Effect of different cultivars of tomato on species diversity and efficacy of natural enemies of Tuta absoluta (Lepidoptera: Gelechiidae) under field condition in Ardabil province, Iran.
The tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta (Meyrick), is one of the most important pests of tomato, Solanum lycopersicum L., in Iran. In this research, natural enemies diversity of T. absoluta and proportion of predators or parasitoids density to moth eggs or larvae density on five tomato cultivars including Super Strain B, Super Chief, Mobil, Korral, and Early Urbana Y were studied in an experimental field during 2014 and 2015. In this study, ten predator species, four larval parasitoid species and one egg parasitoid species were collected and identified. Amongst the natural enemies, the predatory bugs Miridae and larval parasitoids Braconidae had the highest relative abundance. The Shannon diversity index for the complex of natural enemies was not significant among the five tested cultivars. The values of Morisita-Horn index for the complex of natural enemies among the five cultivars were calculated from 0.932 to 0.994. In two years, the greatest proportion of predarors density to moth eggs and larvae density (5.09% in 2014 and 6.44% in 2015), the highest proportion of larval parasitoids density to moth larvae density (3.92% in 2014 and 3.75% in 2015), and the greatest egg parasitoid density to moth eggs density (1.67% in both studied years) were recorded on Early Urbana Y. Therefore, it can be concluded that the cultivation of Early Urbana Y with increasing of the proportion of predators or parasitoids density to T. absoluta eggs and larvae density could be useful in the integrated management programs of the tomato leafminer in tomato fields.