Shelter-building behavior and natural history of two pyralid caterpillars feeding on Piper stipulaceum.
Bottom Line: Shelter-building behavior was found to be constrained by the ontogenetic stage of caterpillars and influenced by leaf size of the host plant, Piper stipulaceum Opiz (Piperales: Piperaceae) .A similar pattern of shelter-building behavior exhibited by Tosale n. sp. near cuprealis larvae that coexisted in the same host plant is also described.Larvae of the second species were significantly less abundant than those of Lepidomys and hatched one month later in the rainy season, which could indicate some competitive interactions between these two pyralid species.
Affiliation: Departamento de Ecología Evolutiva, Instituto de Ecología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), México D.F., México Department of Biological Sciences, George Washington University, 2023 G St. NW Suite 340, Washington, D.C., USA email@example.com.Show MeSH
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Mentions: Eggs and neonates are microscopic, so their behavior and morphology could not be fully described. The subsequent five macroscopic instars lasted a total of 30 days in captivity when fed a fresh foliage diet, although larval development in the field can be affected by food quality and thus can take longer (Abarca and Boege 2011). The first two macroscopic instars had black head capsules and were gregarious. These two stages were identified from a bimodal distribution of the head capsule measurements (Figure 2), and it was assumed that each group corresponded to a different instar. The first group included 61 larvae whose head capsule ranged from 0.2–0.26 mm, with a mode of 0.22 mm. The second group, with 29 individuals, had head capsules ranging from 0.27–0.35 mm with a mode of 0.29 mm. Measurements of the two groups were significantly different (χ12 = 59.7, P < 0.0001). These two black head instars lasted around seven days in captivity.
Affiliation: Departamento de Ecología Evolutiva, Instituto de Ecología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), México D.F., México Department of Biological Sciences, George Washington University, 2023 G St. NW Suite 340, Washington, D.C., USA firstname.lastname@example.org.