Aphidius colemani
aphid parasitoid

Aphidius colemani is a very important parasitoid for aphids biocontrol especially against Aphis gossypii in horticulture and in some ornamental crops.

Adults are 2-3 mm long with dark body and long antennae. Life cycle from egg to adult takes around 2 weeks in suitable climatic condition (between 16 and 22ºC) but when the temperature rise above 28-32ºC the activity sharply decrease. It is a solitary wasp which development takes place within the host body. Adult females show a good searching capability and frequently explore the sites preferred by the pest. A parasitized aphid became a brown “mummy” when the parasitoid larva develops feeding from its internal parts.

Good parasitization level and specificity makes the application of AphidiPAK very interesting in IPM program against aphids. Mummies and adults are packed in bottle for the distribution in the crop. Generally to reach a good balance with the pest several introductions with 0.5-1 parasite/m2 are made. A sort of “preventive” application is recommended when is difficult to evaluate the first aphid presence.