The impact of off-host starvation on Aceria tosichella


Abstract: Small herbivores rely mainly on abiotic or biotic vectors to disperse. Thus, to achieve a colonization success they need to pose abilities to survive off-host starvation periods as their dispersal agents may not be present in a right time or they can be transmitted to unfavorable environment. A good example can be a representative of eriophyoid mites, wheat curl mite –Aceria tosichella (Acari: Eriophyoidea), an important pest of cereals which dispersal is mostly airborne, with wind. Eriophyoid mites are sensitive to desiccation when off-host, yet it was previously shown that wheat curl mites can remain alive even several days off-host if proper humidity and temperature conditions were provided. However, the effect of this starvation period on further feeding and reproduction abilities has not been tested. The aim of the study was to test if the wheat curl mite, lineage MT-1, ability to colonize wheat plants after 24 hours of off-host starvation in laboratory conditions (95 % humidity and ca. 21 °C temperature) was impaired. After the starvation, ten active females were transferred to each test plants. The mite numbers were assessed three weeks post mite transfers and compared with the control that was set up with the non-starved mites from the same population. We showed that starvation had no negative effect on wheat curl mite ability to colonize plants. In addition, we obtained the protocol that can be used for wheat curl mite starvation in laboratory conditions prior to various behavioral and plant virus transmission experiments.

Cookie Consent with Real Cookie Banner