Mate choice and reproductive success in the speckled bushcricket, Leptophyes punctatissima

Kilduff, Ian Andrew (2000). Mate choice and reproductive success in the speckled bushcricket, Leptophyes punctatissima. PhD thesis The Open University.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.ro.0000d3aa

Abstract

Leptophyes punctatissima is unusual in that both sexes call. The male calls, the female replies and the male performs phonotaxis to the stationary female. Consequently mate choice could occur at either of two stages: first, during the interchange of calls and second, on the basis of proximate criteria once the male has approached. There is no evidence that females choose their mates on the basis of calling behaviour or call characteristics, though males that call more may achieve more matings. There is no evidence that body asymmetry has any effect on mating success for either sex. Males on a protein-supplemented diet do not produce larger spermatophores than males whose diet is not supplemented, but they do mate more often, possibly as a result of female choice but more likely because diet affects the rate at which males can produce spermatophores. Unsupplemented females mate more often than supplemented females, possibly as a result of male male choice or because they are seeking matings so that they can supplement their diet with spermatophores. Males give larger spermatophores to unsupplemented females. Larger males produce larger spermatophores. They also mate more often than smaller males, possibly as a consequence of female choice, success in male-male contests, or because larger males have larger energy reserves and can produce spermatophores more quickly. Larger females mate more often than smaller females but only when their diet was supplemented. Females lay more eggs the more times they mate. Females lay heavier eggs after their first mating than they do in later batches, and unsupplemented females lay more eggs after their first mating than supplemented females do, but otherwise female size, diet or level of asymmetry has no effect on the size or weight of eggs, or the number of eggs laid. The total weight of spermatophores females receive does not affect any measure of female reproductive success: neither fecundity, egg size or egg weight is affected by the weight of spermatophores females consume, irrespective of the diet the females were maintained on. Diet, size or number of matings does not affect female longevity.

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