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Knowing More About the Lacewing Life Stages
Pests have been a real menace to humans for a long time now but thanks to science and technology, that we have discovered various methods and techniques with the help of which they can be controlled. Different regions are affected by different kinds of pests depending on the area, weather, potential conditions and climate. Pest control services are gaining huge popularity in all parts of the world because of their immense capabilities of controlling and eliminating threats that are inflict led because of the pests. If you have read articles about pest control and how to resolve them, then you must have come across the term “lacewing”. Lacewings are also known as beneficial insects and there are ample amount of reasons because of which they are called so. But what exactly is a lacewing? Well, in this article we will talk in details about what a lacewing is and the different life stages that it goes through and also the habitat it lives in and what are different benefits of using these insects in your daily life.
What is a lacewing?
Well, a lacewing is an insect with a scientific name of Chrysoperla rufilabris which has a delicate body and is commonly green in color. A lacewing has a slender body along with membranous wings with the help of which it can fly. It is an insect which is widely considered to be beneficial for pest control met on because larval lacewings have been considered as predators of aphids which are very small insects which pose a huge threat for agricultural and gardening sector. These aphids suck on the nectar and sap of the plants and therefore they cause widespread damage to them. To counter the impact of aphids and prevent the overuse of harmful pesticides, people have started to invest in lacewings. Lacewings have been thus a very helpful insect in the support of pest management ideas. The biggest benefit which the insect possess is the fact that its predaceous nature helps to eliminate other harmful and dangerous insects.
However, not every species of lacewings are predaceous and many of them feed on different plants and nectars. But they do not pose any threat to humans and they are absolutely not harmful. They are really delicate but at the same time really helpful to the humans in a major way and have been saving properties worth so much effort and money for a long time since we discovered their usage.
Benefits of using insects like lacewing
As you can understand that there are certain benefits which humans get and their food they use these insects for many purposes. Let us have a look at the different benefits that you can get by using this kind of insects.
- Sustainable Solution- when you are using beneficial insects like lacewings in your pest management program then it is an essential solution which protects the healthy plants which you have planted. This process is also called biocontrol and with this method, the pests are controlled with the help of different creature without any manmade materials.
- Easy to Use- using the insects to eliminate your threat for pests is very much easy and convenient. You are not required to do anything or get involved in any kind of actions apart from releasing these insects into the concerned area.
- Healthier People & Plants- when you are using a biocontrol method by releasing this insect in nature they are hunting upon the potential prey and eliminate your threat. Therefore, you are not required to use pesticides and insecticides on a huge scale which is a nice thing because they promote healthily or plants and do not affect the environment around human space.
- Reduce Costs- if these insects are used in the right and proper manner they can prove to be really economical for your overall expenses. There will be reduced costs and you will be able to focus the cost of something else.
So here are the important benefits that you can acquire by using beneficial insects and allowing them to eliminate your potential threat of different kinds of pests. Once you have known the benefits, it is clear to you that why humans have been using these insects for a long time now and why they earned the title of “beneficial insects”.
Different life stages of a lacewing
Just every living creature has different life stages through which it goes through, lacewings also have the same. Each life stage is important for them to grow and potentially become helpful in pest control measures. In this section, we are going to discuss those life cycles in details and bring to you full development of a Lacewing.
The lifecycle of a Lacewing is very interesting and goes through several stages. Each and every lacewings larva will hunt on almost 200 pests or more than 200 pest eggs in a single week which makes them so much useful for killing the potential threat. In a summary, the larva will go through a two to three weeks of the developmental period but after the completion this stage, the larvae will start to pupate by whirling a cocoon with the help of a silken thread-like material. Approximately around 5-6 days later, an adult lacewing emerges from the cocoon and after mating, the lifecycle is repeated once again. If the climate and weather persist, then a Lacewing can survive up to 5-6 weeks. When it comes to laying eggs, an adult female lacewing will lay more than 250 eggs and if the habitat is favorable, then the majority of the eggs would survive. So this is the summary of a Lacewing’s lifecycle and how it keeps repeating.
The eggs of a Lacewing are oval in shape and green in color. They are really tiny and therefore will not be visible with the naked eyes. The prospect of the eggs is really interesting. They turn from pale green to grey just before they are going to hatch. The best way to make sure that the eggs survive and help you to get the results you are looking for, you can ship the eggs in vials of food and in carriers like bran, rice hulls or vermiculite. It is often recommended to let some of the larvae to emerge from the eggs afore the other larvae begin to hatch. But once they have hatched, you must release all of them or else they can get engaged into cannibalism. Scientists have found out that the finest time to release the lacewings is late afternoon or early morning because they facilitate the correct weather conditions for the lacewings to survive.
Since they are really delicate and tender, harsh weather like rain, strong winds or scorching sun can kill many of these insects. Therefore, a favorable weather is very much necessary. The eggs of a Lacewing must be stored at above 50°F but not less than that for at least 48 hours or else they will not be able to survive. However, thanks to special research and observations, to reduce the number of egg mortality, the humidity of the environment where they are stored must be approximately around 75%. The presence of a warm temperature will facilitate and speed up the emergence of the larvae but any temperature above 80°F will destroy the eggs and kill all the insects. To make sure that the hatching of the eggs is going to be good, people mix the eggs with inert ingredients like the vermiculite, bran or sawdust etc. Usually, lacewing egg cards are available at most of the stores which deal with gardening and agricultural items and products. Therefore, if you want to buy the lacewings and help to get rid of aphids, then you can buy Lacewing egg card.
