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The effects of conspecific and heterospecific interactions on foraging and oviposition behaviours of two parasitoids of Diaphorina citri

Vankosky, Meghan A., Hoddle, Mark S.
Biocontrol science and technology 2017 v.27 no.6 pp. 739-754
Diaphorina citri, Encyrtidae, Tamarixia radiata, biological control, females, foraging, instars, natural enemies, nymphs, oviposition, ovipositor, parasitoids, walking, California, Pakistan, Taiwan
Direct observation was used to construct activity budgets for Diaphorencyrtus aligarhensis (Shafee, Alam & Agarwal) (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) and Tamarixia radiata (Waterston) (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), foraging for nymphs of Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri Kuwayama (Hemiptera: Liviidae). Two populations of D. aligarhensis were used in experiments: a biparental population from Pakistan and a uniparental population from Taiwan. Parasitoids were provisioned with 20 D. citri nymphs, second through fifth instar; female parasitoids from all three populations foraged alone, in conspecific pairs, or in heterospecific pairs. Walking occupied approximately 40% of the activity budget of D. aligarhensis and ovipositor probing occupied 10–20%. In contrast, probing and walking each accounted for approximately 30% of the activity budget of T. radiata . The presence of conspecific females affected the activity budget of D. aligarhensis females, such that the focal female was observed walking less often and probing more frequently. Heterospecific females did not affect D. aligarhensis activity. These results suggest mutual interference may occur between D. aligarhensis females foraging on the same host patch. The behaviour of T. radiata was not significantly affected by the presence of conspecific or heterospecific competitors. These results are discussed with respect to the release of multiple species of natural enemies in the classical biological control programme targeting D. citri in California.