The impact of daily temperature fluctuations on arthropod life history parameters is inadequately studied compared with the ample amount of research that has been conducted on the effects of constant temperatures. Fluctuating temperatures are likely to be more realistic, as they are ecologically more similar to what these arthropods experience in nature. Here, we compared the impact of 11 constant temperatures that ranged from 10 to 35 °C with fluctuating temperatures with the same corresponding mean temperature and an amplitude of 10 °C between high (12 h) and low (12 h) temperatures on the development and life history parameters of Tetranychus urticae under continuous light conditions. No eggs hatched at constant 10 °C, whereas 81.5% of eggs successfully completed development at fluctuating 10 °C (15/5 °C). Egg-to-female adult development was faster under fluctuating temperatures from 12.5 to 27.5 °C than under constant temperatures, whereas the opposite trend was observed at >30 °C. The lower thermal thresholds (T) were 11.63 and 8.63 °C, and thermal constants (K) were 127.81 and 150.69 degree-days for egg-to-female adults at constant and fluctuating temperatures, respectively. The numbers of oviposition days were significantly higher at fluctuating 15 °C than at the corresponding constant temperature, whereas the opposite trend was observed from 20 to 30 °C. The intrinsic rate of increase (r) was higher at fluctuating than at constant 15 °C. The net reproductive rate (R 0) was also higher at fluctuating than at constant 15 and 35 °C, but showed an opposite trend at 20 and 25 °C. We conclude that fluctuating temperatures should be considered to accurately predict spider mite population dynamics in nature.
Experimental and Applied Acarology – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 13, 2017
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