Behaviour 2019
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Developmental temperature may be more important than size for courtship success
Harrison F Jones, Preston W Simpson, Jennifer M Gleason. University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, United States

In ectotherms, temperature affects both development and behavior, particularly signaling traits. The interaction of developmental and ambient temperature can affect mating success. In Drosophila melanogaster large adult males are more successful at mating than small males, when size is induced by resource availability. Male size is inversely correlated with developmental temperature. We tested alternative hypotheses: 1) large males outcompete small males for mates at any temperature; 2) males developed and performing at the same temperature have higher mating success than males that are mismatched. Males were raised at low (18˚C) and ideal (25˚C) temperature and competed for a female raised at an intermediate temperature (21.5˚C) at all three temperatures. Male size did not affect mating success, but males raised at 25˚C were more successful than males raised at 18˚C when competing at 18˚C. Males from both developmental temperatures were equally successful at the medium and high ambient temperatures. Mating success for both types of males was highest at the medium temperature implying that optimal temperature for survivorship and reproductive fitness may be different.