Long Legs And Combat Outcomes Among Male Cave Crickets
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About The Author

I am a naturalist, zoologist and behavioural ecologist based in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. I focus my research attention on terrestrial invertebrates and I am continually astounded by the diversity in their morphology and behaviour. In New Zealand, we are fortunate to have some of the most remarkable arthropods in our backyards and the Holwell lab has explored much of this beautiful country, along with Australia and South-East Asia searching for exciting research topics. Currently, we have a major focus on understanding the evolution of diverse and exaggerated weaponry in harvestmen, spiders and weta along with exploring the evolution of genitalia and the dynamics of scramble competition in arthropods. I do not endorse the feeding of wild birds…….except regent bowerbirds……they’re smart, they know the risks.

                       

Long Legs And Combat Outcomes Among Male Cave Crickets

Some animals possess extraordinarily enlarged or specialized structures used as weaponry for combat over mating rights – think of the huge antlers of elk or the tusks of elephants. However, in proportion to body size, many of the most extreme weapons are carried by tiny invertebrates. Like the mammals we are familiar with, male insects also do battle to win access to females, and in many cases, they wield bizarre structures in the form of enlarged or elaborated limbs, horns,...

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