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Title: The effect of lamellae autotomy and sexual size dimorphism on startle-response performance in larvae of a lestid damselfly (Odonata)
Authors: Stoks, Robby # ×
Issue Date: Feb-1999
Publisher: Cambridge univ press
Series Title: Journal of zoology vol:247 pages:269-273
Abstract: Swimming is the most important escape mechanism in lestid damselflies. The effect of lamellae autotomy and sexual size dimorphism on startle-response performance was studied experimentally in larvae of the lestid damselfly Lestes sponsa. In contrast with the prediction of McNeill (1960) that lamellae loss would not affect swimming speed in fast swimmers such as Lestes larvae, swimming performance decreased in a quadratic way with the removal of subsequent lamellae. Lamellae autotomy therefore will considerably reduce the probability of escape from a predator. Larger larvae swim faster than smaller ones of the same instar. This may contribute to a higher survival of larger larvae compared with smaller ones when confronted with both conspecific and heterospecific predators. Despite larvae showing sexual size dimorphism, with females being larger, no difference in swimming speed between the sexes was found.
URI: 
ISSN: 0952-8369
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity Conservation Section
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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