Complementary effects of different predators of leaf-cutting ants: implications for biological control
ELIZALDE LUCIANA; SUPERINA, MARIELLA
ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE
Lugar: Amsterdam; Año: 2018
Predators that share a prey can interact negatively or positively, depending on whether there is intraguild predation or they facilitate the consumption of the shared prey. Leaf-cutting ants may become pests, thus, knowing their interaction with natural enemies is key for managing their populations. We quantified the negative effect of armadillo predation and parasitism by phorids on leaf-cutting ants, and studied whether armadillo affect parasitoids negatively or positively. Parasitoid incidence was very high on ant nest population but only 2% of the ants within nests were parasitized; while the few nests attacked by armadillo were highly damaged. We did not find evidence of any effect of armadillos on parasitoids. The different types of predation pressure that each enemy exerts on the prey and the lack of negative interaction of armadillos on parasitoids highlight the importance of considering these neglected natural enemies in conservation biological control of these ants.