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Key to identification of egg parasitoids (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae, Encyrtidae, Eurytomidae) of Pentatomidae (Hemiptera) of economic interest in Brazil

Grant number: 18/18965-6
Support type:Scholarships abroad - Research
Effective date (Start): March 19, 2019
Effective date (End): March 18, 2020
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology
Principal Investigator:Valmir Antonio Costa
Grantee:Valmir Antonio Costa
Host: Norman F. Johnson
Home Institution: Instituto Biológico (IB). Agência Paulista de Tecnologia dos Agronegócios (APTA). Secretaria de Agricultura e Abastecimento (São Paulo - Estado). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Local de pesquisa : Ohio State University, United States  
Associated research grant:17/50334-3 - Institutional research development plan (PDIP): modernization and adequacy of strategic multi-user units of the Instituto Biológico, AP.PDIP

Abstract

Pentatomidae (Hemiptera) are serious pests of several crops of great importance, like soybean and rice. The biological control of these pests with egg parasitoids is a viable alternative; there is even a well-stablished biological control program of soybean bugs in south Brazil, using Trissolcus basalis and Telenomus podisi (Hymenoptera: Scelionidae). However, different parasitoid species may have distinct preferences for host species and regions of occurrence, which can result in different parasitism efficiency. The correct identification of the organisms involved is of crucial importance for the success of biological control projects, given the variation in the efficiency on the pest control by the different natural enemies' species. In Brazil, there are records of 27 species of parasitoids associated to Pentatomidae eggs, namely eight species of Telenomus, 11 Trissolcus, one Phanuropsis (Scelionidae), three Ooencyrtus (Encyrtidae), two Neorileya (Eurytomidae), one Eupelmus and one Anastatus (Eupelmidae) species. However, there is not a unified dichotomous key which allow their identification. Specialists in these groups are from other countries and it is necessary to qualify people in Brazil to perform these identifications. Also, due to the decreasing number of taxonomists in the world, it is important to have interactive online keys that allow the non-specialist to identify with relative safety at least less problematic species. The objective of this project is to construct a dichotomous key for the identification of parasitoids (Scelionidae, Encyrtidae, Eurytomidae) of eggs of Pentatomidae in crops of economic interest in Brazil. Because of this, I am applying for a Fellowship of Research Abroad to FAPESP (São Paulo Research Council). This fellowship will provide training under the supervision of Dr. Norman F. Johnson (Ohio State University, Columbus, USA), one of the world's leading authorities on Neotropical Telenominae (Scelionidae) in activity. Also, Dr. Johnson is the director of the C.A. Triplehorn Insect Collection (OSUC), from the same institution, which houses the largest collection of parasitoids belonging to this group in the world, including Brazilian specimens sent to him for identification. There are at OSUC at least eight species of Telenomus and Trissolcus associated to Pentatomidae that occur in Brazil and do not have available specimens in organized Brazilian collections. In addition, during this period we will identify ca. 3 thousand Brazilian specimens of Scelionidae reared from Pentatomidae eggs, which have been received by the applicant. (AU)

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