[Syrphidae] Raising Syrphus larvae

Perkins, Matthew mjp223 at exeter.ac.uk
Sun Jun 27 13:28:06 BST 2010

Good afternoon,

I could do with some advice on my hoverflies! Thanks already for those who have already offered much useful advice on my first PhD experiemnt examining food chain lengths... this email list has proved invaluable.

I have two new querries though if anyone could help:

I am raising Syrphus ribesii larvae and am keeping each larvae individually in small glass / plastic test tubes and provide them with a small leaf and lots of fresh aphids every day. I clean the tubes every day, and use damp cotton wool to plug the ends of the tube. They are kept at 70% humidity, 16:8 hours light: dark.

1. My larvae are now 6 days old and I need to know if they have any requirements for successful development into pupae - do they require something to stick too or do they need to hang upside down etc. Also should I need to keep them moist throughout their pupae stage?

2. I have recently had many (less than 25%) of different age classes turn black and die. It appears on first glance like they have not discharged their gut... but I have no idea. Does anyone recognise these symptoms or could provide advice or keeping more alive?


Matt Perkins

PhD Researcher
Center for Ecology & Conservation
University of Exeter,
Cornwall Campus

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