References of "Verheggen, François"
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See detailSilkworm moths inventory in their natural tapia forest habitat (Madagascar): diversity, population dynamics and host plants
Razafimanantsoa, Tsiresy; Raminosoa, Noromalala; Rakotondrasoa, Olivia et al

in African Entomology (2013), 21(1), 137-150

Endemic silk moths (Lepidoptera: Lasiocampidae) in Madagascar have been collected and exploited for centuries by local populations either for food or as a source of silk cocoons from which textiles are ... [more ▼]

Endemic silk moths (Lepidoptera: Lasiocampidae) in Madagascar have been collected and exploited for centuries by local populations either for food or as a source of silk cocoons from which textiles are made. Moth natural forest habitat has also been degraded, leading to a drastic decrease in silk moth populations. However, very few scientific reports highlighted these observations well known by the local people.We have inventoried silk moths species in tapia (Uapaca bojeri Baill.) forests located in the central highlands of Madagascar. Inventories have been conducted during one year from August 2009 to July 2010 by sampling transects in Imamo forests. Three species of Lasiocampidae belonging to two genera were found: Borocera cajani Vinson, Borocera marginepunctata Guérin-Méneville and Europtera punctillata Guenée. These three silk moth species are endemic to Madagascar but only one (B. cajani) is commercially exploited in the silk industry. The habitat, host plants, abundance, life cycle and feeding behaviour of these species in their natural habitat are described. [less ▲]

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See detailOccurrence of Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in field crops
Vandereycken, Axel ULg; Brostaux, Yves ULg; Joie, Emilie ULg et al

in European Journal of Entomology (2013), 110(2),

Abstract. The Multicoloured Asian Ladybird, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) is known to thrive principally in shrubby and arboreal habitats. This study focuses on the occurrence of ... [more ▼]

Abstract. The Multicoloured Asian Ladybird, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) is known to thrive principally in shrubby and arboreal habitats. This study focuses on the occurrence of this exotic species and its seasonal abundance in various field crops. The abundance of adults, larvae and pupae of H. axyridis was evaluated over a three-year period, from 2009 to 2011, in four important agronomical crops (wheat, corn, broad bean and potato) in Belgium. From May to September, 48 1-m² quadrats were visually inspected in each of the fields sampled on several farms every seven days. H. axyridis colonized and reproduced in all of the four crops studied, with the largest numbers recorded in corn and broad bean crops. Larvae and adults of H. axyridis were recorded mainly in corn and to a much less extent in wheat and potato crops. From 2009 to 2011, the mean weekly abundance of H. ayxridis remained constant except in corn crops, where the recorded densities of all the immature stages and adults were higher in 2011 than in 2009. The population dynamics of aphids and H. axyridis are well described by a symmetric logistic function (S-shape) of cumulative population size. H. axyridis was not always recorded where aphids were abundant, e.g. aphids were abundant on wheat where no H. axyridis were recorded. H. axyridis start reproducing after the peak in aphid population, suggesting that H. axyridis is able to complete its development by feeding on alternative prey such as larvae and pupae of the same and other species of ladybird and other aphidophagous species. H. axyridis is often considered to be bivoltine but it only completes one generation per year in field crops. The second generation generally develops late in the season in other habitats. [less ▲]

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See detailChemical Ecology of the Colorado Potato Beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Say) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), and Potential for Alternative Control Methods
Sablon, Ludovic ULg; Dickens, Joseph C.; Haubruge, Eric ULg et al

in Insects (2013), 4(1), 31-54

The Colorado potato beetle (CPB) has been a major insect pest to potato farming for over 150 years and various control methods have been established to reduce its impact on potato fields. Crop rotation ... [more ▼]

The Colorado potato beetle (CPB) has been a major insect pest to potato farming for over 150 years and various control methods have been established to reduce its impact on potato fields. Crop rotation and pesticide use are currently the most widely used approaches, although alternative methods are being developed. Here we review the role of various volatile and nonvolatile chemicals involved in behavior changes of CPB that may have potential for their control. First, we describe all volatile and nonvolatile chemicals involved in host plant localization and acceptance by CPB beetles, including glycoalcaloids and host plant volatiles used as kairomones. In the second section, we present the chemical signals used by CPB in intraspecific communication, including sex and aggregation pheromones. Some of these chemicals are used by natural enemies of CPBs to locate their prey and are presented in the third section. The last section of this review is devoted a discussion of the potential of some natural chemicals in biological control of CPB and to approaches that already reached efficient field applications. [less ▲]

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See detailAbundance and phenological model of Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in field crops
Vandereycken, Axel ULg; Brostaux, Yves ULg; Joie, Emilie ULg et al

Poster (2012, December 07)

The multicolored Asian ladybeetle Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) was introduced into Western Europe in the late 1990s. This exotic and invasive species is known to thrive ... [more ▼]

The multicolored Asian ladybeetle Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) was introduced into Western Europe in the late 1990s. This exotic and invasive species is known to thrive principally in shrubs and arboreal habitats. We focus on a phonological model and on annual abundance in various field crops. The abundance of H. axyridis adults and larvae were evaluated during a three-year period, from 2009 to 2011, in four important agronomical crops (wheat, corn, broad bean and potato) in Belgium. H. axyridis colonizes and reproduces in all four crops studied, with larger densities observed in corn and broad bean. The reproduction of H. axyridis occurs principally in corn and occurred much less in wheat and potato. From 2009 to 2011, abundances of H. axyridis populations were constant except in corn, where the observed densities of all immature stages and adults were higher in 2011 than in 2009. The population dynamics of aphids and H. axyridis were characterized by a symmetric logistic function (S-shape) based on the cumulative population size. [less ▲]

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See detailHabitat diversity of the Multicolored Asian ladybeetle Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in agricultural and arboreal ecosystems: a review
Vandereycken, Axel ULg; Durieux, Delphine ULg; Joie, Emilie ULg et al

in Biotechnologie, Agronomie, Société et Environnement = Biotechnology, Agronomy, Society and Environment [=BASE] (2012), 16(4), 553-563

The Multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), native to Asia, is an invasive species in many European and American countries. Initially introduced as a biological control agent against ... [more ▼]

The Multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), native to Asia, is an invasive species in many European and American countries. Initially introduced as a biological control agent against aphids and coccids in greenhouses, this alien species rapidly invaded many habitats such as forests, meadows, wetlands, and agricultural crops. This paper reviews the habitats (forests, crops, herbs, gardens and orchards) where H. axyridis has been observed, either during insect samplings or as part of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs. Studies have referenced H. axyridis on 106 plant taxa (35 arboreal species, 21 crop species, 27 herbaceous species, 11 ornamental species, and 12 orchard species) and have identified 89 plant- prey relationships (34 arboreal species, 16 crop species, 13 herbaceous species, 10 ornamental species, and 16 orchard species) in different countries. Harmonia axyridis is more abundant in forest areas, principally on Acer, Salix, Tilia and Quercus, than in agroecosystems. Some plant species, such as Urtica dioica L., which surround crops, contain large numbers of H. axyridis and could constitute important reserves of this alien species in advance of aphid invasions into crops. This review highlights the polyphagy and eurytopic aspect of H. axyridis. [less ▲]

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See detailChoosing an aphid partner: a matter of taste and smell
Detrain, Claire; Fischer, Christophe ULg; Lognay, Georges ULg et al

Conference (2012, August 27)

Honeydew is the keystone upon which ants and aphids build their mutualistic relationship. We have investigated how sugar and volatile compounds from honeydew are involved in the discovery, the recognition ... [more ▼]

Honeydew is the keystone upon which ants and aphids build their mutualistic relationship. We have investigated how sugar and volatile compounds from honeydew are involved in the discovery, the recognition and the exploitation of aphid colonies by the black garden ant Lasius niger. In addition to semiochemicals produced by aphids, honeydew volatile compounds are used by ant scouts to orient themselves and distantly recognize myrmecophilous species. Once discovered, aphid colonies producing sugars which are the most beneficial to the ants are preferentially tended. In this respect, the ways each sugar acts upon the feeding behavior of ant foragers and triggers the laying of a recruitment trail are essential to understand how their collective exploitation of aphid colonies proceeds and why mutualistic interactions between ants and aphids are maintained. Sensitivity of ant scouts to honeydew sugars was also investigated. Dose-response curves revealed between-sugar differences with foragers being very sensitive even to small amounts of melezitose, a sugar specifically produced by aphid colonies. We discuss about the relevance of honeydew cues used by ants in the selection of sugary resources, the recognition of their honeydew-producing partners as well as in the assessment of size and nutritive value of exploited aphid colonies. [less ▲]

