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News Article | April 20, 2017
Site: phys.org

Their investigation began when Boe showed Johnson a photo of a cup plant flower teaming with insects, including a large colony of bright red aphids. Boe grows cup plants at two locations near Brookings to evaluate the plant—a member of the sunflower family—as a potential feedstock for biofuel production. The project, which is done in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is funded by the Sun Grant Initiative. "What these researchers are uncovering about the agronomics of cup plant, as well as the insects that affect them, will help us decide how they can be integrated into a bioenergy cropping system," said Vance Owens, director of the North Central Regional Sun Grant Center. "People have not looked closely at these insects—we brought everything together in understanding the biology of this one genus of parasitic wasps," Johnson said. He collaborated with research entomologist Robert Kula of the Systemic Entomology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. The work also involved entomologist Thelma Heidel-Baker, then at Purdue University, who supplied specimens from Indiana. The South Dakota researchers reared two species of parasitic wasps from the aphids, while Heidel-Baker reared five species. "Now we know that all the wasps of the genus Acanthocaudus are specialists on different species of aphids on different host plants," Johnson said. The taxonomy of each wasp species now correlates with the host aphids and their plant hosts. A parasitic wasp identified from Uroleucon aphids in South Dakota cup plants, for instance, had characteristics similar to specimens of a known species, A. tissoti, found in British Columbia and Florida. Kula ascertained that the species from South Dakota was, indeed, A. tissoti. Heidel-Baker reared a new related species of parasitic wasp, now called A. bicolor, on a different host Uroleucon aphid that feeds on asters. Their findings were published in the January 2017 issue of Zootaxa. Parasitic wasps protect the plants against aphid infestations, Johnson explained as he described wasp-aphid interaction on cup plants. What begins as a few dozen aphids per plant in mid-July can become as many as 800 aphids per leaf by the end of July or the first week of August. "The aphids feed on the juices, which can cause deformities and general weakness of the plant," Johnson said. The parasitic wasps sting the aphids to inject their eggs into the aphids' bodies.As these eggs hatch, the larvae feed internally on the aphids, he explained. By the second week in August, nearly 98 percent of the aphids had been parasitized by wasps. "When the larvae become adults, they chew a hole and pop out of the aphids," Johnson said. "It's like an alien movie." The parasitic wasps are beneficial to the cup plant. "If you have wasps around, you don't need to spray the cup plant," Johnson said. Explore further: Cunning super-parasitic wasps sniff out protected aphids and overwhelm their defenses


News Article | April 20, 2017
Site: www.rdmag.com

Entomologists will find it easier to identify parasitic wasps and their host aphids, thanks to the work of South Dakota State University entomologist Paul Johnson and forage breeder Arvid Boe. Both are professors in the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science. Their investigation began when Boe showed Johnson a photo of a cup plant flower teaming with insects, including a large colony of bright red aphids. Boe grows cup plants at two locations near Brookings to evaluate the plant, which is a member of the sunflower family, as a potential feedstock for biofuel production. The project, which is done in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is funded by the Sun Grant Initiative. “What these researchers are uncovering about the agronomics of cup plant, as well as the insects that affect them, will help us decide how they can be integrated into a bioenergy cropping system,” said Vance Owens, director of the North Central Regional Sun Grant Center. “People have not looked closely at these insects—we brought everything together in understanding the biology of this one genus of parasitic wasps,” Johnson said. He collaborated with research entomologist Robert Kula of the Systemic Entomology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. The work also involved entomologist Thelma Heidel-Baker, then at Purdue University, who supplied specimens from Indiana. The South Dakota researchers reared two species of parasitic wasps from the aphids, while Heidel-Baker reared five species. “Now we know that all the wasps of the genus Acanthocaudus are specialists on different species of aphids on different host plants,” Johnson said. The taxonomy of each wasp species now correlates with the host aphids and their plant hosts. A parasitic wasp identified from Uroleucon aphids in South Dakota cup plants, for instance, had characteristics similar to specimens of a known species, A. tissoti, found in British Columbia and Florida. Kula ascertained that the species from South Dakota was, indeed, A. tissoti. Heidel-Baker reared a new related species of parasitic wasp, now called A. bicolor, on a different host Uroleucon aphid that feeds on asters.  Their findings were published in the January 2017 issue of Zootaxa. Parasitic wasps protect the plants against aphid infestations, Johnson explained as he described wasp-aphid interaction on cup plants. What begins as a few dozen aphids per plant in mid-July can become as many as 800 aphids per leaf by the end of July or the first week of August. “The aphids feed on the juices, which can cause deformities and general weakness of the plant,” Johnson said. The parasitic wasps sting the aphids to inject their eggs into the aphids’ bodies. As these eggs hatch, the larvae feed internally on the aphids, he explained.  By the second week in August, nearly 98 percent of the aphids had been parasitized by wasps. “When the larvae become adults, they chew a hole and pop out of the aphids,” Johnson said. “It’s like an alien movie.” The parasitic wasps are beneficial to the cup plant. “If you have wasps around, you don’t need to spray the cup plant,” Johnson said.


