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Insect Science

Zachary Y Huang, Stephanie Lin, Kiheung Ahn
Methoprene, a juvenile hormone (JH) analog, is a widely used insecticide that also accelerates behavioral development in honey bees (Apis mellifera). JH regulates the transition from nursing to foraging in adult worker bees, and treatment with JH or methoprene have both been shown to induce precocious foraging. To determine how methoprene changes honey bee behavior, we compared JH titers of methoprene-treated and untreated bees. Behavioral observations confirmed that methoprene treatment significantly increased the number of precocious foragers in 3 out of 4 colonies...
October 20, 2016: Insect Science
Maryse Vanderplanck, Sylvain Decleves, Nathalie Roger, Corentin Decroo, Guillaume Caulier, Gaetan Glauser, Pascal Gerbaux, Georges Lognay, Aurore Richel, Nathalie Escaravage, Denis Michez
Current evidence suggests that pollen is both chemically and structurally protected. Despite increasing interest in studying bee-flower networks, the constraints for bee development related to pollen nutritional content, toxicity and digestibility as well as their role in the shaping of bee-flower interactions have been poorly studied. In this study we combined bioassays of the generalist bee Bombus terrestris on pollen of Cirsium, Trifolium, Salix and Cistus genera with an assessment of nutritional content, toxicity and digestibility of pollen...
October 12, 2016: Insect Science
Jacques Régnière, Vincent G Nealis
Conifer-feeding spruce budworms emerge from overwintering sites as small larvae in early spring, several days before budburst, and mine old needles. These early-emerging larvae suffer considerable mortality during this foraging period as they disperse in search of available, current-year buds. Once buds flush, surviving budworms construct feeding shelters and must complete maturation before fresh host foliage senesces and lignifies later in the summer. Late-developing larvae suffer greater mortality and survivors have lower fecundity when feeding on older foliage...
October 3, 2016: Insect Science
Haiyan Li, Ann C Smigocki
Sugar beet root maggot (SBRM, Tetanops myopaeformis von Röder) is a major but poorly understood insect pest of sugar beet (Beta vulgaris L.). The molecular mechanisms underlying plant defense responses are well documented, however, little information is available about complementary mechanisms for insect adaptive responses to overcome host resistance. To date, no studies have been published on SBRM gene expression profiling. Suppressive subtractive hybridization (SSH) generated more than 300 SBRM ESTs differentially expressed in the interaction of the pest with a moderately resistant (F1016) and a susceptible (F1010) sugar beet line...
October 3, 2016: Insect Science
Xiao-Jian Liu, Ya-Wen Sun, Da-Qi Li, Sheng Li, En-Bo Ma, Jian-Zhen Zhang
In Locusta migratoria, we found that two chitin biosynthesis genes UDP N-acetylglucosamine pyrophosphorylase gene LmUAP1 and chitin synthase gene LmCHS1 are expressed mainly in the integument and responsible for the cuticle formation. However, whether these genes are regulated by 20-hydroxyecdysone (20E) is still largely unclear. Here, we showed the developmental expression pattern of LmUAP1, LmCHS1 and the corresponding 20E titer during the last instar nymph stage of locust. RNA interference (RNAi) directed towards a common region of the two isoforms of LmEcR (LmEcRcom) reduced the expression level of LmUAP1, while there was no difference in the expression of LmCHS1...
October 3, 2016: Insect Science
Nicolas Brasero, Baptiste Martinet, Thomas Lecocq, Patrick Lhomme, Paolo Biella, Irena Valterova, Klara Urbanova, Maurizio Cornalba, Heather Hines, Pierre Rasmont
Socially parasitic Hymenoptera have evolved morphological, chemical, and behavioral adaptations to overcome the sophisticated recognition and defense systems of their social host to invade host nests and exploit their worker force. In bumblebees, social parasitism appeared in at least three subgenera independently: in the subgenus Psithyrus consisting entirely of parasitic species, in the subgenus Alpinobombus with Bombus hyperboreus, and in the subgenus Thoracobombus with B. inexspectatus. Cuckoo bumblebee males utilize species-specific cephalic labial gland secretions for mating purposes which have been showed as acting in their inquiline strategy...
