Eur. J. Entomol. 108 (4): 597-601, 2011 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2011.077

Influence of male density on guarding behaviour in the water strider Aquarius paludum (Heteroptera: Gerridae)

Atsuo MATSUEDA, Kenji FUJISAKI
Laboratory of Insect Ecology, Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kitashirakawa Oiwake-cho Sakyo-ku, Kyoto City,

In species with last sperm precedence, post-mating guarding behaviour by males is effective for avoiding sperm displacement by additional males. However, for males to guard their mates under all circumstances may be undesirable, particularly when the population density of conspecific rival males is low. To better understand the effects of rival density on mate guarding behaviour, we compared post-copulatory behaviour in males artificially subjected to different male densities using Aquarius paludum. Our results indicate that males of A. paludum modulate their post-copulatory behaviour based on previously experienced rival densities.

Keywords: Heteroptera, Gerridae, Aquarius paludum, mating behaviour, sex ratio, male density, isolation period, struggle duration, guarding behaviour decision, water strider

Received: July 13, 2010; Accepted: May 3, 2011; Published: October 3, 2011

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