Paternity analysis in a Hexapod (Orchesella cincta; Collembola) with indirect sperm transfer

R. Gols, G. Ernsting, N.M. van Straalen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


In species where males and females interact during mating, the role of females in sexual selection cannot always be demonstrated unambiguously. Here we present a model system to study female choice for mates. Orchesella cinca is a soil-dwelling hexapod with indirect sperm transfer. Females and males do not interact physically for reproduction. We gave females the choice between spermatophores produced by two different males. Paternity analysis based on microsatellite variation revealed that offspring in one clutch were sired by one male only. Direct observations showed that after a female has taken up a spermatophore, the female's receptivity to further spermatophore uptake seem to end. Our results imply that the female is in full control of paternity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)317-328
JournalJournal of Insect Behavior
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2004


  • springtails
  • arthropods
  • behavior


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