, Volume 60, Issue 2, pp 221–229 | Cite as

Development and survivorship of a predatory lady beetle, Coccinella novemnotata, on various aphid diets

  • Danielle M. Brandt
  • Paul J. Johnson
  • John E. Losey
  • Michael A. Catangui
  • Louis S. Hesler


Ex situ rearing of Coccinella novemnotata Herbst (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), a Nearctic native that has declined precipitously, may be important for experimentation and conservation. Rearing success may depend on optimizing an aphid prey diet. The objective was to compare development, survivorship and adult size of C. novemnotata reared on diets of various aphid (Hemiptera: Aphididae) species. Diets of Acyrthosiphon pisum (Harris) and A. pisum + Rhopalosiphum padi L. were most suitable for rearing C. novemnotata. Single species diets of other aphids had low suitability for C. novemnotata. Combining A. pisum with one of the other aphid species improved diet suitability compared to diets of other species alone. Knowledge of C. novemnotata development and survival on various aphid species may not only aid in ex situ rearing, but could also be used to identify habitats where C. novemnotata may be extant or those with suitable prey for reestablishment or augmentation of C. novemnotata.


Coccinella novemnotata Coccinellidae Invasive species Biological control Conservation 



Francoise Marie Vermeylen and Cuirong Ren provided statistical advice, and Eric Beckendorf helped perform statistical tests. Eric Beckendorf, Mallory Burtz and Corrinna Schwartz assisted with experiments. Jeff Heinle, Guadalupe Rojas, and Eric Beckendorf reviewed drafts of this paper. Research was supported by funding from the National Science Foundation through the Lost Ladybug Project, award number DRL-0741738, and through base funding to the USDA North Central Agricultural Research Laboratory, CRIS Project Number 5447-21220-003-00D.


