Life-history traits of forest-inhabiting flightless Lepidoptera

P. Barbosa, V. Krischik, D. Lance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations

Abstract

Some species of forest-inhabiting Lepidoptera possess a set of life-history traits including flightless females, larval dispersal by ballooning, polyphagy, univoltinism and overwintering larvae or eggs. Convergence in these life history traits occurs in species from the Geometridae, Lymantriidae and Psychidae. Ecological factors in the forest habitat which probably contribute to this convergence include habitat stability, resource persistence, covergence in tree chemical defense and phenological variability in bud-break. These life-history traits contribute to the ability of these species to reach high population density during years favorable to larval growth and survival resulting in the economic importance of these species. Increased fucundity may be associated with flightlessness, although nutritional studies comparing number of eggs produced in relation to female pupal weight for species with flighted and flightless females must be performed to evaluate this assertion. -Authors

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)262-274
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Midland Naturalist
Volume122
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1989

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