, and production systems. Globally, pest managers are committed to building upon their past successes to increase implementation of IPM in specialty crops (vegetables, fruits, and nut crops).

In recent decades, the most-commonly used method for pest management has been the direct application of agrochemicals. However, in response to environmental, economic, and other problems associated with over-reliance on synthetic chemicals, there has been an increasing drive towards the development and improvements of integrated pest management (IPM) strategies in specialty crops. Many IPM strategies are now well-developed under protected crop production settings. However, within the open fields in many situations, targeted success is yet to be achieved. This Special Issue will include original research articles and reviews by leading research entomologists, plant pathologists, weed control specialists, and associated experts. Articles will focus on the development, improvement, and implementation of IPM strategies against serious pests (both indigenous and invasive species) in specialty crops. Articles that outline the integration of effective IPM options for a given pest species and also the appropriate use of agrochemicals within the management strategies are particularly welcome.

Dr. Muhammad Haseeb
Dr. Ashfaq Ahmad Sial
Prof. Jawwad A. Qureshi

 

Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • Specialty crops
  • Horticulture
  • Integrated pest management
  • Global population
  • Food security

Published Papers (14 papers)

2021

Jump to: 2020

Article
Field Efficacy of Cordyceps javanica, White Oil and Spinetoram for the Management of the Asian Citrus Psyllid, Diaphorina citri
Insects 2021, 12(9), 824; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12090824 - 14 Sep 2021
Viewed by 809
Abstract
Citrus greening disease is devastating the citrus industry in Florida, and the conventional synthetic pesticide applications used to control the vector, the Asian citrus psyllid (AsCP), Diaphorina citri, are rapidly becoming unsustainable. Various laboratory experiments indicate that the entomopathogenic fungus Cordyceps javanica [...] Read more.
Citrus greening disease is devastating the citrus industry in Florida, and the conventional synthetic pesticide applications used to control the vector, the Asian citrus psyllid (AsCP), Diaphorina citri, are rapidly becoming unsustainable. Various laboratory experiments indicate that the entomopathogenic fungus Cordyceps javanica, alone and in combination with horticultural oils, may offer a more sustainable strategy for the management of AsCP. Field studies conducted in 2018 and 2019 in mature citrus indicated that C. javanica alone, C. javanica mixed with white oil, and the chemical standard spinetoram mixed with white oil significantly suppressed AsCP adult populations by 61–83% up to 14 days after treatment in 2018, although colony-forming units of C. javanica were still present on the leaves 21 days after treatment (DAT). Only spinetoram + oil significantly suppressed AsCP, by 100%, up to 7 DAT in 2019. Natural enemies of AsCP, including lady beetles, lacewing larvae and the parasitoid Tamarixia radiata, were observed in the fungal treatments and the untreated control. The AsCP suppression by C. javanica and its compatibility with beneficial organisms suggest the potential use of this entomopathogenic fungus in citrus-integrated pest management. Full article
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Article
Laboratory Selection and Assessment of Resistance Risk in Drosophila suzukii (Diptera: Drosophilidae) to Spinosad and Malathion
Insects 2021, 12(9), 794; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12090794 - 04 Sep 2021
Viewed by 731
Abstract
Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura) is one of the most economically important pests of soft-skinned fruits worldwide. Repeated insecticide applications commonly used to prevent fruit infestations increase the risk of resistance development in D. suzukii. Assessment of resistance risk in D. suzukii using artificial [...] Read more.
Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura) is one of the most economically important pests of soft-skinned fruits worldwide. Repeated insecticide applications commonly used to prevent fruit infestations increase the risk of resistance development in D. suzukii. Assessment of resistance risk in D. suzukii using artificial selection can be valuable in developing proactive resistance management strategies to retain susceptibility in the field populations. Here, we artificially selected a colony of field-collected D. suzukii for resistance against spinosad and malathion. A quantitative genetic approach was then used to estimate realized heritability (h2) of resistance and predict the rates of resistance development. After 10 and 11 generations of selection, resistance to spinosad and malathion in D. suzukii females significantly increased by 7.55- and 2.23-fold, respectively. Based on the predicted rates of resistance development, assuming h2 = 0.14 (mean h2 of spinosad resistance in this study) and 90% of population was killed at each generation, 10-fold increase in LC50 of D. suzukii females would be expected in nine generations for spinosad. However, 10-fold increase in LC50 of D. suzukii females for malathion would be expected in 37 generations, assuming h2 = 0.08 (mean h2 of malathion resistance) and 90% of population was killed at each generation. These results indicate that the risk of resistance in D. suzukii populations exists against both spinosad and malathion. However, resistance would develop faster against spinosad as compared to malathion. Thus, resistance management strategies should be implemented proactively to maintain the effectiveness of these insecticides to control D. suzukii. Full article
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Article
Myzus persicae Management through Combined Use of Beneficial Insects and Thiacloprid in Pepper Seedlings
Insects 2021, 12(9), 791; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12090791 - 03 Sep 2021
Viewed by 378
Abstract
Excessive insecticide application has posed a threat to pollinators and has also increased insecticide resistance of Myzus persicae Sulzer. Therefore, it is urgent to develop an economical and effective strategy, especially for greenhouse vegetables. Firstly, we selected a neonicotinoid insecticide that is specifically [...] Read more.
Excessive insecticide application has posed a threat to pollinators and has also increased insecticide resistance of Myzus persicae Sulzer. Therefore, it is urgent to develop an economical and effective strategy, especially for greenhouse vegetables. Firstly, we selected a neonicotinoid insecticide that is specifically fatal to M. persicae but relatively safe to predators and bumblebees by laboratory toxicity tests and risk assessments. Then, we tested the effectiveness of the neonicotinoid insecticide under different temperature conditions. According to the LC50 values and the hazard quotients, thiacloprid met the requirements. Greenhouse trails indicated that thiacloprid was quite efficient, while control dropped to 80% without the application of thiacloprid. As for biological control, Harmonia axyridis effectively controlled 90% of aphids with thiacloprid or not. However, Aphidoletes aphidimyza performed better above 20 °C. Our results indicated that it is cost-effective to control M. persicae with A. aphidimyza in suitable temperature conditions and H. axyridis was more effective at low temperatures. Practically, thiacloprid could be used either as an emergency option to control aphids’ abundance alone or in combination with natural enemies. Full article
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Communication
The Cotton Mealybug Is Spreading along the Mediterranean: First Pest Detection in Italian Tomatoes
Insects 2021, 12(8), 675; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12080675 - 27 Jul 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 760
Abstract
The cotton mealybug Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) is an extremely polyphagous invasive pest that can cause serious damages to cultivated plants. The pest is native to America but invaded Asian and Mediterranean countries during the last decades. Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill., [...] Read more.
The cotton mealybug Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) is an extremely polyphagous invasive pest that can cause serious damages to cultivated plants. The pest is native to America but invaded Asian and Mediterranean countries during the last decades. Tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum Mill., Solanaceae) is an economic relevant crop worldwide and its production can be threatened by numerous insect pests including P. solenopsis. We recorded for the first time P. solenopsis in association with tomato in greenhouse crops and urban landscapes in Sicily (Italy) during the fall season in 2020. The species was identified as P. solenopsis based on the morphological characters and DNA amplification of an ≈800 bp portion of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (mtCOI) gene. The phylogenetic analysis among the obtained P. solenopsis mtCOI sequences with those already available in GenBank suggests Asian countries as a potential source of new introduction. This is the first record of P. solenopsis attacking tomato plants in Italy and may represent a potential threat for tomato production in Europe and nearby countries. For this reason, actions should be taken to avoid the uncontrolled spread of this alien species. Full article
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Article
Evaluation of Wild Flora Surrounding Blueberry Fields as Viable Hosts of Drosophila suzukii (Matsumura, 1931) (Diptera: Drosophilidae) in Georgia
Insects 2021, 12(8), 667; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12080667 - 22 Jul 2021
Viewed by 551
Abstract
Drosophila suzukii, an economically important pest of small and thin-skinned fruits, has caused annual crop losses up to 20% in the state of Georgia’s multimillion-dollar blueberry industry. The known host range of D. suzukii is large, yet the breadth of uncultivated and [...] Read more.
