Eur. J. Entomol. 110 (2): 277-283, 2013 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2013.041

Is host age an important factor in the bionomics of Apanteles myeloenta (Hymenoptera: Braconidae)?

Hossein Kishani FARAHANI, Seyed Hossein GOLDANSAZ
Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Tehran, Karaj 3158777871, Iran; e-mail: Kishani@ut.ac.ir

The carob moth, Ectomyelois ceratoniae (Lepidoptera: Pyralidae), is a serious pest and causes a considerable loss of yield of pomegranate in Iran. Apanteles myeloenta (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) is the dominant parasitoid of this pest parasitizing it more than 30% in recent years. This parasitoid is a candidate for augmentative biological control program to reduce the level of the infestation of fruit overwinter. The objective of this research was to optimize the mass production of A. myeloenta. The mean developmental time of females was 28 days and of males 27 days. Pupal development lasted 7 days. The second instar was the preferred host and most heavily parasitized (45%). Wasps that started their development in second instar hosts produced the highest progeny and those that started in third instar hosts survived as adults for longest. The sex ratio (females to males) of A. myeloenta that emerged from carob moth larvae parasitized in the first instar was 1 : 3.5, in the second instar 1 : 3 and in the third instar 1 : 2. The influence of different host ages on the functional response of A. myeloenta to host density was assessed. Logistic regression indicated a type II functional response to different densities of all the stages of the host tested.

Keywords: Hymenoptera, Braconidae, Apanteles myeloenta, Lepidoptera, Pyralidae, Ectomyelois ceratoniae, parasitism, pomegranate, host age

Received: July 2, 2012; Accepted: November 7, 2012; Published: April 11, 2013

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