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Life-history and host preference of Trichopria drosophilae, a pupal parasitoid of spotted wing drosophila

Abstract

Trichopria drosophilae is a cosmopolitan pupal parasitoid that attacks many species of Drosophilidae, including the invasive Drosophila suzukii. This study reports on the life-history traits and host preferences of a Californian population of T. drosophilae and compares its life-time fecundity with a South Korean population of T. drosophilae. Female parasitoids emerge with a high mature egg-load (47.6 ± 2.3 eggs per female). The number of mature eggs of female T. drosophilae was affected by the female age and body size but not by the interaction between these two factors. The parasitoid did not show preference among differently aged (1–4 days old) D. suzukii pupae and host age did not affect the parasitoid’s fitness, except that offspring developmental time slightly increased with host age. In a choice test, more offspring successfully developed from the larger D. suzukii than the smaller D. melanogaster, and adult females reared from D. suzukii were larger than those that were reared from D. melanogaster, apparently at no cost in parasitoid fitness. T. drosophilae females from the Californian and the South Korean populations survived 27.5 and 20.2 days, produced a total of 63.8 and 52.0 offspring, and had an intrinsic rate of increase of 0.124 and 0.113, respectively, when provided with adult food and D. suzukii pupae as host material.

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Acknowledgments

Funding for research was supported by the California Cherry Board and the USDA APHIS (Farm bill, fund 14-8130-0463). We thank Jeffrey Miller, Peter Shearer, and Betsey Miller (Oregon State University) for foreign exploration in South Korea (funded by the USDA-NIFA award # 2010-51181-21167); Matthew Buffington (USDA-ARS) for the identification of the parasitoid; John Hutchins and Marilyn Chan (University of California, Berkeley) for assistance in colony maintenance. We also thank Betsey Miller for useful comments on an early version of this manuscript. Gülay Kaçar was supported by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK); Antonio Biondi received funding from the People Programme (Marie Curie Actions) of the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013/under REA Grant agreement 318246 and from the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research (PRIN project GEISCA, 2010CXXHJE 004); Marilyn Chan was supported by Sponsored Projects for Undergraduate Research (SPUR).

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Correspondence to Xin-Geng Wang.

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Wang, XG., Kaçar, G., Biondi, A. et al. Life-history and host preference of Trichopria drosophilae, a pupal parasitoid of spotted wing drosophila. BioControl 61, 387–397 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10526-016-9720-9

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Keywords

  • Drosophila suzukii
  • Biological control
  • Host preference
  • Life history