Evolutionary Ecology

, Volume 27, Issue 6, pp 1217–1233 | Cite as

Temperature- and density-dependence of diapause induction and its life history correlates in the geometrid moth Chiasmia clathrata (Lepidoptera: Geometridae)

  • Panu Välimäki
  • Sami M. Kivelä
  • Maarit I. Mäenpää
Original Paper


The relative roles of genetics and developmental plasticity in creating phenotypes adapted to prevailing conditions are insufficiently understood. In potentially multivoltine temperate insects, individuals that do not enter diapause but develop directly into reproductive adults within the same season are severely time-constrained. Direct development is, however, under selection only if expressed in the wild. Thus, adaptive correlates of the direct development are expected to evolve and persist only in multivoltine populations. We studied the genetic and phenotypic components of variation in juvenile development in the geometrid moth Chiasmia clathrata from univoltine and bivoltine regions. Larvae were reared at two temperatures (14/20 °C) and densities (low/high) in a factorial split-brood experiment. High temperature and low density promoted direct development, the former condition being associated with a short development time, high growth rate and large body size. Genotypes of bivoltine origin had a higher propensity for direct development and seemingly expressed an exaggerated plastic response to increasing temperature compared to the ones from univoltine populations. Alternative life history phenotypes associated with the induced developmental pathway emerged only in the bivoltine region, direct development resulting in a short larval period, high growth rate and small size at 20 °C there. The degree of differentiation between the developmental pathways was insensitive to larval density; high density only decreased both development time and body size to a certain degree. We conclude that the differences between the pathways are not due to the induction of a particular pathway itself, but geographically varying selection pressures shape the correlation structure among life history traits and their pathway-specific expression.


Developmental pathway Geographic variation Insects Phenotypic plasticity Thermal reaction norms 



We thank Matthew Symonds and three anonymous referees for useful comments on earlier drafts of the manuscript. This study was financed by Ella och Georg Ehrnrooths Stiftelse (grants to P.V. and S.M.K.), Finnish Cultural Foundation (P.V.) as well as Jenny and Antti Wihuri foundation (S.M.K.). All Finland’s guidelines and legal requirements for the use of animals in research were followed.

Supplementary material

10682_2013_9657_MOESM1_ESM.doc (634 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOC 635 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Panu Välimäki
    • 1
  • Sami M. Kivelä
    • 1
  • Maarit I. Mäenpää
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BiologyUniversity of OuluOuluFinland
  2. 2.Institute of Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK

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