Comparative biocontrol potential of three predatory mirids when preying on sweet pepper key pests
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Cita bibliográficaBouagga, S.; Urbaneja, A.; Pérez-Hedo, M. (2018b). Comparative biocontrol potential of three predatory mirids when preying on sweet pepper key pests. Biological Control, 121, 168-174.
Pest management in protected sweet pepper crops mainly rely on biological control (BC) strategies. Recently, the zoophytophagous predatory mirids, Nesidiocoris tenuis, Macrolophus pygmaeus, and Dicyphus maroccanus, proved to be effective in the control of aphids on sweet pepper, for which the current biological control strategies have been meagre. The next step to integrate the possible use of these mirids in sweet pepper BC practices would be to ascertain their potential control on other sweet pepper pests. In this research, a comparative study to assess the establishment and the efficacy of N. tenuis, M. pygmaeus, and D. maroccanus on the two sweet pepper key pests; the thrips, Frankliniella occidentalis, and the whitefly, Bemisia tabaci was conducted. This study was carried out with two different temperature regimes, 20 degrees C and 27 degrees C, which simulated the mean temperatures registered in the two main crop cycles in Spain (the winter and summer planting period). Both, N. tenuis and M. pygmaeus were able to establish on sweet pepper and significantly reduced the number of F. occidentalis and B. tabaci adults, larvae and nymphs. Macrolophus pygmaeus had the highest density at 20 degrees C, whereas N. tenuis was more abundant at 27 degrees C. In contrast, D. maroccanus was less abundant under both temperatures studied; and did not reduce neither F. occidentalis nor B. tabaci infestations in this crop. None of the three mirids were observed to cause any damage to the pepper plant. The implications of these results applied to the use of mirids in sweet pepper crops are discussed.