WorldWideScience

Sample records for ant dispersal assemblages

  1. Climate mediates the effects of disturbance on ant assemblage structure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Heloise; Sanders, Nathan J.; Dunn, Robert R.; Watson, Simon; Photakis, Manoli; Abril, Silvia; Andersen, Alan N.; Angulo, Elena; Armbrecht, Inge; Arnan, Xavier; Baccaro, Fabricio B.; Bishop, Tom R.; Boulay, Raphael; Castracani, Cristina; Del Toro, Israel; Delsinne, Thibaut; Diaz, Mireia; Donoso, David A.; Enríquez, Martha L.; Fayle, Tom M.; Feener, Donald H.; Fitzpatrick, Matthew C.; Gómez, Crisanto; Grasso, Donato A.; Groc, Sarah; Heterick, Brian; Hoffmann, Benjamin D.; Lach, Lori; Lattke, John; Leponce, Maurice; Lessard, Jean-Philippe; Longino, John; Lucky, Andrea; Majer, Jonathan; Menke, Sean B.; Mezger, Dirk; Mori, Alessandra; Munyai, Thinandavha C.; Paknia, Omid; Pearce-Duvet, Jessica; Pfeiffer, Martin; Philpott, Stacy M.; de Souza, Jorge L. P.; Tista, Melanie; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L.; Vonshak, Merav; Parr, Catherine L.

    2015-01-01

    Many studies have focused on the impacts of climate change on biological assemblages, yet little is known about how climate interacts with other major anthropogenic influences on biodiversity, such as habitat disturbance. Using a unique global database of 1128 local ant assemblages, we examined whether climate mediates the effects of habitat disturbance on assemblage structure at a global scale. Species richness and evenness were associated positively with temperature, and negatively with disturbance. However, the interaction among temperature, precipitation and disturbance shaped species richness and evenness. The effect was manifested through a failure of species richness to increase substantially with temperature in transformed habitats at low precipitation. At low precipitation levels, evenness increased with temperature in undisturbed sites, peaked at medium temperatures in disturbed sites and remained low in transformed sites. In warmer climates with lower rainfall, the effects of increasing disturbance on species richness and evenness were akin to decreases in temperature of up to 9°C. Anthropogenic disturbance and ongoing climate change may interact in complicated ways to shape the structure of assemblages, with hot, arid environments likely to be at greatest risk. PMID:25994675

  2. Extended phenotype: nematodes turn ants into bird-dispersed fruits

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hughes, D P; Kronauer, D J C; Boomsma, J J

    2008-01-01

    A recent study has discovered a novel extended phenotype of a nematode which alters its ant host to resemble ripe fruit. The infected ants are in turn eaten by frugivorous birds that disperse the nematode's eggs.......A recent study has discovered a novel extended phenotype of a nematode which alters its ant host to resemble ripe fruit. The infected ants are in turn eaten by frugivorous birds that disperse the nematode's eggs....

  3. An invasive slug exploits an ant-seed dispersal mutualism.

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    Meadley Dunphy, Shannon A; Prior, Kirsten M; Frederickson, Megan E

    2016-05-01

    Plant-animal mutualisms, such as seed dispersal, are often vulnerable to disruption by invasive species. Here, we show for the first time how a non-ant invasive species negatively affects seed dispersal by ants. We examined the effects of several animal species that co-occur in a temperate deciduous forest-including native and invasive seed-dispersing ants (Aphaenogaster rudis and Myrmica rubra, respectively), an invasive slug (Arion subfuscus), and native rodents-on a native myrmecochorous plant, Asarum canadense. We experimentally manipulated ant, slug, and rodent access to seed depots and measured seed removal. We also video-recorded depots to determine which other taxa interact with seeds. We found that A. rudis was the main disperser of seeds and that A. subfuscus consumed elaiosomes without dispersing seeds. Rodent visitation was rare, and rodent exclusion had no significant effect on seed or elaiosome removal. We then used data obtained from laboratory and field mesocosm experiments to determine how elaiosome robbing by A. subfuscus affects seed dispersal by A. rudis and M. rubra. We found that elaiosome robbing by slugs reduced seed dispersal by ants, especially in mesocosms with A. rudis, which picks up seeds more slowly than M. rubra. Taken together, our results show that elaiosome robbing by an invasive slug reduces seed dispersal by ants, suggesting that invasive slugs can have profound negative effects on seed dispersal mutualisms.

  4. Signals can trump rewards in attracting seed-dispersing ants.

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    Kyle M Turner

    Full Text Available Both rewards and signals are important in mutualisms. In myrmecochory, or seed dispersal by ants, the benefits to plants are relatively well studied, but less is known about why ants pick up and move seeds. We examined seed dispersal by the ant Aphaenogaster rudis of four co-occurring species of plants, and tested whether morphology, chemical signaling, or the nutritional quality of fatty seed appendages called elaiosomes influenced dispersal rates. In removal trials, ants quickly collected diaspores (seeds plus elaiosomes of Asarum canadense, Trillium grandiflorum, and Sanguinaria canadensis, but largely neglected those of T. erectum. This discrepancy was not explained by differences in the bulk cost-benefit ratio, as assessed by the ratio of seed to elaiosome mass. We also provisioned colonies with diaspores from one of these four plant species or no diaspores as a control. Colonies performed best when fed S. canadensis diaspores, worst when fed T. grandiflorum, and intermediately when fed A. canadense, T. erectum, or no diaspores. Thus, the nutritional rewards in elaiosomes affected colony performance, but did not completely predict seed removal. Instead, high levels of oleic acid in T. grandiflorum elaiosomes may explain why ants disperse these diaspores even though they reduce ant colony performance. We show for the first time that different elaiosome-bearing plants provide rewards of different quality to ant colonies, but also that ants appear unable to accurately assess reward quality when encountering seeds. Instead, we suggest that signals can trump rewards as attractants of ants to seeds.

  5. Riverine Landscape Patch Heterogeneity Drives Riparian Ant Assemblages in the Scioto River Basin, USA.

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    Paradzayi Tagwireyi

    Full Text Available Although the principles of landscape ecology are increasingly extended to include riverine landscapes, explicit applications are few. We investigated associations between patch heterogeneity and riparian ant assemblages at 12 riverine landscapes of the Scioto River, Ohio, USA, that represent urban/developed, agricultural, and mixed (primarily forested, but also wetland, grassland/fallow, and exurban land-use settings. Using remotely-sensed and ground-collected data, we delineated riverine landscape patch types (crop, grass/herbaceous, gravel, lawn, mudflat, open water, shrub, swamp, and woody vegetation, computed patch metrics (area, density, edge, richness, and shape, and conducted coordinated sampling of surface-active Formicidae assemblages. Ant density and species richness was lower in agricultural riverine landscapes than at mixed or developed reaches (measured using S [total number of species], but not using Menhinick's Index [DM], whereas ant diversity (using the Berger-Park Index [DBP] was highest in agricultural reaches. We found no differences in ant density, richness, or diversity among internal riverine landscape patches. However, certain characteristics of patches influenced ant communities. Patch shape and density were significant predictors of richness (S: R2 = 0.72; DM: R2=0.57. Patch area, edge, and shape emerged as important predictors of DBP (R2 = 0.62 whereas patch area, edge, and density were strongly related to ant density (R2 = 0.65. Non-metric multidimensional scaling and analysis of similarities distinguished ant assemblage composition in grass and swamp patches from crop, gravel, lawn, and shrub as well as ant assemblages in woody vegetation patches from crop, lawn, and gravel (stress = 0.18, R2 = 0.64. These findings lend insight into the utility of landscape ecology to river science by providing evidence that spatial habitat patterns within riverine landscapes can influence assemblage characteristics of riparian

  6. Climate mediates the effects of disturbance on ant assemblage structure

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gibb, H.; Sanders, N. J.; Dunn, R. R.; Watson, S.; Photakis, M.; Abril, S.; Andersen, A. N.; Angulo, E.; Armbrecht, I.; Arnan, X.; Baccaro, F. B.; Bishop, T. R.; Boulay, R.; Castracani, C.; Del Toro, I.; Delsinne, T.; Diaz, M.; Donoso, D. A.; Enríquez, M. L.; Fayle, Tom Maurice; Feener Jr., D. H.; Fitzpatrik, M. C.; Gómez, C.; Grasso, D. A.; Groc, S.; Heterick, B.; Hoffmann, B. D.; Lach, L.; Lattke, J.; Leponce, M.; Lessard, J.-P.; Longino, J.; Lucky, A.; Majer, J.; Menke, S. B.; Mezger, D.; Mori, A.; Munyai, T. C.; Paknia, O.; Pearce-Duvet, J.; Pfeiffer, M.; Philpott, S. M.; de Souza, J. L. P.; Tista, M.; Vasconcelos, H. L.; Vonshak, M.; Parr, C. L.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 282, č. 1808 (2015), article number 20150418 ISSN 0962-8452 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : assemblage structure * dominance * global warming Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 4.823, year: 2015

  7. Agricultural matrices affect ground ant assemblage composition inside forest fragments.

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    Diego Santana Assis

    Full Text Available The establishment of agricultural matrices generally involves deforestation, which leads to fragmentation of the remaining forest. This fragmentation can affect forest dynamics both positively and negatively. Since most animal species are affected, certain groups can be used to measure the impact of such fragmentation. This study aimed to measure the impacts of agricultural crops (matrices on ant communities of adjacent lower montane Atlantic rainforest fragments. We sampled nine forest fragments at locations surrounded by different agricultural matrices, namely: coffee (3 replicates; sugarcane (3; and pasture (3. At each site we installed pitfall traps along a 500 m transect from the interior of the matrix to the interior of the fragment (20 pitfall traps ~25 m apart. Each transect was partitioned into four categories: interior of the matrix; edge of the matrix; edge of the fragment; and interior of the fragment. For each sample site, we measured ant species richness and ant community composition within each transect category. Ant richness and composition differed between fragments and matrices. Each sample location had a specific composition of ants, probably because of the influence of the nature and management of the agricultural matrices. Species composition in the coffee matrix had the highest similarity to its corresponding fragment. The variability in species composition within forest fragments surrounded by pasture was greatest when compared with forest fragments surrounded by sugarcane or, to a lesser extent, coffee. Functional guild composition differed between locations, but the most representative guild was 'generalist' both in the agricultural matrices and forest fragments. Our results are important for understanding how agricultural matrices act on ant communities, and also, how these isolated forest fragments could act as an island of biodiversity in an 'ocean of crops'.

  8. Agricultural matrices affect ground ant assemblage composition inside forest fragments.

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    Assis, Diego Santana; Dos Santos, Iracenir Andrade; Ramos, Flavio Nunes; Barrios-Rojas, Katty Elena; Majer, Jonathan David; Vilela, Evaldo Ferreira

    2018-01-01

    The establishment of agricultural matrices generally involves deforestation, which leads to fragmentation of the remaining forest. This fragmentation can affect forest dynamics both positively and negatively. Since most animal species are affected, certain groups can be used to measure the impact of such fragmentation. This study aimed to measure the impacts of agricultural crops (matrices) on ant communities of adjacent lower montane Atlantic rainforest fragments. We sampled nine forest fragments at locations surrounded by different agricultural matrices, namely: coffee (3 replicates); sugarcane (3); and pasture (3). At each site we installed pitfall traps along a 500 m transect from the interior of the matrix to the interior of the fragment (20 pitfall traps ~25 m apart). Each transect was partitioned into four categories: interior of the matrix; edge of the matrix; edge of the fragment; and interior of the fragment. For each sample site, we measured ant species richness and ant community composition within each transect category. Ant richness and composition differed between fragments and matrices. Each sample location had a specific composition of ants, probably because of the influence of the nature and management of the agricultural matrices. Species composition in the coffee matrix had the highest similarity to its corresponding fragment. The variability in species composition within forest fragments surrounded by pasture was greatest when compared with forest fragments surrounded by sugarcane or, to a lesser extent, coffee. Functional guild composition differed between locations, but the most representative guild was 'generalist' both in the agricultural matrices and forest fragments. Our results are important for understanding how agricultural matrices act on ant communities, and also, how these isolated forest fragments could act as an island of biodiversity in an 'ocean of crops'.

  9. Changes in canopy structure and ant assemblages affect soil ecosystem variables as a foundation species declines

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kendrick, Joseph A.; Ribbons, Relena Rose; Classen, Aimee Taylor

    2015-01-01

    in ant species composition would interact to alter soil ecosystem variables. In the Harvard Forest Hemlock Removal Experiment (HF-HeRE), established in 2003, T. canadensis in large plots were killed in place or logged and removed to mimic adelgid infestation or salvage harvesting, respectively. In 2006...... (richness and abundance) of ants increases rapidly as T. canadensis is lost from the stands. Because ants live and forage at the litter-soil interface, we hypothesized that environmental changes caused by hemlock loss (e.g., increased light and warmth at the forest floor, increased soil pH) and shifts......, we built ant exclosure subplots within all of the canopy manipulation plots to examine direct and interactive effects of canopy change and ant assemblage composition on soil and litter variables. Throughout HF-HeRE, T. canadensis was colonized by the adelgid in 2009, and the infested trees are now...

  10. Ant exclusion in citrus over an 8-year period reveals a pervasive yet changing effect of ants on a Mediterranean spider assemblage.

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    Mestre, L; Piñol, J; Barrientos, J A; Espadaler, X

    2013-09-01

    Ants and spiders are ubiquitous generalist predators that exert top-down control on herbivore populations. Research shows that intraguild interactions between ants and spiders can negatively affect spider populations, but there is a lack of long-term research documenting the strength of such interactions and the potentially different effects of ants on the diverse array of species in a spider assemblage. Similarly, the suitability of family-level surrogates for finding patterns revealed by species-level data (taxonomic sufficiency) has almost never been tested in spider assemblages. We present a long-term study in which we tested the impact of ants on the spider assemblage of a Mediterranean citrus grove by performing sequential 1-year experimental exclusions on tree canopies for 8 years. We found that ants had a widespread influence on the spider assemblage, although the effect was only evident in the last 5 years of the study. During those years, ants negatively affected many spiders, and effects were especially strong for sedentary spiders. Analyses at the family level also detected assemblage differences between treatments, but they concealed the different responses to ant exclusion shown by some related spider species. Our findings show that the effects of experimental manipulations in ecology can vary greatly over time and highlight the need for long-term studies to document species interactions.

  11. Does an ant-dispersed plant, Viola reichenbachiana, suffer from reduced seed dispersal under inundation disturbances?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Prinzing, A.; Dauber, J.; Hammer, E.; Hammouti, N.; Bohning-Gaese, K.

    2008-01-01

    Many plant species use ants as seed dispersers. This dispersal mode is considered to be susceptible to disturbances, but the effect of natural, small-scale disturbances is still unknown. We investigated how small-scale disturbances due to inundation affect seed dispersal in Viola reichenbachiana, a

  12. Geographic mosaic of plant evolution: extrafloral nectary variation mediated by ant and herbivore assemblages.

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    Anselmo Nogueira

    Full Text Available Herbivory is an ecological process that is known to generate different patterns of selection on defensive plant traits across populations. Studies on this topic could greatly benefit from the general framework of the Geographic Mosaic Theory of Coevolution (GMT. Here, we hypothesize that herbivory represents a strong pressure for extrafloral nectary (EFN bearing plants, with differences in herbivore and ant visitor assemblages leading to different evolutionary pressures among localities and ultimately to differences in EFN abundance and function. In this study, we investigate this hypothesis by analyzing 10 populations of Anemopaegma album (30 individuals per population distributed through ca. 600 km of Neotropical savanna and covering most of the geographic range of this plant species. A common garden experiment revealed a phenotypic differentiation in EFN abundance, in which field and experimental plants showed a similar pattern of EFN variation among populations. We also did not find significant correlations between EFN traits and ant abundance, herbivory and plant performance across localities. Instead, a more complex pattern of ant-EFN variation, a geographic mosaic, emerged throughout the geographical range of A. album. We modeled the functional relationship between EFNs and ant traits across ant species and extended this phenotypic interface to characterize local situations of phenotypic matching and mismatching at the population level. Two distinct types of phenotypic matching emerged throughout populations: (1 a population with smaller ants (Crematogaster crinosa matched with low abundance of EFNs; and (2 seven populations with bigger ants (Camponotus species matched with higher EFN abundances. Three matched populations showed the highest plant performance and narrower variance of EFN abundance, representing potential plant evolutionary hotspots. Cases of mismatched and matched populations with the lowest performance were associated

  13. Are ant assemblages of Brazilian veredas characterised by location or habitat type?

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    CB Costa-Milanez

    Full Text Available Wetland areas in the Brazilian Cerrado, known as “veredas”, represent ecosystems formed on sandy soils with high concentrations of peat, and are responsible for the recharge of aquiferous reservoirs. They are currently under threat by various human activities, most notably the clearing of vegetation for Eucalyptus plantations. Despite their ecological importance and high conservation value, little is known about the actual effects of human disturbance on the animal community. To assess how habitat within different veredas, and plantations surrounding them affect ant assemblages, we selected four independent vereda locations, two being impacted by Eucalyptus monoculture (one younger and one mature plantation and two controls, where the wetland was surrounded by cerrado vegetation. Ant sampling was conducted in May 2010 (dry season using three complementary methods, namely baits, pitfall traps, and hand collection, in the wetland and in the surrounding habitats. A total of 7,575 ants were sampled, belonging to seven subfamilies, 32 genera and 124 species. Ant species richness and abundance did not differ between vereda locations, but did between the habitats. When impacted by the monoculture, ant species richness and abundance decreased in wetlands, but were less affected in the cerrado habitat. Ant species composition differed between the three habitats and between vereda locations. Eucalyptus plantations had an ant species composition defined by high dominance of Pheidole sp. and Solenopsis invicta, while natural habitats were defined by Camponotus and Crematogaster species. Atta sexdens was strictly confined to native habitats of non-impacted “veredas”. Eucalyptus monocultures require high quantities of water in the early stages, which may have caused a decrease in groundwater level in the wetland, allowing hypogeic ants such as Labidus praedator to colonise this habitat.

