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BioControl

, Volume 64, Issue 1, pp 103–114 | Cite as

With or without you: stem-galling of a tephritid fly reduces the vegetative and reproductive performance of the invasive plant Chromolaena odorata (Asteraceae) both alone and in combination with another agent

  • Pascal Osa Aigbedion-AtalorEmail author
  • Michael D. Day
  • Itohan Idemudia
  • David D. Wilson
  • Iain D. Paterson
Article
  • 63 Downloads

Abstract

With or without another biological control agent, the specialist folivore Pareuchaetes pseudoinsulata, the stem-galling fly Cecidochares connexa reduced the performance of the invasive alien plant, Chromolaena odorata in Ghana. There was a strong significant negative relationship between gall densities of the gall fly and stem height, and the number of stems and flower heads of C. odorata. Pareuchaetes pseudoinsulata had very little impact on any C. odorata parameters. However, at sites where both C. connexa and P. pseudoinsulata occurred simultaneously, the performance of C. odorata was significantly reduced when compared with control plants. Increasing densities of both agents had a strong significant negative correlative effect on C. odorata plant parameters. Cecidochares connexa was recorded in all five regions of the country sampled, while P. pseudoinsulata was recorded in four regions. Densities of both agents declined in the dry season, but galls were persistent throughout the study period. This is the first report of the impact of C. connexa on C. odorata in the West African sub-region since its introduction to Cote d’Ivoire in 2003 and it is clear that the agent has a significant impact on C. odorata in Ghana. Further surveys are required to determine the impact of both biological control agents in other parts of the sub-region where they have established.

Keywords

Biological control agent interactions Cecidochares connexa Pareuchaetes pseudoinsulata Post-release evaluation West Africa 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors gratefully acknowledge the farmers and the curators of the botanical gardens who ensured the safety of all sites during the study period. We thank Medetissi Adom, Nana Agyemang, Kwaku Owusu, Queendella Ofori, Nana Ama, Kofi Daniel and Kwesi Emmanuel for assisting with the surveys and data collection. Also, we thank Dr. Daisy Salifu, Steve Baleba and Abdelmutalab G. Ahmed for the advice on the statistics used in this study. This study was funded majorly by the German Academic Exchange Services (DAAD) through the African Regional Postgraduate Programme In Insect Science (ARPPIS), University of Ghana. Funding was also provided by the Working for Water (WfW) programme of the Department of Environmental Affairs: Natural Resource Management programme (DEA: NRM). Further funding for this work was provided by the South African Research Chairs Initiative of the Department of Science and Technology and the National Research Foundation (NRF) of South Africa. Any opinion, finding, conclusion or recommendation expressed in this material is that of the authors and the DAAD and NRF do not accept any liability in this regard.

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Copyright information

© International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Centre of Insect Physiology and EcologyNairobiKenya
  2. 2.Biosecurity Queensland, Department of Agriculture and FisheriesEcosciences PrecinctBrisbaneAustralia
  3. 3.Department of Animal and Environmental BiologyUniversity of BeninBeninNigeria
  4. 4.African Regional Postgraduate Programme in Insect ScienceUniversity of GhanaLegonGhana
  5. 5.Department of Zoology and Entomology, Centre for Biological ControlRhodes UniversityGrahamstownSouth Africa

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