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Germain Chevignon, Bret M Boyd, Jayce W Brandt, Kerry M Oliver, Michael R Strand
Many insects host facultative, bacterial symbionts that confer conditional fitness benefits to their hosts. Hamiltonella defensa is a common facultative symbiont of aphids that provides protection against parasitoid wasps. Protection levels vary among strains of H. defensa that are also differentially infected by bacteriophages named APSEs. However, little is known about trait variation among strains because only one isolate has been fully sequenced. Generating complete genomes for facultative symbionts is hindered by relatively large genome sizes but low abundances in hosts like aphids that are very small...
February 14, 2018: Genome Biology and Evolution
Elisa Pellegrino, Stefano Bedini, Marco Nuti, Laura Ercoli
Despite the extensive cultivation of genetically engineered (GE) maize and considerable number of scientific reports on its agro-environmental impact, the risks and benefits of GE maize are still being debated and concerns about safety remain. This meta-analysis aimed at increasing knowledge on agronomic, environmental and toxicological traits of GE maize by analyzing the peer-reviewed literature (from 1996 to 2016) on yield, grain quality, non-target organisms (NTOs), target organisms (TOs) and soil biomass decomposition...
February 15, 2018: Scientific Reports
Will T Schneider, Christian Rutz, Berthold Hedwig, Nathan W Bailey
The evolutionary loss of sexual traits is widely predicted. Because sexual signals can arise from the coupling of specialized motor activity with morphological structures, disruption to a single component could lead to overall loss of function. Opportunities to observe this process and characterize any remaining signal components are rare, but could provide insight into the mechanisms, indirect costs and evolutionary consequences of signal loss. We investigated the recent evolutionary loss of a long-range acoustic sexual signal in the Hawaiian field cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus Flatwing males carry mutations that remove sound-producing wing structures, eliminating all acoustic signalling and affording protection against an acoustically-orientating parasitoid fly...
February 2018: Biology Letters
Reyard Mutamiswa, Honest Machekano, Frank Chidawanyika, Casper Nyamukondiwa
Basal and plasticity of thermal tolerance determine abundance, biogeographical patterns and activity of insects over spatial and temporal scales. For coexisting stemborer parasitoids, offering synergistic impact for biological control, mismatches in thermal tolerance may influence their ultimate impact in biocontrol programs under climate variability. Using laboratory-reared congeneric parasitoid species Cotesia sesamiae Cameron and Cotesia flavipes Cameron (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), we examined basal thermal tolerance to understand potential impact of climate variability on their survival and limits to activity...
2018: PloS One
Roberto Romani, Sara Ruschioni, Paola Riolo, Nunzio Isidoro
Pimplinae are parasitoids belonging to the family Ichneumonidae that attack and develops inside hidden host; female wasps evolved a peculiar host recognition strategy, that involves the use of self-produced vibrations which are transmitted through the antennae on the substrate and perceived back as an echo using the leg subgenual organ. In this study we investigated, using both scanning and transmission electron microscopy, the antennal tips of a few Pimplinae. In all the investigated species, the antennal tips present peculiar apical pegs with different shape and number, often defining a flattened sole devoid of other antennal structures, such as sensilla...
February 6, 2018: Micron: the International Research and Review Journal for Microscopy
Agnieszka Gudowska, Ulf Bauchinger
Habitats on land with low oxygen availability provide unique niches inhabited by numerous species. The occupation of such hypoxic niches by animals is hypothesized to come at a cost linked to the limitations of aerobic metabolism and thus energy budget but may also provide benefits through physical protection from predators and parasitoids or reduced competition for food. We investigated the effects of hypoxic conditions on standard metabolic rate (SMR) and specific dynamic action (SDA) in male Carabus nemoralis...
February 9, 2018: Journal of Insect Physiology
P Montoya, C Gálvez, F Díaz-Fleischer
The use of multiple species in biological control programmes is controversial when interactions among them are not fully understood. We determined the response of the pupal parasitoid Coptera haywardi (Oglobin) to different availability of Anastrepha ludens (Loew) pupae previously parasitized or not by larval-pupal Diachasmimorpha longicaudata (Ashmead). The two types of pupae were exposed at different ages and proportions to different numbers of C. haywardi females for 48 h. The performance of C. haywardi adults emerging from parasitized and unparasitized pupae was measured...
