The effect of plant feeding on biological aspects of Podisus nigrispinus (Dallas) (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae) was evaluated. Nymphs and adults of this predator were fed with Tenebrio molitor L. (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) pupae on Eucalyptus urophylla plants in the field or only with pupae of this prey in the laboratory. The development and nymphal survival, as well as the pre-oviposition period, number of egg masses, number, fertility and viability of eggs and the longevity of females of this predator were evaluated. The eucalyptus plants improved the development of P. nigrispinus. This demonstrates that this predator can present higher population growth with eucalyptus plants and T. molitor pupae than in the laboratory (controlled conditions) only with this prey. These plants can supply nutrients that can the population growth and efficiency of P. nigrispinus for biological control in eucalyptus plantations.
Podisus nigrispinus; biological control; feeding habit; vegetable supplement; predator