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Lebia grandis (Coleoptera: Carabidae), recorded as a parasitoid only on Colorado potato beetle, Leptinotarsa decemlineata (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), is capable of parasitizing the false potato beetle, L. juncta, and also L. haldemani. Historical records show that L. decemlineata, while the only recorded host, was not present in much of the original range of L. grandis, and may not have been its host prior to its expansion into eastern North America, where L. juncta is endemic. Our laboratory comparisons suggest that L. juncta, the presumptive original host, best supports the development of the parasitoid larval L. grandis, based on 43.6% successful emergence of the adult carabid parasitoid, compared to 11.5% from the two other Leptinotarsa species. L. grandis adults accept eggs and larvae of all 3 Leptinotarsa species as adult food. Naive, newly-emerged adults show no preference when presented the 3 species of third-instar larvae, which they consume at a mean rate of 3.3 per day, a rate which does not differ significantly by sex, larval host, or weight at emergence. When presented with equal amounts by weight of the 3 species of Leptinotarsa eggs, such adults consume the equivalent of 23.0 L. decemlineata eggs per day, with consumption of L. juncta eggs 67% higher by weight than L. decemlineata consumption. Insight into the biotic and abiotic limitations on L. grandis should aid in determining its potential for suppression of Colorado potato beetle by biological control in diverse agroecosystems.
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