Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Full metadata record
DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorMair, Jacqueline-
dc.descriptionPhD Thesisen_US
dc.description.abstractSlugs are important pests in many agricultural crops and potential biological control agents are being studied as an alternative to molluscicide application. The role of the carabids Pterostichus madidus (Fabricius) and Nebria brevicollis (Fabricius) as predators of the slug Deroceras reticulatum (MUller) was examined in the laboratory. These generalist beetle species were only capable of killing small, healthy slugs (<0.1 ig) as they were unable to overcome the defence mucus production of larger slugs. Dead slugs were scavenged in preference to killing healthy slugs. The relatively high proportion of positive serological results from field caught carabids may reflect a high scavenging rate rather than actual predation on live slugs. Slugs are difficult prey items for generalist beetles to overcome due to their defence mucus production. Results suggest that few slugs will be consumed in the presence of alternative prey which are less difficult for beetles to overcome. Slugs which could no longer produce defence mucus were readily attacked by both beetle species. Although beetles killed few healthy slugs the presence of beetles influenced slug behaviour with slugs of all sizes foraging for shorter periods of time. Any reduction in slug activity on the soil surface would in turn lead to a reduction in seedling damage. The results suggest that the role of potential predators in pest control can only be evaluated fully with a detailed understanding of their behaviour.en_US
dc.publisherNewcastle Universityen_US
dc.titleThe role of Pterostichus madidus and Nebria brevicollis as predators of the slug Deroceras reticulatumen_US
Appears in Collections:School of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Mair00.pdfThesis24.88 MBAdobe PDFView/Open
dspacelicence.pdfLicence43.82 kBAdobe PDFView/Open

Items in DSpace are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.