Wednesday, 8 October 2014

A Bit of Good Luck

Most gardeners, naturalists and entomologists have seen Green Lacewing (family Chrysopidae) eggs in nature. I must have seen hundreds of them but had not encountered the egg-laying female until the other night in the Daintree region of far north Queensland. Unfortunately it was very windy and it was very difficult to take the photos, shelter the female lacewing and steady the camera all at the same time. The eggs are usually laid on the underside of vegetation but they can be found on buildings, garden furniture and the like.

I managed to get some photos that are not too bad considering the less than favourable windy conditions at the time.
 After depositing an egg.
 The female actually laying the egg. An enlargement below.
A thread of silk(?) is made first followed by the egg. The eggs are on stalks supposedly to delay or prevent the hatching larvae from eating one another. One would think that staggering emergence times would solve that problem.

Once the larvae are ambulatory, they are voracious feeders. They consume any small insect they can subdue. This habit has earned them a good reputation as biological control agents. Several species are sold commercially to the agriculture trade.


Lorraine Phelan said...

I learned a lot in this blog because I wasn't sure how these insects do what they do even though I've seen the eggs lots of times. Great photos.

Mr. Smiley said...

Thanks Lorraine. Happy it was of interest. You just have to keep looking, I guess.
Dave Rentz

Ricky Ricardo said...

Thanks a lot for share