BioControl (2011) 56, 295-304

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Robert M. Plowes, Edward G. LeBrun and Lawrence E. Gilbert (2011)
Introduction of the fire ant decapitating fly Pseudacteon obtusus in the United States: factors influencing establishment in Texas
BioControl 56 (3), 295-304
Abstract: The introduction and establishment of Pseudacteon obtusus Borgmeier (Diptera: Phoridae) into the United States is an important milestone in the effort to introduce a suite of parasitoids and pathogens as prospective biocontrol agents of the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). P. obtusus is the fourth species of phorid fly to be established in the US and is now present in at least 11 sites in Texas. This species has a greater propensity for attacking foraging worker ants, and to a lesser degree it will attend mound disturbance events. The effectiveness of alternate field release strategies was evaluated across 28 sites in Texas, with establishment success 35 times more likely when no other phorid species were present at the outset of the releases. This result implies that competition between phorid species may interfere with establishment. Therefore release strategies should be directed to locations lacking other naturalized species or to times when abundances of other species are low.
(The abstract is excluded from the Creative Commons licence and has been copied with permission by the publisher.)
Link to article at publishers website
Database assignments for author(s): Edward G. LeBrun, Lawrence E. Gilbert

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
biocontrol - natural enemies
Research topic(s) for beneficials or antagonists:
classical biocontrol/new introduction
surveys/distribution/isolation


Pest and/or beneficial records:

Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.


Solenopsis invicta U.S.A. (mid S)
Pseudacteon obtusus (parasitoid) Solenopsis invicta U.S.A. (mid S)