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1 September 2000 Reflex Bleeding in Froghoppers (Homoptera: Cercopidae): Variation in Behavior and Taxonomic Distribution
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Abstract

Reflex bleeding in New World froghoppers is described in detail for the first time. Prosapia sp. n. adults exude hemolymph from rupture lines in pretarsal pads when attacked by predators. After an assault, food access permitted replenishment of exudate volume within 6 h. A survey of New World Cercopoidea (53 species) demonstrated the behavior to be synapomorphic in the predominantly aposematic family Cercopidae, but not present in the largely cryptic Aphrophoridae and Clastopteridae. A comparative study of four species [ Iphirhina quota (Distant), Mahanarva costaricensis (Distant), P. plagiata (Distant), and Prosapia sp. n.] showed that total volume of exudate, volume per weight, and response to general versus localized assaults varied among sexes, species, and habitats. Laboratory and field bioassays failed to demonstrate mechanical or chemical deterrency. In tandem with warning odors, however, conspicuousness coloration and reflexive discharge of blood form an elaborate warning signal in cercopid froghoppers, probably functioning as a startle stimulus that permits escape by jumping.

Daniel C. Peck "Reflex Bleeding in Froghoppers (Homoptera: Cercopidae): Variation in Behavior and Taxonomic Distribution," Annals of the Entomological Society of America 93(5), 1186-1194, (1 September 2000). https://doi.org/10.1603/0013-8746(2000)093[1186:RBIFHC]2.0.CO;2
Received: 19 November 1999; Accepted: 1 July 2000; Published: 1 September 2000
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