Heidari, M. 2001a Influence of host-plant physical defenses on the searching behaviour and efficacy of two coccinellid predators of the obscure mealybug, Pseudococcus viburni (Signoret).. Entomologica 33(1999): 397-402.

Keywords:

  • natural enemies
  • Notes: [Special Issue: Proceedings of the ISSIS VIII International Symposium on Scale Insect Studies held at Wye College (U.K.), Aug. 31st - Sept. 6th, 1998.] Laboratory and glasshouse trials were conducted to investigate the influence of host-plant physical structure on the predation of the obscure mealybug, Pseudococcus viburni (Signoret) (Coccoidea: Pseudococcidae) by two coccinellid predators: Cryptolaemus montrouzieri (Mulsant) and Nephus reunioni F├╝rsch. Glasshouse trials showed that good control was achieved by C. montrouzieri irrespective of the hairiness of the plant species, but that N. reunioni was more effective on smooth leaves, such as those of Citrus, coffee and Passiflora, than on hairy plants, such as Streptocarpus and tomato, on which the density of the trichomes and their sticky exudations significantly reduced the walking speed and other searching parameters. It is concluded that the size of the predator and the type of trichomes have a marked influence on the level of mealybug control and that this could influence the choice of predators.