Florida Entomologist (2006) 89, 144-151

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Paul E. Kendra, Wayne S. Montgomery, Nancy D. Epsky and Robert R. Heath (2006)
Assessment of female reproductive status in Anastrepha suspensa (Diptera: Tephritidae)
Florida Entomologist 89 (2), 144-151
Abstract: Reliable methods are needed for assessing sexual maturity in field-captured tephritid fruit flies. To provide such a tool for female Caribbean fruit flies, Anastrepha suspensa (Loew), this study documented changes in ovarian development over a four-week period following adult eclosion. The ovarian maturation process was classified into six developmental stages. Stages 1-4 described sequential steps in the development of immature ovaries, stage 5 indicated presence of mature oocytes, and stage 6 was the ovipositional phase. For each stage, four morphometric characters were examined-length of ovary, width of ovary, an ovarian index (length of ovary multiplied by width of ovary), and length of terminal follicle. Ovarian characters were compared by stage and correlated with the number of mature oocytes per ovary (egg load). Ovarian index maximized the differences between sexually mature and immature ovaries, and ovary length provided the best separation of immature stages. All four characters were positively correlated with egg load, but ovarian index and ovary width were the two best indicators of mature oocytes. Use of these parameters to assess egg load would eliminate the need to tease apart ovaries and count mature oocytes, thereby providing an efficient method for processing large samples of flies. Classification of female sexual maturity based on an ovary staging system, in conjunction with assessment of egg load in mature stages, would facilitate evaluation of the physiological age structure of a fly population captured in field deployed traps.
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Database assignments for author(s): Paul E. Kendra, Nancy D. Epsky

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
general biology - morphology - evolution

Pest and/or beneficial records:

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

Anastrepha suspensa