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Effect of spatial heterogeneity on the role of Coccinella septempunctata as an intra-guild predator of the aphid pathogen Pandora neoaphidis
journal contributionposted on 2023-08-30, 13:24 authored by Helen E. Roy, Peter G. Alderson, Judith K. Pell
The foraging behavior of starved and non-starved adult and larval Coccinella septempunctata on groups of plants in the presence of Pandora neoaphidis-infected Acyrthosiphon pisum, uninfected aphids or a mixture of these two prey types was compared. In general results of these studies confirmed the results of previous work comparing foraging behavior on a smaller spatial scale in Petri dishes. However, behaviors were modified in response to spatial complexity, prey quality, and the host plant. Starved C. septempunctata adults and larvae fed for longer and consumed more aphids than non-starved coccinellids. Both larvae and adults fed on infected aphids and in some cases entirely consumed them. This was thought to be due to the ease of capture of infected (dead) aphids and the feeding stimuli provided by the presence of the host plant and, where there was a choice of prey, uninfected aphids in the environment. Both larvae and adults spent the majority of the time foraging in the upper regions of plants and visited more plants when they were not starved or when they were in the presence of less suitable, infected aphid prey.
Publication titleJournal of Invertebrate Pathology