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Life history parameters for Nesidiocoris tenuis (Reuter) (Het., Miridae) under different temperature regimes


Juan Antonio Sánchez, Instituto Murciano de Investigación y Desarrollo Agrario y Alimentario (IMIDA) C/Mayor, 1. 30150 La Alberca, Murcia, Spain. E-mail:


The development time for eggs and nymphs and female fertility were determined for Nesidiocoris tenuis Reuter (Het., Miridae: Dicyphini) at 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40 ± 1°C, using tomato, Solanum esculentum (Miller), as substrate and eggs of Ephestia kuehniella Zeller as substitute prey. At 40°C, N. tenuis was unable to develop and barely reproduced. Egg development ranged from 30.8 days at 15°C to 6.3 days at 35°C. The cumulative thermal requirements for the eggs were 148.6 degree days (°d) and the lower thermal threshold, 10.3°C. The duration of the nymphal instar decreased from 55.9 days at 15°C to 8.6 days at 35°C. The thermal constant for the nymphs was 182.3 °d and the lower thermal threshold 11.7°C. No nymphs survived at 40°C, and the highest mortalities were at extreme temperatures (15 and 35°C). Female and male weights were influenced significantly by temperature. The fertility of N. tenuis females was reduced greatly at 15 and 40°C. The highest fertility during an observation period of 18 days following female emergence (79.5–60.0 nymphs per female) was within the temperature range of 20 to 35°C. Fertility was related directly to female weight and temperature (r2 = 0.932). Based on development, reproduction data and thermal requirements, the optimum temperature range for N. tenuis was established as being between 20 and 30°C. Overall, N. tenuis is the most thermophilous of all dicyphines from vegetable crops in the Mediterranean area studied so far.