Maternal behavior of a webspinner (Order Embiidina)

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John Wiley & Sons, Inc.


1. This first detailed behavioural field study of any species within the order Embiidina (=Embioptera) examines the function of parental care in the webspinner Clothoda urichi (Saussure) (Clothodidae). 2. Time budgets of nymphs and females in different stages of reproduction differ significantly due, in part, to maternal behaviours. 3. Nymphs, non-reproductive adult females and females with nymphs are active only at night when they feed and spin silk. In contrast, females with eggs guard their eggs both day and night, rarely feeding during the 6-week period prior to hatch. 4. Females physically repel egg parasites. In addition, females construct a substantial egg mass covering, of substrate materials and silk, which hinders parasites.