temperature sensitive? -Reply

Nick Greatorex-Davies NGD at wpo.nerc.ac.uk
Mon Jun 15 10:45:46 EDT 1998

In reponse to Rebecca Jolly's query on this interesting subject Roger
Kendrick wrote:

<<<<<<From what I can remember in the UK, threshold temperatures for
activity varied according to the season>>>>>>>

As would be expected, temperature thresholds for flight activity also
vary within species, and probably also geographically within species
(the same species will fly at lower temperatures in the cooler parts of its
range) (In the UK Butterfly Monitoring Scheme we "allow" recorders in
northern Britain to record butterflies on transect walks at slightly lower
temperatures than in the south as butterflies of the same species are
active at lower temperatures in the north than in the south). An
interesting paper on this subject was published some time ago: 

Taylor, L.R. (1963) Analysis of the effect of temperature on insects in
flight, Journal of Animal Ecology, 32, 99-117. 

The paper includes data on the flight threshold temperatures for two
noctuid moths common in Britain; Agrochola lychnidis (Beaded Chestnut)
and Amphipyra tragopoginis (Mouse Moth). The lower threshold for A.
lychnidis was shown to be 9 deg. C and for A. trag. 10.5 deg.C.

I would be very interested if anyone knows of other more recent
literature on this subject!

Nick Greatorex-Davies
ITE Monks Wood
Abbots Ripton
Cambs PE17 2LS

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