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Dynastes hercules (page 7)

An example of the "minor" form of the male D. hercules.  Photos courtesy of J. Lai.

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The same 77 mm minor male shown on the previous page.  Occasionally, a male will appear that has a relatively normally sized body, yet has horns which are rather small in relation to its body size.  Therefore, horn development cannot be entirely related to mere bulk of the insect.  Most of the time however, males with small bodies will have relatively short, stunted horns, and males with large bodies will generally have long horns.
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Dynastes hercules (male) - Image  J. Lai

 
Dynastes hercules (male) - Image  J. Lai
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A close-up view of the head and thorax of the same male.  Rather small males such as this are usually just as reproductively functional as more normally-sized males of 14 mm+, despite the fact that they are at a disadvantage during competition with larger males over mates in the breeding season.  Used as powerful pry bars, the horns play a vital role in the dominance battles which occur between males of this species.
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Back to Dynastes hercules page 6


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