Invasive Species Compendium

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Abstract Full Text

Studies on cotton mealybug, Phenacoccus solenopsis (Pseudococcidae: Homoptera), and its natural enemies in Punjab, Pakistan.

Abstract

The biological studies on cotton mealybug Phenacoccus solenopsis Tinsley, were undertaken to explore the role of its natural biocontrol agents. Cotton mealybug was active throughout the year on various crops, ornamental plants and weeds with two population peaks in Multan and nearby districts. Females reached adult stage after three nymphal moults whereas, male nymphs shed two moults before pupation. Reproduction was only sexual. Promising natural enemies such as parasitoid, Aenasius bambawalei and predators, Brumoides suturalis, Scymnus coccivora, Menochilus sexmaculatus and spiders were found associated with mealybug in large numbers round the year. Some other species, Coccinella undecimpunctata, C. septempunctata, Hyperaspis maindroni, Chrysoperla carnea, Diadiplosis sp. and Geocoris sp. were relatively less abundant, while Orius sp. and Campylomma sp. were incidentally recorded on the mealybug. Population dynamics and feeding efficiency tests for natural enemies indicated their significance as bio-control agents in integrated management of mealybug if allowed to act in congenial conditions.