News Article | April 20, 2017
Site: www.rdmag.com

Entomologists will find it easier to identify parasitic wasps and their host aphids, thanks to the work of South Dakota State University entomologist Paul Johnson and forage breeder Arvid Boe. Both are professors in the Department of Agronomy, Horticulture and Plant Science. Their investigation began when Boe showed Johnson a photo of a cup plant flower teaming with insects, including a large colony of bright red aphids. Boe grows cup plants at two locations near Brookings to evaluate the plant, which is a member of the sunflower family, as a potential feedstock for biofuel production. The project, which is done in collaboration with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is funded by the Sun Grant Initiative. “What these researchers are uncovering about the agronomics of cup plant, as well as the insects that affect them, will help us decide how they can be integrated into a bioenergy cropping system,” said Vance Owens, director of the North Central Regional Sun Grant Center. “People have not looked closely at these insects—we brought everything together in understanding the biology of this one genus of parasitic wasps,” Johnson said. He collaborated with research entomologist Robert Kula of the Systemic Entomology Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. The work also involved entomologist Thelma Heidel-Baker, then at Purdue University, who supplied specimens from Indiana. The South Dakota researchers reared two species of parasitic wasps from the aphids, while Heidel-Baker reared five species. “Now we know that all the wasps of the genus Acanthocaudus are specialists on different species of aphids on different host plants,” Johnson said. The taxonomy of each wasp species now correlates with the host aphids and their plant hosts. A parasitic wasp identified from Uroleucon aphids in South Dakota cup plants, for instance, had characteristics similar to specimens of a known species, A. tissoti, found in British Columbia and Florida. Kula ascertained that the species from South Dakota was, indeed, A. tissoti. Heidel-Baker reared a new related species of parasitic wasp, now called A. bicolor, on a different host Uroleucon aphid that feeds on asters.  Their findings were published in the January 2017 issue of Zootaxa. Parasitic wasps protect the plants against aphid infestations, Johnson explained as he described wasp-aphid interaction on cup plants. What begins as a few dozen aphids per plant in mid-July can become as many as 800 aphids per leaf by the end of July or the first week of August. “The aphids feed on the juices, which can cause deformities and general weakness of the plant,” Johnson said. The parasitic wasps sting the aphids to inject their eggs into the aphids’ bodies. As these eggs hatch, the larvae feed internally on the aphids, he explained.  By the second week in August, nearly 98 percent of the aphids had been parasitized by wasps. “When the larvae become adults, they chew a hole and pop out of the aphids,” Johnson said. “It’s like an alien movie.” The parasitic wasps are beneficial to the cup plant. “If you have wasps around, you don’t need to spray the cup plant,” Johnson said.


Chagas A.C.,National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases | Calvo E.,National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases | Rios-Velasquez C.M.,Instituto Leonidas e Maria Deane Fiocruz | Pessoa F.A.C.,Instituto Leonidas e Maria Deane Fiocruz | And 2 more authors.
BMC Genomics | Year: 2013

