Some effects of pre-release host-plant on the biological control of Panonychus ulmi by the predatory mite Amblyseius fallacis
Source: Experimental and Applied Acarology, Volume 24, Number 1, January 2000 , pp. 19-33(15)
Abstract:Amblyseius fallacis Garman has been selected for pyrethroid resistance and mass reared for experimental release as a biological control agent for tetranychid mites on a number of crops in Canada. Several releases of this predator onto apple and peach trees have failed to result in the establishment of A. fallacis, or in the biological control of Panonychus ulmi Koch. Here, we test the hypothesis that the change of host-plant at the time of release is a critical factor in the establishment of A. fallacis for biological control of P. ulmi. Functional and numerical response studies were undertaken on two populations of A. fallacis: a wild strain collected from the canopy foliage of an apple orchard near Vineland, Ontario; and a second strain reared on bean plants in a commercial insectary with Tetranychus urticae as prey. Each population consumed significantly more P. ulmi and produced significantly more eggs when on leaf disks from the plant species they were reared on, than on leaf disks from the novel host plant. A further experiment was conducted to determine if establishment and biological control of mass-reared A. fallacis could be affected by rearing a population for a short term on apple leaves prior to release on apple trees. Three release treatments were made into potted apple trees in a glasshouse, using predators commercially mass-reared on bean and T. urticae: A. fallacis released directly; A. fallacis reared in the laboratory for four weeks on bean and T. urticae; A. fallacis reared on apple leaves and T. urticae for four weeks. They were compared with a control treatment lacking predator release. Contrary to results of the functional and numerical response studies, no difference was observed between release treatments. All release treatments adding A. fallacis resulted in a similar, if limited, degree of biological control of P. ulmi. These results indicated that there may be short-term effects of host plant on the establishment of A. fallacis and biological control of P. ulmi, which in our study were observed as an initial reduction of the predatory response. However, in a test, the predators appeared to overcome these short-term effects and successfully established on the new host-plant to control P. ulmi.
Document Type: Regular Paper
Affiliations: 1: Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado 80523, USA 2: Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, Summerland, British Columbia, Z23 1H0, Canada 3: Biology Department, Queens University, Kingston, Ontario, K7L 3N6, Canada
Publication date: January 2000