Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Alternative Title

Apareamiento selectivo de la mariposa de halloween Dryadula phaetusa (Nymphalidae Heliconiinae)


Darin Reynaud



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Publication Date

November 2000


Possible size-assortative mating was investigated in a captive population of the butterfly, Dryadula phaetusa (Nymphalidae) by comparing the forewing sizes of individuals of mating pairs to the average size of forewings in the whole population. It was postulated that females would prefer larger males because they deposit larger spermatophores, and females would thereby increase their fitness. Males would also prefer larger females because larger females have a better chance of fighting off predators and thus higher fitness. Individuals that were feeding or courting were also measured to document size variation and investigate size-dependent behaviors. There was no evidence for positive assortative mating in D. phaetusa but individuals of the mating pairs showed a significantly larger average forewing length than the average forewing length of the courting and feeding population (captive population mean = 3.878 cm, mating population mean = 3.983cm, feeding population mean = 3.573, courting population mean = 3.501 cm). This larger average in size of the mating pairs suggests that there is non-random mating. This sexual selection may be a preference to larger individuals due to their higher fitness or it may be an avoidance behavior to inbreeding. A significantly smaller population than average in the garden suggests that inbreeding is occurring and therefore mate choice may be observed because the butterflies are using it as an avoidance mechanism to inbreeding, which often results in reduced fitness. Examiné una población de mariposas Nymphalidae, Dryadula phaetusa, hay una preferencia para aparearse es por su tamaño. Comparé el tamaño de la segunda ala de las parejas que se aparean con las de la población. Mi expectativa es que las hembras deben escoger los machos más grandes para aumentar la aptitud genética de ella. La frecuencia de comportamientos como comiendo y cortejando estuvieron comparados también para examinar la preferencia del tamaño. Los compañeros que eran aparean muestran mas grande la segundo parte de la ala que la segundo parte de la ala longitud de los que cortejan y en las poblaciones comiendo. Pienso que los compañeros que son apareando son mas grandes porque ellos pueden proteger mejor y ellos tienen espermataphora mas grande. También, las mariposas no quieren aparearse con sus familiares y entonces, ellos escogen depende de tamaño. Porque ellos no tienen una gran selección ellos escogen quien quiere aparearse para tener mejor aptitud.


Butterflies--Reproduction, Mariposas--Reproduccion, Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Monteverde Zone--Monteverde, Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Zona de Monteverde--Monteverde, CIEE Fall 2000, CIEE Otoño 2000


Student affiliation : Department of Biology, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA, USA Digitized by MVI

Subject: topical

Butterflies--Reproduction; Mariposas--Reproduccion; Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Monteverde Zone--Monteverde; Costa Rica--Puntarenas--Zona de Monteverde--Monteverde; CIEE Fall 2000; CIEE Otoño 2000



Holding Location

|Monteverde Institute MVI



Assortative mating of the halloween butterfly Dryadula phaetusa (Nymphalidae, Heliconiinae)



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