Aphelinus abdominalis

The adult individual of Aphelinus abdominalis is about 3 mm in length. When Aphelinus abdominalis finds a prey the wasp inserts an ovipositor in its body and lays eggs. This process takes 20–60seconds. The entomophage is able to parasitize on the most of ontogenesis stages including a winged individual of the pest. The larva develops in the body of the pest. During 7 days of larva development an affected aphid is transformed into a black mummy. The adult predator infects 5-10 mites a day and continues to lay eggs for 8 weeks. As an alternative food source it can use pest sugary excretions. Aphelinus is used for several crops in glass-covered ground: sweet peppers, tomatoes, eggplants, gerberas, roses and chrysanthemums. The parasitic wasp should be introduced in a greenhouse when the first signs of aphids emerge.  Invasion is realized in amounts of 0.5–2 individuals per 1 m2. If necessary invasions are repeated. The entomophage requires high temperature for intensive activity.

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Advantages

  • a wide range of protected crops,
  • the long time of life activity,
  • handy to use in the monitoring of entomophage life activity.