Week Fourteen: Drosophila Mating Behavior

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nrg1101-879a-f1.gifAfter much struggle, we are finally done with the drosophila development lab. Our assignment was to pick something interesting during drosophila development (i.e. mating to pupae hatching) and record it using a Leica Wild M3C Scope and a PixieLINK camera. My lab partner and I put two flies (male and female) into a small petri dish with a damp KIMTECH wipe around the sides. Although this proved to be troublesome during recording, it allowed a moist environment for the flies to thrive.

During drosophila mating, males exhibit a unique courtship behavior in order to engage the female. Initially, the male circled the female in order to orient himself to her. Unless male flies are desperate, they will only engage in copulation with a virgin female fly. After orienting himself to the female, he began to flicker his wings at her. Then, the male chased the female around the petri dish, which was hard to follow in order to capture the video. The male, then, began to tap the female when he got close enough to her. It appeared as though the male also engaged in some other mating behaviors but it was hard to tell. The male attempted to copulate with the female but there was no clear copulation seen.

An interesting note: our female displayed mutant (white) eyes and very short wings. We were not sure if her wings were short because she was young or if she also displayed a mutant wing type, as well.

After many hours attempting to get perfect timing for certain development behaviors of fruit flies, we finally succeeded! Attached below are three videos that demonstrate our results as described above. Enjoy!

Fruit Fly Mating Behavior 1: iPhone Capture

Fruit Fly Mating Behavior 2

Fruit Fly Mating Behavior 3

Fruit Fly Mating Behavior

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This page contains a single entry by walsh414 published on April 15, 2013 1:32 PM.

Week Thirteen: Maternal and Zygotic was the previous entry in this blog.

Week Fifteen: Neurogenesis and developmental consequences is the next entry in this blog.

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