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Research article2004Peer reviewed

Condition-dependent behaviour among damselfly populations

Mikolajewski, DJ; Johansson, F; Brodin, T


Body condition is predicted to influence behaviours such as activity, which in turn affects energy gain and survival. In this study we investigated (i) whether populations of the damselfly Lestes sponsa (Hansemann, 1823) differ in body condition and activity among lakes, and (ii) which body condition factors affect behaviour. We estimated last instar larval behaviour (measured as activity), body condition (measured as size, body mass, muscle mass, fat content, and time to emergence), and fish presence/absence in eight lakes. Body condition of larvae differed among lakes but the presence/absence of fish in lakes had no effect on body condition. Activity did not differ among lakes and was not affected by the presence/absence of fish in lakes. Activity was negatively related to size, body mass, muscle mass, and fat content, and positively related with time to emergence, suggesting that final-instar larvae in good condition are favouring development over growth to emerge earlier. This study highlights the importance of differences in condition among populations and among individuals.

Published in

Canadian Journal of Zoology
2004, Volume: 82, number: 4, pages: 653-659

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Behavioral Sciences Biology

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