Environmental toxicants such as insecticides are able to provoke epigenetic alterations which can be inherited to future generations. The aim of the current study was to assess whether the insecticide Trebon 10F (containing the active ingredient etofenprox) causes multigenerational and/or transgenerational effects on the egg traits of the collembolan Folsomia candida. The parent generation was kept in soil treated with three concentrations of the insecticide. The hatched offspring from each treatment were divided into two groups and were treated in the same manner as their parents (multigenerational effect), or remained untreated (transgenerational effect). The parents reacted with smaller eggs to the insecticide in a concentration dependent manner. Both multigenerational and transgenerational effects were detected in the offspring generations. While neither the number of eggs nor the ratios of the egg diameters (shortest/longest diameter) changed, the egg size increased as the Trebon 10F concentration increased. This is an indication that parents living under insecticide stress transmit this information to their offspring, who react with higher quality egg production. Such alterations in egg traits may have important consequences on the F. candida population dynamic.
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Vol. 65 • No. 1