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Observations on the Feeding Activity of the Australian Plague Locust Chortoicetes terminifera (Walker) in Field Populations in Eastern Australia
M. R. K. Lambert
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 43, No. 1 (Feb., 1974), pp. 209-223
Published by: British Ecological Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3168
Page Count: 15
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(1) The feeding state (percentage of foreguts full) in field populations of the Australian plague locust, Chortoicetes terminifera (Walker), generally reflects the feeding activity at that time, although locusts may still be full for a time after they have ceased to feed. (2) The foregut empties after 2-4 h, the time varying with the food-plant material and temperature at different times of the day. (3) No food was retained in the foregut for an extended period of time when locusts were deprived of food or failed to feed. (4) Feeding commences at 13.5 degrees C, increasing during the morning with air temperature and total radiation, to reach a peak at around mid-day when up to 15% of insects may be observed feeding. (5) Feeding then remains high for the remaining day-light hours in young adults, but in older insects feeding may be reduced for 2 or 3 h before sunset. Younger insects in particular may continue feeding for the first few hours of darkness when the air is warm. (6) Feeding is reduced in adults of more than 10 days after the imaginal ecdysis, while in females it is dependent on the stage of the ovarian cycle. (7) The percentage of time spent feeding in the laboratory, which was low, showed a constant pattern which supported the observations made in the field.
Journal of Animal Ecology © 1974 British Ecological Society