Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Full metadata record
DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorGoulson, Daveen_UK
dc.description.abstractVariability in the colour of lepidopteran larvae has been recorded in a broad range of species, yet little is known of its evolutionary significance, or whether it has a genetic basis. I assess the role of genes and environment in determining the degree of larval melanization in the moth, Mamestra brassicae, and examine functional aspects of larval pigmentation. In particular, whether melanization is of importance in thermoregulation, and whether larvae differing in melanization exhibit concurrent differences in size, rate of development, and fecundity. In the fourth and fifth instars, larval M. brassicae exhibit a continuous range of colour from pale green to black: a classification scheme is described to quantify this variation. Heritability (h2) was measured using regression of brood means against mid-parent values for 36 broods (2339 offspring), and was estimated to be 0.237 0.07 (SD) for fourth instar larvae and 0.421 0.10 (SD) for fifth instar larvae. However, environmental factors mediated development of larval colour: larvae were darker when reared at low temperature (12°C) compared to high (24°C). Direct measurement of larval temperatures using thermocouples inserted into the alimentary canal indicated that dark larvae absorbed more radiant heat, and thus under illumination consistently maintained a higher body temperature than pale larvae. Hence dark larvae are presumed to be at a selective advantage at low ambient temperatures, and increased melanization of larvae reared at low temperatures may be adaptive. I suggest that variation within natural populations may be maintained by fluctuating weather conditions. Dark larvae were found to be smaller, but developed more quickly than light larvae so that weight at pupation, time to pupation, and fecundity (measured by the number of fertile eggs produced) did not differ according to colour. Further studies are suggested to examine the influence of larval colour on thermoregulation, growth rates and predation in the field.en_UK
dc.publisherNature Publishing Groupen_UK
dc.relationGoulson D (1994) Determination of larval melanization in the moth, Mamestra brassicae, and the role of melanin in thermoregulation. Heredity, 73 (5), pp. 471-479.;
dc.rightsThe publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.en_UK
dc.subjectLarval colouren_UK
dc.subjectLepidoptera, Melaninen_UK
dc.titleDetermination of larval melanization in the moth, Mamestra brassicae, and the role of melanin in thermoregulationen_UK
dc.typeJournal Articleen_UK
dc.rights.embargoreason[Goulson_Determination_of_larval_1994.pdf] The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository therefore there is an embargo on the full text of the work.en_UK
dc.type.statusVoR - Version of Recorden_UK
dc.contributor.affiliationBiological and Environmental Sciencesen_UK
rioxxterms.typeJournal Article/Reviewen_UK
local.rioxx.authorGoulson, Dave|en_UK
local.rioxx.projectInternal Project|University of Stirling|
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Goulson_Determination_of_larval_1994.pdfFulltext - Published Version320.47 kBAdobe PDFUnder Permanent Embargo    Request a copy

This item is protected by original copyright

Items in the Repository are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

The metadata of the records in the Repository are available under the CC0 public domain dedication: No Rights Reserved

If you believe that any material held in STORRE infringes copyright, please contact providing details and we will remove the Work from public display in STORRE and investigate your claim.