Drosophila suzukii, an economically important pest of small and thin-skinned fruits, has caused annual crop losses up to 20% in the state of Georgia’s multimillion-dollar blueberry industry. The known host range of D. suzukii is large, yet the breadth of uncultivated and wild plants that can serve as alternative hosts in the southeastern United States is still not fully understood. Establishing comprehensive lists of non-crop D. suzukii hosts in woodlands near blueberry production will assist in the creation of more sustainable integrated pest management (IPM) strategies. Objectives of this study were to determine viability of wild fruiting plant species to this pest based on survivorship to adulthood and assess D. suzukii short-range preference between cultivated blueberries and wild fruit. Laboratory choice and no-choice assays were performed to determine if D. suzukii could complete its development on wild fruits sampled from the field. Results from our no-choice assays indicated that multiple species of wild fruits surveyed in Georgia were viable D. suzukii hosts including blackberry species, deerberry, hillside blueberry, common pokeweed, beautyberry, elderberry, evergreen blueberry, and large gallberry. Yet, none of these hosts were preferred by adult female D. suzukii as ovipositional substrates when compared to cultivated blueberries. However, these uncultivated species have the potential to sustain D. suzukii populations pre- and post-harvest season. This information can help farmers do more targeted management of these viable alternative hosts from wooded areas surrounding blueberry fields in order to minimize D. suzukii populations. Full article
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Article
Does the African Citrus psyllid, Trioza erytreae (Del Guercio) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), Represent a Phytosanitary Threat to the Citrus Industry in Mexico?
Insects 2021, 12(5), 450; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12050450 - 14 May 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 687
Abstract
The African citrus psyllid, Trioza erytreae (Del Guercio) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a vector of Candidatus Liberibacter africanus (CLaf), a pathogen that causes huanglongbing (HLB) in Africa. Trioza erytreae has invaded areas of Asia and Europe and has threatened citrus production due to its [...] Read more.
The African citrus psyllid, Trioza erytreae (Del Guercio) (Hemiptera: Triozidae), is a vector of Candidatus Liberibacter africanus (CLaf), a pathogen that causes huanglongbing (HLB) in Africa. Trioza erytreae has invaded areas of Asia and Europe and has threatened citrus production due to its biological habits and the transmission of CLaf. Mexico is a country where citrus production has a vital role from the economic and social point of view. Therefore, ecological niche modeling (ENM) was used to determine if Mexico has the environmental availability that will allow T. erytreae invasion. We analyzed whether or not the distribution of Casimiroa edulis La Llave (Rutaceae) in the country could be a factor that enables the dispersal of T. eytreae. The environmental connectivity between five points of entry into the country (two ports and three airports) was explored to determine possible routes of dispersal of T. erytrae. The results showed that Mexico has wide availability for the invasion of the African citrus psyllid, which coincides with essential citrus areas of the country and with the distribution of C. edulis. Of the entry points studied, the Port of Veracruz showed nearby areas with environmental connectivity. Preventive monitoring measures for T. erytreae in Mexico should focus on Veracruz state because it has an entry point, ideal environmental availability, citrus areas, and specimens of C. edulis. Full article
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Review
Identifying Molecular-Based Trophic Interactions as a Resource for Advanced Integrated Pest Management
Insects 2021, 12(4), 358; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12040358 - 16 Apr 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1126
Abstract
Biodiversity is an essential attribute of sustainable agroecosystems. Diverse arthropod communities deliver multiple ecosystem services, such as biological control, which are the core of integrated pest management programs. The molecular analysis of arthropod diets has emerged as a new tool to monitor and [...] Read more.
Biodiversity is an essential attribute of sustainable agroecosystems. Diverse arthropod communities deliver multiple ecosystem services, such as biological control, which are the core of integrated pest management programs. The molecular analysis of arthropod diets has emerged as a new tool to monitor and help predict the outcomes of management on the functioning of arthropod communities. Here, we briefly review the recent molecular analysis of predators and parasitoids in agricultural environments. We focus on the developments of molecular gut content analysis (MGCA) implemented to unravel the function of community members, and their roles in biological control. We examine the agricultural systems in which this tool has been applied, and at what ecological scales. Additionally, we review the use of MGCA to uncover vertebrate roles in pest management, which commonly receives less attention. Applying MGCA to understand agricultural food webs is likely to provide an indicator of how management strategies either improve food web properties (i.e., enhanced biological control), or adversely impact them. Full article
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Article
Field Cage Assessment of Feeding Damage by Riptortus pedestris on Soybeans in China
Insects 2021, 12(3), 255; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12030255 - 17 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 548
Abstract
The bean bug, Riptortus pedestris, is a major pest of soybeans. In order to assess the critical stages of soybean damage by R. pedestris, we tested the damage to soybeans at different growth stages (R2, R4, and [...] Read more.
