Sexual Selection and Reproductive Competition in Insects explores the biological mechanisms underlying intrasexual reproductive competition as a driving force in sexual selection in insects. The book contains papers presented at a symposium on reproductive behavior in insects, held at the 15th International Congress of Entomology in Washington, D.C., in 1976.
Organized into 13 chapters, this volume begins with a historical background on sexual selection theory and some of the principal conceptual advances that have been made since Charles Darwin (1871) posited that a sexual character was a characteristic possessed by only one sex and not the other. It then introduces the reader to differences in patterns of sexual selection and how they affect the reproductive success of individuals, male-female mating relationships, and mate choice by females. The book also discusses the evolution of mating strategies in insects, touching on concepts such as parental investment, female choice, and sexual conflict. Later chapters focus on winglessness, fighting, and dimorphism in male fig wasps and other insects, along with agonistic behavior among males of Achias australis, the function of horns in beetles, and the evolution of alternative male reproductive strategies in field crickets. The book also looks into the courtship and mating behavior of insects, and then concludes with an analysis of insect life histories in order to elucidate the biological aspects of the male-female phenomenon.
This book is an essential reading for biologists and chemists.