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Premortality Effects ofZoophthora radicansInfection inPlutella xylostella

Journal of Invertebrate Pathology
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1006/jipa.1997.4690
  • Zoophthora Radicans
  • Plutella Xylostella
  • Feeding Rate
  • Weight Gain
  • Food Conversion Efficiency
  • Oviposition Rate


Abstract The effect of Zoophthora radicansinfection on food consumption and utilization by Plutella xylostellalarvae and oviposition by adults was investigated. Larval food consumption and weight gain were not affected by Z. radicansuntil the third day after infection, 1 day prior to death from mycosis. No food was eaten on the day on which larvae died. Overall, infected larvae ate 44% less leaf tissue than control larvae. Of the leaf tissue consumed by infected larvae 87.5% was eaten on the first 2 days after infection and after this time infected larvae gained little weight. The efficiency with which ingested food was converted into body weight did not change as infection progressed. Infected female moths laid significantly fewer eggs than control moths. This difference was not only due to differential mortality between the infected and control treatments as the egg production by infected females, until the point of death (Day 4 after infection), was significantly less than that of control females over the same period. Incubating females for 24 hr after eclosion (to allow further egg maturation), prior to infection, did not result in greater overall egg production when compared with moths infected on the day of eclosion. The possible causes for these reductions in larval feeding and adult oviposition rates are discussed.

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