Mating habits in the genus Acraea, with a possible explanation for monosexual populations (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae: Acraeinae).

A. Sourakov, T. C. Emmel


Mating Acraea butterflies have been observed with rough "take-down" behavior by males and opposite dorso-ventral orientation of male and female abdomens, supporting theories of authors that males dominate copulation behavior without any pre-copulatory ritual, followed by use of a sphragis to protect their sperm investment in each female. The observations support the view that harassment of mated females may be a selective force which has led to genetic factors causing female-dominant populations in some Acraea species.


Africa; Acraea; behavior; Coleoptera; Ethiopian; Ghana; Kenya; Lycaenidae; mating behavior; Meleageria; population ecology; Russia

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