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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Coudron, Thomas - Tom
item Kim, Y

Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/10/2004
Publication Date: 6/15/2004
Citation: Coudron, T.A., Kim, Y. 2004. Life history and cost analysis for continuous rearing of perillus bioculatus (f.) (heteroptera: pentatomidae) on a zoophytogenous artificial diet. Journal of Economic Entomology. 97:807-812.

Interpretive Summary: Although the use of beneficial insects could displace insecticide use in some applications, the cost of rearing beneficial insects is often too high to make their use a practical alternative. However, the development of artificial diets for rearing insects has the potential of reducing the cost of producing beneficial insects. The two spotted stink bug is an example of an effective beneficial insect that can be difficult and costly to mass rear. This study showed that when fed a new diet containing plant, beef liver and whole egg, the growth rate and number of offspring of the two spotted stink bug remained lower than when fed a natural host insect. However, the cost of diet was sufficiently lower than the cost of rearing natural host insects such that the estimate of the actual cost of rearing on the artificial diet over successive generations was approximately the same as the cost of rearing on the natural host insect. Similar results have been shown for rearing successive generations of another beneficial predator, the spined soldier bug. Therefore, the new artificial diet would appear to have potential for the mass rearing of several insects, and should constitute a good starting formulation for beneficial predators. This is a significant achievement in the effort to develop cost-effective artificial diets for the mass-rearing of beneficial predatory bugs, and demonstrates that an artificial diet can be cost effective in producing beneficial insects.

Technical Abstract: The impact of a zoophytophagous, insect-free artificial diet on the developmental rate, life table parameters, and fertility table parameters was examined over eleven consecutive generations for domesticated Perillus bioculatus (F.) (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae). This study showed that when fed an insect-free artificial diet during both the nymphal and adult stages, developmental times were prolonged, and the reproductive rates (R0) and the intrinsic rates of increase (r) were significantly lower than when fed larval insect prey at both nymphal and adult stages. However, the realized cost to rear P. bioculatus on the artificial diet approached 1.1 times the cost of rearing P. bioculatus on natural prey. These results demonstrate the effectiveness and cost-savings of the zoophytophagous artificial diet for rearing a beneficial pentatomid.

Last Modified: 05/27/2017
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