The voyeurs' guide to Drosophila melanogaster courtship

Behav Processes. 2003 Sep 29;64(2):211-223. doi: 10.1016/s0376-6357(03)00136-0.


Drosophila melanogaster has a long and distinguished history as a model organism in studies of sex-specific behaviour. Courtship is relevant to a wide variety of areas of biological research, from investigations into the evolution of sex-specific behaviours, to studies of the molecular mechanisms underlying the perception and processing of sex-specific information, and the identification of genes that enable a fly to behave in a sex-specific fashion. To address any of these issues it is essential that courtship behaviour is investigated in a robust, reproducible and reliable manner. In this review I consider many of the problems that one might encounter in a study of Drosophila courtship, and how such issues may be addressed.