Lepidopterans are among the most important groups of pests for crops in central Brazil. Fortunately, there is a significant diversity of natural enemies acting in the natural regulation of these pests. Among them, the parasitoids of the family Tachinidae (Diptera) are often found parasitizing the larval phase of Lepidoptera pests in Brazilian agricultural crops. However, little is known about the diversity of these parasitoids in crops in central Brazil, which is one of the main grain-producing regions. Knowing the diversity of tachinid associated to lepidopteran pests is the first step to future studies on conservative and applied biological control. Therefore, we studied the existing diversity of this family of parasitoids associated with several species of lepidopteran pests in soybean and corn crops in the state of Goiás (Brazil) and neighboring municipalities. Nine species of Lepidoptera larvae were collected, of which approximately 18.9% were parasitized by tachinids. We identified three species and 25 morphospecies of this parasitoid family, belonging to 14 genera and nine tribes from three of the four existing subfamilies of tachinid. Strong associations between some tachinid species and hosts species were observed, e.g., Archytas incertus (Tachinidae: Diptera) and Helicoverpa armigera (Noctuidae: Lepidoptera), Gonia sequax (Tachinidae: Diptera) and Spodoptera frugiperda (Noctuidae: Lepidoptera). These species have great potential to be studied as applied biological control agents. This is the first recorded occurrence of the genus Atactosturmia (Tachinidae: Diptera) and the species G. sequax in Brazil.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
The identified material is kept in the entomological collection of the Departamento de Zoologia of Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.
Agboyi LK, Goergen G, Beseh P, Mensah SA, Clottey VA, Glikpo R, Buddie A, Cafà G, Offord L, Day R, Rwomushana I, Kenis M (2020) Parasitoid complex of fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda. Ghana and Benin Insects 11(2):68
Avanci MRF, Foerster LA, Cañete CL (2005) Natural parasitism in eggs of Anticarsia gemmatalis Hübner (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae) by Trichogramma spp. (Hymenoptera, Trichogrammatidae) in Brazil. Ver Bras Entomol 49:148–151
Begg GS, Cook SM, Dye R, Ferrante M, Franck P, Lavigne C, Lövei GL, Mansion-Vaquie A, Pell JK, Petit S, Quesada N, Ricci B, Wratten SD, Birch ANE (2017) A functional overview of conservation biological control. Crop Prot 93:145–158
Blas GS (2014) Agrotis Ochsenheimer (Lepidoptera, Noctuidae): a systematic analysis of South American species. Zootaxa 3771:001–064
Bueno RCOF, Bueno AF, Moscardi F, Parra JRP, Hoffmann-Campo CB (2011) Lepidopteran larva consumption of soybean foliage: basis for developing multiple-species economic thresholds for pest management decisions. Pest Manage Sci 67:170–174
Carneiro E, Silva LB, Silva AF, Lopes GN, Pavan BE, Rodrigues RHF, Carvalhinho DT, Mielezrski DF (2018) Lepidopteran pests associated with the soybean cultivars phenology. Biosci J 34:112–121
Colomo MV, Berta C, Valverde L, Sueldo MDR (2009) Incidencia de parasitoides en larvas de lepidópteros noctuidos en el cultivo de soja, en Tucumán, Argentina. Bol San Veg Plagas 35:563–569 (in Spanish)
Czepak C, Albernaz KC, Vivan LM, Guimarães HO, Carvalhais T (2013) First reported occurrence of Helicoverpa armigera (Hübner) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in Brazil. Pesq Agropec Trop 43:110–113
Dainese M, Luna DI, Sitzia T, Marini L (2015) Testing scale-dependent effects of seminatural habitats on farmland biodiversity. Ecol Appl 25:1681–1690
Dequech ST, Silva RFP, Fiuza LM (2004) Occurrence of Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lep. Noctuidae) parasitoids in maize crops in Cachoeirinha, RS. Brazil Ciênc Rural 34:1235–1237 (in Portuguese with English summary)
Dindo ML, Rezaei M, De Clercq P (2012) Improvements in the rearing of the tachinid parasitoid Exorista larvarum (Diptera: Tachinidae): influence of adult food on female longevity and reproduction capacity. J Insect Sci 19(2):6
