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Effect of Bt-cotton expressing Cry1A(c) on the survival and fecundity of two hymenopteran parasitoids (Braconidae, Encyrtidae) in the laboratory


Effect of Bt-cotton expressing Cry1A(c) on the survival and fecundity of two hymenopteran parasitoids (Braconidae, Encyrtidae) in the laboratory



Biological Control 26(3): 325-332



ISSN/ISBN: 1049-9644

DOI: 10.1016/s1049-9644(02)00160-3

We examined the effect of Bt-cotton (Event 531) plants expressing the Bacillus thuringiensis [delta]-endotoxin CryIA(c) on two hymenopteran endoparasitoids, Cotesia marginiventris and Copidosoma floridanum. In the laboratory, parasitized and unparasitized Pseudoplusia includens larvae were reared on foliage from a conventional soybean cultivar (Pioneer 97B61), a conventional cotton cultivar (DPL 5415), or a Bt-cotton cultivar (NuCotn 33B). C. marginiventris developed significantly faster within P. includens larvae feeding on Pioneer 97B61 and DPL 5415 compared to those feeding on NuCotn 33B. C. marginiventris that developed inside P. includens larvae feeding on NuCotn 33B suffered reduced longevity, and females had fewer ova. NuCotn 33B also affected the growth and development of P. includens parasitized with C. floridanum and life history parameters of adult C. floridanum. Parasitized and unparasitized P. includens developed more slowly when they were fed NuCotn 33B and the prepupae weighed less. Survival of parasitized and unparasitized P. includens was lower when larvae were fed NuCotn 33B and some evidence points to higher susceptibility of parasitized caterpillars to intoxication by NuCotn 33B. Fewer C. floridanum adults emerged from hosts fed NuCotn 33B, but pupal weight and adult longevity were unaffected. Analysis comparing the two experiments conducted with C. floridanum suggests that older NuCotn 33B plants (90-120 days after planting) may affect parasitoid development and adult survival less than younger NuCotn 33B plants (60-90 days after planting). Feeding on NuCotn 33B by P. includens affected the survival and development of the two hymenopteran endoparasitoids studied here, and the degree of the effect was similar to that observed with natural resistance found in soybean plants. It remains to be determined if the effects demonstrated here are less than, equal to, or greater than the impact of conventional insecticide applications used in conventional, non-transgenic, cotton.

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Accession: 003723419

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