Courtship in Drosophila melanogaster involves a series of innate, complex behaviors that allow male and female flies to exchange sensory information and assess the quality of a potential mate. Although highly robust and stereotypical, courtship behaviors can be modulated by internal state and experience. This protocol describes methods for designing and carrying out experiments that measure courtship performance in single-pair assays, in which a male is paired with a female, or in competitive assays, in which a male is presented with a female and with a male competitor. It also includes approaches for measuring female sexual receptivity during courtship.
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