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See detailVolatile organic compounds released by barley roots attract wireworms
Barsics, Fanny ULg; Fiers, Marie ULg; Francis, Frédéric ULg et al

Poster (2012, August)

Wireworms, the soil dwelling larvae of click beetles, are pests of many crops worldwide. Alternatives to insecticide treatments are needed for integrated management strategies. Our work consists in ... [more ▼]

Wireworms, the soil dwelling larvae of click beetles, are pests of many crops worldwide. Alternatives to insecticide treatments are needed for integrated management strategies. Our work consists in elucidating the role of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) root-emitted volatile organic compounds (VOC) on the orientation behaviour of Agriotes sordidus Illiger wireworms (Fig. 1). Using dual choice olfactometers, we have evaluated the attractiveness of baits ranging from barley roots themselves to one isolated root-emitted volatile organic compound. [less ▲]

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See detailHoneydew volatile emission acts as a kairomonal message for the Asian lady beetle Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae)
Leroy, Pascal; Heuskin, Stéphanie ULg; Sabri, Ahmed ULg et al

in Insect Science (2012), 19(4), 498-506

The Asian lady beetle Harmonia axyridis Pallas is considered as an invasive species in most territories where it has been introduced. Because aphid honeydew acts as an attractant for many aphid predators ... [more ▼]

The Asian lady beetle Harmonia axyridis Pallas is considered as an invasive species in most territories where it has been introduced. Because aphid honeydew acts as an attractant for many aphid predators and parasitoids, the objectives of this work were to collect and identify the volatile compounds released from the aphid excretory product to evaluate how these semiochemicals could affect the H. axyridis foraging behavior. Twelve volatile chemicals were identified from the Megoura viciae Buckton honeydew including four alcohols, three ketones, three aldehydes, a pyrazine and a monoterpene. The volatiles 3-methyl-1-butanol and 3-methyl-butanal were highlighted as the two most abundant semiochemicals released from the M. viciae honeydew. Vicia faba L. plants treated with crude honeydew attracted more than 80% of the tested individuals with 40% of attracted beetles located on the plant. Four volatile compounds (3-hydroxy-2-butanone, 3-methyl-butanal, 3-methyl-1-butanol and limonene) were also highlighted to attract more than 75% of the coccinellids toward the odor source and to locate about 35% of them on the plants. Limonenewas the most efficient attractant since 89% of the H. axyridis responded to this odor. The use of the identified semiochemicals aswell as the composition of an artificial honeydew could certainly be helpful to control the dispersal of the Asian lady beetle H. axyridis. [less ▲]

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See detailCharacterization of Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) overwintering sites
Fassotte, Bérénice ULg; Durieux, Delphine ULg; Francis, Frédéric ULg et al

Poster (2012, August)

Originally introduced as a biological control agent, the multicoloured Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), has become an invasive pest throughout Europe and North ... [more ▼]

Originally introduced as a biological control agent, the multicoloured Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), has become an invasive pest throughout Europe and North America in the last few years. Although its effectiveness to control aphid and coccid populations was impressive, some negative impacts appeared rapidly, notably on human health. Indeed, to protect themselves from cold temperatures, H. axyridis individuals move inside dwellings and buildings and form large aggregations in concealed portions of structures to overwinter. The aggregating beetles are responsible for some annoyances due to, on one hand, the number of individuals inside homes and, on the other hand, the hemolymph secretions they release when they are disturbed, which can cause allergic reactions. In order to highlight the specific features of infested houses, we investigated a large number of overwintering sites in Wallonia between 2007 and 2011. These sites were characterized through a survey sent to homeowners confronted to invasion problems. This survey was mainly focused on a general description of the infested house (type, colour, infested floor(s), building material), the orientation of the colonized rooms and the position of the beetles’ cluster. The collected data indicate that H. axyridis preferentially selects isolated brick houses with red or white fronts to take shelter. Aggregations are mostly located at the first floor, essentially inside south, west or southwest oriented rooms. Furthermore, ladybeetles generally gathered into wooden windows frames facing south, west or southwest and to a lesser extent, in the upper corners of walls presenting the same orientation. All these results contribute to improve the knowledge on the aggregative behaviour of H. axyridis and could promote the development of more specific and efficient management methods to prevent massive infestations into dwellings, such as artificial shelters or trapping systems located at the outside of buildings. [less ▲]

