Delphastus catalinae


SKU: WRDP50

These are live insects and MUST be shipped OVERNIGHT. No USPS or ground shipping. 

Delphastus is a specialized whitefly predator in the lady beetle family.The White Fly Predatory Beetle is a native beetle often found associated with high populations of various species of White Fly. Adults are small, shiny, and are approximately 1.3 - 1.4 mm in length (1/15th inch). Adults are dark brown to black, hemispherical beetles; females have reddish yellow heads, lighter color than males. Development is about a month long and females lay 3 - 4 eggs per day.

Eggs are transparent and are twice as long as they are wide. It is mandatory for mated females to consume 100 - 150 eggs a day in order to oviposit. Each larval stage takes about 3 - 5 days to complete, and the pupil stage takes 6 days. Larvae are elongated, cream colored, covered with short fine hairs and have conspicuous legs. The pupae are more yellow and circular. On cloudy and twilight days, adults are most noticeable. The adult beetles fly, while larvae are slow moving and travel from plant to plant on leaves. 

LIFECYCLE: The complete life cycle takes 21 - 25 days. Eggs are yellowish ovals, laid on end, in clusters on the underside of leaves. Females lay 2 - 6 eggs per day, and can lay over 300 eggs in their 65-day lifetime. Females must eat 100- 150 whitefly eggs per day to initiate and sustain egg laying. Larvae feed for 7 - 10 days. Older larvae migrate down the plant to pupate. Pupae are often found clustered along leaf veins on the undersides of leaves. Adults emerge from pupae in 6 days. Adults can eat 150 - 640 whitefly eggs or 11 large larvae per day. A single beetle can consume as many as 10,000 whitefly eggs or 700 larvae during its lifetime. 

RELEASE INSTRUCTIONS: Delphastus are sold in small plastic containers of adults only. They are shipped in shredded paper or other packing material to protect them during transport. A small amount food and water is added to the container. Once you have arrived home with your Delphastus you must use them immediately. Delphastus catalinae cannot be stored. Mist the release zone prior to introducing insects into plant foliage. Release the beetles at sundown on the day you receive the package at 1 beetle for every 50 to 100 square feet of canopy.Use with Encarsia formosa for best results. 

Delphastus is used to control whiteflies in tropical and semi-tropical plantings as well as commercial vegetable greenhouses. Delphastus avoids feeding on parasitized whiteflies, therefore is compatible with the use of Encarsia spp. and Eretmocerus spp. whitefly parasites. Delphastus also tends to feed in high density whitefly populations, while parasites do best at lower densities of whiteflies.Optimum conditions are moderate to high temperatures of 16°-35 °C (61°-90°F); Delphastus do not fly at temperatures below 13°C (55°F). Delphastus do not enter diapause under short-day conditions, therefore remain active all season. 

RELEASE RATES: Introduce Delphastus in whitefly infested areas of the greenhouse as soon as whiteflies are detected. Release the beetles at sundown on the day that they arrive with an inoculation of one beetle per 50 to 100 square feet of canopy to establish them. Ideally, you should inoculate when there are less than six white fly immatures per leaf keeping temperatures between 65° - 90° F, while adults can tolerate a temperature of only 45° to 105°F. Releasing a colony near each other and close to food works well to enhance mating and egg laying of the first generation. Right when the second generation begins to emerge, you can spread them around. 

At this point, you will begin to see control. If you don't spray a heavy infestation, the beetle will soon take over. Each generation is approximately 50-100 times more numerous than the one before it. Once three weeks have passed, 100 beetles can become 10,000 and when six weeks have gone by, they become 1,000,000. Unfortunately, once that amount of time has soon gone by, the plants can be destroyed. Preferably, you should start early or knocking down with a short residual pesticide. Delphastus do not survive in the absence of prey, therefore should be released only after whiteflies are detected. Pesticides and even wetting agents and spreader-stickers may adversely affect Delphastus survival. Broad spectrum and systemic insecticides are toxic to Delphastus. 

*Note: These rates are for preventative control only, multiple releases and/or higher quantities are necessary for heavier infestations. Click each product pic to get more information about that product.

 

QUANTITY PER PACKAGE
APPROX. COVERAGE
50 Insects 2,500 sq. ft.
100 Insects 5,000 sq. ft.