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Lack of evidence for the toxic nectar hypothesis: a plant alkaloid did not deter nectar feeding by Lepidoptera

Lack of evidence for the toxic nectar hypothesis: a plant alkaloid did not deter nectar feeding by Lepidoptera

Florida Entomologist 76(4): 556-566

Floral nectars of many plant species contain alkaloids and other allelochemicals that might deter butterfly visitors and promote flower constancy by specialized pollinators. The pyrrolizidine alkaloid, monocrotaline, has been implicated as such a feeding inhibitor in nectar. The toxic nectar hypothesis was tested by evaluating monocrotaline for deterrence of nectar feeding in Heliothis virescens, Trichoplusia ni and Agraulis vanillae.

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Accession: 002421148

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DOI: 10.2307/3495785

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