oa Journal of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa - The behaviour of newly hatched coccinellid larvae (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae)



Some coccinellids lay their eggs singly near their prey and the resulting larvae disperse from the oviposition site shortly after hatching. Other species, notably those that hatch from eggs laid in batches, postpone departure from the oviposition site and remain clustered together for a relatively long time on the empty egg batch before dispersing (Hagen, 1962). This latter type of behaviour favours sibling cannibalism while the larvae are clustered together on the egg batch. It is generally believed that such feeding benefits survival of the remaining individuals enabling them to make a more prolonged search for aphid food (Banks, 1956; Dixon, 1959).


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