Eur. J. Entomol. 109 (3): 363-371, 2012 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2012.047

Effect of presence and semiochemicals of conspecific stages on oviposition by ladybirds (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae)

Geetanjali MISHRA, Neha SINGH, Mohd. SHAHID, OMKAR*
Ladybird Research Laboratory, Department of Zoology, University of Lucknow, Lucknow-226007, India

Reduced oviposition by ladybirds in the presence of tracks of fourth instar larvae owing to the presence of oviposition deterring pheromones is well established across many genera. However, deterrence, if any, by other life stages has not been well investigated, in particular the effect of conspecific presence. The present study investigates the effects of conspecific presence and semiochemicals of conspecific life stages (eggs, fourth instar larvae, pupae, adult males and females) on oviposition by five ladybird (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) species, viz. Coccinella septempunctata, Coccinella transversalis, Cheilomenes sexmaculata, Propylea dissecta and Anegleis cardoni. Results reveal that the presence of life stages inhibits oviposition and the inhibition is density-dependent, although the degree of inhibition is species-specific. Surface semiochemicals of eggs and larval and adult tracks also show density-dependent inhibitory effects. Moreover, the semiochemicals in tracks (oviposition deterring pheromones) and egg surface semiochemicals are not similar, indicating semiochemical parsimony. Of all species tested, C. transversalis and C. septempunctata were the most and the least responsive to both conspecific presence and semiochemicals, respectively.

Keywords: Oviposition deterring pheromone, interference, Coleoptera, conspecific, Coccinellidae

Received: December 20, 2011; Accepted: March 27, 2012; Published: July 2, 2012

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