  14. Are ant assemblages of Brazilian veredas characterised by location or habitat type?

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    Costa-Milanez, C B; Lourenço-Silva, G; Castro, P T A; Majer, J D; Ribeiro, S P

    2014-02-01

    Wetland areas in the Brazilian Cerrado, known as "veredas", represent ecosystems formed on sandy soils with high concentrations of peat, and are responsible for the recharge of aquiferous reservoirs. They are currently under threat by various human activities, most notably the clearing of vegetation for Eucalyptus plantations. Despite their ecological importance and high conservation value, little is known about the actual effects of human disturbance on the animal community. To assess how habitat within different veredas, and plantations surrounding them affect ant assemblages, we selected four independent vereda locations, two being impacted by Eucalyptus monoculture (one younger and one mature plantation) and two controls, where the wetland was surrounded by cerrado vegetation. Ant sampling was conducted in May 2010 (dry season) using three complementary methods, namely baits, pitfall traps, and hand collection, in the wetland and in the surrounding habitats. A total of 7,575 ants were sampled, belonging to seven subfamilies, 32 genera and 124 species. Ant species richness and abundance did not differ between vereda locations, but did between the habitats. When impacted by the monoculture, ant species richness and abundance decreased in wetlands, but were less affected in the cerrado habitat. Ant species composition differed between the three habitats and between vereda locations. Eucalyptus plantations had an ant species composition defined by high dominance of Pheidole sp. and Solenopsis invicta, while natural habitats were defined by Camponotus and Crematogaster species. Atta sexdens was strictly confined to native habitats of non-impacted "veredas". Eucalyptus monocultures require high quantities of water in the early stages, which may have caused a decrease in groundwater level in the wetland, allowing hypogeic ants such as Labidus praedator to colonise this habitat.

  15. Timing of dispersal: effect of ants on aphids

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kindlmann, Pavel; Hullé, M.; Stadler, B.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 152, č. 4 (2007), s. 625-631 ISSN 0029-8549 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA6087301; GA MŠk LC06073; GA ČR(CZ) GEDIV/06/E013 Grant - others:-(DE) BMBF No. PT BEO 51-0339476D Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60870520 Keywords : Ant attendance * Dispersal * Mutualistic systems * Suction traps Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.973, year: 2007

  16. Identifying Shifts in Leaf-Litter Ant Assemblages (Hymenoptera: Formicidae across Ecosystem Boundaries Using Multiple Sampling Methods.

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    Michal Wiezik

    Full Text Available Global or regional environmental changes in climate or land use have been increasingly implied in shifts in boundaries (ecotones between adjacent ecosystems such as beech or oak-dominated forests and forest-steppe ecotones that frequently co-occur near the southern range limits of deciduous forest biome in Europe. Yet, our ability to detect changes in biological communities across these ecosystems, or to understand their environmental drivers, can be hampered when different sampling methods are required to characterize biological communities of the adjacent but ecologically different ecosystems. Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae have been shown to be particularly sensitive to changes in temperature and vegetation and they require different sampling methods in closed vs. open habitats. We compared ant assemblages of closed-forests (beech- or oak-dominated and open forest-steppe habitats in southwestern Carpathians using methods for closed-forest (litter sifting and open habitats (pitfall trapping, and developed an integrated sampling approach to characterize changes in ant assemblages across these adjacent ecosystems. Using both methods, we collected 5,328 individual ant workers from 28 species. Neither method represented ant communities completely, but pitfall trapping accounted for more species (24 than litter sifting (16. Although pitfall trapping characterized differences in species richness and composition among the ecosystems better, with beech forest being most species poor and ecotone most species rich, litter sifting was more successful in identifying characteristic litter-dwelling species in oak-dominated forest. The integrated sampling approach using both methods yielded more accurate characterization of species richness and composition, and particularly so in species-rich forest-steppe habitat where the combined sample identified significantly higher number of species compared to either of the two methods on their own. Thus, an integrated

  17. Identifying Shifts in Leaf-Litter Ant Assemblages (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) across Ecosystem Boundaries Using Multiple Sampling Methods.

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    Wiezik, Michal; Svitok, Marek; Wieziková, Adela; Dovčiak, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Global or regional environmental changes in climate or land use have been increasingly implied in shifts in boundaries (ecotones) between adjacent ecosystems such as beech or oak-dominated forests and forest-steppe ecotones that frequently co-occur near the southern range limits of deciduous forest biome in Europe. Yet, our ability to detect changes in biological communities across these ecosystems, or to understand their environmental drivers, can be hampered when different sampling methods are required to characterize biological communities of the adjacent but ecologically different ecosystems. Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) have been shown to be particularly sensitive to changes in temperature and vegetation and they require different sampling methods in closed vs. open habitats. We compared ant assemblages of closed-forests (beech- or oak-dominated) and open forest-steppe habitats in southwestern Carpathians using methods for closed-forest (litter sifting) and open habitats (pitfall trapping), and developed an integrated sampling approach to characterize changes in ant assemblages across these adjacent ecosystems. Using both methods, we collected 5,328 individual ant workers from 28 species. Neither method represented ant communities completely, but pitfall trapping accounted for more species (24) than litter sifting (16). Although pitfall trapping characterized differences in species richness and composition among the ecosystems better, with beech forest being most species poor and ecotone most species rich, litter sifting was more successful in identifying characteristic litter-dwelling species in oak-dominated forest. The integrated sampling approach using both methods yielded more accurate characterization of species richness and composition, and particularly so in species-rich forest-steppe habitat where the combined sample identified significantly higher number of species compared to either of the two methods on their own. Thus, an integrated sampling

  18. Asymmetric dispersal and colonization success of Amazonian plant-ants queens.

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    Emilio M Bruna

    Full Text Available The dispersal ability of queens is central to understanding ant life-history evolution, and plays a fundamental role in ant population and community dynamics, the maintenance of genetic diversity, and the spread of invasive ants. In tropical ecosystems, species from over 40 genera of ants establish colonies in the stems, hollow thorns, or leaf pouches of specialized plants. However, little is known about the relative dispersal ability of queens competing for access to the same host plants.We used empirical data and inverse modeling--a technique developed by plant ecologists to model seed dispersal--to quantify and compare the dispersal kernels of queens from three Amazonian ant species that compete for access to host-plants. We found that the modal colonization distance of queens varied 8-fold, with the generalist ant species (Crematogaster laevis having a greater modal distance than two specialists (Pheidole minutula, Azteca sp. that use the same host-plants. However, our results also suggest that queens of Azteca sp. have maximal distances that are four-sixteen times greater than those of its competitors.We found large differences between ant species in both the modal and maximal distance ant queens disperse to find vacant seedlings used to found new colonies. These differences could result from interspecific differences in queen body size, and hence wing musculature, or because queens differ in their ability to identify potential host plants while in flight. Our results provide support for one of the necessary conditions underlying several of the hypothesized mechanisms promoting coexistence in tropical plant-ants. They also suggest that for some ant species limited dispersal capability could pose a significant barrier to the rescue of populations in isolated forest fragments. Finally, we demonstrate that inverse models parameterized with field data are an excellent means of quantifying the dispersal of ant queens.

  19. Functional structure of ant and termite assemblages in old growth forest, logged forest and oil palm plantation in Malaysian Borneo

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    Luke, Sarah H.; Fayle, Tom M.; Eggleton, Paul; Turner, Edgar C.; Davies, Richard G.

    2014-01-01

    Forested tropical landscapes around the world are being extensively logged and converted to agriculture, with serious consequences for biodiversity and potentially ecosystem functioning. Here we investigate associations between habitat disturbance and functional diversity of ants and termites – two numerically dominant and functionally important taxa in tropical rain forests that perform key roles in predation, decomposition, nutrient cycling and seed dispersal. We compared ant and termite oc...

  20. Spanish juniper gain expansion opportunities by counting on a functionally diverse dispersal assemblage community.

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    Escribano-Ávila, Gema; Pías, Beatriz; Sanz-Pérez, Virginia; Virgós, Emilio; Escudero, Adrián; Valladares, Fernando

    2013-10-01

    Seed dispersal is typically performed by a diverse array of species assemblages with different behavioral and morphological traits which determine dispersal quality (DQ, defined as the probability of recruitment of a dispersed seed). Fate of ecosystems to ongoing environmental changes is critically dependent on dispersal and mainly on DQ in novel scenarios. We assess here the DQ, thus the multiplicative effect of germination and survival probability to the first 3 years of life, for seeds dispersed by several bird species (Turdus spp.) and carnivores (Vulpes vulpes, Martes foina) in mature woodland remnants of Spanish juniper (Juniperus thurifera) and old fields which are being colonized by this species. Results showed that DQ was similar in mature woodlands and old fields. Germination rate for seeds dispersed by carnivores (11.5%) and thrushes (9.12%) was similar, however, interacted with microhabitat suitability. Seeds dispersed by carnivores reach the maximum germination rate on shrubs (16%), whereas seeds dispersed by thrushes did on female juniper canopies (15.5) indicating that each group of dispersers performed a directed dispersal. This directional effect was diluted when survival probability was considered: thrushes selected smaller seeds which had higher mortality in the seedling stage (70%) in relation to seedlings dispersed by carnivores (40%). Overall, thrushes resulted low-quality dispersers which provided a probability or recruitment of 2.5%, while a seed dispersed by carnivores had a probability of recruitment of 6.5%. Our findings show that generalist dispersers (i.e., carnivores) can provide a higher probability of recruitment than specialized dispersers (i.e., Turdus spp.). However, generalist species are usually opportunistic dispersers as their role as seed dispersers is dependent on the availability of trophic resources and species feeding preferences. As a result, J. thurifera dispersal community is composed by two functional groups of

  1. Monitoring Effect of Fire on Ant Assemblages in Brazilian Rupestrian Grasslands: Contrasting Effects on Ground and Arboreal Fauna

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    Diego Anjos

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Fire is one of the most relevant ecological disturbances in nature. Little is known about the effects of fire on biodiversity in ecosystems like rupestrian grasslands, which share characteristics with savanna and forest biomes. Brazilian rupestrian grasslands are part of an endangered ecosystem that has been modified by anthropogenic fire events that have become more intense in recent decades. In this study, we evaluated the effects of fire on ground and arboreal ant assemblages through a two-year monitoring program (24 monthly samplings. We found that fire does not change cumulative species richness after 24 months, and that fire does not affect mean ant richness, abundance, and species composition in arboreal ants. On the other hand, fire increased mean ground ant species richness and abundance, and caused a significant change in species composition. Our results indicate a weak and beneficial effect of fire only for ground ant communities, which generally agrees with results from other studies in Brazilian savannas. Taken together, results from these studies may be useful for improvement of fire suppression policy in fire-prone habitats in Brazil.

  2. Temporal variation in the composition of ant assemblages (Hymenoptera, Formicidae on trees in the Pantanal floodplain, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil

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    Stela de Almeida Soares

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Temporal variation in the composition of ant assemblages (Hymenoptera, Formicidae on trees in the Pantanal floodplain, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. In this paper we investigate how seasonal flooding influences the composition of assemblages of ants foraging on trees in the Pantanal of Mato Grosso do Sul. During the flood in the Pantanal, a large area is covered by floods that are the main forces that regulate the pattern of diversity in these areas. However, the effects of such natural disturbances in the ant communities are poorly known. In this sense, the objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of temporal variation in assemblages of ants foraging on trees in the Pantanal of Miranda. Samples were collected during a year in two adjacent areas, one who suffered flooding during the wet period and another that did not suffer flooding throughout the year. In 10 sites for each evaluated habitat, five pitfall traps were installed at random in trees 25 m apart from each other. In the habitat with flooding, the highest richness was observed during the flooding period, while there was no significant change in richness in the area that does not suffer flooding. The diversity of species between the two evaluated habitats varied significantly during the two seasons. Most ants sampled belong to species that forage and nest in soil. This suggests that during the flood in flooded habitats, ants that did not migrate to higher areas without flooding adopt the strategy to search for resources in the tree canopy.

  3. Reproduction and dispersal in an ant-associated root aphid community

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ivens, A.B.F.; Kronauer, Daniel Jan Christoph; Pen, I.

    2012-01-01

    viscosity is high and winged aphids rare, consistent with infrequent horizontal transmission between ant host colonies. The absence of the primary host shrub (Pistacia) may explain the absence of sex in three of the studied species, but elm trees (Ulmus) that are primary hosts of the fourth species (T...... above ground, whereas dispersal constraints and dependence on ant-tending may differentially affect the costs and benefits of sex in subterranean aphids. Here, we studied reproductive mode and dispersal in a community of root aphids that are obligately associated with the ant Lasius flavus. We assessed...... the genetic population structure of four species (Geoica utricularia, Tetraneura ulmi, Forda marginata and Forda formicaria) in a Dutch population and found that all species reproduce predominantly if not exclusively asexually, so that populations consist of multiple clonal lineages. We show that population...

  4. ANT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van der Duim, René; Ren, Carina Bregnholm; Jóhannesson, Gunnar Thór

    2017-01-01

    Ten years ago actor-network theory (ANT) entered this journal. To illustrate how the relational ontology and sensibilities of ANT lend themselves to particular kinds of research, we first interrogate the main controversies as a way to open up and discuss the main premises of ANT. These debates...... concern the status and agency of objects and non-humans, ANT’s denial of the explanatory power of social structures, and the political implications of ANT. Second we present ANT’s relevance for tourism studies and discuss what ANT ‘does’ in practice. After summarizing a decade of relations between ANT...... and tourism, we conclude by tracing three future trajectories of how we have ‘moved away with’ ANT into new areas of discovery....

  5. Uncoupling the effects of seed predation and seed dispersal by granivorous ants on plant population dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xavier Arnan

    Full Text Available Secondary seed dispersal is an important plant-animal interaction, which is central to understanding plant population and community dynamics. Very little information is still available on the effects of dispersal on plant demography and, particularly, for ant-seed dispersal interactions. As many other interactions, seed dispersal by animals involves costs (seed predation and benefits (seed dispersal, the balance of which determines the outcome of the interaction. Separate quantification of each of them is essential in order to understand the effects of this interaction. To address this issue, we have successfully separated and analyzed the costs and benefits of seed dispersal by seed-harvesting ants on the plant population dynamics of three shrub species with different traits. To that aim a stochastic, spatially-explicit individually-based simulation model has been implemented based on actual data sets. The results from our simulation model agree with theoretical models of plant response dependent on seed dispersal, for one plant species, and ant-mediated seed predation, for another one. In these cases, model predictions were close to the observed values at field. Nonetheless, these ecological processes did not affect in anyway a third species, for which the model predictions were far from the observed values. This indicates that the balance between costs and benefits associated to secondary seed dispersal is clearly related to specific traits. This study is one of the first works that analyze tradeoffs of secondary seed dispersal on plant population dynamics, by disentangling the effects of related costs and benefits. We suggest analyzing the effects of interactions on population dynamics as opposed to merely analyzing the partners and their interaction strength.

  6. Genetic evidence for landscape effects on dispersal in the army ant Eciton burchellii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soare, Thomas W; Kumar, Anjali; Naish, Kerry A; O'Donnell, Sean

    2014-01-01

    Inhibited dispersal, leading to reduced gene flow, threatens populations with inbreeding depression and local extinction. Fragmentation may be especially detrimental to social insects because inhibited gene flow has important consequences for cooperation and competition within and among colonies. Army ants have winged males and permanently wingless queens; these traits imply male-biased dispersal. However, army ant colonies are obligately nomadic and have the potential to traverse landscapes. Eciton burchellii, the most regularly nomadic army ant, is a forest interior species: colony raiding activities are limited in the absence of forest cover. To examine whether nomadism and landscape (forest clearing and elevation) affect population genetic structure in a montane E. burchellii population, we reconstructed queen and male genotypes from 25 colonies at seven polymorphic microsatellite loci. Pairwise genetic distances among individuals were compared to pairwise geographical and resistance distances using regressions with permutations, partial Mantel tests and random forests analyses. Although there was no significant spatial genetic structure in queens or males in montane forest, dispersal may be male-biased. We found significant isolation by landscape resistance for queens based on land cover (forest clearing), but not on elevation. Summed colony emigrations over the lifetime of the queen may contribute to gene flow in this species and forest clearing impedes these movements and subsequent gene dispersal. Further forest cover removal may increasingly inhibit Eciton burchellii colony dispersal. We recommend maintaining habitat connectivity in tropical forests to promote population persistence for this keystone species. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Pericarpial nectary-visiting ants do not provide fruit protection against pre-dispersal seed predators regardless of ant species composition and resource availability.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Priscila Andre Sanz-Veiga

    Full Text Available Extrafloral nectaries can occur in both vegetative and reproductive plant structures. In many Rubiaceae species in the Brazilian Cerrado, after corolla abscission, the floral nectary continues to secret nectar throughout fruit development originating post-floral pericarpial nectaries which commonly attract many ant species. The occurrence of such nectar secreting structures might be strategic for fruit protection against seed predators, as plants are expected to invest higher on more valuable and vulnerable parts. Here, we performed ant exclusion experiments to investigate whether the interaction with ants mediated by the pericarpial nectaries of Tocoyena formosa affects plant reproductive success by reducing the number of pre-dispersal seed predators. We also assessed whether ant protection was dependent on ant species composition and resource availability. Although most of the plants were visited by large and aggressive ant species, such as Ectatomma tuberculatum and species of the genus Camponotus, ants did not protect fruits against seed predators. Furthermore, the result of the interaction was neither related to ant species composition nor to the availability of resources. We suggest that these results may be related to the nature and behavior of the most important seed predators, like Hemicolpus abdominalis weevil which the exoskeleton toughness prevent it from being predated by most ant species. On the other hand, not explored factors, such as reward quality, local ant abundance, ant colony characteristics and/or the presence of alternative energetic sources could also account for variations in ant frequency, composition, and finally ant protective effects, highlighting the conditionality of facultative plant-ant mutualisms.

  8. Adaptive Advantage of Myrmecochory in the Ant-Dispersed Herb Lamium amplexicaule (Lamiaceae: Predation Avoidance through the Deterrence of Post-Dispersal Seed Predators.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koki Tanaka

    Full Text Available Seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory is found worldwide, but the benefits that plants obtain from this mutualism remain uncertain. In the present study, we conducted laboratory experiments to demonstrate seed predator avoidance as a benefit of myrmecochory using the annual ant-dispersed herb Lamium amplexicaule, the disperser ant Tetramorium tsushimae, and the seed predatory burrower bug Adomerus rotundus. We compared the predation intensity of Lamium amplexicaule seeds by Adomerus rotundus under the presence or absence of Tetramorium tsushimae. Both the number of seeds sucked by Adomerus rotundus adults and the feeding duration of sucked seeds by nymphs were significantly reduced in the presence of ants. This effect was most likely due to the behavioral alteration of Adomerus rotundus in response to the ant presence, because ants seldom predated Adomerus rotundus during the experiment. Our results demonstrated that the presence of ants decreases post-dispersal seed predation, even when the ants do not bury the seeds. The present study thus suggests that the non-consumptive effects of ants on seed predators benefit myrmecochorous plants.

