Submitted to: IOBC/WPRS Bulletin (Abstract for Conference Proceedings)
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: January 14, 2005
Publication Date: March 1, 2005
Citation: Sensenbach, E.J., Sanderson, J.P., Wraight, S.P. 2005. Biology and predatory feeding behavior of larvae of the hunter fly coenosia attenuata. IOBC/WPRS Bulletin (Abstract for Conference Proceedings). 28:229-232.
The larval biology of Coenosia attenuata (Muscidae), a generalist predator, was investigated under laboratory conditions. Feeding behavior of larvae was directly observed and described for the first time. Larval C. attenuata were reared on each of the larval instars and pupae of the fungus gnat Bradysia impatiens. Coenosia larvae readily attacked and killed all fungus gnat prey encountered, but were rarely able to penetrate the sclerotized exoskeletons of the pupae. Larvae reared on pupae killed an average of only 0.4 pupae and survived only 2.6 days. Larvae fed first-instar fungus gnats killed an average of 54.3 prey but were unable to complete development to pupariation and survived 8.9 days. Larvae reared on second-, third-, or fourth-instar fungus gnats were able to complete development and killed 128.7, 70.2, and 59.6 prey over their larval lifetimes of 23.4, 22.0, and 22.9 days, respectively. Coenosia attenuata larvae emerged from the egg in the final instar and did not molt or exhibit growth of their sclerotized mouthparts even though larval body length increased ca. four-fold.