Title: Attraction of a ladybird to sweet pepper damaged by two aphid species simultaneously or sequentially
Author: Souza, L. A.; Souza, B.; Pareja, Martin; Frieiro-costa, F.; Silva, M. S.
Is part of: JOURNAL OF NATURAL HISTORY, v. 54, p. 2909 - 2925
Citation: Souza, L. A.; Souza, B.; Pareja, Martin; Frieiro-costa, F.; Silva, M. S.; Attraction of a ladybird to sweet pepper damaged by two aphid species simultaneously or sequentially. JOURNAL OF NATURAL HISTORY, v.54, p. 2909-2925, 2021
Abstract: Natural enemies of insect herbivores use volatile organic compounds (VOCs) released by plants to locate suitable patches for foraging. When a plant is damaged by herbivores, it can modify its VOC profile, enhancing attraction of the herbivore's natural enemies. In both natural and agricultural ecosystems, plants are usually attacked by more than one species of herbivore, either simultaneously or sequentially. Different herbivores, even those with similar feeding habits, can activate different defensive responses in the same plant and this can alter the attraction of natural enemies. This study aimed to understand how simultaneous and sequential damage to sweet pepper, Capsicum annuum, by two aphid species, Aphis gossypii and Myzus persicae, affects attraction of the aphid predator Cycloneda sanguinea to plant odours. Undamaged plants did not attract C. sanguinea, but plants damaged by either aphid were attractive to this predator. When plants were damaged simultaneously, the predator did not distinguish between the odours of plants damaged by both species from those damaged by a single species. When damage was sequential, a certain combination of damage (A. gossypii followed by M. persicae) made the plants more attractive than plants damaged by A. gossypii only. Odour from plants from all other combinations of sequential damage proved equally attractive to C. sanguinea as plants damaged by a single species. The study allows us to conclude that, unlike for simultaneous damage, a specific sequence of sequential damage enhances attraction of the predator. This could potentially create enemy-dense space on previously damaged plants.
Funding: We are grateful to Viviane Ribeiro for help with rearing and to Alberto Arab and two anonymous reviewers for comments that greatly improved the manuscript. This work was funded by Fundacao de Amparo a Pesquisa do estado de Minas Gerais-FAPEMIG project APQ-04256-10 and Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Cientifico e tecnologico-CNPq/Coordenacao de Aperfeicoamento de Pessoal de Nivel Superior-CAPES Repensa project 562307/2010-9.