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Increases in densities of the citrus red mite,Panonychus citri [Acarina: Tetranychidae], in association with the Argentine ant,Iridomyrmex humilis [Hymenoptera: Formicidae], in southern California citrus

Abstract

We monitored the activities of the Argentine ant,Iridomyrmex humilis (Mayr), in 3 citrus orchards during 1984 and 1985. We also monitored densities of citrus red mite,Panonychus citri (McGregor), the adult spider mite destroyer,Stethorus picipes Casey [Col.: Coccinellidae], and the predatory mite,Euseius tularensis Congdon [Acarina: Phytoseiidae] during the same period in ant-present and ant-free plots in each orchard.

I. humilis was excluded for at least 9 months from trees pruned 60 cm from the ground following a basal application of 1 or 2 % chlorpyrifos 4 EC. Autumn densities ofP. citri in these ant-free plots were significantly lower than those in the plots infested withI. Humilis.

S. picipes appeared to be the most important predator, maintaining lowP. citri densities on citrus in southern California in the absence ofI. humilis activity.S. picipes densities increased numerically in response to the early spring and late autumn increases in the density ofP. citri populations. However, in the presence ofI. humilis activity, effective predation was apparently inhibited.

Densities ofE. tularensis were unaffected by the presence ofI. humilis, nor didE. tularensis respond to spring or autumn increases in the density ofP. citri populations in any of the orchards.

Résumé

Nous avons enregistré en 1984 et 1985 les variations de densité de la fourmi d'Argentine,Iridomyrmex humilis (Mayr), dans trois vergers d'agrumes, chacun contenant des parcelles soit infestées de fourmis, soit non-infestées. Nous avons suivi durant la même période et dans les mêmes vergers les densités de l'acarien rouge du citronnier,Panonychus citri (McGregor), deStethorus picipes [Col.: Coccinellidae] et deE. tularensis (Congdon) [Acarina: Phytoseiidae].

I. humilis a été exclu des parcelles durant 9 mois grâce à l'application de 1 ou 2% de Chlorpyrifos (4 EC) à la base des arbres taillés à 60 cm du sol. A l'automne, les densités deP. citri dans les parcelles non-infestées de fourmis ont été, d'une manière significative, moins élevées que celles des parcelles infestées avecI. humilis.

L'accroissement des densités deS. picipes s'est faite de façon aggrégative, et a suivi celles deP. citri. I. humilis a interféré apparemment avec la capacité que possèdeS. picipes de lutter contreP. citri à l'automne.S. picipes apparait comme étant le principal prédateur de maintenir les populations deP. citri à un bas niveau, à l'automne.

La présence d'I. humilis n'a pas affecté les densités deE. tularensis. Les densités de ces 2 espèces ne sont pas non plus affectées et ce, dans aucun verger, par les accroissements de densité deP. citri, observés à l'automne et au printemps.

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Haney, P.B., Luck, R.F. & Moreno, D.S. Increases in densities of the citrus red mite,Panonychus citri [Acarina: Tetranychidae], in association with the Argentine ant,Iridomyrmex humilis [Hymenoptera: Formicidae], in southern California citrus. Entomophaga 32, 49–57 (1987). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02390931

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Key-words

  • Panonychus citri
  • Iridomyrmex humilis
  • chlorpyrifos
  • citrus orchards

Mots Clefs

  • Panonychus citri
  • Iridomyrmex humilis
  • chlorpyrifos
  • vergers d'agrumes