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Aug 172012
 
Green LacewingDescription

Adult green lacewings are slender, light green, ½- to ¾-inch long, with two pairs of large, clear, highly veined wings and golden eyes. They often fly in the evening or at night. Larvae, 1/8- to 4/5-inch long, resemble tiny, light-brown alligators.

Life cycle

Green lacewings overwinter as adults, generally in leaf litter. They lay their tiny oblong eggs at the ends of long, silken stalks. Larvae emerge in about 4-10 days and the larval stage lasts two to three weeks.

Key benefits

Adult green lacewings feed on aphid honeydew, nectar, pollen, and plant fluids, although some species consume a few small insects. Their larvae-also called “aphid lions”-feed primarily on aphids, capturing them with their large pincers and sucking out their body fluids. During several stages of larval development, a single lacewing can consume as many as 750 aphids. Larvae also feed on leafhoppers, spider mites, thrips, mealybugs, psyllids, whiteflies, small caterpillars, immature plant bugs, and other small insects.

 August 17, 2012