Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home

Early springtime water absorption by overwintering eggs of Mindarus abietinus (Hemiptera: Aphididae): possible implications for cold hardiness and diapause termination

  • Jean-François Doherty (a1), Jean-Frédéric Guay (a1) and Conrad Cloutier (a1)

Abstract

Eggs of the balsam twig aphid Mindarus abietinus Koch (Hemiptera: Aphididae) overwinter for several months in obligate diapause, which terminates in early springtime when embryogenesis of the stem mother supposedly resumes. Important shape and size changes were observed on eggs collected at regular intervals during late winter and early spring. These observations led to the visual classification of eggs into three shape categories: flat eggs (C1), semi-flat eggs (C2), and round and turgid eggs (C3). Egg mass significantly increased with time during late winter and early spring, which coincided with the noticeable changes in morphological composition (i.e., from C2 to C3). Our observations suggest that free water surrounding eggs on fir (Abies balsamea (Linnaeus) Miller; Pinaceae) shoots is essential for M. abietinus normal embryonic development during snowmelt. Also, reduced egg water content during winter could modify its supercooling point, and the renewed availability of water in springtime may signal diapause termination and/or initiate embryogenesis of the stem mother.

Les œufs hivernants du puceron des pousses du sapin Mindarus abietinus Koch (Hemiptera : Aphididae) passent plusieurs mois en diapause obligatoire, qui se termine tôt au printemps, alors que l’embryogenèse de la fondatrice recommence. Des changements morphologiques importants des œufs échantillonnés à différentes dates ont été observés à la fin de l’hiver et au début du printemps, permettant leur classification en trois catégories : les œufs aplatis (C1), les œufs semi-aplatis (C2) et les œufs ronds et turgides (C3). En mesurant régulièrement la masse fraîche d’œufs hivernants durant leur longue période de dormance, il a été possible d’observer une augmentation progressive de la masse durant la transition de l’hiver au printemps, coïncidant avec le changement de la forme des œufs, de la catégorie C2 vers C3. Nos observations suggèrent que l’eau environnante sur les pousses de sapin (Abies balsamea (Linnaeus) Miller ; Pinaceae) est essentielle au développement des œufs de M. abietinus tôt au printemps, lors de la fonte des neiges. Elles suggèrent aussi l’hypothèse que le point de surfusion des œufs durant l’hiver est lié à leur teneur en eau, et que l’eau environnante à la fin de l’hiver est un signal de terminaison de la diapause obligatoire et de reprise de l’embryogenèse de la fondatrice.

Copyright

Corresponding author

1 Corresponding author (e-mail: conrad.cloutier@bio.ulaval.ca)

Footnotes

Hide All

Subject editor: Brent Sinclair

Footnotes

References

Hide All
Bethke, J.A. and Redak, R.A. 1996. Temperature and moisture effects on the success of egg hatch in Trirhabda geminata (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae). Ecology and Population Biology, 89: 661666.
Danks, H.V. 2000. Dehydration in dormant insects. Journal of Insect Physiology, 46: 837852.
Danks, H.V. 2007. The elements of seasonal adaptations in insects. The Canadian Entomologist, 139: 144.
Deland, J.P., Berthiaume, R., Hébert, C., and Cloutier, C. 1998. Programme alternatif de protection du sapin de Noël contre le puceron des pousses dans le contexte d’une saine gestion des ressources environnementales. Final report, Ministère de l’environnement et de la faune, Ville de Québec, Québec, Canada.
Denlinger, D.L. 2002. Regulation of diapause. Annual Review of Entomology, 47: 93122.
Doherty, J.-F., Guay, J.-F., and Cloutier, C. 2017. Temperature-manipulated dynamics and phenology of Mindarus abietinus (Hemiptera: Aphididae) in commercial Christmas tree plantations in Québec, Canada. The Canadian Entomologist, 149: 801812.
Fondren, K.M. and McCullough, D.G. 2003. Phenology and density of balsam twig aphid, Mindarus abietinus Koch (Homoptera: Aphididae) in relation to bud break, shoot damage, and value of fir Christmas trees. Journal of Economic Entomology, 96: 17601769.
Gehrken, U. and Sømme, L. 1987. Increased cold hardiness in eggs of Arcynopteryx compacta (Plecoptera) by dehydration. Journal of Insect Physiology, 33: 987991.
James, B.D. and Luff, M.L. 1982. Cold-hardiness and development of eggs of Rhopalosiphum insertum . Ecological Entomology, 7: 277282.
Leather, S.R., Walters, K.F.A., and Bale, J.S. 1993. The ecology of insect overwintering. Cambridge University Press, New York, New York, United States of America.
Lee, R.E. 1991. Principles of insect low temperature tolerance. In Insects at low temperature. Edited by R.E. Lee and D.L. Denlinger. Chapman and Hall, London, United Kingdom. Pp. 1746.
Moriarty, F. 1969. Egg diapause and water absorption in the grasshopper Chorthippus brunneus . Journal of Insect Physiology, 15: 20692074.
Nahrung, H.F. and Merritt, D.J. 1999. Moisture is required for the termination of egg diapause in the chrysomelid beetle, Homichloda barkeri. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 93: 201207.
Niikawa, K. and Takeda, M. 1996. Water absorption by diapause and nondiapause eggs in two Velarifictorus species (Orthoptera: Gryllidae). Applied Entomology and Zoology, 31: 105110.
Qi, X.-L., Wang, X.-H., Xu, H.-F., and Kang, L. 2007. Influence of soil moisture on egg cold hardiness in the migratory locust Locusta migratoria (Orthoptera: Acrididae). Physiological Entomology, 32: 219224.
Sømme, L. 1982. Supercooling and winter survival in terrestrial arthropods. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology, 73: 519543.
Turnock, W.J. and Fields, P.G. 2005. Winter climates and coldhardiness in terrestrial insects. European Journal of Entomology, 102: 561576.
Yoder, J.A. and Denlinger, D.L. 1992. Water vapour uptake by diapausing eggs of a tropical walking stick. Physiological Entomology, 17: 97103.
Zachariassen, K.E. 1985. Physiology of cold tolerance in insects. American Journal of Physiology, 65: 799832.

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed