Survival of Immersion and Anoxia by Larval Tiger Beetles, Cicindela togata


The sedentary terrestrial larvae of the tiger beetle, Cicindela togata, inhabit areas that are often flooded for days or weeks. We tested the ability of these larvae to survive immersion and anoxia. Maximum survival time of immersed, anoxic C. togata was 6 days at 25 C. Time to 50% mortality (LT50) in these conditions was 85.9 ± 23.5 h. Survival times were more than eight times longer than those of similarly treated larvae of Tenebrio molitor (LT50 10.1 ± 3.2 h). Similar or somewhat longer survival times were observed in larvae of C. togata exposed to an anoxic nitrogen atmosphere (LT50 102 ± 31 h) and of T. molitor (LT5014.4 ± 6.5 h). At 10 C, LT50 of C. togata in anoxic atmospheres exceeded 10 days. Tiger beetle larvae are physiologically capable of surviving several days of inundation during floods without mechanisms to prevent burrow flooding. By entering a quiescent state, C. togata larvae survive much longer periods of anoxia than has been previously reported for terrestrial insect larvae.

Document Type



Publication Date


Journal Title

The American midland naturalist