Environmental Entomology (2004) 33, 1436-1441

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Ricardo J. Vazquez, Sanford D. Porter and Juan A. Briano (2004)
Host specificity of a biotype of the fire ant decapitating fly Pseudacteon curvatus (Diptera: Phoridae) from northern Argentina
Environmental Entomology 33 (5), 1436-1441
Abstract: We tested the host specificity of Pseudacteon curvatus Borgmeier from Formosa, Argentina, on North American colonies of the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta Buren, and the native fire ants Solenopsis geminata (F.) and Solenopsis xyloni McCook. No-choice tests showed that P. curvatus hovered over and attacked all three species of fire ants. The number of pupae successfully completing development to adult flies in the trials was 5.03 ± 1.55 (mean ± SE) per female fly in S. invicta, 0.66 ± 0.24 per female fly in S. xyloni, and 0 per female fly in S. geminata. Paired preference tests showed that P. curvatus preferred to hover over S. invicta instead of S. xyloni 77 ± 3% (mean ± SE) of the time and preferred S. invicta over S. geminata 87 ± 4% of the time. The oviposition attempts of active female P. curvatus were 2.8 times higher on S. invicta than on S. xyloni and 16 times higher on S. invicta than on S. geminata. These results demonstrate that this new biotype of P. curvatus is more host specific to North American red imported fire ants than a previous biotype collected from black imported fire ants.
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Database assignments for author(s): Sanford D. Porter, Juan A. Briano

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
biocontrol - natural enemies
Research topic(s) for beneficials or antagonists:
general biology - morphology - evolution
non-target effects/fate in environm.

Pest and/or beneficial records:

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

Solenopsis invicta
Solenopsis geminata
Solenopsis xyloni
Pseudacteon curvatus (parasitoid) Solenopsis invicta Argentina
Pseudacteon curvatus (parasitoid) Solenopsis geminata
Pseudacteon curvatus (parasitoid) Solenopsis xyloni