Parasitism of Lygus spp. (Hemiptera: Miridae) by Peristenus (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) in the Pacific Northwest

D. F. Mayer, C. R. Baird, B. Simko


Fourth- and fifth-instar lygus bug nymphs (Lygus spp.) were collected from different plants from May through the first week of October in Washington in 1996 and 1997. In 1997, nymphs were also collected from alfalfa seed fields near Ontario, Oregon and Panna, Idaho. Nymphs were dissected under a binocular microscope and the number of nymphs parasitized by a Peristenus larva recorded. In 1996 and 1997, Peristenus was found in all areas of WA sampled (parasitism rate 32% and 14% respectively) and at Panna, ID but not near Ontario, OR. The Peristenus found in Pacific Northwest lygus bugs is apparently a new species, as yet undescribed.

Key words: Peristenus; Lygus; parasites; biological control

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