Predation of invasive red-necked longhorn beetle Aromia bungii (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) eggs and hatchlings by native ants in Japan.
Success of an invasive organism depends on the level of biotic resistance from native species. Understanding the mechanism of biotic resistance is critical to the management of invasive species, but such case studies are sparse. Native to parts of Asia and Russia, the red-necked longhorn beetle Aromia bungii (Faldermann) (Coleoptera: Cerambycidae) recently invaded Germany, Italy, and Japan, causing serious damage to Rosaceae trees. To identify any specific mechanism of biotic resistance to A. bungii, we investigated whether Japanese native ants play a role in the biotic resistance through predation, because ants can impact many arthropods as generalist predators. In laboratory experiments, A. bungii eggs or hatchlings were offered to four ant species. Three species exhibited predatory behaviors toward the eggs within 30 min, and obvious damage was confirmed on the eggs within 2 days. Two ant species fatally damaged hatchlings within 30 min. In field surveys, we found a negative correlation between the number of A. bungii frass-ejection holes and the number of collected ants on tree trunks. These results suggested that Japanese native ant fauna can play a certain role in biotic resistance to A. bungii.