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Keywords:

  • dimorphism;
  • evolution;
  • arthropods;
  • olfaction;
  • glomeruli

Specialized olfactory lobe glomeruli relating to sexual or caste differences have been observed in at least five orders of insects, suggesting an early appearance of this trait in insect evolution. Dimorphism is not limited to nocturnal species, but occurs even in insects that are known to use vision for courtship. Other than a single description, there is no evidence for similar structures occurring in the Crustacea, suggesting that the evolution of dimorphic olfactory systems may typify terrestrial arthropods.