Field Releases of the Larval Parasitoid Diachasmimorpha longicaudata in Spain: First Results on Dispersal Pattern
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AutorHarbi,Ahlem; Beitia,Francisco J.; Tur,Carles; Chermiti,Brahim; Verdu,Maria J.; Sabater-Munoz,Beatriz
The endoparasitoid Diachasmimorpha longicaudata (Ahsmed) (Hymenptera: Braconidae) is one of the larval parasitoids used in biological control of Tephritid fruit flies. Ceratitis capitata (Diptera: Tephritidae) is an economically important fruit fly of special importance in Spain, and mainly in the Valencia Community by the economic importance of the citrus sector. Nowadays the control of C. capitata in Valencia is based on the integration of area-wide Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) program with pest monitoring, mass trapping and chemical applications. The biological control of C. capitata is under study, for this reason in 2009 the larval parasitoid D. longicaudata was imported from Mexico. A release study is presented here to determine its contribution to medfly control. Different densities of D. longicaudata adults were released once each season in a citrus plot to determine its dispersion on the plot and the parasitism rate exerted in infested sentinel apples. The results showed that the parasitoid D. longicaudata is able to disperse and parasitize C. capitata larvae in Mediterranean climatic conditions.