February 12, 2018: Bulletin of Entomological Research
Govinda Shrestha, Gadi V P Reddy, Stefan T Jaronski
Alfalfa weevil, Hypera postica Gyllenhal, is an important pest in forage alfalfa worldwide, and especially so on the Northern Plains of North America. Neither the weevil-specific fungus, Erynia phytonomi, nor the weevil's parasitoids are able to routinely suppress outbreaks as they do in the eastern U.S. A new Bacillus thuringiensis var. galleriae, having a Cry8Da coleopteran-active toxin, has been recently commercialized. We examined the efficacy of this B. thuringiensis product against the H. postica in replicated field trials in north central Montana...
February 8, 2018: Journal of Invertebrate Pathology
Jun-Ce Tian, Geng-Wei Wang, Hai-Liang Han, Jörg Romeis, Fa-Cheng Zhang, Gong-Yin Ye, Mao-Cheng Xie, Gui-Yue Wang, Zhong-Xian Lu
BACKGROUND: Honeydew is a sugar-rich excretion produced by sap-feeding Sternorrhyncha and is an important source of carbohydrates for natural enemies, especially for parasitoids. Honeydew derived from GM crops can contain amounts of the transgene product. Thus, it is a possible route of exposure for natural enemies feeding on honeydew. In the present study, the potential effects of Nilaparvata lugens honeydew derived from Cry1C rice and Cry2A rice on different life-table parameters and parasitism dynamics of the egg parasitoid Anagrus nilaparvatae were evaluated under laboratory and field condition...
February 10, 2018: Pest Management Science
R J Monsreal-Ceballos, E Ruiz-Sánchez, H S Ballina-Gómez, A Reyes-Ramírez, A González-Moreno
Botanical insecticides (BIs) are considered a valuable alternative for plant protection in sustainable agriculture. The use of both BIs and parasitoids are presumed to be mutually compatible pest management practices. However, there is controversy on this subject, as various studies have reported lethal and sublethal effects of BIs on hymenopteran parasitoids. To shed new light on this controversy, a meta-analytic approach of the effects of BIs on adult mortality, parasitism, and parasitoid emergence under laboratory conditions was performed...
February 10, 2018: Neotropical Entomology
Christina Sann, Franziska Wemheuer, Alexis Beaurepaire, Rolf Daniel, Silvio Erler, Stefan Vidal
Ongoing intensification of rice production systems in Southeast Asia is causing devastating yield losses each year due to rice hoppers. Their continuing development of immunity to resistant rice varieties and pesticide applications further complicates this problem. Hence, there is a high demand for biological control agents of rice hoppers. Egg parasitoid wasps are among the most important natural enemies of rice hoppers, such as Nilaparvata lugens and Nephotettix spp. However, our knowledge of their diversity is still very limited, due to their small size and the lack of available morphological information...
February 9, 2018: Insects
F G Blanchet, T Roslin, M T Kimura, T Huotari, R Kaartinen, S Gripenberg, A J M Tack
1.Within natural communities, different taxa display different dynamics in time. Why this is the case we do not fully know. This thwarts our ability to predict changes in community structure, which is important for both the conservation of rare species in natural communities and for the prediction of pest outbreaks in agriculture. 2.Species sharing phylogeny, natural enemies and/or life history traits have been hypothesized to share similar temporal dynamics. We operationalized these concepts into testing whether feeding guild, voltinism, similarity in parasitoid community, and/or phylogenetic relatedness explained similarities in temporal dynamics among herbivorous community members...
February 8, 2018: Journal of Animal Ecology
Brian V Brown
Background: Flies of the family Phoridae (Insecta: Diptera) are amongst the most diverse insects in the world, with an incredible array of species, structures and life histories. Wiithin their structural diversity is the world's smallest fly, Euryplatea nanaknihali Brown, 2012. New information: A second minute, limuloid female phorid parasitoid fly (Diptera: Phoridae) is described. Known from a single specimen from a site near Manaus, Brazil, Megapropodiphora arnoldigen...
