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Developmental temperature alters the thermal sensitivity of courtship activity and signal-preference relationships, but not mating rates

Citation

Macchiano, Anthony et al. (2022), Developmental temperature alters the thermal sensitivity of courtship activity and signal-preference relationships, but not mating rates, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.zkh1893ch

Abstract

Mating behaviours are susceptible to novel or stressful thermal conditions, particularly for ectothermic organisms. One way to deal with changes in thermal conditions is to exhibit developmental plasticity, whereby the thermal sensitivity of mating behaviours depend on developmental conditions.

We test how developmental temperature affects the thermal sensitivity of courtship behaviour and mating rates, as well as mating signal and preference coupling.

We rear treehoppers under two temperature regimes and then test how a range of ambient temperature affects behaviours involved in the coordination of mating. We also test for sex-specific thermal sensitivity and developmental plasticity.

We find developmental plasticity in the thermal sensitivity of courtship behaviour and mating signals for males. However, we found no developmental plasticity in females, and no change in the thermal sensitivity of mating rates.

We discuss the implications of signal-preference decoupling for sexual selection, how reversible acclimation may drive sex-specific results, and the potential for mismatches between developmental and mating thermal environments under future climate change predictions.

Funding

NSF, Award: IOS-1656818