Staining Technique for the Integument of Dead and Living Aquatic Larvae (Diptera: Syrphidae)
Maibach, Alain; Goeldlin de Tiefenau, Pierre
A simple technique for staining the integument of dead or living dipteran larvae is presented, applied to the study of aquatic Syrphidae, using Methylene blue. This method enables fine integumental details to be resolved, which eases the problem of separating different taxa in mixed samples. With living larvae, representatives from each taxon are able to continue their development, and if necessary, can be identified using the adult stage. Since the stain is temporary, the ability to restain material and vary coloration intensity proves to be advantageous in the re-examination of specimens.