Genetic control of insect populations: I. Cage studies of chromosome replacement by compound autosomes in Drosophila melanogaste

M. Fitz-Earle, D. G. Holm and D. T. Suzuki,  Genetics,  74:461-475. 1973.

A genetic method for insect control was evaluated using the test organism, Drosophila melanogaster. The technique involved the displacement under a system of continuous reproduction, of standard strains by those carrying compound autosomes. The eradication of the replacements could subsequently be achieved through the use of temperature-sensitive lethal mutations.—While certain compound autosome strains failed to displace standards in population cages, even at the initial release ratio of 25:1, others were highly successful. Indeed, for some strains when the ratio of compounds to standards was as low as 9:1, the population rapidly went to fixation in favor of the compound line.—Hatchability was found to be an insufficient index of fitness to estimate the initial ratios of compounds to standards that would guarantee fixation of the former. Differences in other fitness components, such as development time, were detected that could seriously modify displacement, especially with continuous overlapping generations. The importance of examining the fitness of various compound lines and selecting the most competitive in cages, prior to field tests, cannot be overemphasized.