Registered users receive a variety of benefits including the ability to customize email alerts, create favorite journals list, and save searches.
Please note that a BioOne web account does not automatically grant access to full-text content. An institutional or society member subscription is required to view non-Open Access content.
Contact email@example.com with any questions.
Pollen feeding behaviors Heliconius and Laparus (Lepidoptera: Nymphalidae) represent a key innovation that has shaped other life history traits of these neotropical butterflies. Although all flower visiting Lepidoptera regularly come in contact with pollen, only Heliconius and Laparus butterflies actively collect pollen with the proboscis and subsequently take up nutrients from the pollen grains. This study focused on the behavior of pollen processing and compared the movement patterns with proboscis grooming behavior in various nymphalid butterflies using video analysis. The proboscis movements of pollen processing behavior consisted of a lengthy series of repeated coiling and uncoiling movements in a loosely coiled proboscis position combined with up and down movements and the release of saliva. The proboscis-grooming behavior was triggered by contamination of the proboscis in both pollen feeding and non-pollen feeding nymphalid butterflies. Proboscis grooming movements included interrupted series of coiling and uncoiling movements, characteristic sideways movements, proboscis lifting, and occasionally full extension of the proboscis. Discharge of saliva was more pronounced in pollen feeding species than in non-pollen feeding butterfly species. We conclude that the pollen processing behavior of Heliconius and Laparus is a modified proboscis grooming behavior that originally served to clean the proboscis after contamination with particles.