Infected Females Flick their Wings
Monarch butterflies can be infected with the OE virus. This virus affects about five percent of the eastern migratory species and more than 60 percent of the western species. In southern Florida, virtually all monarchs are infected. To learn more about the disease, participate in Project Monarch Health, a citizen science program tracking the movement of monarch butterflies.
Infected Males Break their Genitalia
Every year, approximately 8,000 men go to emergency rooms with penis injuries. Although these injuries are not the same as a penile break, they can still have a major impact on the person. Men who visit an emergency room will likely have a urologist on call, undergo an MRI to confirm the rupture, or undergo surgery.
The most common causes of penile fractures are blunt trauma, falling, and sexual intercourse. Sixty-six percent of penile fractures occur during heterosexual intercourse, with 50 percent occurring when a man enters a woman from behind. Other common causes include turning over in bed on an erect penis, or landing on a hard surface.
Infected Females Grow through the Insect’s Exoskeleton
The Wolbachia bacterium is a sexually transmitted parasite that can cause various developmental phenotypes in insects. It has the potential to cause feminization, or the development of genetic males into females. Unlike other Wolbachia-induced phenotypes, feminization is a more direct process, and it offers insights into the processes that govern arthropod sex development.
Infected Males Grow through the Insect’s Brain
A parasitic fly that grows through an insect’s brain can infect other wasp colonies by infecting the females. The females show expression patterns associated with the gyne region of the brain. The parasitoid exploits this phenotypic plasticity to shift naturally occurring social behavior in a way that benefits it.
Infected Females have Distorted Genitalia
The genital region of infected females often looks distorted and abnormal. The female genital tract is characterized by abnormalities of the Mullerian ducts, which result in malformations of the female genital tract during embryonic development. While female genital abnormalities are most commonly present after puberty, in some cases, abnormalities are present during childhood or young adulthood.
Infected Males Mate with Infected Females
The prevalence of OE-like infection in frogs has increased significantly over the past few decades. The OE-like infection affects both males and females. When males mate with infected females, the resulting offspring are more likely to be infected, and the offspring may have higher parasite burdens. In addition, OE-like infections have been associated with shorter lifespans, and infected males may choose uninfected females in an effort to extend their lives.
Males infected with Wolbachia are compatible with both infected and uninfected females, but infected females produce between five and twenty percent fewer offspring. Interestingly, females with an infection can also suffer additional fitness costs related to sperm limitation, and this could result in decreased fecundity in the offspring. These effects were incorporated into a model of fecundity and offspring production.
Infected Females Mate with Infected Males
Males and females paired with infected partners did not mate more often than those from uninfected pairs. Moreover, infected males and females did not mate with infected partners more than three times. The difference was not significant and there was no difference in the choice of male.
Females with the infected parasite have shorter snoods than the uninfected ones. This is contrary to the behavior of the uninfected females, which prefer to mate with infected males. The time at which a female calls is important for her choice of male. The earlier she calls the male, the more likely she will choose him. This suggests that the parasite has sex-specific effects.