Quantifying the impact of ants on vine mealybug and its parasitoids

Project number: US E/A A1
Project leader: Addison, P
The interaction between ants, vine mealybug and mealybug parasitoids has not yet been quantified in South Africa. Different ant species exhibit various degrees of aggression towards mealybug parasitoids and this would therefore, amongst other factors, influence the degree of disturbance of biological control of mealybug. The aim of this study was to establish, under controlled conditions, the relative impact of three pest ant species on the effectiveness of biological control of vine mealybug by parasitoids.