Presentation Title

Energy Demands of Reproduction in Burying Beetles

Advisor Information

Claudia Rauter

Location

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

6-3-2015 2:00 PM

End Date

6-3-2015 3:30 PM

Abstract

Reproduction is energetically expensive for females. In order to take on these energy demands, reproducing females build up energy reserves before or at the onset of reproduction. These energy reserves are used up to feed and nurture offspring. Burying beetles provide extensive parental care to their offspring and gain substantial mass during egg laying, but lose all the mass again while feeding the offspring with regurgitated food. The goal of this study was to determine whether burying beetles accumulate energy reserves during egg laying in anticipation of the energetically demanding parental care phase. Using photometric methods, I measured glycogen (storage form of carbohydrate), glucose (transport form of carbohydrate in body), and lipid content of burying beetles at four different stages of reproduction: before, during egg laying, during parental care, and at the end of the reproductive event. Whole body lipid content decreased consistently during reproduction. The whole body content of glucose and glycogen was highest during egg laying and parental care and reached pre-reproduction levels at the end of the reproductive event. These results suggest that burying beetles store energy in form of carbohydrates instead of lipids and use the stored energy for the energetically demanding parental care.

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COinS
 
Mar 6th, 2:00 PM Mar 6th, 3:30 PM

Energy Demands of Reproduction in Burying Beetles

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

Reproduction is energetically expensive for females. In order to take on these energy demands, reproducing females build up energy reserves before or at the onset of reproduction. These energy reserves are used up to feed and nurture offspring. Burying beetles provide extensive parental care to their offspring and gain substantial mass during egg laying, but lose all the mass again while feeding the offspring with regurgitated food. The goal of this study was to determine whether burying beetles accumulate energy reserves during egg laying in anticipation of the energetically demanding parental care phase. Using photometric methods, I measured glycogen (storage form of carbohydrate), glucose (transport form of carbohydrate in body), and lipid content of burying beetles at four different stages of reproduction: before, during egg laying, during parental care, and at the end of the reproductive event. Whole body lipid content decreased consistently during reproduction. The whole body content of glucose and glycogen was highest during egg laying and parental care and reached pre-reproduction levels at the end of the reproductive event. These results suggest that burying beetles store energy in form of carbohydrates instead of lipids and use the stored energy for the energetically demanding parental care.