Morphology and Life History Characteristics of Podisus mucronatus (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae)

  • Sheryl L. Costello
  • Paul D. Pratt
  • Min B. Rayachhetry
  • Ted D. Center


Podisus mucronatus Uhler is a generalist predator found in Florida and the islands of the Caribbean. Adult P. mucronatus were observed preying on larvae of the Australian weevil Oxyops vitiosa (Pascoe), a biological control agent of Melaleuca quinquenervia (Cav.) S.T. Blake. To facilitate field-based identification of this predator, we present descriptions of eggs, nymphal stages, and adults. Life history traits of P. mucronatus when held with no food or either of two prey species (O. vitiosa and Tenebrio molitor (L.) larvae) are also reported. The potential use of this species as a biological control agent of arthropods and its interference with weed biological control are discussed.

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