Predation of Nabis punctipennis on Acyrthosiphon pisum in the presence of the alternative prey Aphis craccivora in alfalfa
Verónica Campos Medina, Jaime E. Araya, and Francisco Zuazúa
The feeding behavior of the generalist predator Nabis punctipennis Blanchard (Nabidae) on Acyrthosiphon pisum Harris (Aphididae), two hemipterans common in alfalfa in Chile, was studied in a laboratory experiment using A. pisum, and Aphis craccivora Koch (Aphididae) as alternative prey, which is another common aphid in alfalfa. The presence of A. craccivora did not affect the predation of A. pisum by N. punctipennis. This finding on the predatory behavior of N. punctipennis is valuable to evaluate the potential of this nabid as a biological control agent of A. pisum.
Key words: Nabis punctipennis, Acyrthosiphon pisum, Alternative prey, Aphis craccivora, biological control, punctured-winged nabid.
1 Purdue University, Dept. Entomology, West Lafayette, Indiana 47905, USA. E-mail: camposvero@ gmail.com
2 Private Consultant. Formerly, Full Professor, Universidad de Chile, Casilla 1004, Santiago, Chile.
3 Facultad de Ciencias, Escuela de Agronomía, Universidad Mayor, Campus Huechuraba, Camino La Pirámide 5750, Santiago, Chile.
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