By Autumn Otto, Biological Sciences and Environmental Studies
Advisor: Stephen Matter
Abstract: In my research, I am examining the oviposition tactics of the alpine butterfly Parnassius smintheus. Oviposition is a possible example of a behavioral response that modifies the effects of climate change on population size. to answer the question: how can animal behavior modify the impacts climate change has on populations? To gather temperature data, data loggers were set out in three meadow habitats where oviposition may occur. I have examined the minimum, maximum, and mean temperatures for each of three apline meadow habitats home to different meta-populations and analysed the temperatures of oviposition sites in relation to what is available in each meadow. The comparison between the temperatures of oviposition site choice and temperatures available in the meadow were used to draw conclusions about whether Parnassius oviposition behavior is mitigating or abetting threats faced to populations due climate change.