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Tierökologie II

Prof. Dr. Konrad Dettner (im Ruhestand)

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Deml, R; Dettner, K: Effects of emperor moth larval secretions. hemolymph, and components on microorganisms and predators, Entomologia Experimentalis et Applicata, 76, 287-293 (1995)
The biological significance of the caterpillar scolus secretions, hemolymph, and compounds of four emperor moth species (Lepidoptera, Saturniidae) has been investigated by means of different biological tests and behavioral observations: 1. Larval body fluids and several components (e.g., phenylacetaldehyde) were shown to inhibit growth of certain bacteria but not of fungi. 2. Larval body fluids deter ants from feeding, evidently due to the strong behavior-modifying activity of several compounds therein. 3. Larval body fluids and whole caterpillars produce feeding-avoidance in model bird species. The findings suggest that these defensive mechanisms effectively protect saturniid caterpillars from pathogens and predators in nature.
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