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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Albany, California » Western Regional Research Center » Invasive Species and Pollinator Health » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #373394

Research Project: Watershed-scale Assessment of Pest Dynamics and Implications for Area-wide Management of Invasive Insects and Weeds

Location: Invasive Species and Pollinator Health

Title: Host specificity of Liothrips ludwigi, a candidate biological control agent of invasive Ludwigia spp. in the USA

Author
item Reddy, Angelica
item Pratt, Paul
item Grewell, Brenda
item HARMS, NATHAN - Us Army Corp Of Engineers (USACE)
item CABRERA WALSH, GUILLERMO - Fuedei
item HERNANDEZ, CRISTINA - Fuedei
item FALTHAUSER, ANA - Fuedei

Submitted to: Biocontrol Science and Technology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/2/2020
Publication Date: 6/22/2020
Citation: Reddy, A.M., Pratt, P.D., Grewell, B.J., Harms, N.E., Cabrera Walsh, G., Hernandez, C.M., Falthauser, A. 2020. Host specificity of Liothrips ludwigi, a candidate biological control agent of invasive Ludwigia spp. in the USA. Biocontrol Science and Technology. https://doi.org/10.1080/09583157.2020.1778637.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/09583157.2020.1778637

Interpretive Summary: Classical biological control is the introduction of natural enemies (insects) to control exotic plants that have become invasive. A biological program targeting water primroses, Ludwigia spp., has been initiated by the USDA-ARS. In this study, the host range of a biological control agent, the thrips Liothrips ludwigi, was investigated using single- and multi-generational no-choice nymphal development and oviposition tests. Development, oviposition, and egg viability were quantified when L. ludwigi were fed three exotic Ludwigia species and eight of USA native plant species. Liothrips ludwigi completed development and oviposited viable eggs on sympatric native Ludwigia species and sustained multiple generations on test plant species under laboratory conditions. These results indicate that L. ludwigi is not sufficiently host-specific for further consideration as a biological control agent of exotic Ludwigia spp. in the USA and further testing is not warranted.

Technical Abstract: The host range of the thrips Liothrips ludwigi was investigated using single- and multi-generational no-choice nymphal development and oviposition tests. Development, oviposition, and egg viability were quantified when L. ludwigi were fed three exotic Ludwigia species and eight of USA native plant species. Liothrips ludwigi completed development and oviposited viable eggs on sympatric native Ludwigia species and sustained multiple generations on test plant species under laboratory conditions. These results indicate that L. ludwigi is not sufficiently host-specific for further consideration as a biological control agent of exotic Ludwigia spp. in the USA and further testing is not warranted.