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Tracking larval insect movement within soil using high resolution X-ray microtomography

Johnson, S. N., Read, D. B. and Gregory, P. J. (2004) Tracking larval insect movement within soil using high resolution X-ray microtomography. Ecological Entomology, 29 (1). pp. 117-122. ISSN 0307-6946

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1111/j.0307-6946.2004.00567.x

Abstract/Summary

1. In contrast to above-ground insects, comparatively little is known about the behaviour of subterranean insects, due largely to the difficulty of studying them in situ. 2. The movement of newly hatched (neonate) clover root weevil (Sitona lepidus L. Coleoptera: Curculinidae) larvae was studied non-invasively using recently developed high resolution X-ray microtomography. 3. The movement and final position of S. lepidus larvae in the soil was reliably established using X-ray microtomography, when compared with larval positions that were determined by destructively sectioning the soil column. 4. Newly hatched S. lepidus larvae were seen to attack the root rhizobial nodules of their host plant, white clover (Trifolium repens L.). Sitona lepidus larvae travelled between 9 and 27 mm in 9 h at a mean speed of 1.8 mm h(-1). 5. Sitona lepidus larvae did not move through the soil in a linear manner, but changed trajectory in both the lateral and vertical planes.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science
Interdisciplinary centres and themes > Soil Research Centre
ID Code:3688
Uncontrolled Keywords:non-invasive imaging root herbivory soil weevil white clover COMPUTED-TOMOGRAPHY MICRO-TOMOGRAPHY HERBIVORY ROOTS CURCULIONIDAE COLEOPTERA BEHAVIOR PLANTS
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