Drumming Communication and Pre-Mating Behavior of Fourteen Eastern Neartic Stonefly Species (Plecoptera)
Graham, Elizabeth A.
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, College of Natural Resources
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Sixty-nine sites in Minnesota, Indiana and Wisconsin were sampled from March, 1981 to May, 1982 for pre-emergent stonefly (Plecoptera) nymphs and adults for drumming experiments. A total of fourteen species were recorded and analyzed including the families Perlodidae, Pteronarcyidae, Taeniopterygidae, Capniidae, Perlidae and Chloroperlidae. Signal parameters analyzed included: 1. number of drumbeats, 2. inter-drumbeat duration, 3. signal duration, 4. interval between start of the male signal and beginning of female response and 5. interval between end of the male signal and beginning of female response. All signals were species specific except Taeniopteryx nivalis females which answered taped male signals of Pteronarcys badia, Pteronarcys californica, Isoperla quinquepunctata, I. fulva, I. phalerata, I. slossonae, Claassenia sabulosa, Hesperoperla pacifica, zeuleuctra arnoldi and z. claasseni. Two-way communication (male-female) was present in I. slossonae, Clioperla clio, Isogenoides frontalis, Acroneuria lycorias, and Phasganophora capitata while Hydroperla fugitans exhibited 3-way communication (male-female-male). Pteronarcys pictetii, Paragnetina media and T. nivalis had 4-way communication (Male-female-male-female). Isoperla bilineata, I. transmarina, I. signata, C. clio, I. frontalis, P. pictetii, T. nivalis, Allocapnia granulata, Hastaperla brevis, and P. capitata male signals were monophasic (no patterned inter-drumbeat duration change or pause within the signal). Male signals of I. slosonae and P. media were diphasic (two separate phases with different inter-drumbeat durations) and H. fugitans and A. lycorias male signals were bimodal (two distinct modes separated by a pause having similar inter-drumbeat durations but usually different number of beats). All female signals recorded were monophasic. Species which were frequent drummers included I. slossonae, T. nivalis, I. frontalis, P. pictetii, A. lycorias, P. media and P. capitata. Infrequent drummers included I. bilineata, I. transmarina, I. signata, C.clio, H. fugitans, A. granulata, and H. brevis. Drumming was not recorded from Oemopteryx glacialis, Strophopteryx faciata, and Prostoia completa. There were no significant changes in signal characteristics between lab reared and field collected T. nivalis and there were no changes in signal parameters between a 1 day old and 14 day old male I. slossonae. There were no apparent geographic variations in signal characteristics of C. clio populations from Indiana and Wisconsin and populations of P. pictetii and I. slossonae within Wisconsin. The following species were found to be most similar in signal characteristics: I. bilineata and I. transmarina, I. slossonae and western Isoperla phalerata, I. frontalis and western Tsogenoides zionensis, A. lycorias and Acroneuria carolinensis., H. brevis and western Isoperla fulva, P. pictetii and Pteronarcys dorsata, and P. media and Paragnetina fumosa and Paragnetina kansensis. Clioperla clio, H. fugitans and T. nivalis signals were not similar to any described Plecoptera signal.