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See detailBehavioral response of Harmonia axyridis towards their footprints according to their physiological state
Durieux, Delphine ULg; Fassotte, Bérénice ULg; Vanderplanck, Maryse et al

Poster (2012, August)

In order to survive cold, the multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), aggregates inside dwellings during winter. It has been recently highlighted that overwintering H. axyridis ... [more ▼]

In order to survive cold, the multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), aggregates inside dwellings during winter. It has been recently highlighted that overwintering H. axyridis individuals lay an area marking while walking, which is used by conspecifics to locate aggregation sites. These footprints are made-up of hydrocarbons, comprising both saturated and unsaturated homologues. However, it has not been demonstrated whether this “following area marking” behavior is specific to the overwintering individuals. The work presented herein was oriented to the study of the chemical evolution of these footprints according to the physiological state of H. axyridis. Monthly GC-MS analyses revealed that the area marking contained a greater amount of di-unsaturated compounds when laid by overwintering ladybeetles, suggesting the great importance of these chemicals in the ladybeetles aggregation process. In the second instance, behavioral investigations conducted in a Y-shaped glass tube were performed to assess (1) the evolution of H. axyridis behavior towards their footprints and (2) whether this behavioral modification is due to an evolution of the ladybeetles sensitivity or rather to an evolution of the area marking attractiveness. The results revealed that only the overwintering individuals follow their area marking, and that this behavior is linked to the ladybeetle physiological state rather than to the chemical profile of the marking biomolecules. [less ▲]

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See detailFlexible aggregative behavior of Harmonia axyridis according to the freshness of area marking in overwintering sites
Durieux, Delphine ULg; Fischer, Christophe ULg; Fassotte, Bérénice ULg et al

Poster (2012, July)

The multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), aggregates inside dwellings and buildings during winter to survive cold. This adaptive behavior causes annoyances ... [more ▼]

The multicolored Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), aggregates inside dwellings and buildings during winter to survive cold. This adaptive behavior causes annoyances to the occupants because of their large number and the induction of allergic reactions. Although this species has aroused a great interest these last years, the factors involved in the selection of its overwintering sites remain misunderstood. The work presented herein was oriented to the study of the non-volatile chemical compounds involved in this aggregation behavior. Chemical analyses revealed the occurrence, in aggregation sites, of an area marking made up of saturated and unsaturated hydrocarbons. Behavioral investigations demonstrated that H. axyridis preferentially aggregates in sites previously marked by congeners, indicating the retention potential of this blend on overwintering individuals. In the second instance, the same analyses were performed on an area marking aged of one year. The chemical investigations showed that only saturated hydrocarbons can still be detected after that period of time but the remaining blend does not induce aggregation anymore. This difference of response according to the freshness of the area marking suggests that this species would not be prisoner of the marking previously deposited on the substrate if the surrounding has changed and the site is not suitable anymore. [less ▲]

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See detailAnt-aphid mutualism - Implication of honeydew microflora
Fischer, Christophe ULg; Piraux, Olivier; Lognay, Georges ULg et al

Conference (2012, July)

Some ant and aphid species can present a mutualistic relationship, ants using aphid honeydew as sugar source and in exchange providing the aphid colony cleaning and protection. From a behavioral point of ... [more ▼]

