Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Evolution of Insect Mating Systems$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

David Shuker and Leigh Simmons

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199678020

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199678020.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 22 September 2019

Reproductive contests and the evolution of extreme weaponry

Reproductive contests and the evolution of extreme weaponry

(p.92) Chapter 6 Reproductive contests and the evolution of extreme weaponry
The Evolution of Insect Mating Systems

Douglas J. Emlen

Oxford University Press

Many insect species face intense reproductive competition, with males battling rival males for opportunities to mate with females. In some lineages the intensity of reproductive competition has led to the evolution of extravagant weapons—disproportionately large mandibles, antlers, horns, or legs. Comparison of the behaviours and natural histories of heavily armed species with related species lacking big weapons hints at the ecological circumstances likely shaping the evolution of extreme weapon sizes. Escalated weapon evolution appears most likely when insects depend on limiting resources that are localized and economically defensible, and when fights over these resources unfold on, or in, substrates that restrict access to guarding males, structuring male—male encounters so that they tend to occur as a succession of duels, rather than multi-male scrambles. This combination of (1) intense reproductive competition, (2) limiting, localized resources, and (3) one-on-one contests, appears a potent formula for rapid evolution of extraordinary weapon sizes

Keywords:   male–male competition, limiting resources, reproductive competition, weapon evolution

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .