Rearing procedure for the pre-imaginal stages of the flea beetle (Podagrica sjostedti) (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), and its developmental biology on okra (Abelmoschus esculentus)
A rearing procedure for the pre-imaginal stages of the flea beetle Podagrica sjostedti (Jac.) was developed in the laboratory at room temperature (24-28 °C) relative humidity of 79-92% and a 12 h photoperiod. Adults were reared in a designed oviposition cage that was developed from a transparent plastic vial, which allowed the eggs to be seen. Eggs were kept in an incubation dish for eclosion, which happened within 7–11 days. One-day-old larvae were used to infest two okra seedlings (4 weeks old each) planted in 200 g sterilized soil and moistened every other day with 16.6 ml of water to half-filled capacity. Larvae were retrieved by washing off infested soil through 3 and 1 mm mesh and then a muslin cloth. Pupae were reared in a jar containing moistened sterilized soil. This procedure and the specially designed medium permitted, for the first time, a study of the pre-imaginal stages of P. sjostedti. Its life cycle consists of an egg stage (mean length and width of 0.10 and 0.05 mm) and three larval stages (mean head-capsule width of 0.21, 0.36 and 0.49 mm for the first, second and third instars, respectively): pre-pupa, pupa and adult. The length of pupae averaged 3.10 mm and the width was 1.40 mm. The mean life cycle was 37 days. The mean pre-oviposition period was 7.7days, oviposition period was 49.2 days and post-oviposition period was 6.5 days. Females were significantly larger than males and the sex ratio (female: male) was 1.52:1.
Key wordsrearing procedure biology pre-imaginal stages Podagrica sjostedti
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