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Acta Scientiarum. Agronomy

On-line version ISSN 1807-8621


SILVA, Cinthia Conceição Matias da; MARQUES, Edmilson Jacinto; OLIVEIRA, José Vargas  and  VALENTE, Ellen Carine Neves. Preference of the parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Cam.) (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) for Diatraea (Lepidoptera: Crambidae). Acta Sci., Agron. (Online) [online]. 2012, vol.34, n.1, pp.23-27. ISSN 1807-8621.

The sugarcane borer Diatraea flavipennella (Box.) (Lepidoptera: Crambidae), has ultimately predominated in the sugarcane fields of the Brazilian northeast region, despite the continual release of the parasitoid Cotesia flavipes (Cam.) (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Questions have been raised about the efficiency of Diatraea spp. in controlling D. flavipennella. In this study, females reared in one of the borers were tested individually and as hosts with the larvae of either of the Diatraea species alone or the larvae of both species. In the first experiment, the females were released for 10 min within the experimental arena using only olfactory cues. In the second experiment, C. flavipes females were individually released for 30 min. within the arena, allowing direct contact with its host, either D. saccharalis or D. flavipennella, or both host species at the same time. The wasps showed no preference for either one of the hosts, thus being able to locate borers in general.

Keywords : parasitism; behavior; sugarcane borer.

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