Various artificial materials were implemented at each life stage of the alfalfa caterpillar, Colias philodice eurytheme Boisduval, to provide effective and economical replacements for alfalfa. Alfalfa substitutes were used for oviposition and feeding. We also developed a favorable laboratory mating environment. Also, the development of a method for removing disease organisms from eggs without increasing egg mortality was an essential facet of this work. The performance of individuals on artificial surfaces was compared with similar individuals reared on greenhouse alfalfa.
Green tape oriented at the top of oviposition cages or near some object which could be held on to while ovipositing was the most successful surface. Egg yields on green tape were comparable to those on alfalfa. A dilute bleach wash followed by two water washes required little time, yet provided adequate disease control, and all larval instars thrived on artificial diet. Methods for handling pupae and new adults and the favorable mating environment reduced colony maintenance time yet sumival rates insured propagation of the colony.
Crain, L. J.; Roberts, S. J.; and Armbrust, E. J.
"An Alternative to Using Fresh Alfalfa for Culturing Colias Philodice Eurytheme Boisduval (Lepidoptera: Pieridae),"
The Great Lakes Entomologist, vol 9
Available at: https://scholar.valpo.edu/tgle/vol9/iss4/6