The influence of floral character on the foraging behaviour of the hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Sutherland, J. P., Sullivan, M. S. and Poppy, G. M. 1999. The influence of floral character on the foraging behaviour of the hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus. Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata. 93 (2), pp. 157-164. https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1570-7458.1999.00574.x

AuthorsSutherland, J. P., Sullivan, M. S. and Poppy, G. M.
Abstract

A bioassay to examine the foraging behaviour of the aphidophagous hoverfly, Episyrphus balteatus was used in which various stimuli purported to influence flower choice were tested using model flowers. In choice experiments, E. balteatus exhibited enhanced behavioural responses to the colour yellow, as previously seen in Eristalis by several workers. Previous suggestions that the generalist forager E. balteatus has no preference for colour are re-examined in the light of this new evidence. The other advertisement cue tested, size, was also demonstrated to play an important role in determining foraging behaviour, with the smaller artificial flowers seemingly preferred. Of the rewards tested, E. balteatus showed preference for the greatest nectar concentrations, whilst increasing pollen did not affect behaviour. These bioassays provided an opportunity to isolate the individual components of decision-making by E. balteatus during foraging. The separation of sexes and ages in these experiments permitted analysis of inter-sexual and inter-generation differences in behaviour, a factor apparently not investigated in previous work.

KeywordsEntomology
Year of Publication1999
JournalEntomologia Experimentalis et Applicata
Journal citation93 (2), pp. 157-164
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1046/j.1570-7458.1999.00574.x
Open accessPublished as non-open access
Funder project or code436
ISSN00138703
0013-8703
PublisherWiley

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