A genetic marker for investigating paternity and maternity in the burying beetle Nicrophorus orbicollis (Coleoptera: Silphidae)

TitleA genetic marker for investigating paternity and maternity in the burying beetle Nicrophorus orbicollis (Coleoptera: Silphidae)
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1991
AuthorsTrumbo ST, Fiore AJ
JournalJournal of the New York Entomological Society
Volume99
Issue4
Pagination637-642
KeywordsSPERM
Abstract

A purebred "spotless" line of Nicrophorus orbicollis was produced by inbreeding. Spotless beetles completely lack orange markings on the basal portion of the elytra. The spotless trait appears to be largely under the influence of a single gene and is an excellent genetic marker for paternity or maternity in a variety of competitive breeding situations. In the laboratory, individuals possessing the spotless trait were as reproductively successful as normally marked beetles. The spotless marker was used to demonstrate that males which pair with a female achieve a high level of paternity. Paternity remained high in a second brood even when the male was separated from the female in the interval between reproductive attempts.