October 3, 2016: Insect Science
Gabor L Lövei, Marco Ferrante
Sentinel prey can provide a direct, quantitative measure of predation under field conditions. Live sentinel prey provides more realistic data but rarely allows the partitioning of the total predation pressure; artificial prey is less natural but traces left by different predators are identifiable, making it suitable for comparative studies. We reviewed the available evidence of the use of both types of invertebrate sentinel prey. Fifty-seven papers used real prey, usually measuring predation on a focal (often pest) species, with studies overwhelmingly from North America...
September 30, 2016: Insect Science
Carl Stenoien, Kelly R Nail, Jacinta M Zalucki, Hazel Parry, Karen S Oberhauser, Myron P Zalucki
We review the postulated threatening processes that may have affected the decline in the eastern population of the monarch butterfly, Danaus plexippus L. (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae), in North America. Although there are likely multiple contributing factors, such as climate and resource-related effects on breeding, migrating, and overwintering populations, the key landscape level change appears to be associated with the widespread use of genetically modified herbicide resistant crops that have rapidly come to dominate the extensive core summer breeding range...
September 21, 2016: Insect Science
Ayad Masry, Michael J Furlong, Anthony R Clarke, John P Cunningham
Good culturing methods play an important role in the study of insect behaviour and its application to pest management. Here, we describe and validate a new method for rearing the parasitoid wasp, Diachasmimorpha kraussii, which attacks some of the world's worst fruit fly pests and is an internationally used biological control agent. Our method differs from standard culturing approaches by presenting adult wasps with host-infested artificial media within a "culturing bag", which mimics the natural (fruit) oviposition substrate...
September 21, 2016: Insect Science
Alan N Andersen, Benjamin D Hoffmann, Stefanie Oberprieler
Although ants are an ecologically dominant and extensively studied faunal group throughout the tropics, there is a poor understanding of tropical ant diversity and distribution at large spatial scales. Here we use a collection developed from three decades of ant surveys to present the first analysis of ant diversity and biogeography of a large tropical region. Our objective was to document the species richness, composition and biogeographic distributions of the ant fauna of the 400 000 km(2) 'Top End' of Australia's Northern Territory...
September 15, 2016: Insect Science
Qi Zhang, Gang Hua, Michael J Adang
Bacillus thuringiensis is a gram-positive aerobic bacterium that produces insecticidal crystalline inclusions during sporulation phases of the mother cell. The virulence factor, known as parasporal crystals, is composed of Cry and Cyt toxins. Cry toxins display a common three-domain topology. Cry toxins exert intoxication through toxin activation, receptor binding and pore formation in suitable larval gut environment. The mosquitocidal toxins, Bt subsp. israelensis (Bti) and was found highly active against mosquito larvae and are widely used in pesticide market for vector control...
September 15, 2016: Insect Science
Stefan Ehl, Vivian Dalstein, Fabienne Tull, Patrick Gros, Thomas Schmitt
High mountain ecosystems are a challenge for the survival of animal and plant species, which have to evolve specific adaptations to cope with the prevailing extreme conditions. The strategies to survive may reach from opportunistic to highly adapted traits. One species successfully surviving under these conditions is the here studied butterfly Erebia nivalis. In a mark-release-recapture study performed in the Hohe Tauern National Park (Austria) from 22 July to 26 August 2013, we marked 1386 individuals and recaptured 342 of these...
September 15, 2016: Insect Science
Ke-Wei Chen, Yigen Chen
The slow growth-high mortality hypothesis (SG-HG) predicts that slower growing herbivores suffer greater mortality due to a prolonged window of vulnerability. Given diverse plant-herbivore-natural enemy systems resulting from different feeding ecologies of herbivores and natural enemies, this hypothesis might not always be applicable to all systems. This is evidenced by mixed support from empirical data. In this study, a meta-analysis of the SG-HM hypothesis for insects was conducted, aiming to find conditions that favor or reject SG-HM...
