NatureToday | Nature on the Doorstep: Private Tape

Chrysoperla carnea – Dutch name Goldeneye – is a bar popular in our country. It has a wingspan of 24 to 29 mm and is usually green in color with a pale yellow longitudinal band on the upper side. Perhaps the most common of the 22 species of green lacewings (family Chrysopidae) found in our country. But in general it does not mean that species do not have interesting characteristics.

from the egg

Like any insect, the golden eye hatches from the egg, in this case about three to six days after the eggs are laid on twigs or on the leaves of plants. These eggs are special, as they are on two stalks. This provides protection against predators, such as ants, who love to eat such an egg. But he also protects the eggs from newly hatched congeners that have cannibalistic habits.
The larvae moult three times before they are fully developed. This is after about three to four weeks. The larvae then spin a somewhat circular cocoon in which the caterpillar pupates. The pupa already looks a bit like an adult lacewing. It has clearly visible legs and mouthparts, but no wings yet. Only short stubs are called wing-coverts.

Golden eye caterpillar.

He spends the winter in peace

In our country, most insects overwinter as eggs, larva or pupa, but the golden eye overwinters as an adult insect. The color of the animals changes from green to brown. It is not uncommon to see hibernators indoors in the fall and winter. Just leave them alone. They do not harm anyone and reproduce again the following spring.

Adult wingtips feed mainly on pollen, honeydew, and other materials.

Gluttonous larvae

Adult tapestry are relatively peaceful, subsisting primarily on pollen, honeydew, and other materials. But caterpillars are voracious little machines. They have little Hollow needle-shaped jaws protruding in front of the head, with which they pierce the prey and suck it empty. They do this so efficiently that the animals are widely bred for use as biological control agents. They have a natural preference for aphids. In some cases, they can be harmful to crops whose fruits we eat or cherish as ornamentals. But with an adequate food supply, the larvae can also subsist on thrips, mealybugs, or other pest insects. Farmers can purchase lactwing eggs from specialized companies, at about 100 to 500 eggs per package, which must be placed on the crop to protect it. A few days after the eggs hatch, the very young fry immediately begin searching for prey and immediately begin eating. A fully grown lace caterpillar can handle more than 500 aphids during its lifetime. This places the sod on the dam. The larvae live for three to four weeks and then pupate. After some time, an adult lacewing appears and then flies away. Therefore, companies that supply eggs are advised to release the eggs again after three to four weeks. In this way, this trade also remains profitable.

Golden flies lure their mates by drumming a love song.


Animals have an interesting breeding ritual. They drum a love song to attract their mates. They do this by banging their belly against a hard surface. The sound they make is very weak. We humans can’t hear them, but by recording and playing them back at amplification we can hear them. As this drum beat became known and was better investigated, it turned out that there are a number of drum beats, each belonging to a separate genre. Chrysoberla belongs to. Six species have been distinguished in recent years. These species are so similar in shape and color that it is difficult to tell them apart at first glance. But this is not a problem for the wings, as they recognize each other better by the sound they make than by color or other body characteristics. Scientists call this group of similar and similar, but genetically separate, “sister species.” Related species are also found in other parts of the world, such as East Asia or North America. But unfortunately it is not always clear if it is there Chrysoberla relating to the expelled Europeans Chrysoperla carnea or for local species.

Conclusion: golden eye (Chrysoperla carnea) may be common, but it is far from common.

Text: Ad Mol, Museum of Nature Brabant
Images: Tineke Cramer, Museum of Nature Brabant;

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