2.1.2. Larvae

SHB larvae are creamy-white and emerge from the egg shell through a longitudinal slit at the anterior end (Lundie, 1940). After hatching, the larvae are about 1.3 mm long and grow to a final size of about 8.6 to 10.5 mm in length (Schmolke, 1974; Fig. 2). Larval development takes 10-14 days, but may extend to 30 days, depending on food resources and temperature (Stedman, 2006). They have three pairs of legs close to the head, a characteristic row of paired dorsal spines on each segment and two larger paired spines protruding sub terminal on the rear end of the dorsum which distinguishes it from the greater wax moth larvae (Galleria mellonella).

Fig. 2. Small hive beetle larvae. The post-feeding wandering stage is shown. Photo: Marc Schäfer.

12106VD revised Fig2