Effects of temperature (16, 20, 24, 28 and 32 ± 1 °C), host plant (Nicotiana tabacum L.) and factitious prey (eggs of Ephestia kuehniella Zeller) on immature development of three recently found Neotropical mirids, Campyloneuropsis infumatus (Carvalho), Engytatus varians (Distant) and Macrolophus basicornis (Stal) were studied at RH 70 ± 10% and 12h photophase in climate cabinets. These mirids are being evaluated for biological control of the South American tomato borer Tuta absoluta (Meyrick) and other pests on tomato. Survival of eggs of the three mirid species on tobacco was high (> 80%) at 16-28 °C, but lower (< 80%) at 32 °C. Development times decreased with increasing temperature from 16-28 °C. Nymphal survival was higher (84-96%) at 20, 24 and 28 °C than at 16 and 32 °C (46-83%). The sex ratio of C. infumatus was strongly female biased at all temperatures, whereas it was 1:1 for the other two species. The lower temperature thresholds for egg-adult development of C. infumatus, E. varians and M. basicornis were 9.4, 9.4 and 7.9 °C, and their thermal constants were 384.6, 384.6 and 476.2 DD, respectively. Temperatures between 24 to 28 °C are best for immature performance and for rearing of these mirids species. Eggs of the factitious host E. kuehniella provide adequate food for their mass production. Optimal temperatures for best mirid predator performance are similar to those for the pest T. absoluta, indicating good climate matching.
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