Monday, December 11, 2006

Impact of methoprene, an insect growth regulator on fecundity and survival of Onthophagus taurus (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae)

Elina Lastro, and Wes Watson, North Carolina State University, Department of Entomology, 1108 Grinnells Laboratory, Campus Box 7626, Raleigh, NC

Methoprene is an insect growth regulator used for control of horn flies on cattle. Little is known of the impact of methoprene on other dung inhabiting insects. Dung beetles aid in fly control by direct competition for food resources with dung breeding flies. We conducted a laboratory study on the impact of methoprene on fecundity and survival of Onthophagus taurus Schreber (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae), a common North Carolina dung beetle. Treatments included technical grade methoprene mixed with cattle manure or directly applied to adult beetles, manure from cattle fed methoprene premix and untreated control. Survival significantly decreased when brood balls were formed from methoprene spiked manure. In contrast no significant decrease in percent emergence was observed when brood balls were made of manure from cattle administered methoprene or when methoprene was topically applied to adult O. taurus. No significant difference was observed in beetle fecundity between methoprene treatments and control.

Species 1: Coleoptera Scarabaeidae Onthophagus taurus (dung beetle)