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Lifetime Reproductive Success of Females of the Damselfly Coenagrion puella

Michael J. Banks and David J. Thompson
Journal of Animal Ecology
Vol. 56, No. 3 (Oct., 1987), pp. 815-832
DOI: 10.2307/4950
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4950
Page Count: 18
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Lifetime Reproductive Success of Females of the Damselfly Coenagrion puella
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Abstract

(1) Two inter-related studies are described, concerned with lifetime clutch production and determination of clutch size in the damselfly Coenagrion puella. The results of these studies are used to investigate lifetime reproductive success in terms of the females' evolutionary biology and population dynamics. (2) Most variation (70%) in reproductive success arises from variation in survival rather than variation in fecundity. (3) Variation in rate of clutch production accounts for 20% of the variation in reproductive success, and variation in clutch size for only 10%. (4) Females maximize their lifetime egg production by minimizing the interval between clutches, rather than by maximizing the size of each clutch. (5) Since females only engage in reproductive activity on warm, sunny days, weather has a marked effect on female egg production; bad weather means increased inter-clutch intervals and lower egg production. (6) Clutch size is inversely related to body size. However, because large females survive for longer than small females, selection should favour large size in females. (7) Egg size is not correlated with female size. (8) There may be a delayed density-dependent population regulatory process, acting through the reduction in adult female size caused by high larval population density.

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