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Acta zoológica mexicana

versão On-line ISSN 2448-8445versão impressa ISSN 0065-1737


KONDO, Takumasa et al. Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), a small but voracious predator of Diaphorina citri Kuwayama (Hemiptera: Liviidae). Acta Zool. Mex [online]. 2018, vol.34, e3412127.  Epub 12-Nov-2018. ISSN 2448-8445.

The effect of predation by the little fire ant Wasmannia auropuntacta (Roger) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on Asian citrus psyllid Diaphorina citri Kuwayama (Hemiptera: Liviidae) kept under experimental conditions for the breeding of the parasitoid Tamarixia radiata (Waterston) (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae) was evaluated. An experiment was carried out using cages with capacity for 9 plants of Murraya paniculata (L.) Jack (Rutaceae) infested with an average of 600 nymphs of D. citri and 100 adults of T. radiata per cage. Three cages were exposed to ants and one had no ant exposure (Control). In each cage, the numbers of healthy and parasitized nymphs and the numbers of adults of D. citri and T. radiata were counted every 2 days for 15 days. Exposure to predation by W. auropunctata significantly affected the number of nymphs that reached the adult stage as well as the number of nymphs parasitized by T. radiata (Fisher's exact test). In the ant-exposed cages, about 3% of the nymphs survived to the adult stage in contrast to 18% in the control cage. Likewise, the action of the parasitoid was affected, with 24% of nymphs parasitized in the ant-exposed cages in contrast to 66% in the control cage. Wasmannia auropunctata has a great potential as a natural enemy of this psyllid pest in citrus nurseries. The ant also consumes T. radiata by consuming parasitized nymphs of D. citri and this predation may negatively impact the control of D. citri by the parasitoid.

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