Environmental Entomology (1995) 24, 412-422

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David H. Headrick, Thomas S. Bellows Jr. and Thomas M. Perring (1995)
Behaviors of female Eretmocerus sp. nr. californicus (Hymenoptera: Aphelinidae) attacking Bemisia argentifolii (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae) on sweet potato
Environmental Entomology 24 (2), 412-422
Abstract: Behaviors of Eretmocerus sp. nr. californicus Howard females on Bemisia argentifolii Bellows and Perring infesting sweet potato, Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam, were described and quantified. Walking speeds of up to 1.3 mm/s were calculated for females searching for host whitefly nymphs on sweet potato leaves. Females encountered all host stages during searching with approximately the same relative frequency as their relative abundance (average of 17.03% of hosts available were encountered). Females also arrested and antennated all of the host stages with the same relative frequency as their encounter rate (62.8%). Females showed a clear and significant preference for probing second instars over all other stages. Of the hosts probed, females chose all stages for oviposition with the same relative frequency. Successful exsertion of the ovipositor under a host nymph occurred after initial probes 12 times and after repeated probing attempts 15 times. Oviposition occurred under 13.5% of the hosts assessed by antennation; however, 20 of the 27 (74%) nymphs under which the ovipositor was exserted received an egg. Females spent 41% of the total time in searching, host assessment, probing, and oviposition; the remainder of the time (59%) was spent host feeding, grooming, and resting.
(The abstract is excluded from the Creative Commons licence and has been copied with permission by the publisher.)
Database assignments for author(s): Thomas M. Perring

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
biocontrol - natural enemies
Research topic(s) for beneficials or antagonists:
general biology - morphology - evolution


Pest and/or beneficial records:

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


Bemisia tabaci biotype MEAM1 Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) U.S.A. (SW)
Eretmocerus (genus - parasitoids) Bemisia tabaci biotype MEAM1 Sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) U.S.A. (SW)