The bean bug, Riptortus pedestris, is a major pest of soybeans. In order to assess the critical stages of soybean damage by R. pedestris, we tested the damage to soybeans at different growth stages (R2, R4, and R6) caused by five densities of R. pedestris (1, 2, 3, 4, and 5) through a field cage experiment. The results show that the R4 stage was the most sensitive stage in terms of suffering R. pedestris injury damage, followed by the R6 stage and then the R2 stage. The number of stay green leaves was 7.04 per plant, the abortive pod rate of the soybeans was 56.36%, and the abortive seed rate of the soybeans was 46.69%. The dry weight of the soybeans was 14.20 g at the R4 stage; these values of R4 were significantly higher than at the R2 and R6 stages. However, the dry weight of soybean seed was 4.27 g and the nutrient transfer rate was 27.01% in the R4 stage; these values were significantly lower than in the R2 and R6 stages. The number of stay green leaves, abortive pod rates, and abortive seed rates were all increased significantly with increasing pest density at each stage of soybean growth. However, the nutrient transfer rate was significantly decreased with the increase in the pest density. Soybean nutrition factors changed after they suffered R. pedestris injury; the lipid content of the soybean seed decreased and the lipid content of the soybean plant increased compared to controls, when tested with a density of five R. pedestris in the R4 stage. These results will be beneficial to the future management of R. pedestris in soybean fields. Full article
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Article
A Bioclimate-Based Maximum Entropy Model for Comperiella calauanica Barrion, Almarinez and Amalin (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) in the Philippines
Insects 2021, 12(1), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12010026 - 04 Jan 2021
Viewed by 1011
Abstract
Comperiella calauanica is a host-specific endoparasitoid and effective biological control agent of the diaspidid Aspidiotus rigidus, whose outbreak from 2010 to 2015 severely threatened the coconut industry in the Philippines. Using the maximum entropy (Maxent) algorithm, we developed a species distribution model [...] Read more.
Comperiella calauanica is a host-specific endoparasitoid and effective biological control agent of the diaspidid Aspidiotus rigidus, whose outbreak from 2010 to 2015 severely threatened the coconut industry in the Philippines. Using the maximum entropy (Maxent) algorithm, we developed a species distribution model (SDM) for C. calauanica based on 19 bioclimatic variables, using occurrence data obtained mostly from field surveys conducted in A. rigidus-infested areas in Luzon Island from 2014 to 2016. The calculated the area under the ROC curve (AUC) values for the model were very high (0.966, standard deviation = 0.005), indicating the model’s high predictive power. Precipitation seasonality was found to have the highest relative contribution to model development. Response curves produced by Maxent suggested the positive influence of mean temperature of the driest quarter, and negative influence of precipitation of the driest and coldest quarters on habitat suitability. Given that C. calauanica has been found to always occur with A. rigidus in Luzon Island due to high host-specificity, the SDM for the parasitoid may also be considered and used as a predictive model for its host. This was confirmed through field surveys conducted between late 2016 and early 2018, which found and confirmed the occurrence of A. rigidus in three areas predicted by the SDM to have moderate to high habitat suitability or probability of occurrence of C. calauanica: Zamboanga City in Mindanao; Isabela City in Basilan Island; and Tablas Island in Romblon. This validation in the field demonstrated the utility of the bioclimate-based SDM for C. calauanica in predicting habitat suitability or probability of occurrence of A. rigidus in the Philippines. Full article
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Article
Is Orius sauteri Poppius a Promising Biological Control Agent for Walnut Aphids? An Assessment from the Laboratory to Field
Insects 2021, 12(1), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects12010025 - 04 Jan 2021
Viewed by 633
Abstract
Walnut aphids are major pests of walnut production with few commercially available natural enemies. We conducted laboratory and field experiments to evaluate the potential of Orius sauteri Poppius (Anthocoridae), a predatory bug, as a biological control agent against two walnut aphid species: the [...] Read more.