Dormann CF, Gruber B, Fründ J (2008) Introducing the bipartite package: analysing ecological networks. R News 8:8–11
Downes S, Kriticos D, Parry H, Paull C, Schellhorn N, Zalucki MP (2017) A perspective on management of Helicoverpa armigera: transgenic Bt cotton, IPM, and landscapes. Pest Manag Sci 73:485–492
Figueiredo MLC, Martins-Dias AMP, Cruz I (2006) Relationship between natural enemies and Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith, 1797) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) on maize crop. Rev Bras Milho Sorgo 5:340–350 (in Portuguese with English summary)
GBIF Secretariat (2019) GBIF Backbone Taxonomy. Checklist dataset. https://doi.org/10.15468/39omei
Gonçalves CR, Gonçalves AJL (1973) Novas observações sobre insetos hospedeiros de moscas da família Tachinidae (Diptera). Agronomia 31:9–15 (in Portuguese)
Greene GL, Leppla NC, Dickerson WA (1976) Velvetbean caterpillar: a rearing procedure and artificial medium. J Econ Entomol 69:487–488
Gross HR, Pair SD (1991) Seasonal distribution, response to host developmental stage, and screened-cage performance of Archytas marmoratus (Diptera: Tachinidae) and Ophion flavidus (Hymenoptera: Ichneumonidae) on Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae). Flor Entomol 74(2):237–245
Guimarães JH (1977) Host-parasite and parasite-host catalogue of South American Tachinidae (Dipera). Arq Zool 28(3):1–131
Hill AS, Rings RW, Swier SR, Roelofs WL (1979) Sex pheromone of the Black Cutworm moth Agrotis Ipsilon. J Chem Ecol 5(3):439–457
Luz PMC, Paula-Moraes SV, López JMP, Pujol-Luz JR, Penteado-Dias AM, Specht A, Diniz IR (2018) Parasitoid associated with of Helicoverpa armigera in refuge areas of cotton, in Western Bahia, Brazil. Ciênc Rural 48:1–4
Maruya WI, Pinto AS, Gravena S (2001) Parasitoides y Nomuraea rileyi (Farlow) Samson en orugas desfoliadoras (Lepidoptera) en el cultivo da soja. Bol San Veg Pladas 27:561–567 (in Spanish)
Massarolli A, Hoffmann ARL, Favetti BM, Butnariu AR (2018) Ichneumonids (Hymenoptera) and tachinid flies (Diptera) associated to leptidopterans in soybean crops. J Agric Sci 10:167–173
Molina-Ochoa J, Carpenter JE, Heinrichs EA, Foster FE (2003) Parasitoids and parasites of Spodoptera frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in the Americas and Caribbean Basin: an inventory. Florida Entomol 83:254–289
Morrison FO (1940) A revision of the American species of Gonia Meigen (Diptera: Tachinidae). Can J Res Sect D 18:336–362
Nihei SS, Lopes AC, Dios RVP, Gudin FM (2017) Check-list of the Tachinidae (Diptera) of Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. Iheringia 107:e2017141
O’Hara JE (2008) Tachinid flies (Diptera: Tachinidae). In: Capinera JL (ed) Encyclopedia of entomology, vol 4, 2nd edn. Springer, Dordrecht, pp 3675–3686
O’Hara JE (2016) World genera of the Tachinidae (Diptera) and their regional occurrence. Version 9.0. National Research Council Canada, Ottawa. http://www.nadsdiptera.org/Tach/WorldTachs/Genera/Worldgenera.htm. Accessed 05 Jan 2021
O’Hara JE, Henderson S, Wood DM (2020) Preliminary checklist of the Tachinidae (Diptera) of the world. Version 2.1. Canadian National Collection of Insects, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. http://www.nadsdiptera.org/Tach/WorldTachs/Checklist/Tachchlist_ver2.1.pdf. Accessed 05 Jan 2021
Pair SD, Laster ML, Martin DF (1982) Parasitoids of Heliothis spp. (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) larvae in Mississippi associated with sesame interplantings in cotton, 1971–74: implications of host-habitat interaction. Environ Entomol 11:504–512
QGIS Development Team (2018) QGIS Geographic Information System. Open Source Geospatial Foundation Project. http://qgis.osgeo.org
R Core Team (2019) R: A language and environment for statistical computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria. http://www.r-project.org/
Sabrosky CW (1955) The taxonomic status of the armyworm parasite known as Archytas piliventris (van der Wulp) (Diptera: Larvaevoridae). Florida Entomol 38:77–83
