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Keywords:

  • Inbreeding avoidance;
  • Locusta migratoria;
  • microsatellite;
  • polyandry;
  • sperm competition

Several studies suggest that polyandrous females bias paternity in favor of unrelated males to avoid inbreeding depression. Here we tested whether the migratory locust biases sperm usage toward unrelated males by analyzing the paternity of offspring from females mated with either two siblings, or two nonsiblings, or a sibling and a nonsibling in either order. We found that the eggs of females mated only with siblings had decreased hatching success. When females mated with both a nonsibling and a sibling, egg hatchability was significantly increased. Subsequent paternity analyses found no evidence that females could avoid fertilization by sibling males. Therefore, improvement of the hatchability of eggs sired by siblings suggests that rather than biased fertilization by females toward genetically compatible or superior males, male-induced maternal effects or direct effects of male ejaculates might influence the survival of offspring sired by related males.