Étude sur la pression de sélection alimentaire chez la tordeuse des bourgeons de l’épinette

Authors: Quezada García, Roberto
Advisor: Bauce, Éric
Abstract: Deterioration in food quality can affect insect performance. This factor could be an evolutionary engine that forces insects to go through short-term adaptive processes. Outbreaks of spruce budworm (Choristoneura fumiferana (Clem.)) significantly affect the quantity and quality of food that is provided by host trees. This phenomenon exerts a strong selection pressure on the population, especially when there is a shortage of food or when food is of poor quality. Thus, various adaptive strategies can be selected for so the species can persist in the environment. These strategies are closely linked to life-history traits such as fecundity, survival, pupal mass and developmental time. The present study investigated the potential for adaptation in the spruce budworm, which had been subjected to nutritional stress, by analyzing particular features that are associated with life-history traits. A colony of spruce budworm larvae was reared on two kinds of artificial diet over three generations (control versus a stress diet with low sugar and high nitrogen contents). The variables that were considered included developmental time, fecundity, pupal mass, growth rate and fertility. Our results showed that a selection pressure was indeed being exerted; the high mortality produced by the stress diet resulted in females having higher pupal mass and fecundity in the last generation. The results revealed high additive variability for fertility, fecundity and developmental time, and a lower additive variability for pupal mass. It appeared that the evolutionary strategies of spruce budworm selected for under diet stress are related to developmental time, fecundity, growth rate, pupal mass. Differences in biological performance between the sexes indicate a bias in favour of males. This factor could stimulate dispersal of males to other locations where resources are more abundant. The overall results clearly showed that this insect has high adaptability and evolutionary potential when food quality affects its biological performance. This phenomenon should be further considered in studies of population dynamics.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2015
Open Access Date: 23 April 2018
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/26451
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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