  9. Limited gene dispersal and spatial genetic structure as stabilizing factors in an ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malé, P-J G; Leroy, C; Humblot, P; Dejean, A; Quilichini, A; Orivel, J

    2016-12-01

    Comparative studies of the population genetics of closely associated species are necessary to properly understand the evolution of these relationships because gene flow between populations affects the partners' evolutionary potential at the local scale. As a consequence (at least for antagonistic interactions), asymmetries in the strength of the genetic structures of the partner populations can result in one partner having a co-evolutionary advantage. Here, we assess the population genetic structure of partners engaged in a species-specific and obligatory mutualism: the Neotropical ant-plant, Hirtella physophora, and its ant associate, Allomerus decemarticulatus. Although the ant cannot complete its life cycle elsewhere than on H. physophora and the plant cannot live for long without the protection provided by A. decemarticulatus, these species also have antagonistic interactions: the ants have been shown to benefit from castrating their host plant and the plant is able to retaliate against too virulent ant colonies. We found similar short dispersal distances for both partners, resulting in the local transmission of the association and, thus, inbred populations in which too virulent castrating ants face the risk of local extinction due to the absence of H. physophora offspring. On the other hand, we show that the plant populations probably experienced greater gene flow than did the ant populations, thus enhancing the evolutionary potential of the plants. We conclude that such levels of spatial structure in the partners' populations can increase the stability of the mutualistic relationship. Indeed, the local transmission of the association enables partial alignments of the partners' interests, and population connectivity allows the plant retaliation mechanisms to be locally adapted to the castration behaviour of their symbionts. © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2016 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  10. Intercontinental dispersal of giant thermophilic ants across the Arctic during early Eocene hyperthermals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, S Bruce; Johnson, Kirk R; Mathewes, Rolf W; Greenwood, David R

    2011-12-22

    Early Eocene land bridges allowed numerous plant and animal species to cross between Europe and North America via the Arctic. While many species suited to prevailing cool Arctic climates would have been able to cross throughout much of this period, others would have found dispersal opportunities only during limited intervals when their requirements for higher temperatures were met. Here, we present Titanomyrma lubei gen. et sp. nov. from Wyoming, USA, a new giant (greater than 5 cm long) formiciine ant from the early Eocene (approx. 49.5 Ma) Green River Formation. We show that the extinct ant subfamily Formiciinae is only known from localities with an estimated mean annual temperature of about 20°C or greater, consistent with the tropical ranges of almost all of the largest living ant species. This is, to our knowledge, the first known formiciine of gigantic size in the Western Hemisphere and the first reported cross-Arctic dispersal by a thermophilic insect group. This implies intercontinental migration during one or more brief high-temperature episodes (hyperthermals) sometime between the latest Palaeocene establishment of intercontinental land connections and the presence of giant formiciines in Europe and North America by the early middle Eocene.

  11. Intercontinental dispersal of giant thermophilic ants across the Arctic during early Eocene hyperthermals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, S. Bruce; Johnson, Kirk R.; Mathewes, Rolf W.; Greenwood, David R.

    2011-01-01

    Early Eocene land bridges allowed numerous plant and animal species to cross between Europe and North America via the Arctic. While many species suited to prevailing cool Arctic climates would have been able to cross throughout much of this period, others would have found dispersal opportunities only during limited intervals when their requirements for higher temperatures were met. Here, we present Titanomyrma lubei gen. et sp. nov. from Wyoming, USA, a new giant (greater than 5 cm long) formiciine ant from the early Eocene (approx. 49.5 Ma) Green River Formation. We show that the extinct ant subfamily Formiciinae is only known from localities with an estimated mean annual temperature of about 20°C or greater, consistent with the tropical ranges of almost all of the largest living ant species. This is, to our knowledge, the first known formiciine of gigantic size in the Western Hemisphere and the first reported cross-Arctic dispersal by a thermophilic insect group. This implies intercontinental migration during one or more brief high-temperature episodes (hyperthermals) sometime between the latest Palaeocene establishment of intercontinental land connections and the presence of giant formiciines in Europe and North America by the early middle Eocene. PMID:21543354

  12. Urban assemblages: ANT and the examination of the city Ensamblajes urbanos: la TAR y el examen de la ciudad

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ignacio Farías

    2011-03-01

    Full Text Available

    This article presents new research perspectives and analytical challenges that actor-network theory opens for urban studies. First, it reviews how the ANT principles of hybrid relationality and flat associativity are being adopted in urban studies to symmetrically expand the urban ecology to nonhumans and contest scalar conceptions of urban space and economy. Second, it proposes that ANT brings along an even more fundamental challenge related to the understanding of the city as a research object. While common understandings as a spatial object, political-economical entity and/or sociocultural form underlie its singular, stable and bounded character, ANT allows thinking the city as a multiple and decentered object. The notion of urban assemblages is introduced to account for the circulation and becoming of the city in multiple hybrid and translocal networks. Finally, it concludes by discussing some consequences of this examination of the city, especially the reassertion of the problem of complexity, especially urban complexity, if not as a starting point, then at least as a point of arrival for ANT.

    Este artículo presenta nuevas perspectivas de investigación y desafíos analíticos que la teoría del actor-red (TAR abre para los estudios urbanos. En primer lugar, se revisan cómo los principios de relacionalidad híbrida y asociatividad plana de la TAR están siendo adoptados en los estudios urbanos para ampliar simétricamente la ecología urbana a no-humanos e impugnar concepciones escalares del espacio y economías urbanas. A continuación, se propone que la TAR trae consigo un desafío más fundamental relativo a la

  13. The ant assemblage visiting extrafloral nectaries of Hibiscus pernambucensis (Malvaceae) in a mangrove forest in Southeast Brazil (Hymenoptera : Formicidae)

    OpenAIRE

    Cogni, R; Freitas, AVL

    2002-01-01

    Ant species visiting extrafloral nectaries (EFNs) of Hibiscus pernambucensis were studied in a daily flooded mangrove forest in Picinguaba, Southeast Brazil. Nineteen ant species in five subfamilies were observed visiting the EFNs. The most common species (in order of abundance) were Camponotus sp.2, Brachymyrmex sp. and Pseudomyrmex gracilis during the warm season and Brachymyrmex sp., Camponotus crassus and Camponotus sp.2 during the cold season. A twenty-four hour census showed that ant ac...

  14. Colonization of abandoned land by Juniperus thurifera is mediated by the interaction of a diverse dispersal assemblage and environmental heterogeneity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gema Escribano-Avila

    Full Text Available Land abandonment is one of the most powerful global change drivers in developed countries where recent rural exodus has been the norm. Abandonment of traditional land use practices has permitted the colonization of these areas by shrub and tree species. For fleshy fruited species the colonization of new areas is determined by the dispersal assemblage composition and abundance. In this study we showed how the relative contribution to the dispersal process by each animal species is modulated by the environmental heterogeneity and ecosystem structure. This complex interaction caused differential patterns on the seed dispersal in both, landscape patches in which the process of colonization is acting nowadays and mature woodlands of Juniperus thurifera, a relict tree distributed in the western Mediterranean Basin. Thrushes (Turdus spp and carnivores (red fox and stone marten dispersed a high amount of seeds while rabbits and sheeps only a tiny fraction. Thrushes dispersed a significant amount of seeds in new colonization areas, however they were limited by the presence of high perches with big crop size. While carnivores dispersed seeds to all studied habitats, even in those patches where no trees of J. thurifera were present, turning out to be critical for primary colonization. The presence of Pinus and Quercus was related to a reduced consumption of J. thurifera seeds while the presence of fleshy fruited shrubs was related with higher content of J. thurifera seeds in dispersers' faeces. Therefore environmental heterogeneity and ecosystem structure had a great influence on dispersers feeding behaviour, and should be considered in order to accurately describe the role of seed dispersal in ecological process, such as regeneration and colonization. J. thurifera expansion is not seed limited thanks to its diverse dispersal community, hence the conservation of all dispersers in an ecosystem enhance ecosystems services and resilience.

  15. Colonization of abandoned land by Juniperus thurifera is mediated by the interaction of a diverse dispersal assemblage and environmental heterogeneity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escribano-Avila, Gema; Sanz-Pérez, Virginia; Pías, Beatriz; Virgós, Emilio; Escudero, Adrián; Valladares, Fernando

    2012-01-01

    Land abandonment is one of the most powerful global change drivers in developed countries where recent rural exodus has been the norm. Abandonment of traditional land use practices has permitted the colonization of these areas by shrub and tree species. For fleshy fruited species the colonization of new areas is determined by the dispersal assemblage composition and abundance. In this study we showed how the relative contribution to the dispersal process by each animal species is modulated by the environmental heterogeneity and ecosystem structure. This complex interaction caused differential patterns on the seed dispersal in both, landscape patches in which the process of colonization is acting nowadays and mature woodlands of Juniperus thurifera, a relict tree distributed in the western Mediterranean Basin. Thrushes (Turdus spp) and carnivores (red fox and stone marten) dispersed a high amount of seeds while rabbits and sheeps only a tiny fraction. Thrushes dispersed a significant amount of seeds in new colonization areas, however they were limited by the presence of high perches with big crop size. While carnivores dispersed seeds to all studied habitats, even in those patches where no trees of J. thurifera were present, turning out to be critical for primary colonization. The presence of Pinus and Quercus was related to a reduced consumption of J. thurifera seeds while the presence of fleshy fruited shrubs was related with higher content of J. thurifera seeds in dispersers' faeces. Therefore environmental heterogeneity and ecosystem structure had a great influence on dispersers feeding behaviour, and should be considered in order to accurately describe the role of seed dispersal in ecological process, such as regeneration and colonization. J. thurifera expansion is not seed limited thanks to its diverse dispersal community, hence the conservation of all dispersers in an ecosystem enhance ecosystems services and resilience.

  16. Dispersal for survival: some observations on the trunk ant (Formica truncorum Fabricius)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mabelis, A.A.; Korczynska, J.

    2001-01-01

    The survival chance of the trunk ant (Formica truncorum) is compared with the survival chance of two other species of red wood ants: F.rufa and F.polyctena. Nest populations of F.truncorum are much smaller than nest populations of the other red wood ant species, which makes the species a weaker

  17. Sex-biased dispersal creates spatial genetic structure in a parthenogenetic ant with a dependent-lineage reproductive system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhn, A; Bauman, D; Darras, H; Aron, S

    2017-10-01

    Reproduction and dispersal are key aspects of species life history that influence spatial genetic structure in populations. Several ant species in the genus Cataglyphis have evolved a unique breeding system in which new reproductives (that is, queens and males) are produced asexually by parthenogenesis; in contrast, non-reproductives (that is, workers) are produced via sexual reproduction by mates from distinct genetic lineages. We investigated how these two coexisting reproductive methods affect population-level spatial genetic structure using the ant Cataglyphis mauritanica as a model. We obtained genotypes for queens and their male mates from 338 colonies, and we found that the two lineages present in the study population occurred with equal frequency. Furthermore, analysis of spatial genetic structure revealed strong sex-biased dispersal. Because queens were produced by parthenogenesis and because they dispersed over short distances, there was an extreme level of spatial structuring: a mosaic of patches composed of clonal queens was formed. Males, on the other hand, dispersed over several hundred metres and, thus, across patches, ensuring successful interlineage mating.

  18. Annual and Seasonal Changes in the Structure of Litter-Dwelling Ant Assemblages (Hymenoptera: Formicidae in Atlantic Semideciduous Forests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávio Siqueira de Castro

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We surveyed ant fauna in the leaf litter in an Atlantic Semideciduous forest in the State Park of Rio Doce (PERD. The work aimed to produce basic information about habitat effects on diversity, as well as about how the ant fauna in a such buffered forest habitat, as the litter layer, could respond the climate variation in a short and long term. We sampled two years in two distinct forest physiognomies, which respond to different geomorphologic backgrounds, in dry and rainy seasons. Species composition, richness and abundance of these forests were distinct. However, both forests hosted similar numbers of rare and specialized, habitat demanding species, thus suggesting both are similarly well preserved, despite distinct physiognomies. However, the lower and more open forest was, more susceptible to dry season effects, showing a steeper decline in species numbers in such season, but similar numbers in the wet seasons. The pattern varied between years, which corroborates the hypothesis of a strongly variable community in response to subtle climatic variation among years. The present results are baselines for future long term monitoring projects, and could support protocols for early warnings of global climatic changes effects on biodiversity.

  19. Fish assemblages of the Casiquiare River, a corridor and zoogeographical filter for dispersal between the Orinoco and Amazon basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Winemiller, K.O.; Lopez-Fernandez, H.; Taphorn, D.C.; Nico, L.G.; Duque, A.B.

    2008-01-01

    Aim: The aim of this study was to determine whether the Casiquiare River functions as a free dispersal corridor or as a partial barrier (i.e. filter) for the interchange of fish species of the Orinoco and Negro/Amazon basins using species assemblage patterns according to geographical location and environmental features. Location: The Casiquiare, Upper Orinoco and Upper Negro rivers in southern Venezuela, South America. Methods: Our study was based on an analysis of species presence/absence data and environmental information (11 habitat characteristics) collected by the authors and colleagues between the years 1984 and 1999. The data set consisted of 269 sampled sites and 452 fish species (> 50,000 specimens). A wide range of habitat types was included in the samples, and the collection sites were located at various points along the entire length of the Casiquiare main channel, at multiple sites on its tributary streams, as well as at various nearby sites outside the Casiquiare drainage, within the Upper Orinoco and Upper Rio Negro river systems. Most specimens and field data used in this analysis are archived in the Museo de Ciencias Naturales in Guanare, Venezuela. We performed canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) based on species presence/absence using two versions of the data set: one that eliminated sites having < 5 species and species occurring at < 5 sites; and another that eliminated sites having < 10 species and species occurring at < 10 sites. Cluster analysis was performed on sites based on species assemblage similarity, and a separate analysis was performed on species based on CCA loadings. Results: The CCA results for the two versions of the data set were qualitatively the same. The dominant environmental axis contrasted assemblages and sites associated with blackwater vs. clearwater conditions. Longitudinal position on the Casiquiare River was correlated (r2 = 0.33) with CCA axis-1 scores, reflecting clearwater conditions nearer to its origin

  20. Selection against aerial dispersal in ants: two non-flying queen phenotypes in Pogonomyrmex laticeps.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Peeters

    Full Text Available The South American seed-harvester ant Pogonomyrmex laticeps has dimorphic queens: ergatoid (permanently wingless and brachypterous (short, non-functional wings. Surveys in western Argentina indicated that colonies near Chilecito, La Rioja Province, produced only ergatoid queens, while those near Punta Balasto, Catamarca Province (263 km away, produced only brachypterous queens. Brachypterous queens were significantly larger than ergatoid queens for 10 of 11 external characters, but both phenotypes had comparable reproductive potential, i.e., a spermatheca and a similar number of ovarioles. Using normal winged queens of the closely related P. uruguayensis for comparison, we determined that both queen phenotypes in P. laticeps had a full set of dorsal thoracic sclerites, albeit each sclerite was much reduced, whereas workers had a thorax without distinct dorsal sclerites. Sclerites were fused and immobile in ergatoid queens, while they were separable and fully articulated in brachypterous queens. Both phenotypes lacked the big indirect flight muscles, but brachypterous queens retained the tiny direct flight muscles. Overall, this dimorphism across populations indicates that there are alternative solutions to selective pressures against flying queens. We lack field data about colony founding strategy (independent or dependent for either queen phenotype, but colonies at both sites produced numerous gynes, and we infer that all foundresses initiate colonies independently and are obligate foragers.

  1. The action of post-dispersal beetles (Coleoptera: Scarabaeidae and ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae on scats of Didelphis spp. (Mammalia: Didelphidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nilton Carlos Cáceres

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available A two year study of dung beetles and ants acting on scats of two species of opossum (Didelphis spp. was carried out. Scats were left in the field in order to detect post-dispersal agents. A portion of each scat (30 % was examined for seeds in the laboratory. Beetles were recovered from burrows (51 % of 84 faecal samples left in the field where they either buried scats of opossums or were attracted, together with ants, to pitfalls (N= 10 baited with opossum scats. Dung beetles were the main post-dispersal agents of seeds found in scats of opossums, rolling the scats away or burying then on the site of deposition. They buried faeces at 4 to 15 cm in depth (N= 22 tunnels. The main dung beetles identified (medium to large size were Eurysternus (28.7 % in pitfalls and Dichotomius (13.7 %, Coprophanaeus (seen only directly on faeces, besides small-bodied beetles (Por dos años estudiamos los escarabajos coprófagos y las hormigas que actúan en las heces de zarigüellas (Didelphis. Se dejaron excrementos en el campo para descubrir los agentes secundarios de dispersión. Una parte de cada excremento (30 % fue analizada en laboratorio para estimar el número de semillas. Se recolectaron escarabajos del suelo (51 % de 84 excrementos dejados en el campo. También capturamos escarabajos y hormigas con trampas (N= 10. Los escarabajos coprófagos son los principales agentes secundarios de dispersión. Ruedan los excrementos o los entierran a 4-15 cm de profundidad (N= 22 túneles. Los escarabajos coprófagos de mayor tamaño fueron Eurysternus cyanescens (28.7 % en trampas, Dichotomius assifer (13.7 % y Coprophanaeus saphirinus (sólo visto en madrigueras y directamente sobre los excrementos. Los escarabajos de menos de 10 mm fueron el 57.6 %. La hormiga Acromirmex sp. fue 25.5 % del total de hormigas capturadas en trampas. Hallamos varias especies de semillas en los excrementos, muchos de ellos enterrados por los escarabajos, y algunas fueron extraídas por

  2. Habitat differences in dung beetle assemblages in an African savanna-forest ecotone: implications for secondary seed dispersal.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kunz, Britta K; Krell, Frank-Thorsten

    2011-06-01

    The probability and pattern of secondary seed dispersal by dung beetles (Scarabaeinae) depend on their community structure and composition at the site of primary deposition, which, in turn, seem to be strongly determined by vegetation. Consequently, we expected pronounced differences in secondary seed dispersal between forest and savanna in the northern Ivory Coast, West Africa. We found 99 dung beetle species at experimentally exposed dung piles of the olive baboon (Papio anubis (Lesson, 1827)), an important primary seed disperser in West Africa. Seventy-six species belonged to the roller and tunneler guilds, which are relevant for secondary seed dispersal. Most species showed a clear habitat preference. Contrary to the Neotropics, species number and abundance were much higher in the savanna than in the forest. Rollers and tunnelers each accounted for approximately 50% of the individuals in the savanna, but in the forest rollers made up only 4%. Seeds deposited into the savanna by an omnivorous primary disperser generally have a higher overall probability of being more rapidly dispersed secondarily by dung beetles than seeds in the forest. Also, rollers disperse seeds over larger distances. In contrast to other studies, small rollers were active in dispersal of large seeds, which were seemingly mistaken for dung balls. Our results suggest that rollers can remove seeds from any plant dispersed in primate dung in this ecosystem. © 2011 ISZS, Blackwell Publishing and IOZ/CAS.

