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Dietary alkaloids and the development of androconial organs in Estigmene acrea

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Author(s): Jason W. Davenport | William E. Conner

Journal: Journal of Insect Science
ISSN 1536-2442

Volume: 3;
Start page: 3;
Date: 2003;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Male salt marsh moths, Estigmene acrea (Lepidoptera: Arctiidae), possess inflatable androconial organs called coremata. Prior to mating males form aggregations and inflate their coremata en masse. The communal display attracts additional males and females for the purpose of mating. The coremata are known to carry the plant-derived dihydropyrrolizine, hydroxydanaidal. This pheromonal substance is derived from secondary plant chemicals called pyrrolizidine alkaloids found in the larval diet.
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