EcoEvoPub Series

Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Graduate Student Presentations

Thursday, November 29, 2012
5:00 PM
154 Biomedical Sciences Research Building

Jonathan Drury
Dept of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology

"The Intersection between Reproductive Interference and Interspecific Territoriality in Rubyspot Damselflies (Hetaerina spp.)"

Abstract: Male rubyspot damselflies (Hetaerina spp.) defend territories that they use solely for accessing females. In rivers throughout the southern U.S. and Mexico with two or more Hetaerina spp., there is much variation in whether species pairs engage in interspecific territoriality. Previous research has unearthed mechanisms by which some species pairs avoid competing with conspecifics, but until now we had not investigated species pairs that do engage in interspecific territoriality. New field data and simulations that quantify the cost of sharing a territory with heterospecifics demonstrate that interspecific territoriality occurs in species pairs that exhibit heterospecific reproductive interference (i.e., when males clasp heterospecific females). This pattern occurs across several different sites and species pairs, and even within-site as levels of reproductive interference vary, suggesting that between-species aggressive interactions are the adaptive outcome of selection on males competing for access to conspecific females.

Sergio Nigenda
Dept of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology