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1 March 2011 Reproductive Biology of Three Cosmopolitan Mealybug (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) Species, Pseudococcus longispinus, Pseudococcus viburni, and Planococcus ficus
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Abstract

Experiments confirmed that female Pseudococcus longispinus (Targioni Tozzetti), Pseudococcus viburni (Signoret), and Planococcus ficus Signoret (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) must mate to produce viable offspring. Females of all three species were capable of mating multiple times on the same day and on sequential days (range, 1–8 times). Female reproductive output was not increased by multiple copulations. Male P. longispinus, P. viburni, and P. ficus also mated multiple times during their lifetimes (maximum of 9, 11, and 19 times, respectively). Male P. ficus had the highest mean number of copulations (9.6 ± 0.6), followed by P. longispinus and P. viburni. More than half of the P. ficus males survived their first day of copulations and remated the next day when presented with unmated females. P. viburni males also readily mated with unmated females on the day subsequent to their first copulations. Median times between copulations were short for males of all species (<2 min). Constant exposure to pheromone had no detectable effect on the activity levels of male P. ficus and P. longispinus, whereas P. viburni males exposed to pheromone emerged significantly earlier from their cocoons than control males without pheromone exposure. Constant exposure to pheromone had no effect on the longevity of males of any species compared with controls. The implications of the results of these experiments for pheromone-based methods of managing mealybugs are discussed.

© 2011 Entomological Society of America
Rebeccah A. Waterworth, Ian M. Wright, and Jocelyn G. Millar "Reproductive Biology of Three Cosmopolitan Mealybug (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) Species, Pseudococcus longispinus, Pseudococcus viburni, and Planococcus ficus," Annals of the Entomological Society of America 104(2), (1 March 2011). https://doi.org/10.1603/AN10139
Received: 12 September 2010; Accepted: 1 December 2010; Published: 1 March 2011
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