Life history and functional response to prey density of the flower bug Orius sauteri attacking the fungivorous sciarid fly Lycoriella pleuroti
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Seldom have natural enemies been quantified in their ability to control fungivorous arthropods, despite the severe losses they can cause in production of edible fungus. Here, we evaluated the omnivorous predator Orius sauteri (Poppius) when preying on eggs and larvae of the fungivorous sciarid fly Lycoriella pleuroti (Yang et Zhang) and compared against a microencapsulated artificial diet. We also estimated the predation ability of O. sauteri feeding on different densities of L. pleuroti larvae and eggs. The results indicated that O. sauteri successfully oviposit on a mushroom substrate. Moreover, both L. pleuroti eggs and larvae were capable of supporting O. sauteri populations. A type II functional response was observed for both males and females of the predator. Further, moderate values for parameter a′ (instantaneous attack rate) and greatly reduced Th (handling time) revealed a high potential for O. sauteri in suppressing outbreaks of L. pleuroti. This is the first report of a generalist predator feeding and developing within an edible mushroom-pest system. O. sauteri is a prime candidate for testing as a biological control agent, either in inoculative or in inundative release, for targeted suppression of the fungivorous sciarid L. pleuroti.
KeywordsBiological control Development Predator Oyster mushroom Anthocoridae
The authors thank the staff in the mushroom farm in Yongledian town for kindly supplying the pest materials. We also thank all colleagues who helped in maintaining the colony of the natural enemy and Dr. Douglas Chester who reviewed the manuscript and gave advice.
National Key Research and Development Program of China (2017YFD0201000, 2018YFD02004); Beijing Science and Technology Program (D171100001617003); Youth Scientific Research Fund of Beijing Academy of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences (QNJJ201725); Youth Science Foundation, Beijing Academy of Agriculture and Forestry Sciences (No. qnjj201410); International Joint Fund Program of BAAFS (GJHZ2016); Beijing Key Laboratory of Environment Friendly Management on Fruit Diseases and Pests in North China (BZ0432).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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