|MACHTINGER, E - University Of Florida|
|Geden, Christopher - Chris|
|LEPPLA, C - University Of Florida|
Submitted to: Environmental Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/9/2014
Publication Date: 4/1/2015
Citation: Machtinger, E.T., Geden, C.J., Teal, P.E., Leppla, C. 2015. Comparison of host-seeking behavior of the filth fly pupal parasitoids, Spalangia cameroni and Muscidifurax raptor (Hymenoptera: Pteromalidae). Environmental Entomology. 44(2):330-337.
Interpretive Summary: House flies and stable flies are important pests associated with animals and humans and transmit a wide array of disease organisms. Biological control is an important element in successful fly management, and parasitic wasps that attack and kill fly pupae are the most commonly used fly biocontrol agents. Little is known about how the wasps find their fly hosts, especially in situations where they may occur in widely spaced hot spots. In this study, conducted by scientists at USDA’s Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology (Gainesville, FL) and the University of Florida, the attractiveness of various odors were tested against two common parasitic wasp species, Spalangia cameroni and Muscidifurax raptor. Spalangia cameroni was highly attracted to horse manure containing fly larvae. In contrast, M. raptor was most attracted by fly pupae, either alone or in combination with manure. These differences may explain how these two species are able to coexist in nature and provide clues for development of lures for monitoring their presence.
Technical Abstract: The pupal parasitoids, Spalangia cameroni Perkins and Muscidifurax raptor Girault and Sanders, are often sold together for biological control of house flies (Musca domestica L.) and stable flies (Stomoxys calcitrans L.) (Diptera: Muscidae). Little is known about the odors involved in host-seeking behavior of these two species, so odors associated with house flies were investigated in the laboratory using a Y-tube olfactometer. Odor stimuli from house fly host puparia, larvae, pine-shavings bedding with horse manure, and developing flies in the pine-shavings-manure substrate were evaluated in bioassays using the two pteromalid species. In choice tests, naïve female S. cameroni were strongly attracted to odor from the substrate containing house fly larvae and secondarily from the uninfested substrate and substrate with puparia versus humidified and purified air. This species also selected the substrate with larvae versus the substrate with the house fly puparia or uninfested substrate. Muscidifurax raptor was attracted to odor from the substrate containing puparia, washed puparia, and substrate with puparia removed. Thus, coexistence between the two pteromalid parasitoids, S. cameroni and M. raptor, is likely promoted by different host-seeking behavior.