Biology and Host Acceptance of Microplitis Manilae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) Raised on Fall Armyworm Larvae Spodoptera Frugiperda (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae)

  • Rohan H. S. Rajapakse
  • Tom R. Ashley
  • Van H. Waddill


Studies were carried out on host age preference, developmental period and longevity of Microplitis manilae (Ashmead) a larval parasitoid of Spodoptera species imported from Thailand. Experiments conducted with 4 larval age groups (1, 24-48 h; 2, 49-72 h; 3, 73-96 h; 4, 97-130 h) of the fall armyworm (FAW), Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith), revealed that age groups 1 and 2 were most suitable for the development of the endoparasitoid Microplitis manilae. The highest parasitization rates and the highest proportion of female parasitoids were from larvae in the 2nd age group. The developmental period of M. manilae ranged between 13-18 days for temperatures between 23-27 @*C, 50-70% RH and 14:10 LD photoperiod. Highest parasitization was observed for M. manilae when 2 females were exposed to 20 hosts for 30 min at 26 @+ 1 @*C. Adult longevity of males and females was approximately 6 days at 26 @+1 @*C. This biological information will be used for rearing this parasitoid for additional laboratory studies or in the event M. manilae is considered for inundative or inoculative releases.
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