The effect of travel time on oviposition behavior and spatial egg aggregation: Experiments with Drosophila

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5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A higher degree of spatial egg aggregation is often observed in environments where resource patches are more sparsely distributed. This suggests a higher probability of species coexistence when resource distribution is sparse. However, it is still unclear how the degree of spatial egg aggregation increases. I propose a model to explain this phenomenon, which assumes that (i) egg load (the number of mature eggs in ovaries) increases in the travel period between resource patches and (ii) the retention of eggs in the ovaries is harmful (egg load pressure). With these assumptions, a female would lay accumulated eggs on arrival at a new resource patch, resulting in a higher degree of spatial egg aggregation. Laboratory experiments with three drosophilid species, Drosophila simulans Surtevant, Drosophila auraria Peng, and Drosophila immigrans Sturtevant, support the model. This study provides evidence that host availability affects the spatial egg aggregation via egg load.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-248
Number of pages8
JournalEntomologia Experimentalis et Applicata
Volume124
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 1 2007
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aggregation theory
  • Diptera
  • Drosophila auraria
  • Drosophila immigrans
  • Drosophila simulans
  • Drosophilidae
  • Egg load
  • Resource availability
  • Travel cost hypothesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science

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