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Journal Articles Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata Year : 2015

Does Wolbachia infection affect decision-making in a parasitic wasp?


Various physiological effects of Wolbachia infection have been reported in invertebrates, but the impact of this infection on behavior and the consequences of these behavioral modifications on fitness have rarely been studied. Here, we investigate the effect of Wolbachia infection on the estimation of host nutritive resource quality in a parasitoid wasp. We compare decision-making in uninfected and Wolbachia-infected strains of Trichogramma brassicae Bezdenko (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae) on patches containing either fresh or old host eggs. For both strains, fresh eggs were better hosts than older eggs, but the difference was smaller for the infected strain than for the uninfected strain. Oviposition behavior of uninfected wasps followed the predictions of optimal foraging theory. They behaved differently toward high- vs. low-quality hosts, withmore hosts visited andmore ovipositions, fewer high-quality hosts used for feeding or superparasitism, and a sex ratio that was morebiased toward females in patches containing high-quality hosts than in patches containing low-quality ones. Uninfected wasps also displayed shorter acceptance and rejection times in high-quality hosts than in hosts of lower quality. In contrast, infected wasps were less efficient in evaluating the nutritive quality of the host (fresh vs. old eggs) and had a reduced ability to discriminate between unparasitized and parasitized hosts. Furthermore, they needed more energy and therefore engaged in host feeding more often. This study highlights possible decision-making manipulation by Wolbachia, and we discuss its consequences forWolbachia fitness.

Dates and versions

hal-01140468 , version 1 (08-04-2015)



Hossein Kishani Farahani, Ahmad Ashouri, Seyed Hossein Goldansaz, Shahram Farrokhi, Abdelkader Aïnouche, et al.. Does Wolbachia infection affect decision-making in a parasitic wasp?. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 2015, 155 (2), pp.102-116. ⟨10.1111/eea.12293⟩. ⟨hal-01140468⟩
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