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POPULATION-LEVEL CHARACTERISTICS OF DASYMUTILLA NIGRIPES, D. VESTA, AND TIMULLA VAGANS (HYMENOPTERA: MUTILLIDAE)

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Florida Entomologist
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Abstract

A total of 308 females and 182 males of Dasymutilla nigripes (Fab.), D. vesta (Cresson), and Timulla vagans (Fab.) (Hymenoptera: Mutillidae) were collected during 1996 and 1997 in a cleared vacant lot in a deciduous forest in Maryland. Mandibles of females abraded at rates that varied with time of year but were very similar for all members of any given cohort at any specific time. The number of generations varied from 1 to 3 per year depending on the species and year. Some adult females of each species overwintered, and during one 15-day period in 1996 overwintered females of D. vesta were estimated to constitute more than 60% of the total female population. Exceptional females were estimated to live as long as 10 to 12 months although 2 to 2 1/2 months was more typical. In early and mid-season, males generally emerged synchronously with females, but relatively few males were collected during late-season emergences of females. In some cases, discrete size ranges of adults indicated that as many as 4 different sizes (and therefore presumably different species) of hosts were attacked in different years or at different times within the same year.View this article in BioOne

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