Document Type

Peer-Review Article


The univoltine life cycle of the cereal leaf beetle Oulema melanopus (L.) in Michigan (Castro et al. 1965) is similar to that reported by Venturi (1942) in Europe. Adults emerge from pupal cells in the soil in mid-June to early July, feed voraciously for about three weeks, and enter aestivation sites. For the remainder of the summer and early autumn only a few adults can be found feeding on late-maturing native grasses. The beetles overwinter and usually emerge in late March to early April and resume feeding. Mating and oviposition occur, and larval development is usually completed by late June in southern Michigan.

Techniques for rearing the cereal leaf beetle on greenhouse-grown small grain seedlings have been developed by Connin, et al. (1968). Maintaining these cultures requires collecting field adults, growing host material, and handling the cultures to insure that all stages will be available for study.

In Michigan during July adults can be collected more economically and in greater numbers in the field than by rearing in the laboratory. A summary of collection techniques, laboratory feeding and storage conditions for large numbers of field-collected cereal leaf beetles is presented in this paper. In addition, the mortality during storage of newly emerged field collected beetles fed either barley seedlings or an artificial diet is compared.

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Entomology Commons