Sharanabasappa KCM, Poorani J, Maruthi MS, Pavithra HB, Divariam J (2019) Natural enemies of Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), a recent invasive pest on maize in South India. Florida Entomol 102:619–623
Shekharappa Jairao K (1988) Biology of Eucelatoria bryani Sabrosky (Diptera: Tachinidae), A larval parasitoid of Heliothis armigera (Hubner). J Biol Control 2:74–76
Silva MTB (1993) Control of the soybean caterpillar (Anticarsia gemmatalis Hübner, 1818 – Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) IV Natural biological control. Ciênc Rural 23:127–132 (in Portuguese with English summary)
Sisay B, Simiyu J, Mendesil E, Likhayo P, Ayalew G, Mohamed S, Subramanian S, Tefera T (2019) Fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda infestations in East Africa: assessment of damage and parasitism. Insects 10(7):195
Smith JE, King EG, Bell JV (1976) Parasites and pathogens among Heliothis species in the central Mississippi delta. Environ Entomol 5:224–226
Stacke RF, Arnemann JA, Rogers J, Stacke RS, Strahl TT, Perini CR, Dossin MF, Pozebon H, Cavallin LA, Guedes JVC (2018) Damage assessment of Helicoverpa armigera (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in soybean reproductive stages. Crop Prot 112:10–17
Stireman JOIII, O’Hara JE, Wood DM (2006) Tachinidae: evolution, behavior, and ecology. Annu Rev Entomol 51:525–555
Toma R (2010) Contribution to the knowledge of Venezuelan species of Lespesia Robineau-Desvoidy (Diptera, Tachinidae), with descriptions of new species. Rev Bras Entomol 54:165–172 (in Portuguese with English summary)
Toma R, Roel A, Miranda R (2017) First record of Peckia (Sarcodexia) lambens (Wiedemann, 1830) (Diptera: Sarcophagidae) parasitizing Spodoptera frugiperda (Smith, 1797) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in Brazil. Arq Inst Biol 84:e0302016
Valicente FH (1989) Survey of natural enemies of Spodoptera frugiperda (J.E. Smith, 1797) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in different regions of the state of Minas Gerais. An Soc Entomol Bras 18:119–130 (in Portuguese with English summary)
Valicente FH, Barreto MR (1999) Survey of natural enemies of the Fall Armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith) (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae), in Cascavel Region, PR. Brazil an Soc Entomol Bras 28:333–337 (in Portuguese with English summary)
Wood DM (1987) Tachinidae. In: McAlpine JF, Peterson BV, Shewell GE, Teskey HJ, Vockeroth JR, Wood DM (eds) Manual of Nearctic diptera, vol 2. Agriculture Canada Monograph, Canada, pp 1193–1269
Wood DM, Zumbado MA (2010) Tachinidae (tachinid flies, parasitic flies). In: Brown BV, Borkent A, Cumming JM, Wood DM, Woodley NE, Zumbado MA (eds) Manual of Central American diptera, vol 2. National Research Council Canada, Ottawa, pp 1343–1418
This work was funded by Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq) and Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de Goiás (FAPEG) (Grant numbers 124304/2017-6 and 201310267001419, respectively). We thank the undergraduate students of Integrated Pest Management laboratory (Universidade Federal de Goiás) for field assistance with the collections of caterpillars. We specially thank Janayne M. Rezende (AgBitech) and Giulliano S. Camargos (Universidade Federal de Goiás) for their support during the research, and Kevyllen M. B. Borges for making the map in Fig. 1. We are grateful to Silvio S. Nihei (Universidade de São Paulo) for receiving our Tachinid samples in his laboratory.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no known conflicts of interest.
Our research involved only insects.
Consent to participate
Consent for publication
Handling Editor: Stefano Colazza
Below is the link to the electronic supplementary material.
About this article
Cite this article
Weber, I.D., Lopes, W.R., de Paula, L.C.B. et al. Tachinids associated with lepidopteran pests in agricultural crops in south-central region of Goiás, Brazil. BioControl (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10526-021-10098-3
- Natural enemies