  3. Live and let die: why fighter males of the ant Cardiocondyla kill each other but tolerate their winged rivals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Anderson, Carl; Cremer, Sylvia Maria; Heinze, Jürgen

    2003-01-01

    alternative dispersal tactics, ants, Cardiocondyla, ergatoid males, fighting, male dimorphism, toleration......alternative dispersal tactics, ants, Cardiocondyla, ergatoid males, fighting, male dimorphism, toleration...

  4. A global database of ant species abundances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Heloise; Dunn, Rob R.; Sanders, Nathan J.; Grossman, Blair F.; Photakis, Manoli; Abril, Silvia; Agosti, Donat; Andersen, Alan N.; Angulo, Elena; Armbrecht, Ingre; Arnan, Xavier; Baccaro, Fabricio B.; Bishop, Tom R.; Boulay, Raphael; Bruhl, Carsten; Castracani, Cristina; Cerda, Xim; Del Toro, Israel; Delsinne, Thibaut; Diaz, Mireia; Donoso, David A.; Ellison, Aaron M.; Enriquez, Martha L.; Fayle, Tom M.; Feener Jr., Donald H.; Fisher, Brian L.; Fisher, Robert N.; Fitpatrick, Matthew C.; Gomez, Cristanto; Gotelli, Nicholas J.; Gove, Aaron; Grasso, Donato A.; Groc, Sarah; Guenard, Benoit; Gunawardene, Nihara; Heterick, Brian; Hoffmann, Benjamin; Janda, Milan; Jenkins, Clinton; Kaspari, Michael; Klimes, Petr; Lach, Lori; Laeger, Thomas; Lattke, John; Leponce, Maurice; Lessard, Jean-Philippe; Longino, John; Lucky, Andrea; Luke, Sarah H.; Majer, Jonathan; McGlynn, Terrence P.; Menke, Sean; Mezger, Dirk; Mori, Alessandra; Moses, Jimmy; Munyai, Thinandavha Caswell; Pacheco, Renata; Paknia, Omid; Pearce-Duvet, Jessica; Pfeiffer, Martin; Philpott, Stacy M.; Resasco, Julian; Retana, Javier; Silva, Rogerio R.; Sorger, Magdalena D.; Souza, Jorge; Suarez, Andrew V.; Tista, Melanie; Vasconcelos, Heraldo L.; Vonshak, Merav; Weiser, Michael D.; Yates, Michelle; Parr, Catherine L.

    2017-01-01

    What forces structure ecological assemblages? A key limitation to general insights about assemblage structure is the availability of data that are collected at a small spatial grain (local assemblages) and a large spatial extent (global coverage). Here, we present published and unpublished data from 51,388 ant abundance and occurrence records of more than 2693 species and 7953 morphospecies from local assemblages collected at 4212 locations around the world. Ants were selected because they are diverse and abundant globally, comprise a large fraction of animal biomass in most terrestrial communities, and are key contributors to a range of ecosystem functions. Data were collected between 1949 and 2014, and include, for each geo-referenced sampling site, both the identity of the ants collected and details of sampling design, habitat type and degree of disturbance. The aim of compiling this dataset was to provide comprehensive species abundance data in order to test relationships between assemblage structure and environmental and biogeographic factors. Data were collected using a variety of standardised methods, such as pitfall and Winkler traps, and will be valuable for studies investigating large-scale forces structuring local assemblages. Understanding such relationships is particularly critical under current rates of global change. We encourage authors holding additional data on systematically collected ant assemblages, especially those in dry and cold, and remote areas, to contact us and contribute their data to this growing dataset.

  5. Fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGarvey, Daniel J.; Falke, Jeffrey A.; Li, Hiram W.; Li, Judith; Hauer, F. Richard; Lamberti, G.A.

    2017-01-01

    Methods to sample fishes in stream ecosystems and to analyze the raw data, focusing primarily on assemblage-level (all fish species combined) analyses, are presented in this chapter. We begin with guidance on sample site selection, permitting for fish collection, and information-gathering steps to be completed prior to conducting fieldwork. Basic sampling methods (visual surveying, electrofishing, and seining) are presented with specific instructions for estimating population sizes via visual, capture-recapture, and depletion surveys, in addition to new guidance on environmental DNA (eDNA) methods. Steps to process fish specimens in the field including the use of anesthesia and preservation of whole specimens or tissue samples (for genetic or stable isotope analysis) are also presented. Data analysis methods include characterization of size-structure within populations, estimation of species richness and diversity, and application of fish functional traits. We conclude with three advanced topics in assemblage-level analysis: multidimensional scaling (MDS), ecological networks, and loop analysis.

  6. Strange Assemblage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Robert Cole

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available This paper contends that the power of Deleuze & Guattari’s (1988 notion of assemblage as theorised in 1000 Plateaus can be normalised and reductive with reference to its application to any social-cultural context where an open system of dynamic and fluid elements are located. Rather than determining the assemblage in this way, this paper argues for an alternative conception of ‘strange assemblage’ that must be deliberately and consciously created through rigorous and focused intellectual, creative and philosophical work around what makes assemblages singular. The paper will proceed with examples of ‘strange assemblage’ taken from a film by Peter Greenaway (A Zed and 2 Noughts; the film ‘Performance’; educational research with Sudanese families in Australia; the book, Bomb Culture by Jeff Nuttall (1970; and the band Hawkwind. Fittingly, these elements are themselves chosen to demonstrate the concept of ‘strange assemblage’, and how it can be presented. How exactly the elements of a ‘strange assemblage’ come together and work in the world is unknown until they are specifically elaborated and created ‘in the moment’. Such spontaneous methodology reminds us of the 1960s ‘Happenings’, the Situationist International and Dada/Surrealism. The difference that will be opened up by this paper is that all elements of this ‘strange assemblage’ cohere in terms of a rendering of ‘the unacceptable.'

  7. ANT, tourism and situated globality

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jóhannesson, Gunnar Thór; Ren, Carina Bregnholm; van der Duim, René

    2015-01-01

    viable descriptions of the collective condition of humans and more-than-humans in the Anthropocene. Also and moving past a merely descriptive approach, it discusses it as a useful tool to engage with the situated globalities which come into being through the socio-spatial coupling of tourism......In recent years Actor-network theory (ANT) has increasingly been felt in the field of tourism studies (Van der Duim, Ren, & Jóhannesson, 2012). An important implication of the meeting between ANT and tourism studies is the notion of tourism being described as a heterogeneous assemblage of what we...... are used to define as the separate spheres of nature and culture. This paper explores and relates the central tenets of ANT in tourism with regard to the concept of the Anthropocene. It presents the ANT approach as a flat and object-oriented ontology and methodology and explores its potentials to carve out...

  8. Identity Assemblages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Horn, Line Helverskov

    The study aims at exploring how identity is enacted within the context of a two-year programme in Service, Hospitality, and Tourism Management (SHTM). This research thus investigates how students and educators go about their daily lives in different educational contexts both on and off campus...... as a contribution to the body of literature of ANT-based studies. Second, it contributes to existing identity theories by exemplifying a socio-material approach to identity issues. Third, the study enables reflections upon how educational institutions as fundamentally identity-producing organisations acknowledge...

  9. Rovno Amber Ant Assamblage: Bias toward Arboreal Strata or Sampling Effect?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perkovsky E. E.

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available In 2015 B. Guenard with co-authors indicated that the Rovno amber ant assemblage, as described by G. Dlussky and A. Rasnitsyn (2009, showed modest support for a bias towards arboreal origin comparing the Baltic and Bitterfeld assemblages, although it is not clear whether this reflects a sampling error or a signal of real deviation. Since 2009, the Rovno ant collection has now grown more than twice in volume which makes possible to check if the above inference about the essentially arboreal character of the assemblage is real or due to a sampling error. The comparison provided suggests in favour of the latter reason for the bias revealed by B. Guenard and co-authors. The new and larger data on the Rovno assemblage show that the share of non-arboreal ants is now well comparable with those concerning the Baltic and Bitterfeld assemblages. This holds true for the both total assemblages and subassemblages of worker ants only.

  10. Urban habitat complexity affects species richness but not environmental filtering of morphologically-diverse ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alessandro Ossola

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Habitat complexity is a major determinant of structure and diversity of ant assemblages. Following the size-grain hypothesis, smaller ant species are likely to be advantaged in more complex habitats compared to larger species. Habitat complexity can act as an environmental filter based on species size and morphological traits, therefore affecting the overall structure and diversity of ant assemblages. In natural and semi-natural ecosystems, habitat complexity is principally regulated by ecological successions or disturbance such as fire and grazing. Urban ecosystems provide an opportunity to test relationships between habitat, ant assemblage structure and ant traits using novel combinations of habitat complexity generated and sustained by human management. We sampled ant assemblages in low-complexity and high-complexity parks, and high-complexity woodland remnants, hypothesizing that (i ant abundance and species richness would be higher in high-complexity urban habitats, (ii ant assemblages would differ between low- and high-complexity habitats and (iii ants living in high-complexity habitats would be smaller than those living in low-complexity habitats. Contrary to our hypothesis, ant species richness was higher in low-complexity habitats compared to high-complexity habitats. Overall, ant assemblages were significantly different among the habitat complexity types investigated, although ant size and morphology remained the same. Habitat complexity appears to affect the structure of ant assemblages in urban ecosystems as previously observed in natural and semi-natural ecosystems. However, the habitat complexity filter does not seem to be linked to ant morphological traits related to body size.

  11. Urban habitat complexity affects species richness but not environmental filtering of morphologically-diverse ants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nash, Michael A.; Christie, Fiona J.; Hahs, Amy K.; Livesley, Stephen J.

    2015-01-01

    Habitat complexity is a major determinant of structure and diversity of ant assemblages. Following the size-grain hypothesis, smaller ant species are likely to be advantaged in more complex habitats compared to larger species. Habitat complexity can act as an environmental filter based on species size and morphological traits, therefore affecting the overall structure and diversity of ant assemblages. In natural and semi-natural ecosystems, habitat complexity is principally regulated by ecological successions or disturbance such as fire and grazing. Urban ecosystems provide an opportunity to test relationships between habitat, ant assemblage structure and ant traits using novel combinations of habitat complexity generated and sustained by human management. We sampled ant assemblages in low-complexity and high-complexity parks, and high-complexity woodland remnants, hypothesizing that (i) ant abundance and species richness would be higher in high-complexity urban habitats, (ii) ant assemblages would differ between low- and high-complexity habitats and (iii) ants living in high-complexity habitats would be smaller than those living in low-complexity habitats. Contrary to our hypothesis, ant species richness was higher in low-complexity habitats compared to high-complexity habitats. Overall, ant assemblages were significantly different among the habitat complexity types investigated, although ant size and morphology remained the same. Habitat complexity appears to affect the structure of ant assemblages in urban ecosystems as previously observed in natural and semi-natural ecosystems. However, the habitat complexity filter does not seem to be linked to ant morphological traits related to body size. PMID:26528416

  12. Roadside Survey of Ants on Oahu, Hawaii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tong, Reina L.; Grace, J. Kenneth; Krushelnycky, Paul D.

    2018-01-01

    Hawaii is home to over 60 ant species, including five of the six most damaging invasive ants. Although there have been many surveys of ants in Hawaii, the last island-wide hand-collection survey of ants on Oahu was conducted in 1988–1994. In 2012, a timed hand-collection of ants was made at 44 sites in a systematic, roadside survey throughout Oahu. Ants were identified and species distribution in relation to elevation, precipitation and soil type was analyzed. To assess possible convenience sampling bias, 15 additional sites were sampled further from roads to compare with the samples near roads. Twenty-four species of ants were found and mapped; Pheidole megacephala (F.), Ochetellus glaber (Mayr), and Technomyrmex difficilis Forel were the most frequently encountered ants. For six ant species, a logistic regression was performed with elevation, average annual precipitation, and soil order as explanatory variables. O. glaber was found in areas with lower precipitation around Oahu. Paratrechina longicornis (Latrielle) and Tetramorium simillimum (Smith, F.) were found more often in lower elevations and in areas with the Mollisol soil order. Elevation, precipitation, and soil type were not significant sources of variation for P. megacephala, Plagiolepis alluaudi Emery, and T. difficilis. P. megacephala was associated with fewer mean numbers of ants where it occurred. Ant assemblages near and far from roads did not significantly differ. Many species of ants remain established on Oahu, and recent invaders are spreading throughout the island. Mapping ant distributions contributes to continued documentation and understanding of these pests. PMID:29439503

  13. Beyond ANT

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jansen, Till

    2017-01-01

    Actor-Network-Theory (ANT) offers an ‘infra-language’ of the social that allows one to trace social relations very dynamically, while at the same time dissolving human agency, thus providing a flat and de-centred way into sociology. However, ANT struggles with its theoretical design that may lead...... us to reduce agency to causation and to conceptualize actor-networks as homogeneous ontologies of force. This article proposes to regard ANT’s inability to conceptualize reflexivity and the interrelatedness of different ontologies as the fundamental problem of the theory. Drawing on Günther......, it offers an ‘infra-language’ of reflexive relations while maintaining ANT’s de-centred approach. This would enable us to conceptualize actor-networks as non-homogeneous, dynamic and connecting different societal rationales while maintaining the main strengths of ANT....

  14. Harnessing ant defence at fruits reduces bruchid seed predation in a symbiotic ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G

    2014-06-22

    In horizontally transmitted mutualisms, mutualists disperse separately and reassemble in each generation with partners genetically unrelated to those in the previous generation. Because of this, there should be no selection on either partner to enhance the other's reproductive output directly. In symbiotic ant-plant mutualisms, myrmecophytic plants host defensive ant colonies, and ants defend the plants from herbivores. Plants and ants disperse separately, and, although ant defence can indirectly increase plant reproduction by reducing folivory, it is unclear whether ants can also directly increase plant reproduction by defending seeds. The neotropical tree Cordia alliodora hosts colonies of Azteca pittieri ants. The trees produce domatia where ants nest at stem nodes and also at the node between the peduncle and the rachides of the infloresence. Unlike the stem domatia, these reproductive domatia senesce after the tree fruits each year. In this study, I show that the tree's resident ant colony moves into these ephemeral reproductive domatia, where they tend honeydew-producing scale insects and patrol the nearby developing fruits. The presence of ants significantly reduced pre-dispersal seed predation by Amblycerus bruchid beetles, thereby directly increasing plant reproductive output.

  15. Competence of Litter Ants for Rapid Biodiversity Assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. H. Saumya E. Silva

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Rapid Biodiversity Assessment approaches associated with focusing taxa have overcome many of the problems related to large scale surveys. This study examined the suitability of litter ants as a focusing taxon by checking whether diversity and species assemblages of litter ants reflect the overall picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter in two vegetation types: secondary forest and pine plantation in Upper Hanthana forest reserve, Sri Lanka. In each vegetation type, arthropods were sampled using three sampling methods (Winkler extraction, hand collection, and pitfall traps along three 100 m line transects. From the two sites, 1887 litter ants (34 species and 3488 litter arthropods (52 species were collected. Species assemblages composition of both ants and other arthropods differed significantly between the two sites (ANOSIM, p=0.001 with both groups generating distinct clusters for the two sites (SIMPROF, p=0.001. But there was no significant correlation (p>0.05 between abundance and richness of litter ants and those of other arthropods in both vegetation types. The overall finding suggests that the litter ants do not reflect the holistic picture of arthropod diversity and assemblages in leaf litter, but the quality of the habitat for the survival of all litter arthropods.

  16. Monoculture of leafcutter ant gardens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ulrich G Mueller

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Leafcutter ants depend on the cultivation of symbiotic Attamyces fungi for food, which are thought to be grown by the ants in single-strain, clonal monoculture throughout the hundreds to thousands of gardens within a leafcutter nest. Monoculture eliminates cultivar-cultivar competition that would select for competitive fungal traits that are detrimental to the ants, whereas polyculture of several fungi could increase nutritional diversity and disease resistance of genetically variable gardens.Using three experimental approaches, we assessed cultivar diversity within nests of Atta leafcutter ants, which are most likely among all fungus-growing ants to cultivate distinct cultivar genotypes per nest because of the nests' enormous sizes (up to 5000 gardens and extended lifespans (10-20 years. In Atta texana and in A. cephalotes, we resampled nests over a 5-year period to test for persistence of resident cultivar genotypes within each nest, and we tested for genetic differences between fungi from different nest sectors accessed through excavation. In A. texana, we also determined the number of Attamyces cells carried as a starter inoculum by a dispersing queens (minimally several thousand Attamyces cells, and we tested for genetic differences between Attamyces carried by sister queens dispersing from the same nest. Except for mutational variation arising during clonal Attamyces propagation, DNA fingerprinting revealed no evidence for fungal polyculture and no genotype turnover during the 5-year surveys.Atta leafcutter ants can achieve stable, fungal monoculture over many years. Mutational variation emerging within an Attamyces monoculture could provide genetic diversity for symbiont choice (gardening biases of the ants favoring specific mutational variants, an analog of artificial selection.

