Dietary sugars and amino acids increase longevity and enhance reproductive parameters of Bracon cephi and B. lissogaster , two parasitoids that specialise on wheat stem sawfly
Peterson, Robert K. D.
Weaver, David K.
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The wheat stem sawfly, Cephus cinctus Norton (Hymenoptera: Cephidae), is a major pest of wheat grown on the Northern Great Plains and Canadian Prairies of North America, causing economic losses of as much as $350 million annually. Two species that parasitize wheat stem sawfly larvae in wheat stems are Bracon cephi (Gahan) and B. lissogaster Muesebeck (Hymenoptera: Braconidae). Carbohydrate-rich diets increase adult parasitoid longevity and reproductive parameters, enhancing their success as natural enemies. In previous studies, these species had increased longevity, egg load, and volume when fed sucrose solutions, encouraging further research on their nutritional needs. Therefore, we conducted experiments with artificial diets using adult females fed sucrose, glucose, and fructose solutions. Females were also fed these sugars in combination with a mixture of amino acids. We assessed individuals daily for longevity. Both species benefited from diets containing carbohydrates, with an increase in longevity from an average of 9 to 51 days for B. cephi, and from 6 to 34 days for B. lissogaster. Additional experiments assessed egg load and volume after 2, 5, and 10 days of cumulative feeding in B. cephi. These females produced 1.4-fold more eggs when fed amino acids, 2.5-fold more with sugar, and 2.7-fold more when fed sugar with amino acids. They had a 1.3-fold increase in egg volume when fed amino acids, 1.9-fold with sugar, and 2.1-fold when fed sugar with amino acids. Our study reveals the nutritional requirements of these braconid parasitoids and the benefits of nutritional sources when implementing conservation biological control strategies.
This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: [Dietary sugars and amino acids increase longevity and enhance reproductive parameters of Bracon cephi and B. lissogaster , two parasitoids that specialise on wheat stem sawfly. Physiological Entomology 48, 1 p24-34 (2023)], which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/phen.12399. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions: https://authorservices.wiley.com/author-resources/Journal-Authors/licensing/self-archiving.html#3.
Cavallini, L., Peterson, R. K., & Weaver, D. K. (2022). Dietary sugars and amino acids increase longevity and enhance reproductive parameters of Bracon cephi and B. lissogaster, two parasitoids that specialise on wheat stem sawfly. Physiological Entomology.