Sex determination meltdown upon biological control introduction of the parasitoid Cotesia rubecula?
Article first published online: 11 JUN 2012
© 2012 The Authors. Evolutionary Applications published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and is not used for commercial purposes.
Special Issue: Evolution and Biological Control
Volume 5, Issue 5, pages 444–454, July 2012
How to Cite
de Boer, J. G., Kuijper, B., Heimpel, G. E. and Beukeboom, L. W. (2012), Sex determination meltdown upon biological control introduction of the parasitoid Cotesia rubecula? . Evolutionary Applications, 5: 444–454. doi: 10.1111/j.1752-4571.2012.00270.x
- Issue published online: 10 JUL 2012
- Article first published online: 11 JUN 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 24 APR 2012
- Manuscript Received: 10 APR 2012
- Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. Grant Number: 863.07.010
- complementary sex determination;
- diploid males;
- life history;
- natural enemies;
- parasitic wasps;
- Pieris rapae
Natural enemies may go through genetic bottlenecks during the process of biological control introductions. Such bottlenecks are expected to be particularly detrimental in parasitoid Hymenoptera that exhibit complementary sex determination (CSD). CSD is associated with a severe form of inbreeding depression because homozygosity at one or multiple sex loci leads to the production of diploid males that are typically unviable or sterile. We observed that diploid males occur at a relatively high rate (8–13% of diploid adults) in a field population of Cotesia rubecula in Minnesota, USA, where this parasitoid was introduced for biological control of the cabbage white Pieris rapae. However, our laboratory crosses suggest two-locus CSD in a native Dutch population of C. rubecula and moderately high diploid males survival (approximately 70%), a scenario expected to produce low proportions of diploid males. We also show that courtship behavior of diploid males is similar to that of haploid males, but females mated to diploid males produce only very few daughters that are triploid. We use our laboratory data to estimate sex allele diversity in the field population of C. rubecula and discuss the possibility of a sex determination meltdown from two-locus CSD to effective single-locus CSD during or after introduction.