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Observations of parasitoid behaviour in both no‐choice and choice tests are consistent with proposed ecological host range


Withers, TM and Allen, GR and Todoroki, CL and Pugh, AR and Gresham, BA, Observations of parasitoid behaviour in both no‐choice and choice tests are consistent with proposed ecological host range, Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 169, (1: Special Issue IEIC6) pp. 97-110. ISSN 1570-7458 (2021) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2020 The Netherlands Entomological Society. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.

DOI: doi:10.1111/eea.12956


The solitary larval endoparasitoid Eadya daenerys Ridenbaugh (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) is a proposed biological control agent of Paropsis charybdis Stål (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae, Chrysomelinae), a pest of eucalypts in New Zealand. Eadya daenerys oviposition behaviour was examined in two assay types during host range testing, with the aim of improving ecological host range prediction. No‐choice sequential and two‐choice behavioural observations were undertaken against nine closely related species of New Zealand non‐target beetle larvae, including a native beetle, introduced weed biocontrol agents, and invasive paropsine beetles. No behavioural measure was significantly different between no‐choice and two‐choice tests. In sequential no‐choice assays the order of first presentation (target–non‐target) had no significant effect on the median number of attacks or the attack rate while on the plant. Beetle species was the most important factor. Parasitoids expressed significantly lower on‐plant attack rates against non‐targets compared to target P. charybdis larvae. The median number of attacks was always higher towards target larvae than towards non‐target larvae, except for the phylogenetically closest related non‐target Trachymela sloanei (Blackburn) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae, Chrysomelinae). Most non‐target larvae were disregarded upon contact, which suggests that the infrequent attack behaviour observed by two individual E. daenerys against Allocharis nr. tarsalis larvae in two‐choice tests and the frass of Chrysolina abchasica (Weise) was probably abnormal host selection behaviour. Results indicate that E. daenerys is unlikely to attack non‐target species apart from Eucalyptus‐feeding invasive paropsines (Chrysomelinae). Non‐lethal negative impacts upon less preferred non‐target larvae are possible if E. daenerys does attack them in the field; however, this is likely to be rare.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:oviposition, Chrysomelidae, Braconidae, endemic beetle, host range testing, host acceptance, non-target impacts, Eadya daenerys, Paropsis charybdis, Eucalyptus nitens, Hymenoptera, Coleoptera, biological control a, wasp, Eucalyptus nitens, entomology
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Forestry sciences
Research Field:Forest health and pathology
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Terrestrial systems and management
Objective Field:Control of pests, diseases and exotic species in terrestrial environments
UTAS Author:Allen, GR (Associate Professor Geoff Allen)
ID Code:139899
Year Published:2021 (online first 2020)
Web of Science® Times Cited:1
Deposited By:Agriculture and Food Systems
Deposited On:2020-07-13
Last Modified:2021-09-21
Downloads:16 View Download Statistics

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