Texas Nature Observations and Reminiscenses Page: 22
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22 TEXAS NATURE OBSERVATIONS AND REMINISCENCES.
into the globular forms similar to
these seen in Fig. 4 and similar to
the genesis of other forms of in-
The harm these minute insects
are liable to do to tobacco, food
stuffs and drugs is often enor-
mous, and they are often a great
plague to dealers in tobacco and
drugs and, because of their minute
size and rapid movements, are dif-
ficult to exterminate. Being
winged as other beetles, they can
fly and migrate to distant places
and there perform the same havoc
and multiply enormously.
Both these minute beetles above
described tally with the observa-
tions of Dr. L. O. Howard, (Farm-
ers' Bulletin 120) and Dr. F. H.
Chittenden (Bulletin No. 4, Divis.
Entom. U. S. Department of Ag-
riculture and in our case the
matter is the more interesting,
having found and depicted the
larvae in situ and the larva of the
drug store beetle encapsulated in
the peculiar globular cocoons de-
scribed and illustrated herein. Dr.
Chittenden says in regard to the
tobacco beetle, "as a tobacco feed-
er it outranks that species (the
drug store beetle) and also ap-
pears to favor certain medicinal
plants not so often affected by the
sitodrepa (drug store beetle.)
"Of household supplies it has
been found infesting cayenne pep-
per, ginger, rhubarb, rice, figs,
yeast cakes and prepared fish
food. It has been reported as
destructive to silk and plush up-
holstery and the past year did
considerable damage to dried and
preserved herbarium specimens in
Washington. Of drugs it is par-
tial to ergot and turmeric and to-
bacco it devours in every form."
The druggists and tobacco deal-
ers throughout the country un-
doubtedly are familiar with the
above minute pests and this mat-
ter, I believe, will be appreciated
by reading these memoranda on
On another occasion I hapIpeled
to shell out another larval beetle
from a cigar in its maturing cycle
of development-and a most in-
teresting study it was! Its cubic
length was only about one-eighth
of an inch, and it was in its shed-
ding stadium. After detecting
this specimen, which was partly
(its thoracic and head parts, an-
tennae, legs and part of the ab-
domen) denuded of its previous
external integument or hull and of
white color. I mounted it in
Photo-Micrograph of Maturing Tolbacco
Highly Magnified.Original one-eighth inch.
glycerine on a slide glass, and at
once prepared the pho-micro-
graph seen herein, which I believe
an unusually interesting and rare
specimen to study the genesis of
such minute beetles.
The microscope and the photo-
graphic reproduction from the
original specimen show how the
developing offspring of this min-
ute larva (hardly one-eighth of
an inch long) sheds its previous
integumental environments and
gradually, by means of rythmical
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Menger, R. Texas Nature Observations and Reminiscenses, book, 1913; San Antonio, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth143558/m1/26/?q=menger: accessed December 15, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries.