Duration of development and survival of larvae of Coccinella transversalis fed on essential and alternative foods
Food in providing essential nutrients for development and sustaining longevity is an important determinant in the survival of organisms. The aphidophagous ladybird beetle Coccinella transversalis is common in the Oriental region and feeds on a wide range of aphids that infest and seriously reduce the yield of agricultural crops. The availability of aphids fluctuates throughout the year, being usually present at the end of July and decreasing at the end of March. In this study C. transversalis was fed on essential (aphids) and alternative foods. The development was fastest with high larval survival when larvae were fed on A. craccivora followed by U. compositae, L. erysimi, A. gossypii, R. maidis, H. setariae, and H. coriandri. The alternative foods used were mealy bugs (coccids), honey, sugar syrup and pollen, however only the former two supported the survival and development.
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