Geographic parthenogenesis in the stream mayfly Eurylophella funeralis in eastern North America

350 210 Stroud Water Research Center

Sweeney, B.W., and R.L. Vannote. 1987. Holarctic Ecology 10:52–59.

doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0587.1987.tb00738.x


Unisexual populations were found largely at the periphery of the geographic range of the mayfly Eurylophella funeralis in eastern North America. Bisexual populations generally had a normal sex ratio but at least two populations were observed with only about 2–11% males. Hatch success for unfertilized eggs depended on temperature but in general averaged >61% in unisexual populations and < 14% in bisexual populations. Eggs took about 65 d to hatch at 10°C and 19 d at 25°C; no hatching occurred at 5 or 30°C. Successful oviposition was observed for about 97% and 20% of unmated female adults from unisexual and bisexual populations respectively. The hatch success of unfertilized eggs for three geographically distinct bisexual populations was in versely correlated with the proportion of males in the populations. The genetic structure of bisexual and unisexual populations was very similar. Unisexual populations consists of clones, with as few as four recognizable phenotypes being present at a given location. All offspring had the same phenotype as the mother. Tychoparthenogenesis is suggested as the most reasonable working hypothesis concerning the origin of unisexual populations in E. funeralis.