Friend or Foe Wig? Cohabitation Preferences in the Maritime Earwig, Anisolabis maritima
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Aggregations can form due to resource limitations but can be potentiated by group benefits or for temporary mate selection. Maritime earwigs, Anisolabis maritima, are insects found in aggregations under beach debris in most temperate and tropical regions. Cohabitation is thought to be due to resource limitation but no studies have thus been done. This study compared size, sex and shelter as determinants in cohabitation. Cohabitation was found to be only preferred among different sized males when shelter is absent. Females preferred not to cohabitate in most cases but were more tolerant of cohabitating with males. Shelters played a key role in encouraging separate living which may indicate it is a limited shared resource.