Female Sexual Signaling in a Capital Breeder, the European Glow-Worm Lampyris noctiluca
Baudry, G., Hopkins, J., Watts, P. C., & Kaitala, A. (2021). Female Sexual Signaling in a Capital Breeder, the European Glow-Worm Lampyris noctiluca. Journal of Insect Behavior, 34(1-2), 16-25. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10905-020-09763-9
Published inJournal of Insect Behavior
© The Author(s) 2021
Theory predicts that because costs constrain female sexual signaling, females are expected to have a low signaling effort that is increased with passing time until mating is secured. This pattern of signaling is expected to result from females balancing the costs associated with a higher than optimal signaling effort and those costs associated with a low signaling effort that increase the likelihood of delayed mating. We tested whether this prediction applies in the common glow-worm Lampyris noctiluca (Coleoptera, Lampyridae), a capital breeding species in which females glow at night to attract males. Contrary to predictions, we found that the duration of female sexual signaling significantly decreased with time. Moreover, when females experienced multiple light/dark cycles within 24 h, both signaling duration and intensity significantly decreased. These results imply that females attempt to signal as much as possible at first, with the decrease in signaling duration and intensity likely being due to female resource depletion. Because in capital breeding females the costs of a delayed mating are likely greater than the costs of sexual signaling, females should mate as soon as possible and thus always invest into signaling as much as possible. ...
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Additional information about fundingWe would like to thank the Academy of Finland (project number 294664 to AK) and the Finnish Cultural Foundation (grant numbers 00160127 and 00171185 to GB) for funding, as well as the Tvärminne Zoological Station for providing experimental facilities. Open access funding provided by University of Oulu including Oulu University Hospital.
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