Comparison of life-history traits of the two male morphs of the bulb mite, Rhizoglyphus robini.Exp Appl Acarol 2000; 24(2):115-21EA
Two basic male morphs occur in several species of the family Acaridae: heteromorphic fighters, possessing a thickened and sharply terminated third pair of legs, and homeomorphic males with unmodified legs. We compared major life-history traits of the two morphs in the bulb mite, Rhizoglyphus robini. We found no significant differences in development time or virility, but homeomorphic males lived 23% longer than heteromorphs. We discuss the possibility that the trade-off between longevity and adaptation for fighting maintains genetic variation for the male morph in the studied species.