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Abstract

We quantify variation in the temporal components of long-distance mate attraction signals produced by a North American field cricket, Gryllus rubens Scudder. Total signaling time, trilling bout duration, and hourly bout number exhibit high repeatability within individuals. Extensive variation exists across individuals: some males never signal while others signal for several hours each night; of the signalers, average trilling bout duration ranges from <1 min to well over an hour; some males produce only one trilling bout in an evening while others produce three bouts every 2 h. Body size, weight, wing morphology, and condition do not appear to explain the variation. We compare the temporal signaling components of G. rubens with its sister species, G. texensis. Although G. rubens produce slightly more trills per hour with slightly shorter trilling bout durations, the temporal components of these long-distance mate attraction signals are surprisingly similar across species.