2. Lacewing adults
After the lacewings have developed into adults it is important that you know more details about them so that you can effectively use them with the help of different methods and techniques. Keep an eye on the section below and get to know more about the lacewing adults and make full use of them.
- Pests Under Target: people generally buy and invest in a Lacewing because they target very dangerous and harmful overstated like the Aphids, Mites, Thrips, Moths, and other soft-bodied insects. Since they attack these harmful insects and eliminate them, they have been termed as beneficial insects which help humans. These insects have potential threat towards numerous plants and agricultural materials which are a really important source of economic support and financial aid.
- Lacewing Description: Lacewing adults are either green or brown in color, they are about 0.5 – 0.75 inches in size. A Lacewing has a transparent body which helps them to fly and move around, however not all the lacewings are ferocious or violent and they survive by eating tree sap, honey etc. The lacewing adult is mostly active during the night and they come out to hunt when others not really able to see. The Lacewings have a long body which is usually green or brown in color. When the eggs have been brought you must not delay and keep the insects inside a container for a long time and facilitate their growth in the right process so that they can be released. Lacewings are really small but really a beautiful insect with the tender body and strong wings which feed on aphids.
- Adult Lacewings as Potential Control- we have mentioned before that these insects are really helpful and can provide us with lots of benefits in the agricultural and gardening field. The Lacewings which you are going to buy will either be in their first stages, i.e. the eggs or will be fully developed. If you want to get quick and easy results, then you must buy a living lacewings in a container. The larvae are the only form of species belonging to this category which are predatory in nature. Therefore, you must release a fully grown lacewing into the field which has been affected by aphids because these green lacewings will travel and hunt down the aphids that will be visible. Even though aphids are the main targets of the lacewings, they will attack different other insects of different species which also pose a potential threat to different plants and agricultural units. They usually attack insects which also has a soft body. One thing which should be kept in mind is that, since the larvae are ferocious predators, if they are released in close distance to one another, they may involve themselves in cannibalism. If the larvae are received inside a bottle, then you must release them immediately over the concerned area. Therefore, when you are trying to use these insects for your benefit then you must keep in mind some important points that we have discussed so that you do not concur a loss while using them.
When you are trying to use these beneficial insects it is very much important that you keep in mind all the necessary details that we have talked about in this section. Lacewing adults are important and friendly insects that have been popularly used for a long time now. But you must take care of their environment, needs and handle them with care or else they will not be able to survive and will eventually be a loss to your investment.
3. Lacewing larvae
The Lacewing larvae are really beneficial and have been more productive than the lacewing adults as well. A single lacewing larva can hunt and prey upon 200 aphids, which is a huge number. The Lacewing larvae are ferocious and very good hunters which hunt their prey on the healthy plants that the aphids attack. They can even hunt them during the day when compared to the lacewing adults which are only active during the night. You can buy lacewing larvae from any store or online site very easily and they will be delivered to you efficiently. However, do not buy or release too many larvae in a single area or else they can harm themselves by attacking each other when they run out of their potential diet i.e. the aphids. The Lacewing larvae develop to fully developed adults in 3-4 weeks.
Lacewing larvae habitat
Lacewing larvae feed on the harmful insects such as aphids. Therefore, they will hunt them wherever they are present. So the habitat of the lacewing larvae will be the one where they will be able to find plenty of their prey. Usually, aphids are present on the leaves and stems of the plants which are healthy and green because they suck the sap of these plants. If you want your lacewing larvae to survive and keep eliminating the aphids then release them near or on the concerned area where numerous aphids are present. However, there are certain things which should be kept in mind while deploying the lacewings into their required habitat.
First of all, make sure that the area where you are going to release the Lacewings is not exposed to harsh climatic conditions like rain, scorching heat etc. because these are really tender creatures and they will not be able to survive the harsh conditions. So it will be a real loss when you release them in such an area even though there is a lot of prey around. Secondly, you must make sure that you do not release too many lacewings in the same place or else they will get engaged in cannibalism which is really harmful. Release 7-8 lacewings in a specific area so that they can hunt on their potential prey and not on themselves. Lastly, adult lacewings will only hunt and be active during the night. They are not active during the day and they are less social than other beneficial insects.
So these are the details about a Lacewing habitat and how they can survive there. Their habitat is the area which has been attacked by the aphids or other harmful pests. The important points that we mentioned must also be kept in mind so that they can survive and do their task of eliminating harmful pests.
If you have read the article until this point then you must have known a lot of information and details about lacewings and their lifecycle, habitats and other benefits. Lacewings are beneficial insects which have been used in different pest control services which have helped us to save a lot of property from getting damaged. Lacewings are delicate and tender insects which require extra care and attention so that they can survive and carry their task of hunting and eliminating aphids and other harmful pests. Nowadays, it is very easy to get hold of a can full of lacewings from any agricultural store or online website. So if you are planning to buy them then you must read our detailed article and make sure that you do everything the right way and get the benefits out of these beneficial insects.
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