Emergence and survival of leafcutter bees, Megachile rotundata, held at constant incubation temperatures (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae)

publication date: Jun 8, 2011
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Journal of Apicultural Research
Vol. 27 (3) pp. 197-204
Date
June 1988
Article Title

Emergence and survival of leafcutter bees, Megachile rotundata, held at constant incubation temperatures (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae)

Author(s)

K. W. Richards And G. H. Whitfield

Abstract

Survival and development of prepupae of the alfalfa leafcutter bee, Megachile rotundata (F.), for 4 locations in Alberta, Canada, were investigated during incubation of cocoons at eight constant temperatures in the laboratory. Good survival was observed for incubation temperatures of 20-32°C and there was no significant interaction in postoverwintering mortality between males and females. In some cases, prepupae held at 35 or 37°C went through a state of arrested development for 2-3 weeks, which may be a form of aestivation. Development times at seven constant temperatures by location and sex are provided. There were no significant differences among locations in mean development time and a common linear regression equation for development versus temperature was determined. Threshold temperature for prepupal development was estimated to be 15.7°C and 295 accumulated 'degree-days' were required for 50% completion of adult emergence. This information was used for successful prediction of adult emergence when leafcutter bee cocoons were placed in a commercial incubator. The duration and temperature of cold storage for cocoons prior to incubation must be standardized to allow homologous comparisons of research results.

Keywords

Leafcutter bee, Megachile rotundata, Prepupal development, Incubation

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