An energy budget approach for evaluating the biocontrol potential of cotton aphid (Aphis gossypii) by the ladybeetle Propylaea japonica Academic Article uri icon


  • Biological control of economically important crop pests is an important component of integrated pest management (IPM) strategies. Predator-prey energy relationships are critical to the success of biocontrol strategies; however, these relationships are often ignored in many IPM programs. In this study, the biocontrol potential of cotton aphid, Aphis gossypii (Glover) (Hemiptera: Aphididae), by the ladybeetle Propylaea japonica (Thunberg) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) was estimated in terms of energy budgets calculated at 27 1 C. The energy equivalent of prey subjects (aphids) consumed was estimated from bomb calorimetry and partitioned into the energy associated with ingestion, assimilation, respiration, reproduction, and waste for each developmental stage of the lady beetle. The average assimilation efficiencies for larval and adult ladybeetles were 88.2 and 91.1%, respectively, whereas net ecological efficiencies were 17.6% for larvae and 2.6% for adults. Similarly, assimilation efficiencies of cotton aphids were 71.5 and 74.4% for nymphs and adults, respectively. Based on energy budget calculations, approximately 520, 3-day-old aphids and 5 356, 3-day-old aphids were estimated to be consumed by the ladybeetle larval stage and the female adult stage, respectively. These estimates were similar to the actual number of aphids consumed by the ladybeetles, based on actual counts. The current data demonstrate that P. japonica is an important natural enemy of the cotton aphid, and that predator-prey energy relationships can play a critical role in biocontrol strategies and IPM programs. 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation 2010 The Netherlands Entomological Society.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Gao, F., Jifon, J., Liu, X., & Ge, F.

citation count

  • 9

complete list of authors

  • Gao, Feng||Jifon, John||Liu, Xiang-Hui||Ge, Feng

publication date

  • July 2010