Hemerobius humulinus

Striped Brown Lacewing
Hemerobius humulinus


Head: Yellowish-white with a dark stripe behind eyes, extending to collar (pronotum).
Antenna: Long – to mid-wing. Whitish, faintly ringed with dark brown, very tip dark is usually not visible.
Thorax: Yellowish-white with dark stripe on each side of collar (pronotum) from back of eye.
Wings: Wings clear to light tan, with intermittent flecks of brown. Base of wings has a dark patch. Two slanted dark stripes, one mid-wing with a dark patch at top wing edge, and the other, usually incomplete near wing tip. Stripes can sometimes be faded.
Legs: Uniformly yellowish-white.
Abdomen: Yellowish with dark brown to black spots on each side. Lighter on underside.

Main ID: Dark stripe down each side of neck from eye to thorax.

Size: 10 mm long.

Flight Time: March to April; again from Sept to Oct.

Habitat: Deciduous trees, apple orchards.

Food: Both adults and larvae are predators of soft-bodied insects like mites, mealy bugs and aphids.

Life Cycle: The Striped Brown Lacewing is predominant in apple orchards in southern Ontario. One of the earliest to fly in spring, and the last to leave in the fall. Females lay hundreds of whitish eggs on fruit buds, leaves and in bark crevices. Eggs are not stalked (on a foot pad or pulvillus) like green lacewings. Hatching occurs in about 5 days. Larvae, sometimes called aphid wolves, are light brown with reddish-brown stripes and spots. Three instars or molts, they mature from 11 to 22 days. The larvae stay in debris on the ground, or on plants, usually carrying bits of debris on their back. They can over-winters as adults, mature larvae, or hibernate in a loose net-like, see-through dome cocoon. Several generations in spring, and again in the fall.

Comments: Essex County – Ojibway Prairies. Kent County – Rondeau Provincial Park.

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