Document Type

Peer-Review Article


The deltocephaline leafhopper, Graminella nigrifrons, produces low intensity sub- strate transmitted vibrations (signals) to facilitate location of virgin females by males during courtship. In the laboratory, signals produced on maize leaves were received by a phonographic cartridge, amplified, and analyzed on an oscillograph and sonograph. Male calls, that are produced spontaneously, are complex, consisting of three consecutive sections. Section 1 consists of ca. 3 sec of irregular clicks. Section 2 has ca. 4 sec of repeated phrases consisting of a continuous series of 0.4 sec chirps and a roll. Section 3 consists of ca. 5 sec of an intermittent series of 0.2 sec chirps and a roll. Female calls are produced in response to male calls. Female calls are simple compared to male calls and consist of ca. 4-5 sec of low frequency clicking. Signal patterns of G. nigrifrons are compared to those of other leafhoppers and evolutionary scenarios are presented to account for the observed gender differ­ences in signals.

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