  17. Effects of UV on photosynthesis of Antarctic phytoplankton: models and their application to coastal and pelagic assemblages Efecto de la radiación UV sobre la fotosíntesis de fitoplancton antártico: modelos y su aplicación a ensambles costeros y pelágicos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    PATRICK J. NEALE

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available We have characterized the photosynthetic response to ultraviolet radiation (UV of natural phytoplankton assemblages in Antarctic (Southern Ocean waters. Biological weighting functions (BWFs and exposure response curves for inhibition of photosynthesis by UV were measured during spring-time ozone depletion (October-November. Two different models were developed to relate photosynthesis to UV exposure. A model that is a function of the duration of exposure (BWF H applied to assemblages in the well-mixed open waters of the Weddell-Scotia Confluence (WSC, 60° S, 50° W, since responses were a function of cumulative exposure and recovery rates were slow. These assemblages had a variable but generally high sensitivity to UV. A steady-state model (BWF E applied in the shallow waters near the Antarctic Peninsula (Palmer Station, 64° S, 64° W, where inhibition was a function of irradiance (reciprocity failed, and recovery was rapid. Using information on the time-dependence of photosynthesis in assemblages with active repair, inferences were drawn on the relative contribution of damage and recovery processes to the UV weights. BWFs for Palmer phytoplankton sampled during periods of pack-ice cover had both higher damage and higher repair than BWFs for WSC assemblages. BWFs for Palmer phytoplankton sampled during open water periods had about the same damage weights as Weddell-Scotia assemblages but had a higher repair rate. Solar exposures of more than 10 min were predicted to have generally less effect on Palmer phytoplankton than the WSC phytoplanktonSe caracterizó la respuesta fotosintética a radiación ultravioleta (RUV en poblaciones naturales de fitoplancton del Océano Antártico. Se midieron las funciones espectrales de peso biológico (BWFs y curvas de inhibición de fotosíntesis en respuesta a la exposición de RUV durante la temporada de mayor disminución de la capa de ozono (octubre-noviembre. Se desarrollaron dos modelos distintos que

  18. Ant aggression and evolutionary stability in plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualistic interactions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oña, L; Lachmann, M

    2011-03-01

    Mutualistic partners derive a benefit from their interaction, but this benefit can come at a cost. This is the case for plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualistic associations. In exchange for protection from herbivores provided by the resident ants, plants supply various kinds of resources or nests to the ants. Most ant-myrmecophyte mutualisms are horizontally transmitted, and therefore, partners share an interest in growth but not in reproduction. This lack of alignment in fitness interests between plants and ants drives a conflict between them: ants can attack pollinators that cross-fertilize the host plants. Using a mathematical model, we define a threshold in ant aggressiveness determining pollinator survival or elimination on the host plant. In our model we observed that, all else being equal, facultative interactions result in pollinator extinction for lower levels of ant aggressiveness than obligatory interactions. We propose that the capacity to discriminate pollinators from herbivores should not often evolve in ants, and when it does it will be when the plants exhibit limited dispersal in an environment that is not seed saturated so that each seed produced can effectively generate a new offspring or if ants acquire an extra benefit from pollination (e.g. if ants eat fruit). We suggest specific mutualism examples where these hypotheses can be tested empirically. © 2010 The Authors. Journal of Evolutionary Biology © 2010 European Society For Evolutionary Biology.

  19. Fire Ant Bites

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Favorite Name: Category: Share: Yes No, Keep Private Fire Ant Bites Share | Fire ants are aggressive, venomous insects that have pinching ... across the United States, even into Puerto Rico. Fire ant stings usually occur on the feet or ...

  20. Secondary seed dispersal of Ricinus communis Linnaeus (Euphorbiaceae by ants in secondary growth vegetation in Minas Gerais Dispersão secundária de sementes de Ricinus communis Linnaeus (Euphorbiaceae por formigas em vegetação secundária em Minas Gerais

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mário Marcos do Espírito Santo

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available In this study, I tested the efficacy of ants as secondary seed dispersers of Ricinus communis in southeastern Brazil. In a natural population of 143 individuals, I determined the ballistic dispersal distance for 62 seeds and 100 additional seeds were experimentally offered to ants in groups of ten seeds along a transect of 50 m. Fifty-three seeds were removed by ants, mainly by the leafcutter Atta sexdens (90.4%. The dispersal distance by ants was high, compared to the global average (4.38 m ± 0.74 m vs. 0.96 m, but was lower than the ballistic distance (7.27 m ± 0.13 m. Ants increased the total dispersal distance (8.66 m ± 0.60 m, but the main benefit for the plant was the directed dispersal, with seed deposition on the enriched soil of ant nests.Este estudo testou a eficiência de formigas como dispersores secundários de Ricinus communis no Brasil. Em uma população natural de 143 indivíduos, a distância de dispersão balística foi determinada para 62 sementes. Além disso, 100 sementes adicionais foram oferecidas a formigas em grupos de 10, ao longo de um transecto de 50 m. Cinqüenta e três sementes foram removidas por formigas, principalmente pela formiga-cortadeira Atta sexdens (90,4%. A distância de dispersão por formigas foi alta se comparada à média global (4,38m ± 0,74 m vs. 0,96 m, porém menor que a distância de dispersão balística (7,27 m ± 0,13 m. As formigas aumentaram a distância de dispersão total (8,66 m ± 0,60 m, mas o principal benefício para a planta foi a dispersão direcionada, com a deposição das sementes no solo enriquecido encontrado nos ninhos das formigas.

  1. Cryptococcus neoformans carried by Odontomachus bauri ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Santos de Jesus

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Cryptococcus neoformans is the most common causative agent of cryptococcosis worldwide. Although this fungus has been isolated from a variety of organic substrates, several studies suggest that hollow trees constitute an important natural niche for C. neoformans. A previously surveyed hollow of a living pink shower tree (Cassia grandis positive for C. neoformans in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was chosen for further investigation. Odontomachus bauri ants (trap-jaw ants found inside the hollow were collected for evaluation as possible carriers of Cryptococcus spp. Two out of 10 ants were found to carry phenoloxidase-positive colonies identified as C. neoformans molecular types VNI and VNII. The ants may have acted as a mechanical vector of C. neoformans and possibly contributed to the dispersal of the fungi from one substrate to another. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on the association of C. neoformans with ants of the genus Odontomachus.

  2. Canopy assemblages of ants in a New Guinea rain forest

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janda, Milan; Konečná, M.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 27, č. 1 (2011), s. 83-91 ISSN 0266-4674 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR KJB612230701; GA MŠk LC06073; GA MŠk ME09082; GA ČR GD206/08/H044; GA ČR GA206/09/0115; GA ČR GAP505/10/0673 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : bait traps * canopy * dominance Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.401, year: 2011

  3. Affects and assemblages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Samson, Kristine

    the paper raises the questions where to locate aesthetics when planners and architects wishes to design for aesthetical experiences and sensations rather than formal objects. The paper will proceed through a brief outline of the recent notion of assemblage and affect in urban studies, planning theory...... happens to aesthetics and how does it change the existing social and geographical understanding of urban space? The paper sets out to reintroduce aesthetical aspects of affects and assemblages in relation to urban space and urban planning. It presupposes urban space as a continuous state of becoming where...

  4. The endemic Patagonian vespertilionid assemblage is a depauperate ecomorphological vicariant of species-rich neotropical assemblages

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Analía L.GIM(E)NEZ; Norberto P. GIANNINI

    2017-01-01

    Vespertilionidae is the most diverse chiropteran family,and its diversity is concentrated in warm regions of the World;however,due to physiological and behavioral adaptations,these bats also dominate bat faunas in temperate regions.Here we performed a comparative study of vespertilionid assemblages from two broad regions of the New World,the cold and harsh Patagonia,versus the remaining temperate-to-subtropical,extra-Patagonian eco-regions of the South American Southern Cone.We took an ecomorphological approach and analyzed the craniodental morphological structure of these assemblages within a phylogenetic framework.We measured 17 craniodental linear variables from 447 specimens of 22 currently recognized vespertilionid species of the study regions.We performed a multivariate analysis to define the morphofunctional space,and calculated the pattern and degree of species packing for each assemblage.We assessed the importance of phylogeny and biogeography,and their impact on depauperate (Patagonian) versus rich (extra-Patagonian) vespertilionid assemblages as determinants of morphospace structuring.We implemented a sensitivity analysis associated to small samples of rare species.The morphological patterns were determined chiefly by the evolutionary history of the family.The Patagonian assemblage can be described as a structurally similar but comparatively depauperate ecomorphological version of those assemblages from neighboring extra-Patagonian eco-regions.The Patagonian assemblage seems to have formed by successively adding populations from Northern regions that eventually speciated in the region,leaving corresponding sisters (vicariants) in extraPatagonian eco-regions that continued to be characteristically richer.Despite being structurally akin,degree of species packing in Patagonia was comparatively very low,which may reflect the effect of limited dispersal success into a harsh region for bat survival.

  5. Pheromone disruption of Argentine ant trail integrity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suckling, D.M.; Peck, R.W.; Manning, L.M.; Stringer, L.D.; Cappadonna, J.; El-Sayed, A. M.

    2008-01-01

    Disruption of Argentine ant trail following and reduced ability to forage (measured by bait location success) was achieved after presentation of an oversupply of trail pheromone, (Z)-9-hexadecenal. Experiments tested single pheromone point sources and dispersion of a formulation in small field plots. Ant walking behavior was recorded and digitized by using video tracking, before and after presentation of trail pheromone. Ants showed changes in three parameters within seconds of treatment: (1) Ants on trails normally showed a unimodal frequency distribution of walking track angles, but this pattern disappeared after presentation of the trail pheromone; (2) ants showed initial high trail integrity on a range of untreated substrates from painted walls to wooden or concrete floors, but this was significantly reduced following presentation of a point source of pheromone; (3) the number of ants in the pheromone-treated area increased over time, as recruitment apparently exceeded departures. To test trail disruption in small outdoor plots, the trail pheromone was formulated with carnuba wax-coated quartz laboratory sand (1 g quartz sand/0.2 g wax/1 mg pheromone). The pheromone formulation, with a half-life of 30 h, was applied by rotary spreader at four rates (0, 2.5, 7.5, and 25 mg pheromone/m2) to 1- and 4-m2 plots in Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii. Ant counts at bait cards in treated plots were significantly reduced compared to controls on the day of treatment, and there was a significant reduction in ant foraging for 2 days. These results show that trail pheromone disruption of Argentine ants is possible, but a much more durable formulation is needed before nest-level impacts can be expected. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  6. Assemblages of Patient Safety

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Balatsas Lekkas, Angelos

    2016-01-01

    This thesis identifies how design processes emerge during the use of devices in healthcare, by attending to assemblages where contingencies of risk and harm co-exist with the contribution of healthcare professionals to the safe care of patients. With support from the field of Science and Technology...... practices of interdisciplinary care....

  7. Translanguaging and Semiotic Assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pennycook, Alastair

    2017-01-01

    This paper asks what translanguaging could start to look like if it incorporated an expanded version of language and questioned not only to the borders between languages but also the borders between semiotic modes. Developing the idea of spatial repertoires and assemblages, and looking at data from a Bangladeshi-owned corner shop, this paper…

  8. Ant- and Ant-Colony-Inspired ALife Visual Art.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenfield, Gary; Machado, Penousal

    2015-01-01

    Ant- and ant-colony-inspired ALife art is characterized by the artistic exploration of the emerging collective behavior of computational agents, developed using ants as a metaphor. We present a chronology that documents the emergence and history of such visual art, contextualize ant- and ant-colony-inspired art within generative art practices, and consider how it relates to other ALife art. We survey many of the algorithms that artists have used in this genre, address some of their aims, and explore the relationships between ant- and ant-colony-inspired art and research on ant and ant colony behavior.

  9. A diverse ant fauna from the mid-cretaceous of Myanmar (Hymenoptera: Formicidae.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phillip Barden

    Full Text Available A new collection of 24 wingless ant specimens from mid-Cretaceous Burmese amber (Albian-Cenomanian, 99 Ma comprises nine new species belonging to the genus Sphecomyrmodes Engel and Grimaldi. Described taxa vary considerably with regard to total size, head and body proportion, cuticular sculpturing, and petiole structure while all species are unified by a distinct shared character. The assemblage represents the largest known diversification of closely related Cretaceous ants with respect to species number. These stem-group ants exhibit some characteristics previously known only from their extant counterparts along with presumed plesiomorphic morphology. Consequently, their morphology may inform hypotheses relating to basal relationships and general patterns of ant evolution. These and other uncovered Cretaceous species indicate that stem-group ants are not simply wasp-like, transitional formicids, but rather a group of considerable adaptive diversity, exhibiting innovations analogous to what crown-group ants would echo 100 million years later.

  10. Riding with the ants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Duarte, A. P. M.; Attili-Angelis, D.; Baron, N. C.; Groenewald, Johannes Z.; Crous, Pedro W.; Pagnocca, F. C.

    Isolates of Teratosphaeriaceae have frequently been found in the integument of attine ants, proving to be common and diverse in this microenvironment. The LSU phylogeny of the ant-isolated strains studied revealed that they cluster in two main lineages. The first was associated with the genus

  11. Sick ants become unsociable

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bos, Nicky Peter Maria; Lefevre, T.; Jensen, A.B.

    2012-01-01

    Parasites represent a severe threat to social insects, which form high-density colonies of related individuals, and selection should favour host traits that reduce infection risk. Here, using a carpenter ant (Camponotus aethiops) and a generalist insect pathogenic fungus (Metarhizium brunneum), we...... show that infected ants radically change their behaviour over time to reduce the risk of colony infection. Infected individuals (i) performed less social interactions than their uninfected counterparts, (ii) did not interact with brood anymore and (iii) spent most of their time outside the nest from...... day 3 post-infection until death. Furthermore, infected ants displayed an increased aggressiveness towards non-nestmates. Finally, infected ants did not alter their cuticular chemical profile, suggesting that infected individuals do not signal their physiological status to nestmates. Our results...

  12. Does structural complexity determine the morphology of assemblages? An experimental test on three continents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Heloise; Parr, Catherine L

    2013-01-01

    Understanding how species will respond to global change depends on our ability to distinguish generalities from idiosyncrasies. For diverse, but poorly known taxa, such as insects, species traits may provide a short-cut to predicting species turnover. We tested whether ant traits respond consistently to habitat complexity across geographically independent ant assemblages, using an experimental approach and baits. We repeated our study in six paired simple and complex habitats on three continents with distinct ant faunas. We also compared traits amongst ants with different foraging strategies. We hypothesised that ants would be larger, broader, have longer legs and more dorsally positioned eyes in simpler habitats. In agreement with predictions, ants had longer femurs and dorsally positioned eyes in simple habitats. This pattern was most pronounced for ants that discovered resources. Body size and pronotum width responded as predicted for experimental treatments, but were inconsistent across continents. Monopolising ants were smaller, with shorter femurs than those that occupied or discovered resources. Consistent responses for several traits suggest that many, but not all, aspects of morphology respond predictably to habitat complexity, and that foraging strategy is linked with morphology. Some traits thus have the potential to be used to predict the direction of species turnover, changes in foraging strategy and, potentially, evolution in response to changes in habitat structure.

  13. Does structural complexity determine the morphology of assemblages? An experimental test on three continents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heloise Gibb

    Full Text Available Understanding how species will respond to global change depends on our ability to distinguish generalities from idiosyncrasies. For diverse, but poorly known taxa, such as insects, species traits may provide a short-cut to predicting species turnover. We tested whether ant traits respond consistently to habitat complexity across geographically independent ant assemblages, using an experimental approach and baits. We repeated our study in six paired simple and complex habitats on three continents with distinct ant faunas. We also compared traits amongst ants with different foraging strategies. We hypothesised that ants would be larger, broader, have longer legs and more dorsally positioned eyes in simpler habitats. In agreement with predictions, ants had longer femurs and dorsally positioned eyes in simple habitats. This pattern was most pronounced for ants that discovered resources. Body size and pronotum width responded as predicted for experimental treatments, but were inconsistent across continents. Monopolising ants were smaller, with shorter femurs than those that occupied or discovered resources. Consistent responses for several traits suggest that many, but not all, aspects of morphology respond predictably to habitat complexity, and that foraging strategy is linked with morphology. Some traits thus have the potential to be used to predict the direction of species turnover, changes in foraging strategy and, potentially, evolution in response to changes in habitat structure.

  14. An assessment of rehabilitation success in an African grassland using ants as bioindicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samantha-Leigh Jamison

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Many studies that evaluate rehabilitation make use of invertebrate bioindicators. Invertebrates, especially ants, make useful indicators as they are sensitive to environmental change. We compared ant assemblages in rehabilitated and control sites in the Rietvlei Nature Reserve, a protected area important for grassland conservation in South Africa. Pitfall traps were used to sample ant assemblages at six control sites and six rehabilitated sites. In addition, environmental and vegetation surveys were conducted at each site. We found that the ant assemblages differed significantly between the control and rehabilitated sites, although there was considerable overlap; the control sites supported a greater species density and higher abundance of ants than the rehabilitated sites. In total, 36 ant species were collected (control sites: 34 species; rehabilitated sites: 26 species. The environmental survey revealed that percentages of bare ground and coarse sand, as well as soil pH, differed significantly between the control and rehabilitated sites. The control and rehabilitated sites also supported significantly different plant assemblages. Three indicator ant species were identified for the control sites: Crematogaster rectinota, Crematogaster amita and Monomorium fastidium. No indicator species were identified for the rehabilitated sites. These results suggest that recovery from the previous agricultural use of the area is still incomplete and highlights the lack of research examining the success of rehabilitation in the grassland biome. Conservation implications: The present study illustrates the need for further research on rehabilitation techniques utilised in the grassland biome. This is of value as the remainder of South African grasslands are considered critically endangered.

  15. paleoenvironmental settings and assemblage changes

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Kasanzu

    shallow borehole drilled in the southern coastal basin of Tanzania with the aim of characterizing foraminifera and palynomorphs assemblage changes aiming at reconstructing ..... decline in temperature at EOT which caused the extinction of ...

