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Correlations in morphology between the sexes in feather mites (Acari: Astigmata): precopulatory guarding and reproductive morphologies

  • Author / Creator
    Byers, Kaylee A.
  • Sexual dimorphism is prominent across animals. In addition to differences in size and colouration, the sexes may also differ in non-genitalic contact traits whereby the grasping morphologies of males are matched by either cooperative or resistant corresponding structures in females. Resistance traits may also be genitalic and are indicative of sexually antagonistic coevolution whereby the sexes adapt and counter-adapt traits to maximize their own fitness. For both hypotheses of cooperative and antagonistic coevolution, theory predicts a correlation in the dimensions of male and female structures. I aim to determine whether correlated morphologies between the sexes in the Proctophyllodidae and Trouessartiidae are cooperative or antagonistic. Furthermore, I evaluate whether directional trends exist in the evolution of gentialic size in the genus Trouessartia. My studies indicate that feather mites are exceptions to many trends, and due to their diversity are excellent organisms for further study in regards to sexual selection.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
    2013-11
  • Type of Item
    Thesis
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
    https://doi.org/10.7939/R3DJ58R05
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
    English
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
    Master's
  • Department
    • Department of Biological Sciences
  • Specialization
    • Systematics and Evolution
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Proctor, Heather (Biological Sciences)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Hall, Jocelyn (Biological Sciences)
    • Palmer, Rich (Biological Sciences)
    • Heming, Bruce (Biological Sciences)