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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: PEST BIOLOGY, ECOLOGY, AND INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT FOR SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE

Location: North Central Agricultural Research Laboratory

Title: Relationships of Natural Enemies and Non-Prey Foods

Author
item Lundgren, Jonathan

Submitted to: Springer Verlag
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: August 10, 2008
Publication Date: February 23, 2009
Citation: Lundgren, J.G. 2009. Relationships of Natural Enemies and Non-prey Foods. Springer Verlag, Dordrecht, The Netherlands, 453 + xxviii pages.

Interpretive Summary: There are very few entomophagous species so maladapted as to rely on prey as their sole nutritional resource. Although a rich source of nutrients, prey/host availability to predators and parasitoids is restricted temporally by ephemeral population dynamics, spatial differences in microclimate, structural and chemical defences of the prey, etc. Nevertheless, the importance of prey dynamics to predator behavior has predominated the biological control literature. A frustration is that non-prey sources of nutrition have received a disproportionate level of attention when one considers how important these foods are to the evolution and ecology of natural enemies. This book changes that. The interactions between natural enemies and their non-prey foods can be viewed from either party’s perspective- the food and its functional role for the plant or organism that produces it, and the natural enemy that consumes the food source as part of their diet. This book examines these relationships from both sides of the aisle. In many cases, it is well understood that entomophagous species consume non-prey foods. But what precisely are these non-prey foods? What is their function in the environment? What are their nutritional properties? Understanding these characteristics will allow a better understanding of the interactions between entomophagous insects and their environment. This graduate-level book consolidates much of the known information on natural enemies that consume sugar, pollen, seeds, and fungus, and the nutritional and ecological functions these non-prey foods provide within cropland. The functional significance of omnivory in natural enemies to biological control is highlighted in the final section of the book, and illustrates the importance of consuming non-prey foods to the integration of biological control into IPM systems.

Technical Abstract: There are very few entomophagous species so maladapted as to rely on prey as their sole nutritional resource. Although a rich source of nutrients, prey/host availability to predators and parasitoids is restricted temporally by ephemeral population dynamics, spatial differences in microclimate, structural and chemical defences of the prey, etc. Nevertheless, the importance of prey dynamics to predator behavior has predominated the biological control literature. A frustration is that non-prey sources of nutrition have received a disproportionate level of attention when one considers how important these foods are to the evolution and ecology of natural enemies. This book changes that. The interactions between natural enemies and their non-prey foods can be viewed from either party’s perspective- the food and its functional role for the plant or organism that produces it, and the natural enemy that consumes the food source as part of their diet. This book examines these relationships from both sides of the aisle. In many cases, it is well understood that entomophagous species consume non-prey foods. But what precisely are these non-prey foods? What is their function in the environment? What are their nutritional properties? Understanding these characteristics will allow a better understanding of the interactions between entomophagous insects and their environment. This graduate-level book consolidates much of the known information on natural enemies that consume sugar, pollen, seeds, and fungus, and the nutritional and ecological functions these non-prey foods provide within cropland. The functional significance of omnivory in natural enemies to biological control is highlighted in the final section of the book, and illustrates the importance of consuming non-prey foods to the integration of biological control into IPM systems.

Last Modified: 8/22/2014
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