Walnut aphids are major pests of walnut production with few commercially available natural enemies. We conducted laboratory and field experiments to evaluate the potential of Orius sauteri Poppius (Anthocoridae), a predatory bug, as a biological control agent against two walnut aphid species: the dusky-veined aphid (Panaphis juglandis Goeze) and the walnut aphid (Chromaphis juglandicola Kaltenbach). Both species co-occur on walnut trees; P. juglandis is distributed on the upper surface (adaxial) of leaves while C. juglandicola is found on the lower surface (abaxial) of leaves. Based on functional response experiments, O sauteri had a strong capacity for consuming both aphid species. Biocontrol efficacy of O. sauteri for each species in the laboratory and field experiments was high, 77% for P. juglandis and 80% for C. juglandicola, regardless if one or two predators being present. However, biocontrol efficacy declined 15–25% for C. juglandicola and 20–50% for P. juglandis when both aphid species were present on the same leaf. The efficacy of O. sauteri under (semi)-field conditions gave similar findings based on the percentage reduction of aphids and change in population growth rates of aphids. The reduced biocontrol efficacy of the predatory bug against mixed species populations of aphids can be explained by competition between the aphid species and differences in their preferred location on leaves. Our experiments showed that O. sauteri is a promising biocontrol agent, but biocontrol efficacy may decline when both aphid species are present on walnut trees. This should be considered in the commercial release of O. sauteri in walnut orchards to promote economic and environmental benefits of walnuts production. Full article
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2020

Jump to: 2021

Article
Biological Control: A Major Component of the Pest Management Program for the Invasive Coconut Scale Insect, Aspidiotus rigidus Reyne, in the Philippines
Insects 2020, 11(11), 745; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11110745 - 30 Oct 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1240
Abstract
The coconut scale insect, Aspidiotus rigidus Reyne, caused a major pest outbreak in coconut plantations and stands in the Southern Tagalog region of Luzon Island in the Philippines between 2010 and 2015. To determine if parasitism by Comperiella calauanica Barrion, Almarinez and Amalin, [...] Read more.
The coconut scale insect, Aspidiotus rigidus Reyne, caused a major pest outbreak in coconut plantations and stands in the Southern Tagalog region of Luzon Island in the Philippines between 2010 and 2015. To determine if parasitism by Comperiella calauanica Barrion, Almarinez and Amalin, a native encyrtid, could have been a factor in the eventual management of the outbreak by 2015, we estimated and assessed its parasitization levels on A. rigidus colonies on field-collected samples from selected points in three provinces in the Southern Tagalog Region across three sampling periods. We observed that C. calauanica consistently occurred only in areas where A. rigidus populations occurred, with high parasitization levels in the Southern Tagalog sites from 2014 to 2015. Results of correlation and regression of total scale count against parasitized scale count suggest putative host density-dependent parasitism by C. calauanica in the field. A marked decrease in the abundance of A. rigidus was recorded concurrently with visually observable recovery of coconut trees from the third quarter of 2014 up to the second quarter of 2016. Similar results of significant reduction in A. rigidus populations concurrent with high percent parasitization by mass-reared and released C. calauanica were found in the Zamboanga Peninsula from 2018 to 2020. Our findings and observations altogether suggest that host-specific parasitization by C. calauanica effected biological control, which may have contributed to the eventual management of the A. rigidus outbreak in the Southern Tagalog Region, and also in the Zamboanga Peninsula where similar recovery of coconut trees were observed within a year after inoculative releases of C. calauanica. Full article
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Article
Biological Control Potential and Drawbacks of Three Zoophytophagous Mirid Predators against Bemisia tabaci in the United States
Insects 2020, 11(10), 670; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11100670 - 01 Oct 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 838
Abstract
Miridae (Hemiptera) of the tribe Dicyphini are important zoophytophagous predators use to control pest arthropods in vegetable crops. However, the risk that their herbivory may cause economic damage could hinder their application as useful biocontrol agents and may limit the likelihood they would [...] Read more.
