Predicting Insect Development in Changing Climates: Bean Beetle Phenology Modeling

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Drs. Brian Yurk and Aaron Putzke

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Traditional development models for poikilotherms assume that development rates depend on temperature, but do not allow rates to vary as an individual ages within a life stage. We designed experiments to test this assumption using bean beetles. Our hypothesis is that the time that bean beetle embryos are exposed to a period of higher or lower temperature will impact their development time. According to the age-independent model, embryos spending the same amount of time at each temperature, regardless of when they are exposed to those temperatures, will take the same amount of time to develop. Our preliminary results suggest that this is not the case, supporting the possibility of age-dependent aging.


This research was supported by The Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the National Science Foundation.

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