Journal article

Age-dependent chemical signalling and its consequences for mate attraction in the gumleaf skeletonizer moth, Uraba lugens

Hieu T Pham, Kathryn B McNamara, Mark A Elgar

ANIMAL BEHAVIOUR | ACADEMIC PRESS LTD- ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD | Published : 2021

Abstract

Theoretical models predict that virgin females at risk of not mating should strategically adjust their signalling investment as they age, with older, virgin females investing more to attract males. We explored how adult age influences the ‘calling’ (pheromone-releasing) behaviour of virgin female gumleaf skeletonizer moths, Uraba lugens, over four consecutive 10 h scotophases (dark periods). Adult virgin females commenced calling shortly after the onset of the scotophase. We found that female investment in calling behaviour changed with age: but in contrast with theoretical predictions and empirical observations in other species, older females were less likely to call and spent less time cal..

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Grants

Awarded by Australian Research Council


Funding Acknowledgements

We thank QikeWang for his help in method development. H.T.P was funded by the Holsworth Wildlife Endowment Fund and an Australia Award (Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Australian Government). K.B.M was supported by the Australian Research Council (DE160100097).