Behavior

During courtship, males of L. fontinalis first struggle with, then dominate, and finally defend their intended partners in precop-ulatory mate guarding. Defense is necessary to prevent a single male from dislodging the paired male and taking his place. During precopulatory mate guarding, the male carries the female beneath him for one to three days. Females are receptive for only a short time, so the behavior appears to assure that the male is in the correct location when the female begins her maturation molt and is ready to be fertilized. Males seem to prefer females who are close to parturitional molt.

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