Investigation into the delayed establishment of <i>Microctonus aethiopoides</i> in Northland


  • T.M. Eden
  • P.J. Gerard
  • J.J. Dymock
  • N. Ahmad



The Irish strain of Microctonus aethiopoides was released in New Zealand in 2006 to help control clover root weevil (Sitona lepidus) Establishment was rapid at all release sites except in Northland where multiple releases appeared to fail until low numbers were recovered in 2008 It was hypothesised that because Northland at 35S is at sufficiently different latitude to the original collection sites near Belfast Ireland (5437N) there is a crossing of the critical photoperiod for diapause induction in the wasp larvae Replicated cage trials were undertaken to compare the prevalence of premature diapause in Northland with Waikato under natural daylength and simulated Far North midsummer photoperiod (1410 h light dark) with a 16 h photoperiod Results indicated that larval diapause inside the weevil may be initiated by the parent wasp as significantly more 1st instar larvae were present in weevils where wasps had been subjected to reducing daylength (16 h down to 14 h light) High mortality amongst singlylaid wasp larvae in the Northland summer and the absence of teratocytes usually associated with larvae indicates clover root weevil adults can defeat a singlylaid parasitoid These results may explain the reduced efficacy of the Irish wasp in Northland




How to Cite

Eden, T., Gerard, P., Dymock, J. and Ahmad, N. 2009. Investigation into the delayed establishment of &lt;i&gt;Microctonus aethiopoides&lt;/i&gt; in Northland. New Zealand Plant Protection. 62, (Aug. 2009), 414–414. DOI:



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