Relationships between egg size and clutch size among European species of Sympetrinae (Odonata: Libellulidae)


A negative relationship between clutch size and egg size is generally expected. However, no such trade off has been reported in Odonata. In this paper we analyse relationships between egg size and clutch size in the dragonfly subfamily of Sympetrinae using material from Norway, Sweden, Germany and France. Clutch size varied within and among the species, and only maximum clutch size was comparable between species. Both egg length and width varied among species. Moreover, mean egg length differed significantly intraspecifically among individual clutches of all species. We found mean egg length to be negatively correlated to clutch size, confirming the trade off between egg size and clutch size across species. Clutch size was positively correlated to female size, but egg size was not.

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