Temperature Effects on Epicuticular Hydrocarbons and Sexual Isolation in Drosophila mojavensis

  • Therese Ann Markow
  • Eric C. Toolson
Part of the Monographs in Evolutionary Biology book series (MEBI)


Drosophila mojavensis is found in several geographically separate regions of the Sonoran Desert of North America. Within each area, it utilizes different host plants as its primary breeding site. When flies from two of these regions, Baja California and Sonora (including southern Arizona) are raised in the laboratory and then placed together to mate, a significant degree of sexual isolation is observed (Zouros and D’Entremont, 1980; Koepfer, 1987a, b). This isolation is due largely to a failure of Baja males to mate with Sonora females. The factors responsible for the observed isolation have not yet been identified, but they have been demonstrated to have a genetic component by the selection experiments of Koepfer (1987a, b), which makes D. mojavensis a particularly attractive subject for studies of speciation. We have been interested in both the proximate and ultimate causes underlying the sexual isolation between these populations. Our approach to this problem has been to first identify where the behavioral breakdown occurs and then to seek the characters involved. Our long term goal is to understand the evolutionary forces which caused the responsible characters to diverge in the first place.


Cuticular Hydrocarbon Sonoran Desert Sexual Isolation Preimaginal Development Tenebrionid Beetle 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Therese Ann Markow
    • 1
  • Eric C. Toolson
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ZoologyArizona State UniversityTempeUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiologyUniversity of New MexicoAlbuquerqueUSA

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