Tetranychus kanzawai Kishida and Panonychus citri (McGregor) are two major acarine pests of the principal papaya variety in Taiwan, and they often co-occur in the same papaya screen-houses. This study measured prey acceptability, foraging schedule, short-term consumption rate, and handling time of larvae of a domesticated line of the green lacewing, Mallada basalis (Walker), in no-choice tests with different life stages of these two mite pests. After a period of prey deprivation, all three larval instars of M. basalis exhibited a high rate of acceptance of all life stages of both T. kanzawai and P. citri. In 2-h trials, second- and third-instar predators foraged actively most of the time, whereas first instars spent ≈40% of the time at rest. Consumption increased and prey handling time decreased as predator life stage advanced and prey stage decreased. Third-instar lacewings consumed an average of 311.4 T. kanzawai eggs (handling time: 6.7 s/egg) and 68.2 adults (handling time: 58.8 s/adult), whereas first instars consumed 19.6 eggs (handling time: 23.6 s/egg) and 4.0 adults (handling time: 633.4 s/adult). M. basalis generally consumed more P. citri than T. kanzawai. Except for prey eggs, handling times of T. kanzawai were generally longer than those of P. citri by all M. basalis instars. Handling times were shorter, and consumption were greater, at the higher P. citri density than at the lower one, whereas there were generally no significant differences in prey acceptability and foraging time between those two densities. This study suggests that M. basalis larvae may have high potential for augmentative biological control of mites on papayas.
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