Subsocial Behavior

Parental care arose on a number of occasions within the ovoviviparous Blaberidae and elsewhere just once, in the oviparous Cryptocercidae. One extreme of the subsocial range is represented by Byrsotria fumigata. From what we currently know of parent-offspring interactions in this species, subsociality consists of no more than long-term brooding behavior. First instars are able to recognize their own mother and prefer to aggregate beneath her for the first 15 days after hatch (Liechti and Bell, 1975). More

Fig. 8.3 (A) Newly hatched nymphs of Gromphadorhina portentosa feeding on secretory material expelled from the abdominal tip of the female (note left cercus). A new pulse of the material is just beginning to emerge. The oothecal case can be seen in the upper-right corner. Image captured from frame of videotape, courtesy of Jesse Perry. (B) Four young nymphs of Salganea taiwanensis feeding on the stomodeal fluids of the female, viewed through glass from below. Note antennae of the adult. Photo courtesy of Tadao Matsumoto.

Fig. 8.3 (A) Newly hatched nymphs of Gromphadorhina portentosa feeding on secretory material expelled from the abdominal tip of the female (note left cercus). A new pulse of the material is just beginning to emerge. The oothecal case can be seen in the upper-right corner. Image captured from frame of videotape, courtesy of Jesse Perry. (B) Four young nymphs of Salganea taiwanensis feeding on the stomodeal fluids of the female, viewed through glass from below. Note antennae of the adult. Photo courtesy of Tadao Matsumoto.

elaborate forms of subsocial behavior include those species in which morphological modifications of the nymphs or the female facilitate parental care. Specializations of the juveniles include appendages that aid in clinging to the female, and adaptations of their mouth-parts to facilitate unique feeding habits. Some females have evolved external brood chambers under their wing covers, and others have the ability to roll into a ball, pill bug-like (conglobulation), to protect ventrally clinging nymphs. Maternal care is the general rule, biparental care is recognized only in two taxa of wood-feeding cockroaches, and male uniparental care is unknown.

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