Influence of a dorsal trash-package on interactions between larvae of Mallada signata (Schneider) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae)

Anderson, Kylie L., Seymour, Jamie E., and Rowe, Richard (2003) Influence of a dorsal trash-package on interactions between larvae of Mallada signata (Schneider) (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae). Australian Journal of Entomology, 42 (4). pp. 363-366.

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Larvae of the native Australian chrysopid Mallada signata use discarded prey items and environmental debris ('trash'), carried on the dorsal abdominal segments, as camouflage. Larvae that carry trash were confirmed experimentally to experience lower rates of cannibalism, an effect attributed to the camouflage conferred by the package. Larvae preferred physically hard material over normal dietary items when constructing their trash-package. The inclusion of these materials in the package may provide both physical and chemical camouflage from predator and prey alike. When encounter rates between conspecifics were low, larvae that carried trash increased their activity rates as they aged. In contrast, trash-denuded larvae decreased activity rates as they aged. Among first-instar larvae, as the density of larvae increased and encounters became more frequent, those with trash moved further than those without. Larvae with trash packages exhibited lower cannibalism and higher activity rates, which may subsequently enhance foraging capacity.

Item ID: 5920
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1440-6055
Keywords: camouflage; cannibalism; Chrysopidae; predation; trash-package
Date Deposited: 12 Feb 2010 01:25
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060899 Zoology not elsewhere classified @ 100%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%
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