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Hornworm counterattacks: defensive strikes and sound production in response to invertebrate attackers

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Biological Journal of the Linnean Society

Oxford University Press (OUP)

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      The structure and function of auditory chordotonal organs in insects.

       Jayne Yack (2004)
      Insects are capable of detecting a broad range of acoustic signals transmitted through air, water, or solids. Auditory sensory organs are morphologically diverse with respect to their body location, accessory structures, and number of sensilla, but remarkably uniform in that most are innervated by chordotonal organs. Chordotonal organs are structurally complex Type I mechanoreceptors that are distributed throughout the insect body and function to detect a wide range of mechanical stimuli, from gross motor movements to air-borne sounds. At present, little is known about how chordotonal organs in general function to convert mechanical stimuli to nerve impulses, and our limited understanding of this process represents one of the major challenges to the study of insect auditory systems today. This report reviews the literature on chordotonal organs innervating insect ears, with the broad intention of uncovering some common structural specializations of peripheral auditory systems, and identifying new avenues for research. A general overview of chordotonal organ ultrastructure is presented, followed by a summary of the current theories on mechanical coupling and transduction in monodynal, mononematic, Type 1 scolopidia, which characteristically innervate insect ears. Auditory organs of different insect taxa are reviewed, focusing primarily on tympanal organs, and with some consideration to Johnston's and subgenual organs. It is widely accepted that insect hearing organs evolved from pre-existing proprioceptive chordotonal organs. In addition to certain non-neural adaptations for hearing, such as tracheal expansion and cuticular thinning, the chordotonal organs themselves may have intrinsic specializations for sound reception and transduction, and these are discussed. In the future, an integrated approach, using traditional anatomical and physiological techniques in combination with new methodologies in immunohistochemistry, genetics, and biophysics, will assist in refining hypotheses on how chordotonal organs function, and, ultimately, lead to new insights into the peripheral mechanisms underlying hearing in insects. Copyright 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
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        Structure, development, and evolution of insect auditory systems.

         James Yager (1999)
        This paper provides an overview of insect peripheral auditory systems focusing on tympanate ears (pressure detectors) and emphasizing research during the last 15 years. The theme throughout is the evolution of hearing in insects. Ears have appeared independently no fewer than 19 times in the class Insecta and are located on various thoracic and abdominal body segments, on legs, on wings, and on mouth parts. All have fundamentally similar structures-a tympanum backed by a tracheal sac and a tympanal chordotonal organ-though they vary widely in size, ancillary structures, and number of chordotonal sensilla. Novel ears have recently been discovered in praying mantids, two families of beetles, and two families of flies. The tachinid flies are especially notable because they use a previously unknown mechanism for sound localization. Developmental and comparative studies have identified the evolutionary precursors of the tympanal chordotonal organs in several insects; they are uniformly chordotonal proprioceptors. Tympanate species fall into clusters determined by which of the embryologically defined chordotonal organ groups in each body segment served as precursor for the tympanal organ. This suggests that the many appearances of hearing could arise from changes in a small number of developmental modules. The nature of those developmental changes that lead to a functional insect ear is not yet known. Copyright 1999 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
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          Dangerous prey and daring predators: a review.

          How foragers balance risks during foraging is a central focus of optimal foraging studies. While diverse theoretical and empirical work has revealed how foragers should and do manage food and safety from predators, little attention has been given to the risks posed by dangerous prey. This is a potentially important oversight because risk of injury can give rise to foraging costs similar to those arising from the risk of predation, and with similar consequences. Here, we synthesize the literature on how foragers manage risks associated with dangerous prey and adapt previous theory to make the first steps towards a framework for future studies. Though rarely documented, it appears that in some systems predators are frequently injured while hunting and risk of injury can be an important foraging cost. Fitness costs of foraging injuries, which can be fatal, likely vary widely but have rarely been studied and should be the subject of future research. Like other types of risk-taking behaviour, it appears that there is individual variation in the willingness to take risks, which can be driven by social factors, experience and foraging abilities, or differences in body condition. Because of ongoing modifications to natural communities, including changes in prey availability and relative abundance as well as the introduction of potentially dangerous prey to numerous ecosystems, understanding the prevalence and consequences of hunting dangerous prey should be a priority for behavioural ecologists. © 2013 The Authors. Biological Reviews © 2013 Cambridge Philosophical Society.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            Biological Journal of the Linnean Society
            Oxford University Press (OUP)
            0024-4066
            1095-8312
            February 10 2018
            February 10 2018
            :
            :
            10.1093/biolinnean/blx156
            © 2018

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