REARING OF Mallada astur (Banks) (NEUROPTERA : CHRYSOPIDAE) ON A SEMI-SYNTHETIC DIET
Mallada astur (Banks), an important predator of sucking pests in horticultural ecosystems, was reared on a larval semi-synthetic diet comprising hen‘s egg yolk (64.6 g), hydrolysed soyabean powder (2.6 g), honey (32.2 g), yeast extract (2.6 g), niphagine (0.05 g), petroleumjelly (1.4 g), paraffin wax (l9.3 g) and distilled water (77.4 ml). Biological attributes of M. astur on reared semi-synthetic diet was compared with the host insect reared. Semi-synthetic diet reared predators laid highly fertile eggs (88.0 to 90.0%) similar to host insect reared predators. Duration of the larval stage is lengthened when reared on semi~synthetic diet. Mean adult emergence (F0 to F3) of semi-synthetic diet and host insect reared predator was 56.0% and 75.2% respectively and the adult emergence decreased from F0 to F3 generations both in senri-synthetic and host insect reared M, asmr. Difference in fecundity between semi-synthetic diet and host insect reared predators was non-signiﬁcant. The above findings revealed that M. nstur could be reared using the semi-synthetic diet.
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