Brood guarding in Trissolcus plautiae(Watanabe)(Hymenoptera:Scelionidae),an egg parasitoid of the brown-winged green bug,Plautia crossota stali Scott(Heteroptera:Pentatomidae)

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  • Brood guarding in Trissolcus plautiae Watanabe Hymenoptera Scelionidae an egg parasitoid of the brown-winged green bug Plautia crossota stali Scott Heteroptera Pentatomidae

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The adaptive significance of female territorial behavior in Trissolcus plautiae, a solitary parasitoid of a pentatomid bug, was examined in relation to the reproductive strategies of the parasitoids. When two female wasps oviposited in the same host eggs, the offspring survival of the first female increased with decreasing time intervals between ovipositions of the first and second females. The offspring survival of the second female was similar to that of the first female when superparasitism took place a few hours after the first oviposition. When a conspecific female approached a host egg mass guarded by a resident female, the resident generally succeeded in evicting the intruder, and the resident stayed longer on the host egg mass. The intruder rarely succeeded in laying eggs in parasitized host eggs, although they tried to approach the host egg mass. When female wasps encountered conspecifics before or just after oviposition, they also stayed longer on the egg mass until the time when offspring survival would not be affected by subsequent parasitism. These results suggest that T. plautiae females decide how long to stay on the host egg mass after oviposition, assessing the likelihood of superparasitism by conspecifics.


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