Seasonal variation in mate-locating activity in the desert hackberry butterfly (Asterocampa leilia; Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae)

Ronald L. Rutowski, Michael J. Demlong, Barbara Terkanian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Males of the desert hackberry butterfly occupy and defend encounter sites used in mate location. This activity is restricted to about 3 h each day, usually between 0800 and 1100. We monitored dai1y and seasonal changes in the number of males perched at encounter sites along a census route on 32 days during 1991 and 1992. The results indicate that males are active earlier in the mornings during summer than in spring or fail. However, they were not active at all times when air temperature and solar altitude would appear to permit perch site occupation. Daily and seasonal shifts in air temperature and solar radiation are not a sufficient proximate explanation for patterns of male behavior. Over a wide range of temperatures, females most often eclose around 0800, which suggests that the timing of female availability determines when males are active within the broad limits imposed by thermoregulatory requirements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)921-931
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Insect Behavior
Volume9
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1996

Keywords

  • Asterocampa leilia
  • desert hackberry butterfly
  • mate-locating tactics
  • seasonal changes
  • thermoregulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science

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