Developmental Effects of Microplastic Ingestion on the Tropical House Cricket Gryllodes sigillatus

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Fudlosid, Serita Abigail




Microplastic (MP) is now considered ubiquitous in our ecosystems. Microplastics have been confirmed to be present in terrestrial environments, yet the majority of studies have focused on the effects of MPs on aquatic biota. I tested the effect of microplastic exposure on the growth of the cricket Gryllodes sigillatus. Crickets were fed a diet containing different concentrations of fluorescent polyethylene MP beads (75-105μm) or untreated polyethylene terephthalate microfibers until adulthood. Weight and body length were measured weekly and MP ingestion was confirmed through fluorescence microscopy and inspection of frass. I found no effect of polyethylene MP ingestion on growth rate of G. sigillatus, yet females experienced a reduction in size and weight at high concentrations of polyethylene terephthalate microfibers in their diet. These results suggest that polyethylene MP beads can be passed through the cricket's gut without a substantial effect on their growth, but polyethylene terephthalate microfibers cannot.


Animal Physiology




Carleton University

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