Canadian Forest Service Publications

Interactions between size and temperature influence fecundity and longevity of a tortricid moth, Zeiraphera canadensis. 1993. Carroll, A.L.; Quiring, D.T. Oecologia 93: 233-241.

Year: 1993

Issued by: Atlantic Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 18821

Language: English

Availability: Order paper copy (free)

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Females of Zeiraphera canadensis Mut. & Free., the spruce bud moth, were reared in the laboratory at constant and alternating temperatures, and in an outdoor insectary, to (1) determine the effects of temperature, age and size on several reproductive parameters and, (2) to test the hypothesis that body size-temperature interactions influence longevity and realized fecundity. Egg maturation was linearly related to age and large moths developed eggs at a higher rate than small ones. Mean lifetime oviposition rate reached a maximum and remained stable at temperatures greater than or equal to 20 C while the mean lifetime rate of egg maturation increased linearly with temperature, indicating that higher temperatures adversely affect oviposition. The production of nonviable eggs increased with age but also with temperature, suggesting high temperature (greater than or equal to 25 C) reduces egg quality and/or hinders fertilization. The realized fecundity and longevity of females reared under an alternating temperature regime (mean 20 C) was significantly less than that of females reared at constant 20 C. Similar realized fecundity, longevity and mean lifetime oviposition rates for females reared at temperatures alternating between 10 and 25 C (mean 20 C) and those at constant 25 C reflected the inability of females to recover from elevated diurnal temperatures. Longevity was positively related to female body size at constant 15 and 20 C but the relationships were negative for moths exposed to diurnal temperatures equal to or exceeding 25 C. Due to the reduced longevity of large moths at high temperatures, linear regressions between size and realized fecundity were only significant at constant temperatures less than or equal to 20 C. At higher temperatures, the size-fecundity relatinship became curvilinear as a result of the diminished reproductive output of large individuals. Reduced fecundity and longevity of large females at high temperatures may have been due to elevated internal temperatures of large-bodied moths. Large females in a controlled-environment chamber maintained at 25 C developed an internal temperature excess (i.e., temperature above ambient) of nearly 2 C while small-bodied females exceeded ambient by only 0.3 C. However, when held at 20 C, the temperature excess of large-bodied moths was much less than 1 C and small-bodied females did not differ from ambient. Such interactions between temperature and body size suggest that there should be stabilizing selection toward moderate-sized individuals and may explain the absence of size-related effects on fecundity and longevity previously reported for several other lepidopterans.