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Title: Lethal and sublethal costs of autotomy and predator presence in damselfly larvae
Authors: Stoks, Robby ×
De Block, Marjan
Van Gossum, H
Valck, F
Lauwers, K
Verhagen, R
Matthysen, E
De Bruyn, L #
Issue Date: Jul-1999
Publisher: Springer verlag
Series Title: Oecologia vol:120 issue:1 pages:87-91
Abstract: We studied the costs of lamellae autotomy with respect to growth and survival of Lestes sponsa damselfly larvae in field experiments. We manipulated predation risk by Aeshna cyanea dragonfly larvae and lamellae status of L. sponsa larvae in field enclosures and compared differences in numbers, size and mass of survivors among treatments. In the absence of a free-ranging A. cyanea larva, about 29% of the L. sponsa larvae died. This was probably due to cannibalism. The presence of a free-ranging A. cyanea reduced larval survival by 68% compared to treatments in which it was absent or not permitted to forage on L. sponsa damselflies. Across all predator treatments, lamellae autotomy reduced survival by about 20%. The mean head width and mass of survivors was lower in the enclosures with a free-ranging A. cyanea compared to the other two predator treatments. This suggested that larvae grew less in the presence of a free-ranging predator, indicating that increased antipredator behaviours were more important in shaping growth responses than reduced population density. Mass, but not head width, of survivors was also reduced after autotomy. The fitness consequences of these effects for the adults may be pronounced. In general, these field data strongly suggest that lamellae autotomy affects population regulation of damselflies.
URI: 
ISSN: 0029-8549
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Ecology, Evolution and Biodiversity Conservation Section
Laboratory for Aquatic Ecology and Evolutionary Biology (-)
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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