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Control of the rhodesgrass mealybug, Antonina graminis Maskell (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae), by the encyrtid wasp Neodusmetia sangwani is considered a textbook example of classical biological control. However, recent evidence suggests that A. graminis is abundant in the southeastern United States and no recent surveys have been conducted to determine the status of N. sangwani or other A. graminis parasites. A survey was conducted and it was found that N. sangwani was uncommon overall, occurring at only 20 percent of survey sites. In addition, N. sangwani exhibited a patchy geographic distribution. Possible causes for these results are that N. sangwani has not dispersed widely since its introduction, or that the imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, is interfering with biological control. These results suggest that a reevaluation of the efficacy of biological control may be necessary. The survey also found two other encyrtid wasps utilizing A. graminis as a host. One, Acerophagus sp., is apparently native and was nearly as frequent as N. sangwani, while the other, Pseudectroma sp., is apparently introduced and relatively rare.
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