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Weak parasitoid-mediated apparent competition between two Phyllonorycter (Lepidoptera: Gracillariidae) leaf miner species on a deciduous oak Quercus dentata


Masahito T. Kimura, Graduate School of Environmental Earth Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Hokkaido 060-0810, Japan. Email:


Parasitoid assemblages and the rates of parasitism on tissue-feeding larvae of two Phyllonorycter leaf miner species, P. persimilis and P. leucocorona, were studied from the autumn generation in 2002 to the summer generation in 2005 to understand whether parasitoids mediate interactions between the two leaf miner species. Fourteen species of parasitoids emerged from P. persimilis and 11 emerged from P. leucocorona. The parasitism rate was high: 24.1–92.6% in P. persimilis and 58.9–81.7% in P. leucocorona. Thus, parasitism was a major mortality factor in the present Phyllonorycter species. The parasitoid composition was distinctly different between the two host species, although most parasitoids were able to parasitize both leaf miner species. The analysis based on the quantitative parasitoid overlap revealed that the present parasitoids could mediate interactions between the present leaf miner species, but their effects would be weak. This is attributable to parasitoid's preferential uses of either of the leaf miners as a host.

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