n African Entomology - Hydrellia lagarosiphon Deeming (Diptera: Ephydridae), a potential biological control agent for the submerged aquatic weed, Lagarosiphon major (Ridl.) Moss ex Wager (Hydrocharitaceae)
|Article Title||Hydrellia lagarosiphon Deeming (Diptera: Ephydridae), a potential biological control agent for the submerged aquatic weed, Lagarosiphon major (Ridl.) Moss ex Wager (Hydrocharitaceae)|
|© Publisher:||Entomological Society of South Africa (ESSA)|
|Affiliations||1 Rhodes University, 2 Rhodes University and 3 University College Dublin, Ireland|
|Publication Date||Mar 2013|
|Pages||151 - 160|
|Keyword(s)||Leaf damage, Native range survey, Natural enemy, Submersed aquatic macrophyte and Weed biological control|
The leaf-mining fly, Hydrellia lagarosiphon Deeming (Diptera: Ephydridae), was investigated in its native range in South Africa, to determine its potential as a biological control agent for Lagarosiphon major (Ridl.) Moss ex Wager (Hydrocharitaceae), an invasive submerged macrophyte that is weedy in many parts of the world. The fly was found throughout the indigenous range of the plant in South Africa. High larval abundance was recorded at field sites with nearly all L. major shoots sampled containing larvae, with densities of up to 10 larvae per shoot. Adults laid batches of up to 15 eggs, usually on the abaxial sides of L. major leaves. The larvae mined internally, leaving the epidermal tissues of the upper and lower leaves intact. The larvae underwent three instars which took an average of 24 days and pupated within the leaf tissue, from which the adults emerged. Impact studies in the laboratory showed that H. lagarosiphon larval feeding significantly restricted the formation of L. major side branches. Based on its biology and damage caused to the plant, Hydrellia lagarosiphon could be considered as a useful biological control candidate for L. major in countries where the plant is invasive.
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