  1. Anstead JA, Burd JD, Shufran KA (2003) Over-summering and biotypic diversity of Schizaphis graminum (Homoptera: Aphididae) populations on noncultivated grass hosts. Environ Entomol 32:662–667CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bista M, Omkar (2013) Effects of body size and prey quality on the reproductive attributes of two aphidophagous Coccinellidae (Coleoptera) species. Can Entomol 45:566–576CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Blackman RL, Eastop VF (2000) Aphids on the world’s crop: an identification and information guide. Wiley, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  4. Day WH, Tatman KM (2006) Changes in abundance of native and adventive Coccinellidae (Coleoptera) in alfalfa fields, in northern New Jersey (1993–2004) and Delaware (1999–2004), U.S.A. Entomol News 117:491–502CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Dixon AFG, Guo Y (1993) Egg and cluster size in ladybird beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae): the direct and indirect effects of aphid abundance. Eur Entomol 90:457–463Google Scholar
  6. Foottit RG, Halbert SE, Miller GL, Maw E, Russell LM (2006) Adventive aphids (Hemiptera: Aphididae) of America north of Mexico. Proc Entomol Soc Wash 3:583–610Google Scholar
  7. Gordon RD (1985) The Coccinellidae (Coleoptera) of America north of Mexico. J N Y Entomol Soc 93:1–912Google Scholar
  8. Halbert SE, Voegtlin DJ (1998) Evidence for the North American origin of Rhopalosiphum and barley yellow dwarf virus. In: Nieto Nafría JM, Dixon AFG (eds) Aphids in natural and managed ecosystems. Universidad de León, León, Spain, pp 351–356Google Scholar
  9. Harmon JP, Stephens E, Losey J (2007) The decline of native coccinellids (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in the United States and Canada. J Insect Conserv 11:85–94CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Hauge SM, Nielsen FH, Toft S (1998) The influence of three cereal aphid species and mixed diet on larval survival, development and adult weight of Coccinella septempunctata. Entomol Exp Appl 89:319–322CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hesler LS, Petersen JD (2008) Survey for previously common native Coccinellidae (Coleoptera) in the northern Great Plains. Great Lakes Entomol 41:60–67Google Scholar
  12. Hesler LS, Kieckhefer RW, Ellsbury MM (2005) Abundance of coccinellids (Coleoptera) in field-crop and grass habitats in eastern South Dakota. Great Lakes Entomol 38:83–96Google Scholar
  13. Hesler LS, Losey JE, Catangui MA, Helbig JB, Mesman A (2009) Recent records of Adalia bipunctata (L.), Coccinella transversoguttata richardsoni Brown, and Coccinella novemnotata Herbst (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) from South Dakota and Nebraska. Coleopts Bull 63:475–484Google Scholar
  14. Hesler LS, McNickle G, Catangui MA, Losey JE, Beckendorf EA, Stellwag L, Brandt DM, Bartlett PB (2012) Method for continuously rearing Coccinella lady beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Open Entomol J 6:42–48CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Hodek I (1996) Food relationships. In: Hodek I, Honĕk A (eds) Ecology of Coccinellidae. Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht, The NetherlandsGoogle Scholar
  16. Kajita Y, Evans EW (2010) Relationships of body size, fecundity, and invasion success among predatory lady beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) inhabiting alfalfa fields. Ann Entomol Soc Am 103:750–756CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Knowlton GF, Smith CF, Harmston FC (1938) Pea aphid investigations. Proc Utah Acad Sci 15:71–80Google Scholar
  18. Losey JE, Perlman JE, Hoebeke ER (2007) Citizen scientist rediscovers rare nine-spotted lady beetle, Coccinella novemnotata, in eastern North America. J Insect Conserv 11:415–417CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Losey J, Perlman J, Kopco J, Ramsey S, Hesler L, Evans E, Allee L, Smyth R (2012) Potential causes and consequences of decreased body size in field populations of Coccinella novemnotata. Biol Control 61:98–103CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. McMullen RD (1967a) A field study of diapause in Coccinella novemnotata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Can Entomol 99:42–49CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. McMullen RD (1967b) The effects of photoperiod, temperature, and food supply on rate of development and diapause in Coccinella novemnotata. Can Entomol 99:578–586CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Mehrparvar M, Mahdavi Arab N, Weisser WW (2013) Diet-mediated effects of specialized tansy aphids on survival and development of their predators: Is there any benefit of dietary mixing? Biol Control 65:142–146CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Michaud JP (2005) On the assessment of prey suitability in aphidophagous Coccinellidae. Eur J Entomol 102:385–390CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Michels GJ Jr (1986) Graminaceous North American host plants of the greenbug with notes on biotypes. Southwest Entomol 11:55–66Google Scholar
  25. New TR (2010) Beetles in conservation. Wiley-Blackwell, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  26. Nielsen FH, Hauge SM, Toft S (2002) The influence of mixed aphid diets on larval performance of Coccinella septempunctata (Col., Coccinellidae). J Appl Entomol 126:194–197CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Pack HJ (1925) A biological study of certain ladybird beetles (Coccinellidae). PhD Dissertation, Cornell University, Ithaca, USAGoogle Scholar
  28. SAS Institute (2008) SAS/STAT user’s guide. Release 9.1. SAS Institute, Cary, USAGoogle Scholar
  29. Sokal RR, Rohlf FJ (1995) Biometry: the principles and practice of statistics in biological research, 3rd edn. W. H. Freeman, New York, USAGoogle Scholar
  30. Stellwag L, Losey JE (2014) Sexual dimorphism in North American coccinellids: sexing methods for species of Coccinella (L.) and implications for conservation research. Coleopts Bull 68:271–281Google Scholar
  31. Stephens EJ, Losey JE, Allee L, DiTommaso A, Bodner C, Breyre A (2012) The impact of Cry 3Bb1 Bt-maize on two guilds of beneficial beetles. Agr Ecosyst Environ 156:72–81CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Thomas C (1878) A list of the species of the tribe Aphidini, family Aphidae, found in the United States, which have been heretofore named with descriptions of some new species. Bull Ill Lab Nat Hist 2:3–16Google Scholar
  33. Travis JW, Hull A, Miller JD (1978) Toxicity of insecticides to the aphid predator Coccinella novemnotata. Environ Entomol 7:785–786CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Ungerová D, Kalushko P, Nedvěd O (2010) Suitability of diverse prey species for development of Harmonia axyridis and the effect of container size. IOBC Bull 58:165–174Google Scholar
  35. Wheeler AG (1971) A study of the arthropod fauna of alfalfa. PhD Dissertation, Cornell University, Ithaca, USAGoogle Scholar
  36. Wheeler AG Jr, Hoebeke ER (1995) Coccinella novemnotata in northeastern North America: historical occurrence and current status (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae). Proc Entomol Soc Wash 97:701–716Google Scholar

Copyright information

© International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC) 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Danielle M. Brandt
    • 1
  • Paul J. Johnson
    • 1
  • John E. Losey
    • 2
  • Michael A. Catangui
    • 3
  • Louis S. Hesler
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Plant ScienceSouth Dakota State UniversityBrookingsUSA
  2. 2.Department of EntomologyCornell UniversityIthacaUSA
  3. 3.Sioux FallsUSA
  4. 4.North Central Agricultural Research Laboratory, Agricultural Research ServiceUSDABrookingsUSA

Personalised recommendations