Extreme Promiscuity in a Mating System Dominated by Sexual Conflict



Blyth JE & Gilburn A (2006) Extreme Promiscuity in a Mating System Dominated by Sexual Conflict. Journal of Insect Behavior, 19 (4), pp. 447-455.

Coelopids live in wrack beds consisting of seaweed washed up on beaches. 5 Their mating system is characterized by sexual conflict and convenience 6 polyandry, with females resisting male mating attempts. We estimated the 7 level of harassment by males and the success rate of rejection by females 8 collected from a high density wild population. Males mounted a female every 9 8.41 min. Of these mounts 35% resulted in copulation. This suggests that 10 females could be mated up to 5 times every 2 h. Females typically live for 11 3 weeks, and thus, could mate with hundreds of males during their lifetime. 12 We found a 50:50 sex ratio throughout the wrack bed revealing that females 13 do not avoidmale harassment by leaving the wrack bed when not ovipositing.

sexual conflict; pre-mating struggle; convenience polyandry; sex ratio; male harassment; multiple mating

Journal of Insect Behavior: Volume 19, Issue 4

Publication date31/07/2006
Publication date online26/09/2006
Date accepted by journal31/03/2006
PublisherSpringer Verlag

People (1)


Dr Andre Gilburn

Dr Andre Gilburn

Senior Lecturer, Biological and Environmental Sciences