September 7, 2016: Insect Science
Jianing Wei, Wenbo Shao, Xianhui Wang, Jin Ge, Xiangyong Chen, Dan Yu, Le Kang
Chemical communication plays an important role in density-dependent phase change in locusts. However, the volatile components and emission patterns of the migratory locust, Locusta migratoria, are largely unknown. In this study, we identified the chemical compositions and emission dynamics of locust volatiles from the body and feces and associated them with developmental stages, sexes and phase changes. The migratory locust shares a number of volatile components with the desert locust (Schistocerca gregaria), but the emission dynamics of the two locust species are significantly different...
August 24, 2016: Insect Science
Anneleen Parmentier, Ivan Meeus, Filip Van Nieuwerburgh, Dieter Deforce, Peter Vandamme, Guy Smagghe
Although the gut microbial communities in adult bumblebees and their associated functionalities are widely studied, descriptive data on the larval gut microbiota are still limited. The gut microbiota of a fully sampled wild Bombus pascuorum nest has been characterized, using the multiplexed Illumina MiSeq 16S ribosomal RNA amplicon sequencing technique. The nesters and foragers inhabiting the same nest showed the typical core bacterial sequences and only marginal differences in their characterized gut microbiota...
August 17, 2016: Insect Science
Huarong Li, Andrew J Bowling, Premchand Gandra, Murugesan Rangasamy, Heather E Pence, Robert McEwan, Chitvan Khajuria, Blair Siegfried, Kenneth E Narva
Western corn rootworm (WCR, Diabrotica virgifera virgifera LeConte) is highly sensitive to orally delivered double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). RNAi in WCR is systemic and spreads throughout the insect body. This raises the question whether transitive RNAi is a mechanism that functions in WCR to amplify the RNAi response via production of secondary siRNA. Secondary siRNA production is achieved through RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP) activity in other eukaryotic organisms, but RdRP has not been identified in WCR and any other insects...
August 13, 2016: Insect Science
Mélanie Leclair, Sarah Polin, Thibaut Jousseaume, Jean-Christophe Simon, Akiko Sugio, Stéphanie Morlière, Takema Fukatsu, Tsutomu Tsuchida, Yannick Outreman
Symbiotic associations between microbes and insects are widespread, and it is frequent that several symbionts share the same host individual. Hence, interactions can occur between these symbionts, influencing their respective abundance within the host with consequences on its phenotype. Here, we investigate the effects of multiple infections in the pea aphid, Acyrthosiphon pisum, which is the host of an obligatory and several facultative symbionts. In particular, we study the influence of a co-infection with two protective symbionts: Hamiltonella defensa, which confers protection against parasitoids, and Rickettsiella viridis, which provides protection against fungal pathogens and predators...
August 11, 2016: Insect Science
María Arias-Martín, Matías García, Pedro Castañera, Félix Ortego, Gema P Farinós
The cultivation of Cry1Ab-expressing genetically modified MON810 (Bt maize) has led to public concern in Europe, regarding its impact on nontarget arthropods (NTAs). We have assessed the potential effects of DKC 6451 YG (MON810) maize on canopy NTAs in a farm-scale study performed in Central Spain during 3 years. The study focused on hemipteran herbivores (leafhoppers and planthoppers) and hymenopteran parasitic wasps (mymarids) collected by yellow sticky traps, which accounted for 72% of the total number of insects studied...
August 11, 2016: Insect Science
Lazaros Neokosmidis, Thomas Tscheulin, Jelle Devalez, Theodora Petanidou
The majority of studies investigating the effects of landscape composition and configuration on bee populations have been conducted in regions of intensive agricultural production, ignoring regions which are dominated by seminatural habitats, such as the islands of the Aegean Archipelago. In addition, research so far has focused on the landscape impacts on bees sampled in cropped fields while the landscape effects on bees inhabiting seminatural habitats are understudied. Here, we investigate the impact of the landscape on wild bee assemblages in 66 phryganic (low scrubland) communities on eight Aegean islands...
August 11, 2016: Insect Science
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October 2016: Insect Science
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