Miridae (Hemiptera) of the tribe Dicyphini are important zoophytophagous predators use to control pest arthropods in vegetable crops. However, the risk that their herbivory may cause economic damage could hinder their application as useful biocontrol agents and may limit the likelihood they would meet regulatory requirements for importation. We conducted field cage studies to assess the predation capacity and tomato plant damage of three mirid species established in south USA, a known biocontrol agent (Nesidiocoris tenuis), and two native species (Macrolophus praeclarus and Engytatus modestus). All three species significantly reduced the number of whiteflies (Bemisia tabaci) on tomato plants compared to tomato plants without mirids. More damage, evaluated as the number of necrotic rings, was observed on tomato plants with E. modestus and N. tenuis compared to M. praeclarus. In our experiments that included sesame plants (Sesamum indicum) with tomato plants, mirid numbers increased despite a low number of prey, thus showing a benefit of the plant-feeding habit of these predators. USA’s established mirids may therefore prove to be immediately available biological agents for the management of present and future tomato pests. Full article
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Article
Host Plant Affects Symbiont Abundance in Bemisia tabaci (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae)
Insects 2020, 11(8), 501; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11080501 - 04 Aug 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1083
Abstract
Symbionts contribute nutrients that allow insects to feed on plants. The whitefly Bemisia tabaci Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) is a polyphagous pest that depends on symbionts to provide key nutrients that are deficient in the diet. Here, we established three whitefly populations [...] Read more.
Symbionts contribute nutrients that allow insects to feed on plants. The whitefly Bemisia tabaci Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) is a polyphagous pest that depends on symbionts to provide key nutrients that are deficient in the diet. Here, we established three whitefly populations on eggplants, cucumbers, and tomatoes and observed that they harbored the same symbiont taxa in different quantities. The amount of the primary symbiont, Portiera, decreased with increasing concentrations of host-plant essential amino acids (EAAs). Whitefly populations transferred to different plant species exhibited fluctuations in Portiera amounts in the first three or four generations; the amount of Portiera increased when whitefly populations were transferred to plant species with lower EAAs proportions. As for the secondary symbionts, the whitefly population of eggplants exhibited lower quantities of Hamiltonella and higher quantities of Rickettsia than the other two populations. The changes of both symbionts’ abundance in whitefly populations after host-plant-shifting for one generation showed little correlation with the EAAs’ proportions of host plants. These findings suggest that host-plant nitrogen nutrition, mainly in the form of EAAs, influences the abundance of symbionts, especially Portiera, to meet the nutritional demands of whiteflies. The results will inform efforts to control pests through manipulating symbionts in insect–symbiont associations. Full article
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Article
Temperature-Dependent Demographic Characteristics and Control Potential of Aphelinus asychis Reared from Sitobion avenae as a Biological Control Agent for Myzus persicae on Chili Peppers
Insects 2020, 11(8), 475; https://doi.org/10.3390/insects11080475 - 27 Jul 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 730
Abstract
Aphelinus asychis, a polyphagous parasitoid, has been widely used as an efficient biological control agent against the aphid Myzus persicae. Aiming to evaluate the influence of temperature on the biological characteristics and control potential of A. asychis for M. persicae, we [...] Read more.
Aphelinus asychis, a polyphagous parasitoid, has been widely used as an efficient biological control agent against the aphid Myzus persicae. Aiming to evaluate the influence of temperature on the biological characteristics and control potential of A. asychis for M. persicae, we compared the life table parameters and control potential of A. asychis, which included the developmental time, longevity, fecundity, intrinsic rate of increase (r), and finite killing rate (θ). The results showed that increasing the temperature significantly decreased the developmental time and longevity of A. asychis. The r at 24 (0.2360 d−1) and 28 °C (0.2441 d−1) were significantly greater than those at 20 (0.1848 d−1) and 32 °C (0.1676 d−1). The θ at 24 (0.4495), 28 (0.5414), and 32 °C (0.4312) were also significantly greater than that at 20 °C (0.3140). The relationship between population fitness (r and θ) and temperature followed a unary quadratic function (R2 > 0.95). The temperatures for the expected maximum intrinsic rate of increase (rmax) and the maximum finite killing rate (θmax) were 25.7 and 27.4 °C, respectively. In conclusion, A. asychis could develop and produce progenies within the temperature range of 20–32 °C, and its control efficiency for M. persicae at 24, 28, and 32 °C was greater than that at 20 °C. The most suitable temperature range for controlling M. persicae with A. asychis in the field might be between 25.7 and 27.4 °C. Full article
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