Background: Psorophora mosquitoes are exclusively found in the Americas and have been associated with transmission of encephalitis and West Nile fever viruses, among other arboviruses. Mosquito salivary glands represent the final route of differentiation and transmission of many parasites. They also secrete molecules with powerful pharmacologic actions that modulate host hemostasis, inflammation, and immune response. Here, we employed next generation sequencing and proteome approaches to investigate for the first time the salivary composition of a mosquito member of the Psorophora genus. We additionally discuss the evolutionary position of this mosquito genus into the Culicidae family by comparing the identity of its secreted salivary compounds to other mosquito salivary proteins identified so far. Results: Illumina sequencing resulted in 13,535,229 sequence reads, which were assembled into 3,247 contigs. All families were classified according to their in silico-predicted function/ activity. Annotation of these sequences allowed classification of their products into 83 salivary protein families, twenty (24.39%) of which were confirmed by our subsequent proteome analysis. Two protein families were deorphanized from Aedes and one from Ochlerotatus, while four protein families were described as novel to Psorophora genus because they had no match with any other known mosquito salivary sequence. Several protein families described as exclusive to Culicines were present in Psorophora mosquitoes, while we did not identify any member of the protein families already known as unique to Anophelines. Also, the Psorophora salivary proteins had better identity to homologs in Aedes (69.23%), followed by Ochlerotatus (8.15%), Culex (6.52%), and Anopheles (4.66%), respectively. Conclusions: This is the first sialome (from the Greek sialo = saliva) catalog of salivary proteins from a Psorophora mosquito, which may be useful for better understanding the lifecycle of this mosquito and the role of its salivary secretion in arboviral transmission. © 2013 Chagas et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Cavalcante M.C.,Federal University of Ceará | Oliveira F.F.,Federal University of Bahia | Maues M.M.,Entomology Laboratory | Freitas B.M.,Federal University of Ceará
Psyche (New York) | Year: 2012

This study was carried out with cultivated Brazil nut trees (Bertholletia excelsa Bonpl., Lecythidaceae) in the Central Amazon rainforest, Brazil, aiming to learn about its pollination requirements, to know the floral visitors of Brazil nut flowers, to investigate their foraging behavior and to determine the main floral visitors of this plant species in commercial plantations. Results showed that B. excelsa is predominantly allogamous, but capable of setting fruits by geitonogamy. Nineteen bee species, belonging to two families, visited and collected nectar and/or pollen throughout the day, although the number of bees decreases steeply after 1000HR. Only 16, out of the 19 bee species observed, succeeded entering the flower and potentially acted as pollinators. However, due to the abundance, flower frequency and foraging behavior of floral visitors, it was concluded that only the species Eulaema mocsaryi and Xylocopa frontalis could be considered relevant potential pollinators. © 2012 M. C. Cavalcante et al.


Poncio S.,Federal University of Pelotas | Montoya P.,SAGARPA IICA | Cancino J.,SAGARPA IICA | Nava D.E.,Entomology Laboratory
Austral Entomology | Year: 2016

An understanding of the search, selection and host use behaviours of parasitoids that have the potential to be used as biological control agents is becoming increasingly important. We studied under laboratory conditions the host suitability of Anastrepha obliqua (Macquart) and Anastrepha ludens (Loew) larvae for the parasitoids Doryctobracon crawfordi (Viereck) and Opius hirtus (Fischer), which are native to the Americas. By counting the oviposition scars on the puparium, we found that both types of larvae were equally attacked; however, the pupa dissections revealed that different numbers of eggs were laid in each type of larvae. The A.obliqua larvae were significantly less parasitised than those of A.ludens, and immature insect development or adult emergence was not in either parasitoid species. Dissections of the parasitised A.obliqua pupae also showed that the immature parasitoids of both species died by encapsulation and melanisation, and there was a high proportion of unemerged adult flies. By contrast, A.ludens parasitised pupae contained several viable immature parasitoids that subsequently emerged as adult parasitoids. These results indicated contrasting suitability conditions of A.ludens and A.obliqua larvae as hosts of O.hirtus and D.crawfordi parasitoids, which suggest that A.obliqua is not a natural host for either parasitoid species. These findings will improve the understanding for the use of these parasitoid species in projects for biological control against economically important fruit flies of the genus Anastrepha. © 2015 Australian Entomological Society.


Kumar R.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Paul S.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Kumar S.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Sharma A.K.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | And 8 more authors.
Indian Journal of Animal Sciences | Year: 2011

Hyper variable segment of mitochondrial 16S rDNA from different stages of laboratory reared, disease free and acaricide susceptible Hyalomma anatolicum anatolicum and Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus were partially amplified, sequenced and analyzed with the aid of the GenBank database. Thirty conserved genus specific nucleotide change were observed in Hyalommid and Boophilid ticks. These conserved sequences were sufficient to identify embryonic stages of the ticks. These conserved sequences at the genus level could act as biomarker for identification of ticks during epidemiological studies of tick borne diseases, transmitted by Hyalommid and Rhipicephalid ticks.


