Acoustic component and social context of the wing display of the walnut fly Rhagoletis juglandis

Henar Alonso-Pimentel, Hayward G. Spangler, Rene Rogers, Daniel R. Papaj

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Courtship signaling via wing vibration, accompanied by sound production, has been reported in several species of tephritids. In this large family of flies, sound communication as well as complex courtship displays appears to be restricted to species with lekking mating systems (i.e., Mediterranean fruit fly, Anastrepha and Dacus species). In contrast, in tephritid species with resource-defense mating systems, such as species in the genus Rhagoletis, little or no courtship behavior, acoustical or otherwise, has been described. Wing displays in Rhagoletis species have been considered to play a visual role. This study describes a distinctive wing display performed by males of the walnut fly, Rhagoletis juglandis. Laboratory experiments and field observations demonstrate that the male wing display plays a role in courtship. We used sound and vibration detectors to record the signals produced by this wing display. Using a combination of techniques, we were able to record both the very low-frequency vibration and its accompanying airborne infrasound (12-22 Hz) produced by the males.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)511-524
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Insect Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2000


  • Courtship
  • Near-field communication
  • Rhagoletis juglandis
  • Sound
  • Wing display
  • Wing vibration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science


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