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Entomol Exp Appl. 2016 Mar 1;158(3):269-274. Epub 2016 Feb 6.

The effects of temperature, relative humidity, light, and resource quality on flight initiation in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum.

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Department of Biology, Indiana University, 1001 East Third Street, Bloomington, 47405 IN, USA.


We investigated the environmental conditions that induce a flight response in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum Herbst (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae), including resource quality, temperature, relative humidity, and light. Over 72-h trial periods, we observed the proportion of individuals emigrating by flight to range from 0.0 in extreme heat or cold to 0.82 with starvation. Resource quality, presence of a light source, and temperature all directly influenced the initiation of the flight response. We did not detect any effect of relative humidity or sudden change in temperature on the incidence of flight. We discuss our findings in the context of Tribolium ecology and evolution.


Coleoptera; Tenebrionidae; behavioural response; dispersal; environmental cues; metapopulation; migration

[Available on 2017-03-01]

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