Applied Entomology and Zoology

, Volume 50, Issue 4, pp 427–434 | Cite as

Unbalanced polyandry in wild-caught ladybirds Harmonia axyridis (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae)

  • Mona Awad
  • Guillaume J. M. Laugier
  • Anne Loiseau
  • Oldřich Nedvěd
Original Research Paper


We investigated the mating and fertilization patterns in one Czech local population of the invasive aphidophagous ladybird Harmonia axyridis (Pallas), sampling the same mixed generations before and after overwintering. Our study using eight microsatellite loci provides the first direct evidence that females of H. axyridis are highly polyandrous in the wild and that they not only mate multiple times but also use the sperm from multiple males to fertilize their eggs. Three types of values (minimum number of fathers, estimated number of fathers and effective number of fathers contributing to progeny of one mother) were about two times higher in the spring sample (2.9, 5.2, 3.1), in the peak of their reproduction period, than in the preceding autumn sample (1.6, 2.8, 1.6). The contribution of individual fathers to the number of progeny was highly unbalanced, with a few dominating fathers and many fathers with low number of progeny.


Promiscuity Paternity Fertilization Overwintering Reproduction Propagule size 



The study was supported by grant no. QH82047 from the Ministry of Agriculture of the Czech Republic and by a grant from the Agropolis Fondation (RTRA—Montpellier, BIOFIS project). All molecular data were generated at the molecular genetic analysis technical facilities of the Environment and Biodiversity IFR 119 at Montpellier (France). We are grateful to John Sloggett, Ivo Hodek, Pavel Kindlmann and four reviewers of the previous version of the manuscript for their valuable comments and corrections.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Applied Entomology and Zoology 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mona Awad
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Guillaume J. M. Laugier
    • 4
    • 5
  • Anne Loiseau
    • 4
  • Oldřich Nedvěd
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty of ScienceUniversity of South BohemiaCeske BudejoviceCzech Republic
  2. 2.Institute of EntomologyThe Czech Academy of SciencesCeske BudejoviceCzech Republic
  3. 3.Faculty of AgricultureUniversity of CairoGizaEgypt
  4. 4.UMR1062, INRA, Centre de Biologie pour la Gestion des PopulationsMontpellierFrance
  5. 5.Université Montpellier 2/CEFE-CNRSMontpellierFrance

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