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Effective strategy of the overwintering of semiaquatic bugs overwintering of Velia caprai Heteroptera Gerromorpha Veliidae



Effective strategy of the overwintering of semiaquatic bugs overwintering of Velia caprai Heteroptera Gerromorpha Veliidae



Journal of Natural History 43.9-10: 529-543



Overwintering of Velia caprai was studied during the winter months 2006-2007 in the area of South Bohemia (Czech Republic) by (1) field phenological observations and samples, (2) study of artificially established experimental cohorts in an unheated glasshouse, and (3) auxiliary experiments in a laboratory. Velia caprai has a unique way of overwintering within the gerromorphan bugs that is rare among insects generally; it can overwinter in both an adult and an egg stage. Most females reach sexual maturity before overwintering, mate with mature males, overwinter actively on the water surface and lay eggs during the winter. The dormant eggs can be induced to hatch by increasing temperatures. Winter oviposition can be interpreted as a sign of a risk-spreading reproductive strategy. The overwintering of both adults and eggs provides a chance to adapt to changes in the local environmental conditions and could be an important determinant in broad variability of life-history traits.

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Accession: 024570178

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DOI: 10.1080/00222930802610436


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