Eur. J. Entomol. 112 (4): 862-865, 2015 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2015.080

Prey abundance and intraguild predation between Adalia bipunctata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) and Macrolophus pygmaeus (Hemiptera: Miridae)

Vincenzo TROTTA, Juliana DURÁN PRIETO, Paolo FANTI, Donatella BATTAGLIA
Dipartimento di Scienze, Università degli Studi della Basilicata, Viale dell'Ateneo Lucano 10, 85100 Potenza, Italy; e-mails: vincenzo.trotta@unibas.it; juliana.duran@unibas.it; paolo.fanti@unibas.it; donatella.battaglia@unibas.it

Macrolophus pygmaeus Rambur (Hemiptera: Miridae) and Adalia bipunctata (L.) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) are two predatory insects commonly used as biological control agents. In order to determine the incidence with which both species attack and eat each other [Intraguild predation (IGP)], the direction and symmetry of the interaction between A. bipunctata and M. pygmaeus were characterized. In addition, whether the intensity of IGP between these two predators increased when the number of extraguild prey Acyrthosiphon pisum (Harris) (Hemiptera: Aphididae) decreased, was also determined. Unidirectional sensu stricto IGP between A. bipunctata and M. pygmaeus was recorded: when IGP occurred, A. bipunctata was always the IG predator that killed and ate M. pygmaeus, the IG prey. However, the intensity of IGP was a function of the abundance of the extraguild prey, A. pisum, since IGP increased when the number of extraguild prey decreased. These results are discussed in terms of theoretical models that predict stability and the outcome of using natural enemies to control pests.

Keywords: Coleoptera, Coccinellidae, Adalia bipunctata, Hemiptera, Miridae, Macrolophus pygmaeus, Aphididae Acyrthosiphon pisum, intraguild predation (IGP), density-dependent IGP

Received: January 19, 2015; Accepted: June 11, 2015; Prepublished online: July 21, 2015; Published: November 21, 2015

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