Spalangia cameroni Perkins is used as a biological control agent of filth flies. These parasitoids are reared commercially, but little is known about the impact of colony age on host-seeking and life history parameters. Hostseeking in bedding from equine stalls (pine shavings and manure) was analyzed with two colonies, one established in 2000 and one in 2010 (144 and 24 generations in colony). These two colonies, and a colony established in 2012 colony (4 generations), were analyzed for differences in female longevity and fecundity. Wolbachia were analyzed in each colony to document sequence variants. All wasps collected to start parasitoid colonies were from the same dairy in Gilchrist County, FL, but collected on different dates. Parasitoids from the 2000 colony parasitized fewer hosts than ones from the 2010 colony when challenged in a complex environment. Life history parameters were different between individuals in the colonies. Differences in reproductive productivity between the colonies could not be correlated to the presence or sequence variant of Wolbachia. New Wolbachia wsp and ftsZ sequences were identified in these colonies. Multiple strains of Wolbachia were found in each colony, and their presence did not vary among colonies. The invariance in strain presence suggests that Wolbachia strains were not lost during colony maintenance, i.e., lost through selection or random genetic drift.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Insect Science