A survey of the adventive parasitoid Meteorus pulchricornis (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) and native larval parasitoids of native Lepidoptera.
Since its arrival in New Zealand, Meteorus pulchricornis has parasitised adventive and native lepidopteran host species. We carried out a survey of parasitism by M. pulchricornis and native parasitoids of native lepidopteran host species in the Auckland region. From September 2013 to January 2016, parasitoids were reared from larvae collected from native host plants in habitats including urban gardens, regenerating native forest and native forest remnants. Meteorus pulchricornis was the most abundant parasitoid, accounting for 12% of parasitism, and was reared from 11 of 26 native Lepidoptera species. The host range of M. pulchricornis overlapped with eight other parasitoid species. A previously unrecorded species of Casinaria as well as M. pulchricornis were reared from Cleora scriptaria larvae collected from Te Hauturu-ō-Toi/Little Barrier Island. The parasitoid host association data collected provides preliminary information on the potential impact of M. pulchricornis on native parasitoids.