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Migratory take-off behaviour of the Mongolian grasshopper Oedaleus asiaticus

Migratory take-off behaviour of the Mongolian grasshopper Oedaleus asiaticus

Wang, Yun-Ping, Tu, Xiong-Bing ORCID: 0000-0003-0676-8777, Lin, Pei-Jiong, Li, Shuang, Xu, Chao-Min, Wang, Xin-Qiao, Reynolds, Don R. ORCID: 0000-0001-8749-7491, Chapman, Jason, Zhang, Ze-Hua ORCID: 0000-0002-0648-8954 and Hu, Gao ORCID: 0000-0002-1000-5687 (2020) Migratory take-off behaviour of the Mongolian grasshopper Oedaleus asiaticus. Insects, 11 (7):416. pp. 1-10. ISSN 2075-4450 (doi:

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Oedaleus asiaticus is one of the dominant species of grasshoppers in the rangeland on the Mongolian plateau, and a serious pest, but its migratory behavior is poorly known. We investigated the take-off behavior of migratory O. asiaticus in field cages in the inner Mongolia region of northern China. The species shows a degree of density-dependent phase polyphenism, with high-density swarming populations characterized by a brown morph, while low-density populations are more likely to comprise a green morph. We found that only 12.4% of brown morphs engaged in migratory take-off, and 2.0% of green morphs. Migratory grasshoppers took off at dusk, especially in the half hour after sunset (20:00–20:30 h). Most emigrating individuals did not have any food in their digestive tract, and the females were mated but with immature ovaries. In contrast, non-emigrating individuals rarely had empty digestive tracts, and most females were mated and sexually mature. Therefore, it seems clear that individuals prepare for migration in the afternoon by eliminating food residue from the body, and migration is largely restricted to sexually immature stages (at least in females). Furthermore, it was found that weather conditions (particularly temperature and wind speed at 15:00 h) in the afternoon had a significant effect on take-off that evening, with O. asiaticus preferring to take off in warm, dry and calm weather. The findings of this study will contribute to a reliable basis for forecasting migratory movements of this pest.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Uncontrolled Keywords: Oedaleus asiaticus; take off; insect migration; weather conditions; inner Mongolia
Subjects: S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Natural Resources Institute
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Natural Resources Institute > Agriculture, Health & Environment Department
Last Modified: 13 Jul 2020 11:30

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