Cold resistance in all life stages of two blowfly species (Diptera, Calliphoridae)

1. Freezing was lethal in the eggs, larvae, pupae and adults of the blowflies Calliphora vicina R‐D. and Calliphora vomitoria (L.), but varying degrees of supercooling were found. 2. Cold resistance (as determined by their supercooling capacity) was greatest in eggs (to c.– 25oC), and moderate in other life stages (range ‐7 to – 13oC), which was evident from the distributions of their supercooling points. 3. Water contents of all life stages varied from 63% to 77% of fresh weight; pupae of C. vomitoria contain the smallest proportion of water. No relationship between the amount of body water and supercooling ability was detected. 4. Glucose was the major compound in all life stages of C. vicina, with a maximum concentration of 8.22 μg mg_1 fresh weight in the adults. In addition, five other potential cryoprotectants occurred in concentrations >0.1% of fresh weight. No correlation between solute concentration and supercooling was observed. 5. Both C. vicina and C. vomitoria have sufficient cold hardiness to avoid lethal freezing in sheltered habitats in southern Britain, which may render diapause unnecessary in both species.


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Authors: Block, William, Erzinclioglu, Y.Z., Worland, M. Roger

On this site: Roger Worland, William Block
1 April, 1990
Medical and Veterinary Entomology / 4
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