Submitted to: Journal of Entomological Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/24/2003
Publication Date: 1/2/2004
Citation: Riddick, E.W. 2004. Effects of exposure time and food on propagation of the fairyfly Anaphes iole Girault (Hymenoptera: Mymaridae). Journal of Entomological Science. 39(1):147-149.
Interpretive Summary: Fairyflies represent a family of parasitic wasps that commonly deposit their eggs inside the eggs of other insects. Some species, such as Anaphes iole, serve as important natural enemies of plant bugs, especially the western tarnished plant bug, Lygus hesperus. Research is underway to discover efficient techniques for mass propagating A. iole for releases in the field or greenhouse. I conducted experiments in the laboratory to see if the time that female wasps were exposed to potential hosts and the presence or absence of food had any effects on the total number of hosts parasitized. The results revealed that neither exposure time (24h versus continuous) nor food (presence versus absence of a honey solution) had any effect on successful parasitism of host eggs. Female wasps deposit a significant proportion of their eggs into hosts within 24h. A system that allows unfed females to deposit their eggs into hosts for a few days is suitable for propagating this parasitoid in 8-liter cages. This study is of value to scientists (in universities, government service and private industry) that are interested in rearing and using natural enemies to control crop pests.
Technical Abstract: Anaphes iole Girault (Hymenoptera: Mymaridae) is a native, solitary egg parasitoid of Lygus bugs (Heteroptera: Miridae) in North America. This study examined the effects of exposure time and food presence (or absence) on progeny production under conditions that simulated our current methods of propagating this parasitoid. The results indicated that exposing 100 A. iole females to host patches for 24h vs continuously, until death, had no effect on progeny production per patch or per cage. Also, presence vs absence of food (20%, v/v aqueous solution) had no effect on progeny production per patch or per cage. This study demonstrates that food is not essential for parasitoid oviposition and multiple females oviposit a significant proportion of their egg load in 24h. A system that allows unfed females to oviposit in hosts for a few days is suitable for in vivo rearing of this parasitoid in 8-liter cages.