Lekking in Gryllotalpa major, the prairie, mole cricket (Insecta : Gryllotalpidae)

Authors
Citation
Psm. Hill, Lekking in Gryllotalpa major, the prairie, mole cricket (Insecta : Gryllotalpidae), ETHOLOGY, 105(6), 1999, pp. 531-545
Citations number
47
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Animal Sciences","Neurosciences & Behavoir
Journal title
ETHOLOGY
ISSN journal
0179-1613 → ACNP
Volume
105
Issue
6
Year of publication
1999
Pages
531 - 545
Database
ISI
SICI code
0179-1613(199906)105:6<531:LIGMTP>2.0.ZU;2-Z
Abstract
Gryllotalpa major is a rare, burrowing insect native to the tallgrass prair ie of the south-central United States and is known to exhibit 'lek-like' be havior during mating. Here I report on a study carried out in the field tha t demonstrates that the prairie mole cricket meets all criteria defining a classical lekking species. Males construct specialized acoustic burrows fro m which they call to attract females for mating. I show that these burrows, which seem to serve no purpose other than for sexual advertisement and mat ing, are aggregated spatially on at least three scalar levels. Females fly through the aggregation of burrows and drop po the ground in the vicinity o f calling males, and are, thus, not constrained in choosing a mate. Females enter the males' acoustic burrows, but I argue that the burrows are not us ed as oviposition sites, and that the males do not otherwise sequester reso urces important to females. Although the term 'lek' is useful for the discu ssion of mating systems, its definition remains ambiguous. I discuss the cu rrent usage of the term and suggest extensions.