2018: Biodiversity Data Journal
Jose Fernandez-Triana
Ten new species within four genera of Microgastrinae parasitoid wasps (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) are described from Canada and United States: Diolcogaster ichiroi, Diolcogaster miamensis, Glyptapanteles pseudotsugae, Microgaster archboldensis, Microgaster syntopic, Microplitis altissimus, Microplitis jorgeluisi, Microplitis juanmanueli, Microplitis julioalbertoi, and Microplitis mariamargaritae. The new taxa are significant because they represent the first North American records of a tropical group (species of the basimacula group in Diolcogaster), exemplify interesting ecological cases (niche-based host selection in Glyptapanteles, syntopic species in Microgaster), and showcase unique morphological features and/or altitudinal records (Microplitis)...
2018: ZooKeys
Majeed Askari Seyahooei, Akhtar Mohammadi-Rad, Shahram Hesami, Abdoolnabi Bagheri
Cold storage can extend shelf life of parasitoids for use in biocontrol. However, cold storage may have negative impacts on life history traits of the parasitoids and, therefore, on their performance as biocontrol agents. Here, we examine the effect of cold storage on life history traits of Habrobracon hebetor (Say) (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), a parasitoid of several economic lepidopteran pests. Newly emerged wasps were stored at three constant temperatures (3°C, 5°C, 7°C) for up to 4 wk. Both temperature and exposure time significantly affected longevity, parasitism, fecundity, and sex ratio...
February 5, 2018: Journal of Economic Entomology
Meelad Yousef, Carmen Alba-Ramírez, Inmaculada Garrido Jurado, Jordi Mateu, Silvia Raya Díaz, Pablo Valverde-García, Enrique Quesada-Moraga
Soil treatments with Metarhizium brunneum EAMa 01/58-Su strain conducted in both Northern and Southern Spain reduced the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae) population density emerging from the soil during spring up to 70% in treated plots compared with controls. A model to determine the influence of rainfall on the conidial wash into different soil types was developed, with most of the conidia retained at the first 5 cm, regardless of soil type, with relative percentages of conidia recovered ranging between 56 and 95%...
2018: Frontiers in Plant Science
Jun Zhu, Yao Li, Hua Jiang, Chen Liu, Weiwei Lu, Wei Dai, Jianxiang Xu, Fang Liu
The novel mesoionic insecticide triflumezopyrim was highly effective in controlling both imidacloprid-susceptible and resistant planthopper populations in Malaysia. However, the toxicity of triflumezopyrim to planthopper populations and their natural enemies has been under-investigated in China. In this study, the median lethal concentrations (LC50) of triflumezopyrim were determined in eight field populations of Nilaparvata lugens and one population of Sogatella furcifera from China under laboratory conditions...
February 5, 2018: Ecotoxicology
Li-Fang Li, Zhi-Wen Xu, Nai-Yong Liu, Guo-Xing Wu, Xue-Min Ren, Jia-Ying Zhu
Venom is a prominently maternal virulent factor utilized by parasitoids to overcome hosts immune defense. With respect to roles of this toxic mixture involved in manipulating hosts immunity, great interest has been mostly restricted to Ichneumonoidea parasitoids associated with polydnavirus (PDV), of which venom is usually considered as a helper component to enhance the role of PDV, and limited Chalcidoidea species. In contrast, little information is available in other parasitoids, especially ectoparasitic species not carrying PDV...
February 5, 2018: Archives of Insect Biochemistry and Physiology
Tania Zaviezo, Romina Retamal, Teddy Urvois, Xavier Fauvergue, Aurélie Blin, Thibaut Malausa
Inbreeding and inbreeding depression are processes in small populations of particular interest for a range of human activities such as animal breeding, species conservation, or pest management. In particular, biological control programs should benefit from a thorough understanding of the causes and consequences of inbreeding because natural enemies experience repetitive bottlenecks during importation, laboratory rearing, and introduction. Predicting the effect of inbreeding in hymenopteran parasitoid wasps, frequently used in biological control programs, is nonetheless a difficult endeavor...
February 2018: Evolutionary Applications
Heidi Käch, Hugo Mathé-Hubert, Alice B Dennis, Christoph Vorburger
There is growing interest in biological control as a sustainable and environmentally friendly way to control pest insects. Aphids are among the most detrimental agricultural pests worldwide, and parasitoid wasps are frequently employed for their control. The use of asexual parasitoids may improve the effectiveness of biological control because only females kill hosts and because asexual populations have a higher growth rate than sexuals. However, asexuals may have a reduced capacity to track evolutionary change in their host populations...
February 2018: Evolutionary Applications
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