The patterning of compensatory sugar feeding in the Australian sheep blowfly


Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3PS.


Abstract. The pattern of feeding is described for males of the Australian sheep blowfly, Lucilia cuprina, with ad libitum access to either 0.1 M or 1.0 M glucose solution. Flies given the 0.1 M solution ingested nearly 3 times the volume taken by flies given the 1.0 M solution by eating meals of, on average, twice the size about 1.5 times as frequently. Flies were usually relatively inactive following a meal, with the extent of this post-prandial quiescence being a function both of meal size and concentration of sugar. Quiescence lasted only about 20% of the average intermeal interval, however, and there was no correlation between meal size and time to the next meal. The crop emptied more slowly when it contained 1.0 M rather than 0.1 M glucose solution and the crop was, on average, fuller at the beginning of a meal on the higher concentration. The volume of solution imbibed during a meal was positively correlated with time since the end of the preceding meal. The average crop volume at the end of a meal was similar in flies feeding on 0.1 M and 1.0 M solutions. The results are considered in relation to published information on control of feeding and compensation in the blowfly Phormia regina.