The use of flightless strains of the multicolored Asian lady beetle, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), established via artificial selection, can be highly effective as a biological control agent for aphids. However, flightless H. axyridis must depend on walking for dispersion. Therefore, data on the walking activity levels in flightless strains are important for the development of effective methods when releasing these agents in the field. Results of measurement of walking activity levels using an infrared actograph showed that walking activity levels during the daytime (but not nighttime) in both sexes of pure flightless strains tended to be lower than those of control strains. We also found that walking activity levels during the daytime for the Ff generation of hybrid strains, produced by reciprocal crossing between two pure flightless strains, were approximately equal to those of pure strains; the reduction in walking activity levels was not recovered by hybrid vigor. Our results indicate that the reduction in walking activity levels in the pure flightless strains was not caused merely by inbreeding depression stemming from the artificial selection process. Instead, potentially flight ability and walking activity levels in this species may be controlled by the pleiotropic effect of a gene.
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