Functional response of indigenous Trichogramma spp. to invasive tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta (Meyrick) under laboratory conditions

  • T. N. Manohar
  • P. L. SharmaEmail author
  • S. C. Verma
  • K. C. Sharma
  • R. S. Chandel
Original Research Article


Functional response is one of the most informative ways to study the density responsiveness of a natural enemy to the target pest. Tuta absoluta (Meyrick), one of the most destructive pests of tomato, has recently invaded India. In the present study, we investigated the functional response of Trichogramma achaeae Nagaraja and Nagarkatti, Trichogramma pretiosum Riley, Trichogramma chilonis (Ishii) and Trichogramma pieridis Nagaraja and Prashanth to the pest. All the parasitoids exhibited type II functional response to T. absoluta eggs. The handling time was minimum for T. achaeae (1.6 h) followed by T. pretiosum (1.86 h) T. chilonis (2.16 h) and T. pieridis (2.65 h). Theoretical maximum number of host eggs that could be parasitized in 24 h by each female of these parasitoids was estimated to be 16.23, 13.24, 11.05 and 8.97, respectively. Functional response parameters indicate that T. achaeae and T. pretiosum were more efficient parasitoids than the other two species against T. absoluta. It is, therefore, important to consider these tested egg parasitoids for biological control based integrated pest management programmes for this invasive pest.


Attack rate Egg parasitoid Handling time Tomato pinworm Trichogrammatidae 



The authors are thankful to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi, India for providing financial support to the study through All India Coordinated Research Project on Biological Control of Crop Pests and Weeds.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© African Association of Insect Scientists 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. N. Manohar
    • 1
  • P. L. Sharma
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. C. Verma
    • 1
  • K. C. Sharma
    • 1
  • R. S. Chandel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EntomologyUniversity of Horticulture and ForestrySolanIndia

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