Andreas Walzer

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We examined intra- and interspecific predation of adult females and immature stages of the generalist Neoseiulus californicus and the specialist Phytoseiulus persimilis. Adult females and immatures of both predators exhibited higher predation rates on larvae than on eggs and protonymphs. N. californicus fed more inter- than intraspecifically. Predation on(More)
Integration of optimal foraging and optimal oviposition theories suggests that predator females should adjust patch leaving to own and progeny prey needs to maximize current and future reproductive success. We tested this hypothesis in the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis and its patchily distributed prey, the two-spotted spider mite Tetranychus(More)
Discrimination between and predation preference for con- or heterospecific larvae was examined for adult females of P. persimilis and N. californicus in plexiglass cages with and without their primary prey T. urticae. Rates of intra- and interspecific predation on larvae were measured for females held on leaves and provided with excess amounts of spider(More)
The success of combined release of the predatory mitesPhytoseiulus persimilis and Neoseiulus californicus insuppression of spider mites may be related to the effects of the interactionsbetween the two predators on their population dynamics. We studied populationgrowth and persistence of the specialist P. persimilis andthe generalist N. californicus reared(More)
Predators are important determinants of the spatiotemporal distribution of prey within a given habitat. The predator effects may vary with diet specialisation, the associated risk posed to prey and, if multiple predators are present, the predator-predator interactions. We examined the spatiotemporal distribution of the herbivorous spider mite Tetranychus(More)
The adaptive canalization hypothesis predicts that highly fitness-relevant traits are canalized via past selection, resulting in low phenotypic plasticity and high robustness to environmental stress. Accordingly, we hypothesized that the level of phenotypic plasticity of male body size of the predatory mites Phytoseiulus persimilis (low plasticity) and(More)
In greenhouse agroecosystems, a guild of spider mite predators may consist of the oligophagous predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis Athias-Henriot, the polyphagous predatory mite Neoseiulus californicus McGregor (both Acari: Phytoseiidae) and the primarily herbivorous but facultatively predatory western flower thrips Frankliniella occidentalis Pergande(More)
We studied developmental plasticity under food stress in three female-biased size dimorphic predatory mite species, Phytoseiulus persimilis, Neoseiulus californicus, and Amblyseius andersoni. All three species prey on two-spotted spider mites but differ in the degree of adaptation to this prey. Phytoseiulus persimilis is a specialized spider mite predator,(More)
BACKGROUND Food limitation early in life may be compensated for by developmental plasticity resulting in accelerated development enhancing survival at the expense of small adult body size. However and especially for females in non-matching maternal and offspring environments, being smaller than the standard may incur considerable intra- and(More)
Polyandry is more widespread than anticipated from Bateman's principle but its ultimate (evolutionary) causes and proximate (mechanistic) correlates are more difficult to pinpoint than those of polygyny. Here, we combined mating experiments, quantification of reproductive traits and microsatellite genotyping to determine the fitness implications of(More)