Chrysoperla carnea
aphid predator

Chrysoperla carnea (green lacewing) is an aphids predator very common in nature. Only the larval stages can feed on aphids, while the adult usually feeds on nectar, honeydew and other sugar sources.

The adult female lay eggs right in the middle of an aphid colony, the larvae are pale brown or grey and start preying after emergence. The range of preys is very large and among them mites, thrips, mealybugs, moth eggs and larvae are the most common. A developing larva can destroy more than 200 aphids. At 26ºC constant it takes about 20-25 days from egg to adult but remarkably C. carnea shows a good flexibility to temperature fluctuations even in field condition. Even if the temperature reaches very low levels for few hours, the larva can survive and start again feeding as soon as a suitable condition returns.

The preferred target pest are green aphids (i.e. Macrosiphum euphorbiae); strawberry, sweet pepper and ornamentals are the most suitable crop for a good control. CrisoPAK contains 2nd instar larvae in vermiculite and buckwheat glumes; 10 to 30 larvae per m2 are recommended for a good action.