Matthews, R. W., J. Yukawa and J. M. González
SEX PHEROMONES IN MALE Melittobia PARASITIC WASPS: FEMALE RESPONSE TO CONSPECIFIC AND CONGENERIC MALES OF MALES OF 3 SPECIES.
Journal of Ethology. 1985. 3: 59 - 62.
Abstract. Presented a choice between conspecific males and 2 congeneric males, virgin females of Melittobia australica and M. digitata chose conspecific males disproportionaly more often, whereas M. femorata females distributed themselves evenly among choices. Empty tubes, provided as the fourth choice in the test apparatus, were entered much less often than tubes containing live males. Femalesof all species chose "wrong" males about equally frequently. These observations suggest that even non-conspecific males posses some degree of attractivenes to virgin females. Chemicals in the sex pheromone of the male are presumed to be the source of the males' attractancy. The incomplete species specificity is interpreted in light of the life history of this genus, and it is suggested that specific recognition cues operate primarily after the sexes come together.
Melittobia Species Mentioned: Melittobia australica (Australian Wowbug); Melittobia digitata (The WOWBug); Melittobia femorata (Crazy Wowbug).
Comments: Three tables showing responses of virgin females to conspecific and congeneric males in a 4-choice arena are presented. Table 1 shows the number of virgin Melittobia females responding to conspecific and congeneric males. Table 2 shows the time required for virgin females to respond to conspecific and congeneric males and Table 3 shows number of virgin females responding to the different males divided according to first and subsequent choices.