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Climate drivers of adult insect activity are conditioned by life history traits
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  • Michael Belitz,
  • Vijay Barve,
  • Joshua Doby,
  • Maggie Hantak,
  • Elise Larsen,
  • Daijiang Li,
  • Jessica Oswald,
  • Neeka Sewnath,
  • Mitchell Walters,
  • Narayani Barve,
  • Kamala Earl,
  • Nicholas Gardner,
  • Robert Guralnick,
  • Brian Stucky
Michael Belitz
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Vijay Barve
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Joshua Doby
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Maggie Hantak
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Elise Larsen
Georgetown University
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Daijiang Li
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Jessica Oswald
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Neeka Sewnath
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Mitchell Walters
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Narayani Barve
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Kamala Earl
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Nicholas Gardner
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Robert Guralnick
University of Florida
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Brian Stucky
Florida Museum of Natural History
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Abstract

Insect phenological lability is key for determining which species will adapt under environmental change. However, little is known about when adult insect activity terminates, and overall activity duration. We used community-science and museum specimen data to investigate the effects of climate and urbanization on timing of adult insect activity for 101 species varying in life history traits. We found detritivores and species with aquatic larval stages extend activity periods most rapidly in response to increasing regional temperature. Conversely, species with subterranean larval stages have relatively constant durations regardless of regional temperature. Multivoltine and univoltine species both extended their period of adult activity similarly in warmer conditions. Longer adult durations may represent a general response to warming, but voltinism data in subtropical environments is likely underreported. This effort provides a framework to address drivers of adult insect phenology at continental scales, and a basis for predicting species response to environmental change.