Some ant and aphid species can present a mutualistic relationship, ants using aphid honeydew as sugar source and in exchange providing the aphid colony cleaning and protection. From a behavioral point of view, this phenomenon has been well studied from decades. However, its chemistry and semiochemical mechanisms are still largely unknown. This study aims to identify semiochemicals involved in the establishment of this relation, using both chemical and behavioral approaches. Bioassays revealed that the greatest part of ant attraction toward aphid colonies is due to honeydew volatile compounds; enabling ant scouts to find more quickly aphid colonies and distantly recognize myrmecophilous species. Many of those VOCs seeming to have microbial origins, the main honeydew microorganisms have been isolated and their roles in VOCs production and ant attraction have been investigated. It appeared that honeydew microflora holds a key role in the establishment of ant-aphids mutualistic relationship. [less ▲]

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See detailDevelopment of semiochemical slow-release formulations as biological control devices
Heuskin, Stéphanie ULg; Lorge, Stéphanie ULg; Leroy, Pascal ULg et al

Poster (2012, July)

Semiochemicals have been widely considered within various integrated pest management (IPM) strategies. In the present work, two sesquiterpenoids, E-β-farnesene and E-β-caryophyllene, were formulated for ... [more ▼]

Semiochemicals have been widely considered within various integrated pest management (IPM) strategies. In the present work, two sesquiterpenoids, E-β-farnesene and E-β-caryophyllene, were formulated for their related properties as aphid enemy attractants. E-β-farnesene, the alarm pheromone of many aphid species, was also identified as a kairomone of aphid predators (Episyrphus balteatus De Geer (Diptera: Syrphidae)) and parasitoids (Aphidius ervi Haliday (Hymenoptera: Braconidae)). E-β-caryophyllene was identified as a potential component of the aggregation pheromone of the Asian ladybird, Harmonia axyridis Pallas, another aphid predator. The two products were purified from essential oils of Matricaria chamomilla L. (Asteraceae) and Nepeta cataria L. (Lamiaceae) for E-β-farnesene and E-β-caryophyllene, respectively. Natural and biodegradable slow-release formulations were then investigated in order to deliver these molecules on crop fields for a long period of time as biological control devices. Due to their sensitivity to oxidation, both sesquiterpenes needed to be protected from degradation. For this purpose, alginate – hydrophilic matrix with low oxygen permeability – was used as polymer for the formulations: the main objective was to deliver semiochemical substances in the air in a controlled way. Consequently, a careful selection of alginates was realised. Formulated beads showed different structural and encapsulation properties depending on various formulation factors. Alginate formulations were characterized by texturometry and by confocal microscopy in order to observe the distribution of semiochemicals in alginate network. The last step of alginate bead characterisation consisted in studying release rate of semiochemicals in laboratory-controlled conditions by optimised trapping and validated Fast-GC procedures. Finally, the efficiency of formulations as aphid predator (Syrphidae) and parasitoid (A. ervi) attractants was demonstrated by field trapping and olfactometry experiments. [less ▲]

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See detailEVALUATION DE RISQUE SIMPLIFIEE POUR XYLELLA FASTIDIOSA
REIGNAULT, Philippe; AUGUSTIN, Sylvie; BREDA, Nathalie et al

Report (2012)

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See detailDo root-emitted volatile organic compounds interact with wireworms?
Barsics, Fanny ULg; Gfeller, Aurélie ULg; Laloux, Morgan ULg et al

Scientific conference (2012, May 22)

Wireworms are the soil dwelling larvae of click beetles (Coleoptera: Elateridae). Their importance as crop pests increases since the efficient chemical means to control them cannot be considered anymore ... [more ▼]

Wireworms are the soil dwelling larvae of click beetles (Coleoptera: Elateridae). Their importance as crop pests increases since the efficient chemical means to control them cannot be considered anymore. Therefore, many integrated pest management strategies have been investigated in the past few years. Most of them rely on the understanding of the ecology of the click beetles during their whole life cycle. We focus our work on the chemical ecology of wireworms, more precisely on the root-emitted volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that might intervene in the food-searching process of the larvae by helping them to find a suitable host-plant or by acting as key factors in the belowground defence mechanism of the plant. Here, we present our first results of dual-choice orientation tests in olfactometric pipes. Wireworms (Agriotes sordidus Illiger) were submitted individually to a variety of olfactory baits ranging from entire barley roots (Hordeum vulgare L. var. Quench) to isolated VOCs identified as part of the emitting profile. The latter was described thanks to HS-SPME samplings and GC-MS analysis, for roots grown in the exact same conditions as for the olfactometric experimentations with entire roots. Most of the experimentations gave significant results. When confronted to volatiles emitted by entire roots, wireworms significantly orientated towards the bait (χ²-goodness-of-fit test, χ²=8, P-value=0.005). This result allowed us to follow up with the same device and to progressively vary the nature of the baits. Our protocol should be used for other plant-wireworm species combinations. Our results should be taken into account in varietal selection, in crop rotation, or in trapping systems aiming at the reduction of the populations of wireworms. [less ▲]

