Univoltine, Bivoltine, Multivoltine

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A univoltine species is a species that has one brood of offspring per year. Many species try and coincide their life cycle with that of another species (such as a food plant) on which they rely. Some univoltine species have long-lived adults. In the UK many species of dragonfly are univoltine. Adults emerge in early summer, mate and lay eggs. The larvae then develop (this can take some years) before eventually becoming an adult. However there is only one new brood of young each year. A bivoltine species is a species that has two broods of offspring per year. Some species have a mixed strategy. For example, in some locations, the Speckled Wood butterfly (Pararge aegeria) is both univoltine and bivoltine. It is thought that this mixed strategy helps the persistence of the species in areas where the weather can be poor towards the end of the season. Larvae of the second brood run the risk of not successfully completing their development and entering diapause before the weather turns cold. Larvae following the single brood (univoltine) strategy are more likely have completed development. A multivoltine species is a species that has two or more broods of offspring per year. Multivoltine species are often short lived insects such as mosquitoes or mayflies. They have a short adult lifespan and often die soon after mating. The larvae then develop quickly and multiple generations occur within a year. Mayflies are very short lived as adults. Most only live between one and four days. Another name for multivoltine is polyvoltine. Diapause is a state of arrested development of an organism. It is usually the result of environmental factors such as weather. Winter is most commonly avoided in temperate zones, but diapause is also used to avoid hot, dry summers and periods of food shortage in the tropics. There are two different types of diapause: Facultative and Obligatory.

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