Present address: Centre for Ecological Entomology, Illinois Natural History Survey, Champaign, IL 61820, USA.
Effect of temperature on the survival of Aconophora compressa Walker (Hemiptera: Membracidae): implications for weed biocontrol
Article first published online: 24 NOV 2005
Australian Journal of Entomology
Volume 44, Issue 4, pages 457–462, November 2005
How to Cite
Dhileepan, K., Treviño, M. and Raghu, S. (2005), Effect of temperature on the survival of Aconophora compressa Walker (Hemiptera: Membracidae): implications for weed biocontrol. Australian Journal of Entomology, 44: 457–462. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-6055.2005.00507.x
- Issue published online: 24 NOV 2005
- Article first published online: 24 NOV 2005
- Accepted for publication 13 July 2005.
- Aconophora compressa;
- biological control;
- Lantana camara;
- thermal tolerances;
Abstract In weed biocontrol, similarity of abiotic factors between the native and introduced range of a biocontrol agent is critical to its establishment and effectiveness. This is particularly the case for weeds that have a wide geographical distribution in the native range. For such weeds, the choice of a specialist insect that has narrow tolerance limits to important abiotic factors can diminish its ability to be an effective biocontrol agent. The membracid Aconophora compressa was introduced in Australia from Mexico for biocontrol of Lantana camara, a plant with a wide climatic tolerance. In this study we investigated the effect of constant and alternating temperatures on A. compressa survival. Longevity of adults and nymphs declined with increasing temperatures, and at 39°C individuals survived for less than a day. At lower temperatures, nymphs survived longer than adults. Survival at alternating temperatures was longer than at constant temperatures, but the general trend of lower survival at higher temperatures remained. Spatially and temporally, the climatic tolerance of A. compressa appears to be a subset of that of lantana, thereby limiting its potential impact.