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1 June 2004 Myzus persicae (Homoptera: Aphididae) as Suitable Prey for Macrolophus pygmaeus (Hemiptera: Miridae) Population Increase on Pepper Plants
Dionyssios Ch Perdikis, Dionyssios P. Lykouressis
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Life table parameters and other biological characteristics were estimated for the predator Macrolophus pygmaeus Rambur (Hemiptera: Miridae) when fed on pepper plant/leaves with or without prey Myzus persicae (Sulzer) (Homoptera: Aphididae). The experiments were conducted at 15, 20, 25, and 30°C, under a photoperiod of 16:8 (L:D) h and at 65 ± 5% RH. Egg incubation was shortest at 30°C (10.5 d), egg hatch percentage reached 90% at 20°C, sex ratio was 78% at 25°C, and preoviposition period was shortest at 25°C (6.1 d). Only females with access to prey were able to reproduce. Fecundity was highest at 20°C (203.9 eggs). Females and males survived longer at 15°C (120.7 and 132.9 d, respectively). When provided with prey, M. pygmaeus can increase its numbers at all temperatures tested. Its intrinsic rate of increase and doubling time were highest at 25°C (0.0958 d−1 and 7.2 d, respectively). The lowest temperature threshold for population increase was 9.06°C. In the absence of prey, the predator did not oviposit, but females and males survived for a relatively long time at 15°C (26.5 and 28.7 d, respectively) and for a shorter time as temperature increased. The results indicate that M. pygmaeus performs very well when it feeds on the aphid M. persicae on pepper plants. Although the pepper plant can support adults, it does not permit population increase when prey is not available. However, these results are discussed with other findings in the context of a better and more effective use of this predator for biological control of M. persicae on pepper plant.

Dionyssios Ch Perdikis and Dionyssios P. Lykouressis "Myzus persicae (Homoptera: Aphididae) as Suitable Prey for Macrolophus pygmaeus (Hemiptera: Miridae) Population Increase on Pepper Plants," Environmental Entomology 33(3), 499-505, (1 June 2004).
Received: 8 September 2003; Accepted: 1 February 2004; Published: 1 June 2004

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