Aggression and Mating Success in Male Spider Mites

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Science  09 Jul 1976:
Vol. 193, Issue 4248, pp. 160-161
DOI: 10.1126/science.193.4248.160


Male Tetranychus urticae search for and defend quiescent pharate females. Intruding males may be threatened or attacked. Fights involve pushing and grappling with the forelegs, jousting with the mouthparts, and entangling the opponent with silk. In these encounters larger males usually win. Sole possession of a female at her ecdysis virtually ensures successful mating.