Feeding Behaviour of Reduviid Predators Against Artificial Diet

  • K. Sahayaraj
  • R. Balasubramanian


Rhynocoris marginatus has been reported as a potential predator on various economically important agricultural pests. The predator can be used as potential biocontrol agent. Rearing and mass multiplication of the reduviids in the laboratory are an important requirement for the successful biological control program. A required number of bioagents can be obtained by rearing them either on their natural host. However, rearing of this predator on natural host is entirely impracticable owing to nonavailability of host throughout the year. Preparation of oligidic diet is only an option for mass multiplication. With trial and error, several diets were prepared and tested for the feeding preference on oligidic diet using different objects like cotton, capsules, cavity slides, and foam for providing oligidic diet for different nymphal and adult stages of Rhynocoris marginatus to find suitable which among them is suitable. The results revealed that cotton has been more preferred by Rhynocoris marginatus; hence, cotton is chosen as a source material for providing oligidic diet. Feeding preference aspects like diet preference, searching behavior, sucking time, and weight gain have been considered in the laboratory using oligidic diet before continuous rearing of reduviid predators to ensure the potential of prepared oligidic diet.

Stage preference study of Rhynocoris marginatus of different life stages fed Dysdercus cingulatus, Spodoptera litura, and Corcyra cephalonica separately was carried out with experiment of choice. Artificial diet-reared Rhynocoris marginatus maximum predatory rate was observed for Spodoptera litura adult female, and it was very low in third instar Dysdercus cingulatus. In this experiment Rhynocoris marginatus nymphs and adult have the capacity to consume more number of Spodoptera litura larvae, when the predator was reared on oligidic diet. Similarly insect hosts were reared by Rhynocoris marginatus second and fifth nymphal instars and adult consumed by more number of Spodoptera litura and other life stages consumed Dysdercus cingulatus second instar. Hence this reduviid can be used as a biological control agent in crop where Spodoptera litura and Dysdercus cingulatus are present.


Rhynocoris marginatus Meat-based artificial diet Diet ingredients Consistency Object preference Choice and non-choice test 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • K. Sahayaraj
    • 1
  • R. Balasubramanian
    • 2
  1. 1.St. Xavier’s College, PalayamkottaiTirunelveliIndia
  2. 2.National Institute of VirologyAlappuzhaIndia

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