May 4, 2004

Dietary glycerol and adult access to water: effects on fecundity and longevity in the almond moth

Journal of Insect Physiology
Camilla RyneMichael T Siva-Jothy


The quality of food eaten by larval insects will affect traits such as gamete production, fat reserves, muscle bulk and body size in the adult. Moreover, larvae also depend on high moisture content in the diet for survival. The almond moth (Ephestia cautella) (W.) (Lepidoptera; Pyralidae) does not feed as an adult although it continues to drink water. We tested the idea that an almond moth could compensate for a low-water diet as a larva by increasing its water intake as an adult. We reared larvae on two different food sources with different moisture regimes; standard laboratory diet with glycerol (relatively wet) and standard diet without glycerol (relatively dry). Half the adult moths from each treatment were given water to drink before their first and only mating. Our results show that wet larval diets (i.e. containing glycerol) significantly decreased fecundity (total number of eggs laid and the proportion of hatched larvae), whilst it significantly increased male and female longevity. The interaction effect of water access for adult males and females was significant, independent of the glycerol in the larval diet. Longevity in females that were not presented with water as adults was slightly higher if mated with a male tha...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

SIVA1 gene
Cadra cautella
Sexual Behavior, Animal
Wheat germ preparation

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