Indexed on: 12 May '16Published on: 10 May '16Published in: Journal of Applied Entomology
Laboratory studies were conducted to determine the consumption rates of two native predators found attacking the exotic invasive stink bug Bagrada hilaris (Burmeister) (Hempitera: Pentatomidae) in field plots in New Mexico, USA. Individual field‐collected adults of the spined soldier bug, Podisus maculiventris (Say) (Hempitera: Pentatomidae) and the soft‐winged flower beetle, Collops vittatus (Say) (Coleoptera: Melyridae), were provided daily with fixed numbers of different life stages of B. hilaris under controlled conditions. Consumption rates were recorded daily for ten consecutive days for a total of 20 adult P. maculiventris and 20 adult C. vittatus per prey life stage. For P. maculiventris, predation rates were obtained in relation to adult, third and fifth instar prey, and for C. vittatus for first, second and third instar prey. On average, predation on third and fifth instar B. hilaris nymphs by P. maculiventris was 0.6 ± 0.1 and 0.9 ± 0.1 per day respectively. Predation rates on adults were slightly higher (1.3 ± 0.1 per day), with female prey being consumed at a significantly higher rate than male prey when three mating pairs of B. hilaris were provided per day (0.8 ± 0.1 females per day vs. 0.5 ± 0.1 males per day). Collops vittatus adults provisioned daily with 20 first instar B. hilaris nymphs killed a mean total of 4.7 ± 0.4 and 9.3 ± 0.6 prey each day (for male and female beetles respectively), with only approximately half that number of prey being fully consumed. Partial consumption of prey by this species was also observed with second and third instar nymphs, but to a lesser degree. Female beetles consumed significantly more prey than did male beetles when fed first and third instar B. hilaris, but not when given second instar prey.