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Courtship Behaviour of Nasonia Vitripennis (Hym., Pteromalidae): Some Qualitative, Experimental Evidence for the Role of Pheromones

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Chemical stimuli appear to play a role in the reproductive behaviour of the parasitic wasp Nasonia vitripennis. We produced qualitative evidence for their function a) in sex recognition (males discriminate conspecific males and females); b) in courtship (males appear to release a pheromone with the extrusion of their mouth parts during "head nodding") ; and c) in territorial behaviour (males mark the place where they have copulated; they may take up a residence in such a place over days).

Affiliations: 1: Zoological Laboratory, Div. of Ethology, University of Leiden, The Netherlands

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