Submitted to: Imported Fire Ants Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/14/2007
Publication Date: 11/20/2007
Citation: Portilla, M., Streett, D.A., Vogt, J.T. Developing Methods to Evaluate Reproduction Rates of Pseudacteon curvatus (Diptera: Phoridae) in Solenopsis richteri (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Imported Fire Ants Conference Proceedings. pp. 78-79. 2007.
Interpretive Summary: When fire ants were accidentally introduced into the United States, their natural enemies remained in South America. Phorid flies are one of these natural enemies that have been introduced into the United States to suppress fire ant populations. We developed a new phorid fly rearing system to calculate the reproductive rate values for phorid flies. This information will prove valuable as a tool for measuring the efficiency of different phorid fly production systems.
Technical Abstract: The black imported fire ants Solenopsis richteri Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) is a major economic pest that has spread throughout United State. A great deal of interest exists in the potential for augmentative biological control agents in an effort to control its spread and reduce the damage produced by this insect. Pseudacteon curvatus Borgmeier is one of the most recognized parasitic phorid fly introduced into United Stated and recovered in areas infested with Solenopsis species. Life and fertility tables were constructed in order to calculate the reproductive rate of this parasitic fly. Preliminary reproductive rates of P. curvatus demonstrated a gross fecundity of 32.12 progeny/female, with 3.82 days of survival, 40.69 days mean developmental time, 13.35 increases in individual per female fly each generation, and a 1.06 individual increase each day per female fly, a fly can laid 8.4 eggs per day and double its population in 11.02 days. The successful In vitro rearing system developed in this investigation could be useful to calculate the fecundity rate values for the other species of phorid fly parasitoids currently approved for release in the U. S to get a better understanding on their intrinsic capacity of increase after released under the field condition.