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Cannibalism and intraguild predation of immature stages and adult females of the stigmaeid mite, Agistemus exsertus Gonzalez were studied under laboratory conditions. Agistemus exsertus successfully developed and reproduced on con- and heterospecific eggs. Feeding on the natural prey Tetranychus urticae Koch eggs enhanced the development of A. exsertus, resulted in the shortest mean generation time and was the most commensurate food for the oviposition of the predator, as exhibited by the highest predation rate, fecundity and net reproductive rate. Preying interspecifically on eggs of Typhlodromus negevi Swirski and Amitai and the natural prey T. urticae produced higher intrinsic rates of increase and finite rates of increase for the predator in comparison to feed on conspecific eggs. Preying intraspecifically gave the lowest predation rate, fecundity, net reproductive rate and negative value of intrinsic rates of increase.When the predator confined without prey, no eggs was laid by the predator.This difference in the predator response to feed intra and interspecific predation should be considered to enhance the role of the predator in biological control programs.

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  • Jenő KONTSCHÁN (Centre for Agricultural Research, Plant Protection Institute)
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