Publication
Title
Dynamics of among-individual behavioral variation over adult lifespan in a wild insect
Author
Abstract
Wild crickets show consistent patterns of behavior over their adult lifetimes and as they get older they become increasingly predictable. We tagged crickets and then periodically recaptured them and measured their behavior in the lab. This revealed that rather than variation in how age affects behavior, there were consistent patterns across the whole population. We do not have a situation where some crickets live fast and die young while others take it easy and slow.Investigating patterns of among and within-individual trait variation in populations is essential to understanding how selection shapes phenotypes. Behavior is often the most flexible aspect of the phenotype, and to understand how it is affected by selection, we need to examine how consistent individuals are. However, it is not well understood whether among-individual differences tend to remain consistent over lifetimes, or whether the behavior of individuals relative to one another varies over time. We examined the dynamics of 4 behavioral traits (tendency to leave a refuge, shyness, activity, and exploration) in a wild population of field crickets (Gryllus campestris). We tagged individuals and then temporarily removed them from their natural environment and tested them under laboratory conditions. All 4 traits showed among-individual variance in mean levels of expression across the adult lifespan, but no significant differences in how rapidly expression changed with age. For all traits, among-individual variance increased as individuals got older. Our findings reveal seldom examined changes in variance components over the adult lifetime of wild individuals. Such changes will have important implications for the relationship between behavioral traits, life-histories, and fitness and the consequences of selection on wild individuals.
Language
English
Source (journal)
Behavioral ecology / International Society for Behavioral Ecology. - New York, NY
Publication
New York, NY : 2015
ISSN
1045-2249
Volume/pages
26:4(2015), p. 975-985
ISI
000358171600007
Full text (Publisher's DOI)
Full text (publisher's version - intranet only)
UAntwerpen
Faculty/Department
Research group
Publication type
Subject
Affiliation
Publications with a UAntwerp address
External links
Web of Science
Record
Identification
Creation 03.09.2015
Last edited 04.06.2017
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