Skip to main content
Dryad logo

Data from: Nectar resource limitation affects butterfly flight performance and metabolism differently in intensive and extensive agricultural landscapes

Citation

Lebeau, Julie; Wesselingh, Renate A.; Van Dyck, Hans (2016), Data from: Nectar resource limitation affects butterfly flight performance and metabolism differently in intensive and extensive agricultural landscapes, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.dc440

Abstract

Flight is an essential biological ability of many insects, but is energetically costly. Environments under rapid human-induced change are characterized by habitat fragmentation and may impose constraints on the energy income budget of organisms. This may, in turn, affect locomotor performance and willingness to fly. We tested flight performance and metabolic rates in Meadow brown butterflies (Maniola jurtina) of two contrasted agricultural landscapes: intensively managed, nectar-poor (IL) versus extensively managed, nectar-rich landscapes (EL). Young female adults were submitted to four nectar treatments (i.e. nectar quality and quantity) in outdoor flight cages. IL-individuals had better flight capacities in a flight mill and had lower resting metabolic rates (RMR) than EL-individuals, except under the severest treatment. Under this treatment, RMR increased in IL-individuals, but decreased in EL-individuals; flight performance was maintained by IL-individuals, but dropped by a factor 2.5 in EL-individuals. IL-individuals had more canalized (i.e. less plastic) responses relative to the nectar treatments than EL-individuals. Our results show significant intraspecific variation in the locomotor and metabolic response of a butterfly to different energy income regimes relative to the landscape of origin. Ecophysiological studies help improving our mechanistic understanding of the eco-evolutionary impact of anthropogenic environments on rare and widespread species.

Usage Notes

Location

Belgium
Wallonia