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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ECOLOGY, SAMPLING, AND MODELING OF INSECT PESTS OF STORED GRAIN, PROCESSING FACILITIES, AND WAREHOUSES

Location: Stored Product Insect Research Unit

Title: Assessment of Prey Preference by the Generalist Predator, Mallada basalis (Walker), When Offered Two Species of Spider Mites, Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida and Panonychus citri (McGregor) on Papaya

Authors
item Cheng, Ling Lan -
item Nechols, James -
item Margolies, David -
item Campbell, James
item Yang, Ping Shih -

Submitted to: Biological Control
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 12, 2010
Publication Date: February 2, 2010
Repository URL: http://doi:10.1016/j.biocontrol.2010.02.006
Citation: Cheng, L., Nechols, J.R., Margolies, D.C., Campbell, J.F., Yang, P. 2010. Assessment of Prey Preference by the Generalist Predator, Mallada basalis (Walker), When Offered Two Species of Spider Mites, Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida and Panonychus citri (McGregor) on Papaya. Biological Control. 53: 267-272.

Interpretive Summary: Preference by generalist predators for one prey species over another can impact their effectiveness as biological control agents. We investigated potential prey preference of a lacewing generalist predator (Mallada basalis) for two species of mites (Tetranychus kanzawai and Panonychus citri) that are important pests of papaya in Taiwan. In laboratory tests where the lacewing was given a choice between the two mite species, regardless of the lacewing immature stage or the mite life stage, lacewing larvae consumed whichever mite was encountered. Previous feeding experience on one mite species did not influence subsequent prey choice when lacewings were presented with both mite species. Absence of preference by the predator for the two mite pests suggests that this predator has potential as an effective biological control agent for both pest mite species when the two mites occur simultaneously or sequentially in papaya plantations.

Technical Abstract: We investigated potential prey preference of the generalist predator Mallada basalis (Walker) when offered two mites, Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida and Panonychus citri (McGregor), both important pests on papaya. Laboratory choice tests revealed that none of the three larval instars of M. basalis showed a preference for either species of mite or discriminated among the four mite life stages. Instead, lacewing larvae consumed whichever mite was encountered. Previous feeding experience on one mite species did not influence subsequent prey choice when lacewings were presented with both mite species. Absence of preference by the predator for the two mite pests suggests that M. basalis has potential as an effective biological control agent for both T. kanzawai and P. citri when the two mites occur simultaneously or sequentially in papaya plantations.

Last Modified: 7/23/2014
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