Parasitoid Foraging and Learning

  • Louise E. M. Vet
  • W. Joe Lewis
  • Ring T. Cardé


The diminutive size of most parasitoids undoubtedly has limited their choice as subjects for behavioral study, despite their great diversity in lifestyles and reproductive strategies. The present chapter addresses their foraging behavior as influenced by learning. Most of their adult life female parasitoids search for host insects which, in turn, are under selection to avoid being found and devoured. This scenario sets the stage for the evolution of diverse hide-and-seek games played by parasitoids and their victims, most often herbivores. That parasitoids are successful in their quest for hosts is evidenced by the vast number of parasitoid species and their importance in insect management.


Conditioned Stimulus Associative Learning Innate Response Larval Parasitoid Host Acceptance 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Louise E. M. Vet
    • 1
  • W. Joe Lewis
    • 2
  • Ring T. Cardé
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of EntomologyWageningen Agricultural UniversityNetherlands
  2. 2.Agricultural Research ServiceUnited States Department of AgricultureUSA
  3. 3.Department of EntomologyUniversity of MassachusettsUSA

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