Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Native egg parasitoids recorded from the invasive Halyomorpha halys successfully exploit volatiles emitted by the plant-herbivore complex.

Abstract

When an accidentally introduced pest establishes in the invaded area, native natural enemies may adapt to the new host. A decade after the accidental introduction of the brown marmorated stink bug, Halyomorpha halys, in Europe, two generalist native egg parasitoids, the eupelmid Anastatus bifasciatus and the encyrtid Ooencyrtus telenomicida, have been recorded from this invasive agricultural pest in the field. Both species are able to complete development to the adult stage within the new host. Trissolcus basalis (Platygastridae=Scelionidae), which is not associated with H. halys in the field, was reared from freeze-killed sentinel eggs placed on soybean plants in central Italy. We tested in a Y-tube olfactometer the behavioural responses of these egg parasitoids to volatiles from H. halys adults and from Vicia faba plants attacked by H. halys. Both A. bifasciatus and O. telenomicida positively responded to adult H. halys male volatiles and to H. halys-induced plant volatiles, indicating ability to exploit cues associated with the new host for egg location, whereas T. basalis only reacted to female volatiles. A. bifasciatus and O. telenomicida are generalist egg parasitoids, showing a much wider host range when compared to T. basalis. On the other hand, platygastrid egg parasitoids from the native area of H. halys, considered for classical biological control, may be too risky due to the possibility of attacking non-target species, including predaceous stink bugs. Therefore, indigenous A. bifasciatus and O. telenomicida are presently under evaluation for augmentative biological control of H. halys in Europe.