Document details

Tenebrio molitor for food or feed: rearing conditions and the effects of pesticides on its performance

Author(s): Ribeiro, Nuno Tiago Garrucho Martins

Date: 2017

Persistent ID:

Origin: Instituto Politécnico de Coimbra

Subject(s): Inseto; Pesticida


Abstract Tenebrio molitor is one of the most reared species of insect at industrial scale. The entire life cycle of mealworms takes place in the same ecosystem and the duration of the different stages is highly dependent on environmental and physical conditions such as temperature, relative humidity, diet and population density. Most of the environment conditions as well as diet have already been studied and are documented. Tenebrio molitor is deeply adaptable to extreme dry conditions, obtaining water from both food ingestion (even substances with low water content) and/or atmosphere, however larvae grows faster in moist conditions upper than 70%. At the industrial scale, water can be provided as pure water, through wet paper, fresh vegetables with high water content or even polymers capable of absorbing water (polyacrylamide). Chapter 1 is a review of the optimal conditions for Tenebrio molitor rearing. In Chapter 2, the effects of relative humidity and the effects of ingesting fresh vegetables contaminated with pesticides and polyacrylamide are evaluated. Relative humidity affected the development of mealworm larvae, with higher pupation and body mass attained at 65% and with faster growth rates attained at 40%. No effects of pesticides were detected. However, the chemical analysis of body mass will allow knowing if there was bioaccumulation.).

Document Type Master thesis
Language English
Advisor(s) Costa, Rui Manuel Machado da
Contributor(s) Ribeiro, Nuno Tiago Garrucho Martins
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