Prolonged exposure to low temperature generally induces deleterious effects on survival and reproduction of insects. Reproduction costs are well documented in cold-exposed female parasitoids, but there is little information concerning males. In some species, low temperature is suspected to cause male sterility. Mummies of the aphid parasitoid Aphidius colemani Viereck (Hymenoptera: Aphidiinae) were exposed to either ?uctuating thermal regimens (FTR: 4°C, 22 h; 20°C, 2 h) or constant low temperature (CLT: 4°C) for 15 d. We verified whether cold exposure can sterilize males and evaluated treatment-related survival, reproductive potential, and mobility parameters. Sterility trials showed that cold-exposed males were all fertile. Survival and reproductive potential of males (e.g., mating success, premating period, and competition for mating) were negatively affected when individuals were exposed to CLT. These alterations were associated with a reduction in locomotion performances during premating period. When parasitoids were exposed to FTR, survival, reproductive potential, and mobility parameters were unaffected. The reduced survival and mobility under CLT, probably results physiological perturbations: processes that may have a limited impact on individuals exposed to FTR. The consequence of mobility reduction on partner acceptance and competitive mating ability is discussed.
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