Tropical Ecology and Conservation [Monteverde Institute]

Alternative Title

El parasitismo dependiente de la densidad en Centropogon solanifolius (Campanulaceae) y los cambios en la longevidad floral y la fase sexual siguientes a la infestación


Erik Z. Solberg



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Publication Date

July 2006


Centropogon solanifolius flowers (Campanulaceae) are parasitized by the fly larvae of Zygothrica neolinea (Drosophilidae). The larvae burrow into the anther of the developing flower bud and eat the pollen, which changes the longevity dynamics among the infested, protandrous flowers. This study investigated whether the flies were parasitizing in a density dependent manner. The study also explored strategies that flowers used to cope with the high infestation rates (!50% in a previous study and documented here as well). To find answers to these questions, 83 flowers were located, their infestation status noted, and nearest neighbor distance measured. Additionally, 78 other flowers were bagged and tagged to look for changes in overall flower lifetime, as well as the longevities of the male and female phases. The results show that group dependence parasitism is operating, with 33% more grouped flowers parasitized (n = 83) ("# = 5.55, df = 1, P < 0.05). Parasitism based on distance to nearest neighbor is also observed (t = 2.261, P = 0.0266). To cope with parasitism and the loss of available pollen in the system, infested flowers shorten their male phase by approximately two days, from 4.2 ± 2.4 to 2.5 ± 2.1 days (t = 2.26, P < 0.21), while experiencing no significant difference in overall flower longevity (t = 0.55, P < 0.59). This results in an implied lengthening of the female phase in infected flowers, increasing the chances of pollination in the pollen-depleted system.


Las flores de Centropogon solanifolius (Campanulaceae) son parasitadas por las larvas de la mosca de Zygothrica neolinea (Drosophilidae). Las larvas hacen una madriguera en la antera del botón de la flor y comen el polen, esto cambia la dinámica de la longevidad entre las flores protandras infestadas. Este estudio investigo si las moscas estaban parasitando de una manera dependiente de la densidad de las flores. El estudio exploro también las estrategias que utilizan las flores para hacer frente a los altos valores de infestación (50% en un estudio previo y documentado aquí también).


Campanulaceae, Drosophilidae, Flowers, CIEE Spring 2007

Palabras claves

Flores, CIEE Primavera 2007


9 pages

Geographic Location

Monteverde (Puntarenas, Costa Rica)

Holding Location

Monteverde Institute


English; Spanish

Media Type



Digital Only





Density-dependent parasitism in Centropogon solanifolius (Campanulaceae) and changes in floral and sex-phase longevity following infestation, July 15, 2006



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