Reproductive biology including mating, adult longevity, fecundity and development of the tachinid fly Zenillia dolosa was investigated for optimizing rearing procedures using Mythimna separata as a host in the laboratory. Females lay microtype eggs containing a first instar larva on food plants of the host and then the eggs must be ingested by the host for parasitization. Mating success was 58.5% with mating duration of 80.7 min. Mating was most successful when day 0–1 females were kept with day 2–4 male flies. Female body size was positively correlated with its fecundity but not with longevity. However, females that survived longer produced more eggs during their lifetime. Parasitoids successfully developed in 4th to 6th instar host larvae. Host instars at the time of parasitoid egg ingestion significantly influenced development time of the immature parasitoid, but did not affect body size of the emerging parasitoid. We suggest that pairing newly emerged females with day 2–4 males should result in higher mating success and using the last instar hosts for parasitization should minimize development time of the parasitoid for rearing.