Effects of spermatophores on male and female monarch butterfly reproductive success

Karen S Oberhauser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


I present the results of experiments designed to measure the effects of spermatophores produced by male monarch butterflies on male and female reproductive success. There was wide variation in the number of matings by captive males, suggesting the potential for strong sexual selection on males. Male lifespan was not affected by total number of matings, nor did it differ between males that were allowed to mate and those not exposed to females. Two effects of spermatophores on female behavior or fecundity are reported; (1) Females that received large spermatophores delayed remating longer than those receiving small ones. (2) Females allowed to mate several times laid more eggs than singly-mated females. The relative importance of these effects is discussed in relation to monarch mating patterns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)237-246
Number of pages10
JournalBehavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 1989


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