Necrosciinae sp. "Cuc Phuong"
(by Bruno Kneubuehler) 

 

OrderPhasmatodea
 
SuborderVerophasmatodea 
InfraorderAnareolatae 
FamilyDiapheromeridaeKirby, 1904
SubfamilyNecrosciinaeBrunner v. Wattenwyl, 1893
Genus (not yet identified)
SpeciesNecrosciinae sp. "Cuc Phuong"(not yet identified)

 

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General Notes

  • taxonomical aspects of this species are being examined by Joachim Bresseel (Belgium), and he will also describe this species
  • this species could belong to a new genus (Joachim Bresseel, pers. comm.)

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Culture History

  • 2011 - first successful culture by Bruno Kneubuehler
  • 2012 - this species has been distributed as Necrosciinae sp. „Cuc Phuong“

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Origin

  • Joachim Bresseel (Belgium) and Jérôme Constant (RBINS) found this species in July 2011 in Cuc Phuong, Vietnam (No. 58, "Necrosciinae sp. glue eggs", Cuc Phuong 2011)

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Females

  • inconspicuous, typical phasmids
  • about 6 - 7 cm long
  • females are differently colored
  • mainly different shades of brown
  • few females have grey areas
  • hind wings are well developed
  • last part of hind wings is faned out – which at first looks as if something went wrong during the last moult. But all females (and males) posses this characteristic
  • 5th – 7th abdominal segment is a bit swollen comapred to the other segments
  • membranous part of hindwings (alae) is translucent and brown
  • antennae are brown-black banded
  • antennae are longer than forelegs
  • subgenital plate is shorter than the abdominal tip

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Males

  • typical, thin phasmids
  • about 5.5 cm long
  • coloration varies amongst males (F1), but not as variable as amongst females
  • different shades of  light and dark brown
  • wings are well developed
  • last part of hind wings is faned out too
  • membranous part of hindwings (alae) is translucent and brown,
  • the base of the hindwings is red
  • antennae much longer than forelegs

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Nymphs

  • about 16 mm long (L1)
  • green (L1)
  • antennae longer than forelegs
  • by L4 – L5 it is quite easy to draw a distinction between ♀♂ (by the naked eye)

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Eggs

  • about 3 x 1 mm
  • elongate-oval
  • contrasty markings, light and dark brown
  • matt
  • surface is rough
  • no distinct capitulum present
  • the egg lid (operculum) is aslope to the longitudinal egg axis
  • microphylar plate is narrow

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Food Plants

  • cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus)
    this very commnon and  evergreen garden plant is very well accepted by freshly hatched nymphs, older nymphs and adults
  • cut away the leaf margins for the small nymphs !

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Behaviour

  • nymphs and adults react rather frantically when they feel threatened (like when they are touched). They drop down, wriggle about and freeze again after a few steps
  • exited adult males sometimes run around for some time with wings spread wide open
  • otherwise adults and nymphs are rather passive during the day
  • matings are frequent, couples usually stay together for a few hours only
  • a defensive spray has not been observed
  • eggs are glued to different sufaces in the cage – ceiling, walls, floor, food plants
  • about 30 eggs per female and per week

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Developement

  • as this species has a rather short incubation time, they can produce two generations per year
  • incubation time (HH-incubation on slightly damp sand at 20 - 23 °C) is about 4 – 6 weeks  (F1)
  • if the eggs are detached, it is important to spread some dried  (!) moss over the eggs - this will make it much easier for the nymphs to hatch unscathed and it also reduces mould growth to some extend
  • hatching ratio in F1 was very high (> 50%)
  • males will be adult after about 3 months (at 20 – 23°C), females after about 3.5 months
  • females start laying eggs after about 2 – 3 weeks
  • adults can live for several months

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Breeding Notes

  • my general notes on how to breed phasmids are an integral part of this care sheet ...
  • it is very easy to breed this species
  • keep the nymphs in a cage with good ventilation, but take care that the humidity does not drop too low
  • a constantly wet paper towel on the floor of the cage helps raising humidity
  • a humidity level of about 60+ % rH (for adults) and 75+ %  rH (for nymphs) seems to be fine
  • nymphs can be kept in a Faunabox (or similar cages)
  • if needed, move nymphs to a bigger cage as they grow bigger
  • a cage of at least 30 x 30 x 30 cm should be provided for 3 – 4 adult couples of this species (or considerably larger if the cage also contains other species !)
  • generally I advise to keep different phasmid species seperately (unfortunately, overcrowed cages are still too common ...)
  • I have never sprayed nymphs, adults or their cage with water
  • make shure that nymphs, which are about to undergo their adult moult, do not find places in the cage which would not offer them enough space beneath to moult successfully

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References

  • Phasmida Species Files  (www.phasmida.orthoptera.org)



 

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