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Interspecies interference of oviposition behaviour in the cowpea weevils Callosobruchus rhodesianus and Callosobruchus maculatus

, : Interspecies interference of oviposition behaviour in the cowpea weevils Callosobruchus rhodesianus and Callosobruchus maculatus. Insect Science & its Application 17(2): 251-255, April-June

The total number of eggs laid by Callosobruchus rhodesianus (Pic.) and Callosobruchus maculatus (F.) females in the presence of single and mixed species populations of males at different densities were counted. Increasing male density significantly reduced the realised fecundity of C. maculatus but not C. rhodesianus females. In the presence of C. maculatus males, however, the number of eggs laid by C. rhodesianus was greatly reduced. The reduction in egg laying and observations on mating behaviour indicates direct physical interference between weevils and competition for mates. An adequate number of beans were provided so competition for oviposition sites by females was unlikely. The ability of C. maculatus to inhibit oviposition of C. rhodesianus is suggested as one reason for its superiority over the latter when the two species compete for limited resources.


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