Motion-triggered defensive display in a tephritid fly

Abstract
Interactions between prey and predators are
often mediated by signals sent by the prey. Passive signals
such as aposematic coloration and active signals such as
pursuit deterrence signals are thought to prevent attack from
predators. In true fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae), the
defensive wing display is called supination, and studies have
shown that supination effectively reduces the chance of
being attacked by salticid predators. In this study, we
investigated the proximal causes of supination in staged
interactions in an arena. We asked whether the movement of
the display target influences the likelihood of triggering
supination in the Mexican fruit fly Anastrepha ludens
.We tested the effect of motion on fly display in three different
ways using (1) a manually moved dead spider or beetle, (2)
live bouts with a spider and a katydid and (3) video playback
experiments where movement of the display target was
controlled. Our results show that flies are more likely to
perform supination when the display target moves. The
identity of the display target did not influence display
propensity, suggesting that the supination of flies is a gen-
eralised display behaviour against any possible threat

Motion-triggered defensive display in a tephritid fly. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/281176476_Motion-triggered_defensive_display_in_a_tephritid_fly [accessed Sep 21, 2015].

Source: Motion-triggered defensive display in a tephritid fly

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