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Host-plant-derived variation in ultraviolet wing patterns influences mate selection by male butterflies

URN to cite this document:
urn:nbn:de:bvb:355-epub-20525
Knüttel, Helge ; Fiedler, Konrad
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Date of publication of this fulltext: 05 Aug 2009 13:35


Abstract

We report on the first case in which sequestered secondary plant compounds determine an insect's external appearance in the ultraviolet spectrum and thereby influence visually mediated mate choice. Larvae of the common blue butterfly Polyommatus icarus specifically sequester flavonoids in different amounts and types, depending on the part or species of food plant. During late pupal development ...

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