Coastal Restoration Trust of New Zealand

Coastal Dune Ecosystem Reference Database

Larval establishment behaviour of the borer Aenetus virescens (Lepidoptera: Hepialidae) in live trees Journal Paper

Grehan, J.R.
Journal / Source
New Zealand Entymology
Hepialidae, polysaccharide digestion, Aenetus virescens, Lepidoptera, Mycophagy, fungivory, larvae, fungi.
Larval feeding by the wood borer Aenetus virescens is characterised by an initial diet of dead wood and fungal fruiting bodies ("litter-phase") followed by a transition to callus tissue of trees and shrubs for the main period of larval development ("treephase). Larvae of both stages exhibit gut activity to laminarin and starch, showing the potential to digest j8-(l,3) and a-(l,4) glucans respectively. Although /3-(l,3) glucans are rare in vascular plants it is suggested that they may be present in the diet of A. virescens as callose. Gut activity to laminarin and starch was also confirmed for the foliage feeding Wiseana, indicating that the ability to digest /3-(l,3) glucans may be widespread in the Hepialidae. Tree-phase gut activity was recorded for galactomannan, very weak activity to carboxymethyl cellulose and no activity to chitin. The litter-phase exhibited very weak activity to chitin, but no activity to carboxymethyl cellulose.
Not available electronically