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Mass occurrence of springtails on a moss cushion – what are they doing?
Swedish Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany. (Reproductive Biology of Bryophytes)
Swedish Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany.
2015 (English)In: Melting Pot, Swedish Museum of Natural History, Abstracts: https://vega.nrm.se/vanstermenyn/forskningochsamlingar/meltingpot/2015.9654.html, 2015Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The motile spermatozoids of bryophytes can swim up to a few centimetres. They require free water to fertilize the egg of the female organs, which sit on plants separate from the males in more than 50% of the species. When the sex organs are produced on different plants, this presents a serious obstacle to successful fertilization. The problems are overcome by a variety of mechanisms. Some of the more spectacular include spermatozoid transport up to at least several decimetres by water movement, by water drops spread from splash-cups surrounding the male organs up to two meters, by ejection up to15 centimetres into the air, or by having dwarf males that grow directly on the female plants. Here we report on another special kind of spermatozoid transfer that we came across during fieldwork in 2014, namely by micro-arthropods. Bryophyte fertilization mediated by animals was suggested more than a century ago, and was recently shown to occur in experimental settings. However, our observation is likely one of the first made directly in nature.

 

 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2015.
National Category
Evolutionary Biology
Research subject
Diversity of life
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:nrm:diva-1578OAI: oai:DiVA.org:nrm-1578DiVA: diva2:878508
Conference
Melting Pot, Swedish Museum of Natural History, 19 March 2015
Available from: 2015-12-09 Created: 2015-12-09 Last updated: 2016-09-29Bibliographically approved

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