Dynamics of a host-parasitoid interaction clarified by modelling and DNA sequencing

Marko Mutanen, Otso Ovaskainen, Gergely Várkonyi, Juhani Itämies, Sean W. J. Prosser, Paul D. N. Hebert & Ilkka Hanski
It has been hypothesized that the 2-year oscillations in abundance of Xestia moths are mediated by interactions with 1-year Ophion parasitoid wasps. We tested this hypothesis by modelling a 35-year time series of Xestia and Ophion from northern Finland. Additionally, we used DNA barcoding to ascertain the species diversity of Ophion and targeted amplicon sequencing of their gut contents to confirm their larval hosts. Modelling of the time-series data strongly supported the hypothesized host–parasitoid dynamics...
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