  16. Impacts of the Invasive European Red Ant (Myrmica rubra (L.): Hymenoptera; Formicidae) on a Myrmecochorous System in the Northeastern United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gammans, Nicola; Drummond, Frank; Groden, Eleanor

    2018-05-16

    We investigated the impact of an invasive ant species from Europe, Myrmica rubra (L.), on a myrmecochorous system (seeds dispersed by ants) in its invaded range in North America. We assessed: 1) how M. rubra process the myrmecochorous diapsores (seeds and elaiosome as a single dispersal unit transported by ants) in comparison with native ants; 2) its preference for common native and invasive diaspore species relative to native ants; 3) how far they disperse diaspores in the field; and 4) the diaspore removal rate by invertebrates and vertebrates in infested areas compared to noninvaded sites. Field experiments demonstrated higher diaspore removal rates over a 10-min and 24-h period by M. rubra compared to native ants. M. rubra's diaspore dispersal distance was 40% greater compared to native ants. In two of three laboratory studies and one field study, there was no significant difference between the seed species which M. rubra and native ants selected. Our data suggest no long-term deleterious effects of M. rubra's invasion on diaspore dispersal in the Maine plant community that is comprised of both native and invasive species. This implies that M. rubra benefits from the myrmechorous plant species' diaspores by increasing their dispersal range away from the parent plant and potentially reducing seed predation. However, it is not known whether the fact that the native ant fauna and M. rubra are attracted to the same plant species' diaspores creates a high level of competition between the ants with deleterious effects on the native ant community.

  17. Harnessing ant defence at fruits reduces bruchid seed predation in a symbiotic ant–plant mutualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G.

    2014-01-01

    In horizontally transmitted mutualisms, mutualists disperse separately and reassemble in each generation with partners genetically unrelated to those in the previous generation. Because of this, there should be no selection on either partner to enhance the other's reproductive output directly. In symbiotic ant–plant mutualisms, myrmecophytic plants host defensive ant colonies, and ants defend the plants from herbivores. Plants and ants disperse separately, and, although ant defence can indirectly increase plant reproduction by reducing folivory, it is unclear whether ants can also directly increase plant reproduction by defending seeds. The neotropical tree Cordia alliodora hosts colonies of Azteca pittieri ants. The trees produce domatia where ants nest at stem nodes and also at the node between the peduncle and the rachides of the infloresence. Unlike the stem domatia, these reproductive domatia senesce after the tree fruits each year. In this study, I show that the tree's resident ant colony moves into these ephemeral reproductive domatia, where they tend honeydew-producing scale insects and patrol the nearby developing fruits. The presence of ants significantly reduced pre-dispersal seed predation by Amblycerus bruchid beetles, thereby directly increasing plant reproductive output. PMID:24807259

  18. Disease dynamics in a specialized parasite of ant societies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra B Andersen

    Full Text Available Coevolution between ant colonies and their rare specialized parasites are intriguing, because lethal infections of workers may correspond to tolerable chronic diseases of colonies, but the parasite adaptations that allow stable coexistence with ants are virtually unknown. We explore the trade-offs experienced by Ophiocordyceps parasites manipulating ants into dying in nearby graveyards. We used field data from Brazil and Thailand to parameterize and fit a model for the growth rate of graveyards. We show that parasite pressure is much lower than the abundance of ant cadavers suggests and that hyperparasites often castrate Ophiocordyceps. However, once fruiting bodies become sexually mature they appear robust. Such parasite life-history traits are consistent with iteroparity--a reproductive strategy rarely considered in fungi. We discuss how tropical habitats with high biodiversity of hyperparasites and high spore mortality has likely been crucial for the evolution and maintenance of iteroparity in parasites with low dispersal potential.

  19. Ants farm subterranean aphids mostly in single clone groups

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ivens, Aniek B.F.; Kronauer, Daniel Jan Christoph; Pen, Ido

    2012-01-01

    mutualisms have been studied in sufficient genetic detail to address these issues, so we decided to characterize symbiont diversity in the complex mutualism between multiple root aphid species and Lasius flavus ants. After showing elsewhere that three of these aphid species have low dispersal and mostly...... if not exclusively asexual reproduction, we here investigate aphid diversity within and between ant nest mounds. Results The three focal species (Geoica utricularia, Forda marginata and Tetraneura ulmi) had considerable clonal diversity at the population level. Yet more than half of the ant mounds contained just....... The ants appear to eat most of the early instar aphids, so that adult aphids are unlikely to face limited phloem resources and scramble competition with other aphids. We suggest that such culling of carbohydrate-providing symbionts for protein ingestion may maintain maximal host yield per aphid while also...

  20. Current and potential ant impacts in the Pacific region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loope, Lloyd L.; Krushelnycky, Paul D.

    2007-01-01

    Worldwide, ants are a powerful ecological force, and they appear to be dominant components of animal communities of many tropical and temperate ecosystems in terms of biomass and numbers of individuals (Bluthgen et al. 2000). For example, ants comprise up to 94% of arthropod individuals in fogging samples taken from diverse lowland tropical rainforest canopies, and 86% of the biomass (Davidson et al. 2003). The majority of these ant species and individuals obtain carbohydrates either from extrafloral nectaries or from sap-feeding Hemiptera that pass carbohydrate-rich “honeydew” to attending ants while concentrating nitrogen (N) from N-poor plant sap (Davidson et al. 2003). Honeydew and nectar represent key resources for arboreal ant species, although most ant species are at least partly carnivorous or scavengers (Bluthgen et al. 2004). In contrast to most of the terrestrial world, the biotas of many Pacific islands evolved without ants. Whereas endemic ant species are found in New Zealand (ca. 10 spp.), Tonga (ca. 10 spp.), and Samoa (ca. 12 spp.), other islands of Polynesia and parts of Micronesia likely lack native ants (Wilson and Taylor 1967, Wetterer 2002, Wetterer and Vargo 2003). About 20 Indo-Australian and western Pacific ant species range to the east and north of Samoa, but it is unclear how many of these were transported there by humans at some time (Wilson and Taylor 1967). Most of the remainder of the ant species currently found on Pacific islands are widespread species that fall in the category of “tramp species,” dispersed by recent human commerce and generally closely tied to human activity and urban areas (Wilson and Taylor 1967, McGlynn 1999). In Pacific island situations, some of these tramp ant species are able to thrive beyond areas of human activity. Relatively few ant species have been successful invaders of native communities on continents, and these include most of the species that pose the greatest problems for Pacific islands

  1. Can anthropic fires affect epigaeic and hypogaeic Cerrado ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) communities in the same way?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canedo-Júnior, Ernesto de Oliveira; Cuissi, Rafael Gonçalves; Nelson Henrique de Almeida, Curi; Demetrio, Guilherme Ramos; Lasmar, Chaim José; Malves, Kira

    2016-03-01

    Fire occurrences are a common perturbation in Cerrado ecosystems, and may differently impact the local biodiversity. Arthropods are one of the taxa affected by fires, and among them, ants are known as good bioindicators. We aimed to evaluate the effect of anthropic fires on epigaeic and hypogaeic ant communities (species richness and composition) in Cerrado areas with different post-fire event recovery periods. We conducted the study in four Cerrado areas during two weeks of 2012 dry season: one unburned and three at different post-fire times (one month, one and two years). We sampled ants with pitfall traps in epigaeic and hypogaeic microhabitats. We collected 71 ant morpho-species from 25 genera. In the epigaeic microhabitat we sampled 56 morpho-species and 42 in the hypogaeic microhabitat. The area with the shortest recovery time presented lower epigaeic ant species richness (4.3 ± 2.00) in comparison to the other areas (8.1 ± 2.68 species on one year area; 10.3 ± 2.66 species on two years area; 10.4 ± 2.31 species on control area), but recovery time did not affect hypogaeic ant species richness. Regarding ant species composition, fire did not directly affect hypogaeic ant species, which remained the same even one month after fire event. However, two years were not enough to reestablish ant species composition in both microhabitats in relation to our control group samples. Our study is the first to assess anthropic fire effects upon epigaeic and hypogaeic ants communities; highlighting the importance of evaluating different microhabitats, to more accurately detect the effects of anthropic disturbances in biological communities. We concluded that ant communities are just partially affected by fire occurrences, and epigaeic assemblages are the most affected ones in comparison to hypogaeic ants. Furthermore the study provides knowledge to aid in the creation of vegetation management programs that allow Cerrado conservation.

  2. Commentary: Warring ants

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Home; Journals; Journal of Biosciences; Volume 27; Issue 2. Commentary: Warring ants: Lessons from Lanchester's laws of combat? Renee M Borges. Volume 27 Issue 2 March 2002 pp 75-78. Fulltext. Click here to view fulltext PDF. Permanent link: https://www.ias.ac.in/article/fulltext/jbsc/027/02/0075-0078 ...

  3. Antílope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Anderson Martinho Moçambique

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Essa espécie de antílope só é encontrada em território angolano, sendo assim um símbolo nacional. Segundo a mitologia africana é símbolo de vivacidade, velocidade e beleza - Angola.

  4. Antílope

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Anderson Martinho Moçambique

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Essa espécie de antílope só é encontrada em território angolano, sendo assim um símbolo nacional. Segundo a mitologia africana é símbolo de vivacidade, velocidade e beleza - Angola.

  5. Fire Ant Allergy

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... venom in a fire ant sting will kill bacteria and some of your skin cells. This results in the formation of a blister that fills with a cloudy white material in about 24 hours. While this looks like a pus-filled lesion that should be drained, ...

  6. "Ant-egg" cataract revisited

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Clemmensen, Kåre; Enghild, Jan J; Ivarsen, Anders

    2017-01-01

    -ray scans and electron microscopy. The purpose of this study was to further characterize "ant-egg" cataract using modern technology and display the history of the "ant-eggs" after cataract extraction. METHODS: "Ant-eggs" were examined using Heidelberg SPECTRALIS Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT...

  7. Ant Colony Optimization for Control

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Ast, J.M.

    2010-01-01

    The very basis of this thesis is the collective behavior of ants in colonies. Ants are an excellent example of how rather simple behavior on a local level can lead to complex behavior on a global level that is beneficial for the individuals. The key in the self-organization of ants is communication

  8. Ants sow the seeds of global diversification in flowering plants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lengyel, Szabolcs; Gove, Aaron D; Latimer, Andrew M; Majer, Jonathan D; Dunn, Robert R

    2009-01-01

    The extraordinary diversification of angiosperm plants in the Cretaceous and Tertiary periods has produced an estimated 250,000-300,000 living angiosperm species and has fundamentally altered terrestrial ecosystems. Interactions with animals as pollinators or seed dispersers have long been suspected as drivers of angiosperm diversification, yet empirical examples remain sparse or inconclusive. Seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory) may drive diversification as it can reduce extinction by providing selective advantages to plants and can increase speciation by enhancing geographical isolation by extremely limited dispersal distances. Using the most comprehensive sister-group comparison to date, we tested the hypothesis that myrmecochory leads to higher diversification rates in angiosperm plants. As predicted, diversification rates were substantially higher in ant-dispersed plants than in their non-myrmecochorous relatives. Data from 101 angiosperm lineages in 241 genera from all continents except Antarctica revealed that ant-dispersed lineages contained on average more than twice as many species as did their non-myrmecochorous sister groups. Contrasts in species diversity between sister groups demonstrated that diversification rates did not depend on seed dispersal mode in the sister group and were higher in myrmecochorous lineages in most biogeographic regions. Myrmecochory, which has evolved independently at least 100 times in angiosperms and is estimated to be present in at least 77 families and 11 000 species, is a key evolutionary innovation and a globally important driver of plant diversity. Myrmecochory provides the best example to date for a consistent effect of any mutualism on large-scale diversification.

  9. Ants in Tropical Urban Habitats: The Myrmecofauna in a Densely Populated Area of Bogor, West Java, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    AKHMAD RIZALI

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Ants are the most abundant animals in tropical habitats and have been widely studied in natural and semi-natural tropical systems. However, species in urban tropical habitats remain poorly studied, despite their abundance and potentially important roles in urban ecosystems and pest dynamics. We investigated the ant fauna of Bogor and its surroundings to contribute to the characterization of the myrmecofauna of one of Southeast Asia’s most densely populated regions. Ants were collected both by hand collection and from honey baits in the most common habitats: garbage dumps, households, and home gardens. In total, 94 species were recorded, over two thirds of which occurred in home gardens, which underlines the importance of vegetated habitats for urban planning to support complex ant assemblages. Twelve sampled species are well-known as tramp species that occur primarily in human-dominated landscapes. The two tramp species Anoplolepis gracilipes and Paratrechina longicornis dominated ant assemblages in all locations and most habitat types. The assemblages of tramp species were affected by habitat type, whereas that of non tramp species were not. Forty-five species were also recorded in the Bogor Botanical Garden and five species are also known to be common in cacao agroforests. Hence, research in urban tropical habitats can increase our knowledge of the occurrence of ant species, allowing us to better assess the biodiversity and conservation potential of semi-natural habitats.

  10. Recolonization patterns of ants in a rehabilitated lignite mine in central Italy: Potential for the use of Mediterranean ants as indicators of restoration processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ottonetti, L.; Tucci, L.; Santini, G. [University of Florence, Florence (Italy)

    2006-03-15

    Ant (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) assemblages were sampled with pitfall traps in three different habitats associated with a rehabilitated mine district and in undisturbed forests in Tuscany, Italy. The four habitats were (1) open fields (3-4 years old); (2) a middle-age mixed plantation (10 years); (3) an old-age mixed plantation (20 years); and (4) an oak woodland (40 years) not directly affected by mining activities. The aim of the study was to analyze ant recolonization patterns in order to provide insights on the use of Mediterranean ant fauna as indicators of restoration processes. Species richness and diversity were not significantly different among the four habitats. However, multivariate analyses showed that the assemblages in the different habitats were clearly differentiated, with similarity relationships reflecting a successional gradient among rehabilitated sites. The observed patterns of functional group changes along the gradient broadly accord with those of previous studies in other biogeographic regions. These were (1) a decrease of dominant Dolichoderinae and opportunists; (2) an increase in the proportion of cold-climate specialists; and (3) the appearance of the Cryptic species in the oldest plantations, with a maximum of abundance in the woodland. In conclusion, the results of our study supported the use of Mediterranean ants as a suitable tool for biomonitoring of restoration processes, and in particular, the functional group approach proved a valuable framework to better interpret local trends in terms of global ecological patterns. Further research is, however, needed in order to obtain a reliable classification of Mediterranean ant functional groups.

  11. Following the moving and changing attachments and assemblages of 'addiction': Applying the actor network approach to autobiographies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Törrönen, Jukka; Tigerstedt, Christoffer

    2018-04-01

    The article applies actor network theory (ANT) to autobiographical data on alcohol dependence to explore what ANT can offer to the analysis of 'addiction stories'. By defining 'addiction' as a relational achievement, as the effect of elements acting together as a configuration of human and non-human actors, the article demonstrates how the moving and changing attachments of addiction can be dynamically analyzed with concepts of 'assemblage', 'mediator', 'tendency', 'translation', 'trajectory', 'immutable mobile', 'fluid' and 'bush fire'. The article shows how the reduction of alcohol dependence simply to genetic factors, neurobiological causes, personality disorders and self-medication constitutes an inadequate explanation. As 'meta theories', they illuminate addiction one-sidedly. Instead, as ANT pays attention to multiple heterogeneous mediators, it specifies in what way the causes identified in 'meta theories' may together with other actors participate in addiction assemblages. When following the development of addiction assemblages, we focus on situational sequences of action, in which human and non-human elements are linked to each other, and we trace how the relational shape of addiction changes from one sequence to another as a transforming assemblage of heterogeneous attachments that either maintain healthy subjectivities or destabilize them. The more attachments assemblages of addiction are able to make that are flexible and durable from one event to another, the stronger also the addiction-based subjectivities. Similarly, the fewer attachments that assemblages of addiction are able to keep in their various translations, the weaker the addiction-based subjectivities also become. An ANT-inspired analysis has a number of implications for the prevention and treatment of addiction: it suggests that in the prevention and treatment of addiction, the aim should hardly be to get rid of dependencies. Rather, the ambition should be the identification of attachments

  12. Biodiversity on Broadway--enigmatic diversity of the societies of ants (Formicidae on the streets of New York City.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marko Pećarević

    2010-10-01

    Full Text Available Each year, a larger proportion of the Earth's surface is urbanized, and a larger proportion of the people on Earth lives in those urban areas. The everyday nature, however, that humans encounter in cities remains poorly understood. Here, we consider perhaps the most urban green habitat, street medians. We sampled ants from forty-four medians along three boulevards in New York City and examined how median properties affect the abundance and species richness of native and introduced ants found on them. Ant species richness varied among streets and increased with area but was independent of the other median attributes measured. Ant assemblages were highly nested, with three numerically dominant species present at all medians and additional species present at a subset of medians. The most common ant species were the introduced Pavement ant (Tetramorium caespitum and the native Thief ant (Solenopsis molesta and Cornfield ant (Lasius neoniger. The common introduced species on the medians responded differently to natural and disturbed elements of medians. Tetramorium caespitum was most abundant in small medians, with the greatest edge/area ratio, particularly if those medians had few trees, whereas Nylanderia flavipes was most abundant in the largest medians, particularly if they had more trees. Many of the species encountered in Manhattan were similar to those found in other large North American cities, such that a relatively small subset of ant species probably represent most of the encounters humans have with ants in North America.

  13. Runtime analysis of the 1-ANT ant colony optimizer

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Doerr, Benjamin; Neumann, Frank; Sudholt, Dirk

    2011-01-01

    The runtime analysis of randomized search heuristics is a growing field where, in the last two decades, many rigorous results have been obtained. First runtime analyses of ant colony optimization (ACO) have been conducted only recently. In these studies simple ACO algorithms such as the 1-ANT...... that give us a more detailed impression of the 1-ANT’s performance. Furthermore, the experiments also deal with the question whether using many ant solutions in one iteration can decrease the total runtime....

  14. Trail Pheromone Disruption of Argentine Ant Trail Formation and Foraging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suckling, D.M.; Peck, R.W.; Stringer, L.D.; Snook, K.; Banko, P.C.

    2010-01-01

    Trail pheromone disruption of invasive ants is a novel tactic that builds on the development of pheromone-based pest management in other insects. Argentine ant trail pheromone, (Z)-9-hexadecenal, was formulated as a micro-encapsulated sprayable particle and applied against Argentine ant populations in 400 m2 field plots in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. A widely dispersed point source strategy for trail pheromone disruption was used. Traffic rates of ants in bioassays of treated filter paper, protected from rainfall and sunlight, indicated the presence of behaviorally significant quantities of pheromone being released from the formulation for up to 59 days. The proportion of plots, under trade wind conditions (2-3 m s-1), with visible trails was reduced for up to 14 days following treatment, and the number of foraging ants at randomly placed tuna-bait cards was similarly reduced. The success of these trail pheromone disruption trials in a natural ecosystem highlights the potential of this method for control of invasive ant species in this and other environments. ?? Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010.