Sharma A.K.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Kumar S.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Tiwari S.S.,Indian Veterinary Research Institute | Tiwari S.S.,National Botanical Research Institute | And 10 more authors.
Indian Journal of Animal Sciences | Year: 2012

Use of herbal acaricides is considered one of the options for integrated tick management. Many natural compounds have low water solubility and use of solvents/surfactants is obligatory to test the efficacy of the herbal extracts in experimental conditions. In an attempt to identify best suitable solvents, experiments were conducted on laboratory reared homogenous colonies of adults of R.(B.) microplus. Adult immersion test was conducted by exposing the adults on solvents (methanol, ethanol, acetone, n-butanol, di-methyl sulphoxide) and surfactant (tween 20). The effect of solvents and surfactant was monitored in terms of causing mortality and inhibition of oviposition (IO). Out of 4 solvents used, n-butanol was found most toxic to tick system with a mean mortality of 20.0±8.2% at 10% concentration. Though no mortality was seen in 25% ethanol treated ticks but percentage inhibition of oviposition (%IO) of 10.3 was recorded. In contrast, upto 50% concentration acetone and methanol were found to be safe as a solvent since it had least toxic effect on tick mortality. Amongst the two detergents tested up to 6% concentration tween- 20 found safe while DMSO can be used even at higher concentration up to 10% without any toxic effect. The results revealed that of the 4 commonly used solvents tested, acetone was the least toxic while n-butanol was highly toxic to ticks both in terms of causing mortality and IO. The surfactant DMSO was found safe at 10% level against adults of R. (B.) microplus.


de Paula Batista E.S.,Federal University of Juiz de fora | Auad A.M.,Entomology Laboratory
Biocontrol Science and Technology | Year: 2010

The pathogenicity of entomopathogenic nematodes (EPNs) against nymphs of the pasture spittlebug Mahanarva spectabilis (Distant, 1909) (Hemiptera: Cercopidae) was studied under four application methods. Nymphs of the fourth or fifth instar were placed on the roots of elephant grass plants and submitted to four EPN isolates (Steinernema carpocapsae, S. feltiae, S. riobravis and Heterorhabditis amazonensis RSC1), at two concentrations (2000 and 4000 infective juveniles/mL), with four application methods (pipetting, spraying on the nymphs after froth formation, spraying before froth formation and placement of infected host cadaver method). There was no significant difference in the nymph mortality in function of the concentration and/or the isolate used. However, the efficacy was influenced by the application method, with the most efficient being sprayed on nymphs after froth formation and infected host cadavers. Steinernema riobravis applied by spraying on nymphs with froth, at a concentration of 2000 EPNs/mL, and H. amazonensis RSC1 applied by infected host cadavers caused 71% of the nymphs to die. The use of infected host cadavers and spraying in an aqueous solution on nymphs after froth formation were found to be the most efficient methods to control Mahanarva spectabilis. © 2010 Taylor & Francis.


Aguilera P A.,Past Research Entomologist of Agricultural Research Institute | Escobar S S.,Entomology Laboratory
Acta Horticulturae | Year: 2014

One of the most important insects pest associated with Corylus avellana L. is the filbert aphid, Myzocallis coryli (Goeze) (Hemiptera: Homoptera: Aphididae), considered specific and unique on hazelnut orchards in Chile. Since 1992 a survey was carried out of predators Coccinellidae (Coleoptera) each year from October to April in La Araucanía, Chile. Here, hazelnut is an important cultivated nut tree. So, in 2006 for the first time in Chile, seven species and one sub species of predators coccinellids on filbert aphid were registered. These Coccinellidae were reported as Adalia angulifera Mulsant, A. bipunctata (L.), A. deficiens Mulsant, Eriopis connexa chilensis Hofmann, Hippodamia convergens Guérin-Méneville, H. variegata (Goeze), Scymnus bicolor (Germain) and S. loewii Mulsant. In this present work two Coccinellidae are identified for the first time in Chile and the world as aphidophagous predators on filbert aphid. The two species are Eriopis eschscholtzi Mulsant and Hyperaspis sphaeridioides (Mulsant). By 8 April 2011 adults of these species were observed and collected in the south of Chile from Santa Elena farm, near the rural way Pitrufquén to Gorbea in La Araucanía Region. E. eschscholtzi is an entomophagous aphidophagous coccinellid belonging to the Coccinellinae subfamily, Coccinellini tribe. This species is reported from Argentina and in Chile, the geographical distribution corresponds from Petorca in Valparaíso Region to the National Park of Torres del Paine in Magallanes y Antártica Chilena Region. H. sphaeridioides is also an aphidophagous predator coccinellid that belongs to the Scymninae subfamily, Hyperaspidini tribe. This species is endemic of Chile and the geographical distribution corresponds from Elqui valley in the Coquimbo Region to Osorno in the Los Lagos Region.

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