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See detailPhenology of the invasive coccinellid Harmonia axyridis Pallas and other aphidophages in crops
Vandereycken, Axel ULg; Durieux, Delphine ULg; Joie, Emilie ULg et al

Poster (2012, May 22)

The multicoloured Asian ladybird Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), previously introduced as a biological control agent to control aphids populations, is now frequently considered as an ... [more ▼]

The multicoloured Asian ladybird Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), previously introduced as a biological control agent to control aphids populations, is now frequently considered as an intraguild predator, consuming other aphids natural enemies. The interactions between this exotic ladybird and other aphidophagous species present in Belgian agro-ecosystems are mainly asymmetric in support of H. axyridis. An aphidophages sampling has been performed between 2009 and 2011 in four agrosystems such as broad bean, wheat, corn and potato. The sampling method consisted in the counting of aphids and all developmental stages of aphidophages present in quadrats of 1m² from April to September. Harmonia axyridis, the invasive coccinellid, was mainly observed in broad bean (21.84 ± 6.30 individuals/100m²) and corn (70.83±6.60 individuals/100m²) with other aphidophages such as Episyrphus balteatus (De Geer), Chrysoperla carnea sensus lato (Stephens), Coccinella septempunctata (Linné) and Propylea quatuordecimpunctata (Linné). In corn, our field data showed that immature stages and adults of H. axyridis were found throughout the summer. Adults were observed from mid-June to the beginning of September with two peaks, in the late June and in the beginning of August. The life history of larvae starts in late-June to the beginning of Augustus with only one peak (347.91 ± 59.99 individuals /100m²) in the beginning of July. The peak of H. axyridis arrives when no extraguild preys are present. At this moment, pupae of E. balteatus and C. septempunctata are the main food available to ensure the development of H. axyridis so that native aphidophages could be intraguild prey for H. axyridis. In the four crops, reproduction of H. axyridis starts after those of other aphidophages and so it does not benefit of available prey such as aphid: in corn and broad bean, C. septempunctata reproduce the first, in wheat it is E. balteatus and in potato it is C. carnea. That could be explained by several reasons: (1) H. axyridis reproduces firstly in arboreal habitats and after that comes in agrosystems, (2) the delay between aphidophage reproductions allows a reduction of interactions with other larvae during spring and therefore decrease mortality levels and (3) H. axyridis is able to use pollen as food substitute when no aphids are available. [less ▲]

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See detailFactors involved in the aggregation of Harmonia axyridis Pallas
Durieux, Delphine ULg; Fischer, Christophe ULg; Deneubourg, Jean-Louis et al

Conference (2012, May 22)

In order to survive cold winters, the invasive multicoloured Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) forms large aggregations in dwellings to overwinter. The factors ... [more ▼]

In order to survive cold winters, the invasive multicoloured Asian ladybeetle, Harmonia axyridis Pallas (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) forms large aggregations in dwellings to overwinter. The factors involved in the selection of aggregation sites remain misunderstood. The work presented herein focussed on the study of the chemical compounds involved in this phenomenon. Chemical and behavioural analyses highlighted that long-chain hydrocarbons lead congeners towards aggregation sites and ensure the cohesion of the cluster. Subsequently, physical factors were investigated. We studied the influence of (1) the density of individuals and (2) the quality of available shelters on H. axyridis decision to settle and aggregate under shelters. A binary choice experiment conducted in laboratory showed that the multicoloured Asian ladybeetles present a permanent aggregative behaviour, even during non-wintering conditions. These experiments also highlighted the existence of social interactions between individuals. All these results contribute to improve knowledge of this behaviour in H. axyridis and could be used in the design of species-specific traps in order to control infestations in dwellings. [less ▲]

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