  15. Reaction of mutualistic and granivorous ants to ulex elaiosome chemicals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gammans, Nicola; Bullock, James M; Gibbons, Hannah; Schönrogge, Karsten

    2006-09-01

    It has been proposed that chemicals on plant elaiosomes aid seed detection by seed-dispersing ants. We hypothesized that the chemical interaction between ants and elaiosomes is more intimate than a generic attraction, and that elaiosome chemicals will attract mutualistic but not granivorous ant species. We investigated this by using two gorse species, Ulex minor and U. europaeus, and two associated ant species from European heathlands, the mutualist Myrmica ruginodis and the granivore Tetramorium caespitum. Behavioral studies were conducted with laboratory nests and foraging arenas. Both ants will take Ulex seeds, but while M. ruginodis showed increased antennation toward ether extracts of elaiosome surface chemicals compared with controls, T. caespitum showed no response. Elaiosome extracts were separated into seven lipid fractions. M. ruginodis showed increased antennation only toward the diglyceride fractions of both Ulex species, whereas T. caespitum showed no consistent reaction. This indicates that M. ruginodis can detect the elaiosome by responding to its surface chemicals, but T. caespitum is unresponsive to these chemicals. Responses to surface chemicals could increase the rate of seed detection in the field, and so these results suggest that Ulex elaiosomes produce chemicals that facilitate attraction of mutualistic rather than granivorous ant species. This could reduce seed predation and increase Ulex fitness.

  16. Functional and Taxonomic Differentiation of Macrophyte Assemblages Across the Yangtze River Floodplain Under Human Impacts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Min; García Molinos, Jorge; Zhang, Xiaolin; Xu, Jun

    2018-01-01

    Human activities and the consequent extirpations of species have been changing the composition of species assemblages worldwide. These anthropogenic impacts alter not only the richness of assemblages but also the biological dissimilarity among them. One of the main gaps in the assessment of biodiversity change in freshwater ecosystems is our limited understanding regarding how taxonomic and functional facets of macrophyte assemblages respond to human impacts on regional scales. Here, we assess the temporal (before 1970s against after 2000s) changes in taxonomic and functional richness and compositional dissimilarities, partitioned into its turnover and nestedness components, of freshwater macrophyte assemblages across the floodplain lakes of the Yangtze River in China. We found that functional and taxonomic assemblage differentiation occurred simultaneously under increasing human impact, concomitant to a general decrease in functional and taxonomic richness. However, this effect weakened when the historical level of taxonomic dissimilarity among assemblages was high. Macrophyte species with large dispersal range and submersed life form were significantly more susceptible to extirpation. The impact of human activities on differentiation was complex but habitat loss and fishery intensity were consistently the main drivers of assemblage change in these lakes, whereas water quality (i.e., light pollution and nutrient enrichment) had weaker effects. Further, macrophyte taxonomic and functional differentiation was mainly driven by the nestedness component of dissimilarity, accounting for changes in assemblage composition related to changes in species richness independent of species replacement. This result, markedly different from previous studies on freshwater fish assemblages conducted in these lakes, represents a novel contribution toward achieving a more holistic understanding of how human impacts contribute to shape community assemblages in natural ecosystems.

  17. Extracted Venom and Cuticular Compounds of Imported Fire Ants, Solenopsis spp., and Chemotaxonomic Applications Across a Persistent Hybrid Zone

    Science.gov (United States)

    Characterization of cuticular biomolecular assemblages for imported fire ants permit basic distinctions among colonies of S. invicta, S. richteri, and their hybrids; thus, providing opportunities to investigate details of landscape ecology for this species complex as well as to assess levels of inva...

  18. Effects of the Trophobiont Herbivore Calloconophora pugionata (Hemiptera on Ant Fauna Associated with Myrcia obovata (Myrtaceae in a Montane Tropical Forest

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberth Fagundes

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Many studies have investigated the mechanisms behind the structure of arboreal ant assemblages. In this study, the objective was to evaluate the effect of availability of honeydew-producing colonies of Calloconophora pugionata (Membracidae on the structure of ant assemblages associated with the host plant Myrcia obovata (Myrtaceae in an Atlantic forest of Minas Gerais (Brazil. Our experiment consisted in a gradual exclusion of hemipteran colonies out of the host plant crown and further record of the ant assemblage response (species richness, composition, and occurrence to the presence and density of treehopper colonies. The hypothesis was that an increase in the number of trophobiont herbivores results in an increase in tending ant occurrence but a reduction in ant species diversity. Results corroborated our main hypothesis: membracids had a positive effect on the occurrence of ants but negative on species richness. Overall insect occurrence was also reduced with increasing in C. pugionata colonies, probably due to strengthening dominant ant species territory sizes and intensification of patrolling.

  19. The metapleural gland of ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yek, Sze Huei; Mueller, Ulrich G

    2011-01-01

    The metapleural gland (MG) is a complex glandular structure unique to ants, suggesting a critical role in their origin and ecological success. We synthesize the current understanding of the adaptive function, morphology, evolutionary history, and chemical properties of the MG. Two functions......-compressible invagination of the integument and the secretion is thought to ooze out passively through the non-closable opening of the MG or is groomed off by the legs and applied to target surfaces. MG loss has occurred repeatedly among the ants, particularly in the subfamilies Formicinae and Myrmicinae, and the MG...... is more commonly absent in males than in workers. MG chemistry has been characterized mostly in derived ant lineages with unique biologies (e.g. leafcutter ants, fire ants), currently precluding any inferences about MG chemistry at the origin of the ants. A synthetic approach integrating functional...

  20. A new Lower Triassic ichthyopterygian assemblage from Fossil Hill, Nevada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Neil P. Kelley

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available We report a new ichthyopterygian assemblage from Lower Triassic horizons of the Prida Formation at Fossil Hill in central Nevada. Although fragmentary, the specimens collected so far document a diverse fauna. One partial jaw exhibits isodont dentition with blunt tipped, mesiodistally compressed crowns and striated enamel. These features are shared with the Early Triassic genus Utatsusaurus known from coeval deposits in Japan and British Columbia. An additional specimen exhibits a different dentition characterized by relatively small, rounded posterior teeth resembling other Early Triassic ichthyopterygians, particularly Grippia. This Nevada assemblage marks a southward latitudinal extension for Early Triassic ichthyopterygians along the eastern margin of Panthalassa and indicates repeated trans-hemispheric dispersal events in Early Triassic ichthyopterygians.

  1. The evolution of invasiveness in garden ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvia Cremer

    Full Text Available It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its rapid spread through Europe and Asia as the most recent example of a pest ant that may become a global problem. Here, we present the first integrated study on behavior, morphology, population genetics, chemical recognition and parasite load of L. neglectus and its non-invasive sister species L. turcicus. We find that L. neglectus expresses the same supercolonial syndrome as other invasive ants, a social system that is characterized by mating without dispersal and large networks of cooperating nests rather than smaller mutually hostile colonies. We conclude that the invasive success of L. neglectus relies on a combination of parasite-release following introduction and pre-adaptations in mating system, body-size, queen number and recognition efficiency that evolved long before introduction. Our results challenge the notion that supercolonial organization is an inevitable consequence of low genetic variation for chemical recognition cues in small invasive founder populations. We infer that low variation and limited volatility in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles already existed in the native range in combination with low dispersal and a highly viscous population structure. Human transport to relatively disturbed urban areas thus became the decisive factor to induce parasite release, a well established general promoter of invasiveness in non-social animals and plants, but understudied in invasive social insects.

  2. The Evolution of Invasiveness in Garden Ants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cremer, Sylvia; Ugelvig, Line V.; Drijfhout, Falko P.; Schlick-Steiner, Birgit C.; Steiner, Florian M.; Seifert, Bernhard; Hughes, David P.; Schulz, Andreas; Petersen, Klaus S.; Konrad, Heino; Stauffer, Christian; Kiran, Kadri; Espadaler, Xavier; d'Ettorre, Patrizia; Aktaç, Nihat; Eilenberg, Jørgen; Jones, Graeme R.; Nash, David R.; Pedersen, Jes S.; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2008-01-01

    It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its rapid spread through Europe and Asia as the most recent example of a pest ant that may become a global problem. Here, we present the first integrated study on behavior, morphology, population genetics, chemical recognition and parasite load of L. neglectus and its non-invasive sister species L. turcicus. We find that L. neglectus expresses the same supercolonial syndrome as other invasive ants, a social system that is characterized by mating without dispersal and large networks of cooperating nests rather than smaller mutually hostile colonies. We conclude that the invasive success of L. neglectus relies on a combination of parasite-release following introduction and pre-adaptations in mating system, body-size, queen number and recognition efficiency that evolved long before introduction. Our results challenge the notion that supercolonial organization is an inevitable consequence of low genetic variation for chemical recognition cues in small invasive founder populations. We infer that low variation and limited volatility in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles already existed in the native range in combination with low dispersal and a highly viscous population structure. Human transport to relatively disturbed urban areas thus became the decisive factor to induce parasite release, a well established general promoter of invasiveness in non-social animals and plants, but understudied in invasive social insects. PMID:19050762

  3. Hospitales seguros ante desastres

    OpenAIRE

    Celso Vladimir Bambaren Alatrista; María Del Socorro Alatrista Gutierrez

    2007-01-01

    Entre 1982 a 2005 se registraron daños en 1 143 establecimientos de salud en el Perú, generalmente debido a sismos, lluvias e inundaciones. Los daños en los servicios de salud producen la interrupción de la atención de la población y de los programas de salud, así como generan un gran gasto para la rehabilitación y reconstrucción. Por ello, se requiere proteger a los establecimientos de salud y desarrollar una política de hospitales seguros ante desastres que incluya medidas para prevenir o r...

  4. Adaptive Radiation in Socially Advanced Stem-Group Ants from the Cretaceous.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barden, Phillip; Grimaldi, David A

    2016-02-22

    Across terrestrial ecosystems, modern ants are ubiquitous. As many as 94 out of every 100 individual arthropods in rainforests are ants, and they constitute up to 15% of animal biomass in the Amazon. Moreover, ants are pervasive agents of natural selection as over 10,000 arthropod species are specialized inquilines or myrmecomorphs living among ants or defending themselves through mimicry. Such impact is traditionally explained by sociality: ants are the first major group of ground-dwelling predatory insects to become eusocial, increasing efficiency of tasks and establishing competitive superiority over solitary species. A wealth of specimens from rich deposits of 99 million-year-old Burmese amber resolves ambiguity regarding sociality and diversity in the earliest ants. The stem-group genus Gerontoformica maintained distinct reproductive castes including morphotypes unknown in solitary aculeate (stinging) wasps, providing insight into early behavior. We present rare aggregations of workers, indicating group recruitment as well as an instance of interspecific combat; such aggression is a social feature of modern ants. Two species and an unusual new genus are described, further expanding the remarkable diversity of early ants. Stem-group ants are recovered as a paraphyletic assemblage at the base of modern lineages varying greatly in size, form, and mouthpart structure, interpreted here as an adaptive radiation. Though Cretaceous stem-group ants were eusocial and adaptively diverse, we hypothesize that their extinction resulted from the rise of competitively superior crown-group taxa that today form massive colonies, consistent with Wilson and Hölldobler's concept of "dynastic succession." Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Public Sphere as Digital Assemblage

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Salovaara-Moring, Inka

    the 1990s onwards digitalization brought concepts of network and complexity into the theoretical discourse. This relational turn changed the social ontology of the public sphere into a dynamic and complex system, erasing the division between the fields of reality (the world), representation (discourse......Normative theories of public sphere have struggled with the topic of materiality. The historical narrative of the ‘public sphere’ situated the phenomenon in specific spaces, where practices (public deliberation) and language (discourse) constructed political agencies, and further publics. From......), and subjectivity (agency). This changed the public sphere into an assemblage consisting of both human and non-human actors interactingin a highly dynamic, networked environment. This paper proposes a framework for considering this new materiality in the field of the public sphere: the assemblage and complexity...

  6. La vivienda ante emergencias

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arq. María Eugenia Gonzàlez Chipont

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Este trabajo propone analizar la evolución de la vivienda como respuesta ante emergencias desde principios del siglo XX hasta nuestros días. La secuencia de casos a analizar no sigue una cronología estricta sino que se organiza en función de un creciente grado de complejidad. Comienza con los aportes fundamentales de la vivienda mínima del movimiento moderno, con un fuerte acento en lo tecnológico, para ir profundizando, mientras avanzamos en el siglo, en los aspectos sociales de la arquitectura. Sin intentar oponer lo tecnológico y lo social, la estructura propuesta expresa un enriquecimiento de la cuestión técnica conforme se van ampliando sus objetivos sociales. Mientras los requerimientos tecnológicos como la inmediatez y la masividad de la respuesta, permanecen a lo largo del tiempo, la vivienda ante emergencias puede plantearse objetivos sociales cada vez más profundos. Los casos fueron elegidos a partir de autores renombrados de la Historia de la Arquitectura partiendo de ejemplos cercanos a la génesis del movimiento moderno para acercarnos cada vez más hacia el contexto actual de Latinoamérica. Se logra así un barrido geográfco pero principalmente cultural: desde las fuentes de la modernidad, bajo el paradigma sólido de la industrialización, hasta la inestabilidad de la ciudad posindustrial latinoamericana

  7. Habitat segregation in fish assemblages

    OpenAIRE

    Ibbotson, A.T.

    1990-01-01

    The segregation of habitats of fish assemblages found in the chalk streams and rivers within the Wessex, South West and Southern Water Authority boundaries in southern England have been examined. Habitat segregation is the most frequent type of resource partitioning in natural communities. The habitat of individual fish species will be defined in order to determine the following: (1) the requirements of each species in terms of depth, current velocity, substrate, cover etc.; (2) identify the ...

  8. How does the Taquari River influence in the cladoceran assemblages in three oxbow lakes?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    EA. Panarelli

    Full Text Available This study examined the cladoceran assemblages in three oxbow lakes of the Taquari River floodplain, near the transition between the plateau and the plain. We sought to answer the following questions: does the Taquari River function as a geographical barrier or dispersal corridor for Cladocera? Can different degrees of connection induce different structures in the assemblages in each lake? Cladocerans and limnological variables were sampled every other month for one year. Forty-one species were recorded, four of which were common to all the lakes. Our results indicated that the different degrees of connection between the river and the oxbow lakes favoured environmental heterogeneity and diversification in the cladoceran assemblages. The greatest dissimilarity between the two lakes connected with the river indicates that in this case the river functions better as a barrier than a dispersal corridor.

  9. Pest repellent properties of ant pheromones

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2012-01-01

    of ant pheromones may be sufficient to repel pest insects from ant territories. The study of ant semiochemicals is in its infancy, yet, evidence for their potential use in pest management is starting to build up. Pheromones from four of five tested ant species have been shown to deter herbivorous insect...... prey and competing ant species are also deterred by ant deposits, whereas ant symbionts may be attracted to them. Based on these promising initial findings, it seems advisable to further elucidate the signaling properties of ant pheromones and to test and develop their use in future pest management....

  10. Hospitales seguros ante desastres

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celso Vladimir Bambaren Alatrista

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Entre 1982 a 2005 se registraron daños en 1 143 establecimientos de salud en el Perú, generalmente debido a sismos, lluvias e inundaciones. Los daños en los servicios de salud producen la interrupción de la atención de la población y de los programas de salud, así como generan un gran gasto para la rehabilitación y reconstrucción. Por ello, se requiere proteger a los establecimientos de salud y desarrollar una política de hospitales seguros ante desastres que incluya medidas para prevenir o reducción de la vulnerabilidad estructural, no estructural y funcional en los nuevos establecimientos y en los existentes.(Rev Med Hered 2007;18:149-154.

  11. Ants sow the seeds of global diversification in flowering plants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Szabolcs Lengyel

    Full Text Available The extraordinary diversification of angiosperm plants in the Cretaceous and Tertiary periods has produced an estimated 250,000-300,000 living angiosperm species and has fundamentally altered terrestrial ecosystems. Interactions with animals as pollinators or seed dispersers have long been suspected as drivers of angiosperm diversification, yet empirical examples remain sparse or inconclusive. Seed dispersal by ants (myrmecochory may drive diversification as it can reduce extinction by providing selective advantages to plants and can increase speciation by enhancing geographical isolation by extremely limited dispersal distances.Using the most comprehensive sister-group comparison to date, we tested the hypothesis that myrmecochory leads to higher diversification rates in angiosperm plants. As predicted, diversification rates were substantially higher in ant-dispersed plants than in their non-myrmecochorous relatives. Data from 101 angiosperm lineages in 241 genera from all continents except Antarctica revealed that ant-dispersed lineages contained on average more than twice as many species as did their non-myrmecochorous sister groups. Contrasts in species diversity between sister groups demonstrated that diversification rates did not depend on seed dispersal mode in the sister group and were higher in myrmecochorous lineages in most biogeographic regions.Myrmecochory, which has evolved independently at least 100 times in angiosperms and is estimated to be present in at least 77 families and 11 000 species, is a key evolutionary innovation and a globally important driver of plant diversity. Myrmecochory provides the best example to date for a consistent effect of any mutualism on large-scale diversification.

  12. The nature of culture: technological variation in chimpanzee predation on army ants revisited

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schöning, Caspar; Humle, Tatyana; Möbius, Yasmin

    2008-01-01

    -eating may represent local behavioral responses of the chimpanzees to the anti-predator traits of the army ant species present at the different sites. We examined assemblages of available prey species, their behavior and morphology, consumption by chimpanzees, techniques employed, and tool lengths at 14...... sites in eastern, central, and western Africa. Where army ants are eaten, tool length and concomitant technique are a function of prey type. Epigaeically foraging species with aggressive workers that inflict painful bites are harvested with longer tools and usually by the "pull-through" technique......; species foraging in leaf-litter with less aggressive workers that inflict less painful bites are harvested with short tools and by the "direct-mouthing" technique. However, prey species characteristics do not explain several differences in army-ant-eating between Bossou (Guinea) and Taï (Ivory Coast...

  13. A cellular automata model for ant trails

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this study, the unidirectional ant traffic flow with U-turn in an ant trail was inves- tigated using ... the literature, it was considered in the model that (i) ant colony consists of two kinds of ants, good- ... ponents without a central controller [8].

