DOI: 10.3390/insects15010014 ISSN: 2075-4450

Age- and Density-Dependent Parasitism Rate and Development Time of the Generalist Egg-Parasitoid Ooencyrtus telenomicida (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) on Eggs of the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, Halyomorpha halys

Eleni I. Koutsogeorgiou, Theodoros Moysiadis, Georgios T. Fifis, Nikoloz E. Gogolashvili, Dimitrios Chatzimpalasis, Stefanos S. Andreadis
  • Insect Science

Halyomorpha halys (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae) is an invasive pest species that was imported into Greece in 2011 and since then, has caused severe qualitative and quantitative damage to economically important crops. Its management relies mainly on the use of broad-spectrum insecticides, with little to no information available concerning the potential use of native parasitoids in terms of classical biological control. Our study aimed to assess the parasitism rate and development time of the gregarious egg parasitoid Ooencyrtus telenomicida (Hymenoptera: Encyrtidae) on H. halys egg-masses, depending on several factors such as: (i) age of parasitoids, (ii) density of parasitoids, (iii) age of host eggs, and (iv) oviposition experience of parasitoids. According to our results, the younger the host eggs and the more parasitoids, the higher the parasitism rate achieved by adults of O. telenomicida, with the maximum mean value of the parasitism rate observed with 1-day-old host eggs and 4 parasitoid pairs (57.3%). On the contrary, the lowest mean value of the parasitism rate was observed with 4-day-old host eggs and 1 parasitoid pair (6.5%). Similarly, the age of parasitoids significantly affected parasitisation. The older the parasitoids were, the higher the parasitism rate achieved by adults of O. telenomicida, with a three-fold higher parasitism rate observed at 3–4 and 5–6-day-old O. telenomicida, compared to 1–2-day-old (31.8, 32.4, and 12.1%, respectively). Individuals that developed in younger host eggs displayed a shorter development time, and the shortest development time was observed for O. telenomicida laid by 2 parasitoid pairs. Parasitoid age did not affect the development time of O. telenomicida, although there was a tendency for individuals laid by younger female parasitoids to exhibit a shorter development time. Our findings provide valuable information on the potential use of O. telenomicida as a biocontrol agent of H. halys.

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