  14. The scales of variability of stream fish assemblage at tributary confluences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    István Czeglédi

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Tributary confluences play an important role in the dispersal of organisms, and consequently, in shaping regional scale diversity in stream networks. Despite their importance in dispersal processes, little is known about how ecological assemblages are organized in these habitats. We studied the scales of variability of stream fish assemblages over three seasons using a hierarchical sampling design, which incorporated three tributaries, three sites at the mouth of each tributary and using four sampling units at each site. We found strong scale dependent variability in species richness, composition and relative abundance. Most of the variation was accounted for by the interactive effect of season, between stream and between site effects, while habitat structure of the sampling units had a relatively minor role. Species richness showed a continuous decrease from the mainstem river in most cases, while species composition and relative abundance changed less consistently along the longitudinal profile. Consequently, we found that not only the junctions presented a strong filter on the species pool, but some species were filtered out if they passed this critical habitat bottleneck. Spatial position of the tributaries along the river also contributed to assemblage variability in the confluences. Overall, our results suggest high variability in fish assemblages across multiple scales at tributary confluences. Environmental management should take a more critical care on the filtering role of tributary confluences in species dispersal, for better understanding patterns and processes in the branches of dendritic stream networks.

  15. Ants Orase kultuurisõnum

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    2007-01-01

    26. jaanuaril toimub Tallinna Ülikooli Akadeemilises Raamatukogus seminar silmapaistvast Eesti teadlasest ja tõlkijast Ants Orasest. Esinevad kirjandusteadlased Tallinna Ülikoolist, Tartu Ülikoolist ja Eesti Kirjandusmuuseumist. Avaettekandeks on sõna Oklahoma Ülikooli professoril Vincent B. Leitchil, kes oli Ants Orase viimaseks juhendatavaks doktorandiks. Seminari korraldavad Tallinna Ülikool ja Eesti Kirjandusmuuseum. Vt ka Postimees, 26, jaan., lk. 18

  16. Recent saltmarsh foraminiferal assemblages from Iceland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lübbers, Julia; Schönfeld, Joachim

    2018-01-01

    This study reports for the first time boreal to subarctic intertidal foraminiferal assemblages from saltmarshes at Borgarnes and Faskrudsfjördur on Iceland. The composition of living and dead foraminiferal assemblages was investigated along transects from the tidal flat to the highest reach of halophytic plants. The foraminiferal assemblages from Borgarnes showed 18 species in the total foraminiferal assemblage of which only 7 species were recorded in the living fauna. The assemblages were dominated by agglutinated taxa, whereas 3 calcareous species were recorded, of which only Haynesina orbicularis was found in the living fauna. The distribution limit of calcifying species corresponds to the lower boundary of the lower saltmarsh vegetation zone. Furthermore, calcareous tests showed many features of dissolution, which is an indication of a carbonate corrosive environment. The species forming the dead assemblages were mainly derived from the ambient intertidal areas and were displaced by tidal currents into the saltmarsh. The foraminiferal assemblages from Faskrudsfjördur showed two species, of which only one species was recorded in the living fauna. The assemblage was dominated by the agglutinated foraminifer Trochaminita irregularis. The foraminiferal species recorded on Iceland were the same as commonly found elsewhere in Europa. Since no species was found which is endemic to North America, Iceland is considered part of the European bio province. The foraminiferal could have been immigrated to Iceland from Europe through warm water currents, migratory birds or marine traffic since the last Ice Age.

  17. Using Ants as bioindicators: Multiscale Issues in Ant Community Ecology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan Andersen

    1997-06-01

    Full Text Available Ecological patterns and processes are characteristically scale dependent, and research findings often cannot be translated easily from one scale to another. Conservation biology is challenged by a lack of congruence between the spatial scales of ecological research (typically involving small plots and land management (typically involving whole landscapes. Here, I discuss spatial scaling issues as they relate to an understanding of ant communities and, consequently, their use as bioindicators in land management. Our perceptions of fundamental patterns and processes in ant communities depend on scale: taxa that are behaviorally dominant at one scale are not necessarily so at others, functional groups recognized at one scale are often inappropriate for others, and the role of competition in community structure depends on the scale of analysis. Patterns of species richness and composition, and the ability of total richness to be estimated by surrogates, are all also scale dependent. Ant community ecology has a tradition of detailed studies in small plots, but the use of ants as bioindicators requires a predictive understanding of community structure and dynamics at a range of spatial scales. Such an appreciation of ant communities and their most effective use as bioindicators is best served by studies integrating results from plot-scale research with the broad-scale paradigms of biogeography, systematics, and evolutionary biology.

  18. Pest repelling properties of ant pheromones

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2014-01-01

    Ants control pests via predation and physical deterrence; however, ant communication is based on chemical cues which may serve as warning signals to potential prey and other intruders. The presence of ant pheromones may, thus, be sufficient to repel pests from ant territories. This mini-review sh......-review shows that four out of five tested ant species deposit pheromones that repel herbivorous prey from their host plants.......Ants control pests via predation and physical deterrence; however, ant communication is based on chemical cues which may serve as warning signals to potential prey and other intruders. The presence of ant pheromones may, thus, be sufficient to repel pests from ant territories. This mini...

  19. Hydrodynamic disperser

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bulatov, A.I.; Chernov, V.S.; Prokopov, L.I.; Proselkov, Yu.M.; Tikhonov, Yu.P.

    1980-01-15

    A hydrodynamic disperser is suggested which contains a housing, slit nozzles installed on a circular base arranged opposite from each other, resonators secured opposite the nozzle and outlet sleeve. In order to improve the effectiveness of dispersion by throttling the flow, each resonator is made in the form of a crimped plate with crimpings that decrease in height in a direction towards the nozzle.

  20. How ants drop out: ant abundance on tropical mountains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longino, John T; Branstetter, Michael G; Colwell, Robert K

    2014-01-01

    In tropical wet forests, ants are a large proportion of the animal biomass, but the factors determining abundance are not well understood. We characterized ant abundance in the litter layer of 41 mature wet forest sites spread throughout Central America (Chiapas, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica) and examined the impact of elevation (as a proxy for temperature) and community species richness. Sites were intentionally chosen to minimize variation in precipitation and seasonality. From sea level to 1500 m ant abundance very gradually declined, community richness declined more rapidly than abundance, and the local frequency of the locally most common species increased. These results suggest that within this elevational zone, density compensation is acting, maintaining high ant abundance as richness declines. In contrast, in sites above 1500 m, ant abundance dropped abruptly to much lower levels. Among these high montane sites, community richness explained much more of the variation in abundance than elevation, and there was no evidence of density compensation. The relative stability of abundance below 1500 m may be caused by opposing effects of temperature on productivity and metabolism. Lower temperatures may decrease productivity and thus the amount of food available for consumers, but slower metabolisms of consumers may allow maintenance of higher biomass at lower resource supply rates. Ant communities at these lower elevations may be highly interactive, the result of continuous habitat presence over geological time. High montane sites may be ephemeral in geological time, resulting in non-interactive communities dominated by historical and stochastic processes. Abundance in these sites may be determined by the number of species that manage to colonize and/or avoid extinction on mountaintops.

  1. How ants drop out: ant abundance on tropical mountains.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John T Longino

    Full Text Available In tropical wet forests, ants are a large proportion of the animal biomass, but the factors determining abundance are not well understood. We characterized ant abundance in the litter layer of 41 mature wet forest sites spread throughout Central America (Chiapas, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica and examined the impact of elevation (as a proxy for temperature and community species richness. Sites were intentionally chosen to minimize variation in precipitation and seasonality. From sea level to 1500 m ant abundance very gradually declined, community richness declined more rapidly than abundance, and the local frequency of the locally most common species increased. These results suggest that within this elevational zone, density compensation is acting, maintaining high ant abundance as richness declines. In contrast, in sites above 1500 m, ant abundance dropped abruptly to much lower levels. Among these high montane sites, community richness explained much more of the variation in abundance than elevation, and there was no evidence of density compensation. The relative stability of abundance below 1500 m may be caused by opposing effects of temperature on productivity and metabolism. Lower temperatures may decrease productivity and thus the amount of food available for consumers, but slower metabolisms of consumers may allow maintenance of higher biomass at lower resource supply rates. Ant communities at these lower elevations may be highly interactive, the result of continuous habitat presence over geological time. High montane sites may be ephemeral in geological time, resulting in non-interactive communities dominated by historical and stochastic processes. Abundance in these sites may be determined by the number of species that manage to colonize and/or avoid extinction on mountaintops.

  2. Community Structure of Leaf-Litter Ants in a Neotropical Dry Forest: A Biogeographic Approach to Explain Betadiversity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rogério Silvestre

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes habitat and geographic correlates of ant diversity in Serra da Bodoquena, a poorly surveyed region of central-western Brazil. We discuss leaf-litter ant diversity on a regional scale, with emphasis on the contribution of each of the processes that form the evolutionary basis of contemporary beta diversity. The diversity of leaf-litter ants was assessed from a series of 262 Winkler samples conducted in two microbasins within a deciduous forest domain. A total of 170 litter-dwelling ant species in 45 genera and 11 subfamilies was identified. The data showed that the study areas exhibited different arrangements of ant fauna, with a high turnover in species composition between sites, indicating high beta diversity. Our analysis suggests that the biogeographic history of this tropical dry forest in the centre of South America could explain ant assemblage structure more than competitive dominance. The co-occurrence analysis showed that species co-occur less often than expected by chance in only two of the localities, suggesting that, for most of the species, co-occurrences are random. The assessment of the structure of the diversity of litter-dwelling ants is the first step in understanding the beta diversity patterns in this region of great biogeographic importance.

  3. Invasive acacias experience higher ant seed removal rates at the invasion edges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Montesinos

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Seed dispersal is a key process for the invasion of new areas by exotic species. Introduced plants often take advantage of native generalist dispersers. Australian acacias are primarily dispersed by ants in their native range and produce seeds bearing a protein and lipid rich reward for ant mutualists (elaiosome. Nevertheless, the role of myrmecochory in the expansion of Australian acacias in European invaded areas is still not clear. We selected one European population of Acacia dealbata and another of A. longifolia and offered elaiosome-bearing and elaiosome-removed seeds to local ant communities. For each species, seeds were offered both in high-density acacia stands and in low-density invasion edges. For both acacia species, seed removal was significantly higher at the low-density edges. For A. longifolia, manual elimination of elaiosomes reduced the chance of seed removal by 80% in the low-density edges, whereas it made no difference on the high-density stands. For A. dealbata, the absence of elaiosome reduced seed removal rate by 52%, independently of the acacia density. Our data suggests that invasive acacias have found effective ant seed dispersers in Europe and that the importance of such dispersers is higher at the invasion edges.

  4. New evidences supporting trophobiosis between populations of Edessa rufomarginata (Heteroptera: Pentatomidae and Camponotus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel Paiva Silva

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Despite its important effect on the maintenance of tritrophic interactions among plants, insect herbivores, and ants, there is still a paucity of natural history and basic biology information involving trophobiosis among Heteroptera stink bugs. Here, based on previous observations of a new trophobiotic interaction between Edessa rufomarginata (De Geer, 1773 and Camponotus rufipes (Fabricius, 1775 ants, we describe the chemical profile of the honeydew obtained by Gas Chromatography–Mass Spectrometry. There were mainly three different sugars (trehalose, glucose, and sorbose within our samples. The extrafloral nectaries of Caryocar brasiliense Camb., the host plant of E. rufomarginata, attracts a wide assemblage of Cerrado ants with varying aggressiveness toward herbivores. Therefore, this facultative trophobiotic interaction may allow the survival of the stink bug while feeding on the risky, highly ant-visited plant. Given the rarity of trophobiotic interactions between Pentatomidae species and ants and considering a zoological perspective within this family, here we discuss the ecological and evolutionary routes that may allow the rise of these interactions.

  5. Ground-dwelling ant fauna of sites with high levels of copper.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diehl, E; Sanhudo, C E; Diehl-Fleig, Ed

    2004-02-01

    Richness and diversity of ant species are related to environmental factors such as vegetation, soil, presence of heavy metals, and insecticides, which allow the use of the assemblage members as terrestrial indicators of environmental conservation status. This study presents the results of ground ants surveyed in Minas do Camaquã in the municipality of Cacapava do Sul (Camaquã Basin), State of Rio Grande do Sul. Collections were performed in four sites, which high levels of copper in the soil, three of which--a mine, a liquid reject, and a solid reject-, had sparse or no plant cover, and one site where Pinus has been used for rehabilitation. Parque das Guaritas was the control site, since it presented normal levels of copper and a dense savanna cover. For each site, three transect lines extending 100 m were draw, and at each 10 m sardine baits were distributed; after two hours the ants present were collected. Hand collections in all five sites were performed during one hour (capture effort). A total of 51 species belonging to 17 genera were collected. The control site was the richest in ant species (r = 45). Sites with high level of copper and poor plant cover presented the lowest richness: mine (r = 14), solid reject (r = 15), and liquid reject (r = 16). In contrast, the site planted with Pinus presented an increment in richness (r = 24) of ground-dwelling ants, suggesting a reahabilitation process.

  6. Ground-dwelling ant fauna of sites with high levels of copper

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Diehl

    Full Text Available Richness and diversity of ant species are related to environmental factors such as vegetation, soil, presence of heavy metals, and insecticides, which allow the use of the assemblage members as terrestrial indicators of environmental conservation status. This study presents the results of ground ants surveyed in Minas do Camaquã in the municipality of Caçapava do Sul (Camaquã Basin, State of Rio Grande do Sul. Collections were performed in four sites, with high levels of copper in the soil, three of which - a mine, a liquid reject, and a solid reject -, had sparse or no plant cover, and one site where Pinus has been used for rehabilitation. Parque das Guaritas was the control site, since it presented normal levels of copper and a dense savanna cover. For each site, three transect lines extending 100 m were draw, and at each 10 m sardine baits were distributed; after two hours the ants present were collected. Hand collections in all five sites were performed during one hour (capture effort. A total of 51 species belonging to 17 genera were collected. The control site was the richest in ant species (r = 45. Sites with high level of copper and poor plant cover presented the lowest richness: mine (r = 14, solid reject (r = 15, and liquid reject (r = 16. In contrast, the site planted with Pinus presented an increment in richness (r = 24 of ground-dwelling ants, suggesting a reahabilitation process.

  7. Assessing the impact of deforestation of the Atlantic rainforest on ant-fruit interactions: a field experiment using synthetic fruits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Gabriela D Bieber

    Full Text Available Ants frequently interact with fleshy fruits on the ground of tropical forests. This interaction is regarded as mutualistic because seeds benefit from enhanced germination and dispersal to nutrient-rich microsites, whereas ants benefit from consuming the nutritious pulp/aril. Considering that the process of deforestation affects many attributes of the ecosystem such as species abundance and composition, and interspecific interactions, we asked whether the interaction between ants and fallen fleshy fruits in the Brazilian Atlantic forest differs between human-created fragments and undisturbed forests. We controlled diaspore type and quantity by using synthetic fruits (a plastic 'seed' covered by a lipid-rich 'pulp', which were comparable to lipid-rich fruits. Eight independent areas (four undisturbed forests, and four disturbed forest fragments were used in the field experiment, in which we recorded the attracted ant species, ant behaviour, and fruit removal distance. Fruits in undisturbed forest sites attracted a higher number of species than those in disturbed forests. Moreover, the occurrence of large, fruit-carrying ponerine ants (Pachycondyla, Odontomachus; 1.1 to 1.4 cm was higher in undisturbed forests. Large species (≥3 mm of Pheidole (Myrmicinae, also able to remove fruits, did not differ between forest types. Following these changes in species occurrence, fruit displacement was more frequent in undisturbed than in disturbed forests. Moreover, displacement distances were also greater in the undisturbed forests. Our data suggest that fallen fleshy fruits interacting with ants face different fates depending on the conservation status of the forest. Together with the severe loss of their primary dispersers in human-disturbed tropical forest sites, vertebrate-dispersed fruits may also be deprived of potential ant-derived benefits in these habitats due to shifts in the composition of interacting ant species. Our data illustrate the use of

  8. Assessing the impact of deforestation of the Atlantic rainforest on ant-fruit interactions: a field experiment using synthetic fruits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bieber, Ana Gabriela D; Silva, Paulo S D; Sendoya, Sebastián F; Oliveira, Paulo S

    2014-01-01

    Ants frequently interact with fleshy fruits on the ground of tropical forests. This interaction is regarded as mutualistic because seeds benefit from enhanced germination and dispersal to nutrient-rich microsites, whereas ants benefit from consuming the nutritious pulp/aril. Considering that the process of deforestation affects many attributes of the ecosystem such as species abundance and composition, and interspecific interactions, we asked whether the interaction between ants and fallen fleshy fruits in the Brazilian Atlantic forest differs between human-created fragments and undisturbed forests. We controlled diaspore type and quantity by using synthetic fruits (a plastic 'seed' covered by a lipid-rich 'pulp'), which were comparable to lipid-rich fruits. Eight independent areas (four undisturbed forests, and four disturbed forest fragments) were used in the field experiment, in which we recorded the attracted ant species, ant behaviour, and fruit removal distance. Fruits in undisturbed forest sites attracted a higher number of species than those in disturbed forests. Moreover, the occurrence of large, fruit-carrying ponerine ants (Pachycondyla, Odontomachus; 1.1 to 1.4 cm) was higher in undisturbed forests. Large species (≥3 mm) of Pheidole (Myrmicinae), also able to remove fruits, did not differ between forest types. Following these changes in species occurrence, fruit displacement was more frequent in undisturbed than in disturbed forests. Moreover, displacement distances were also greater in the undisturbed forests. Our data suggest that fallen fleshy fruits interacting with ants face different fates depending on the conservation status of the forest. Together with the severe loss of their primary dispersers in human-disturbed tropical forest sites, vertebrate-dispersed fruits may also be deprived of potential ant-derived benefits in these habitats due to shifts in the composition of interacting ant species. Our data illustrate the use of synthetic fruits

  9. Macrodinychus mites as parasitoids of invasive ants: an overlooked parasitic association.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachaud, Jean-Paul; Klompen, Hans; Pérez-Lachaud, Gabriela

    2016-07-21

    Mites are frequent ant symbionts, yet the exact nature of their interactions with their hosts is poorly known. Generally, myrmecophilous mites show adaptations for dispersal through phoresis, but species that lack such an adaptation may have evolved unusual specialized relationships with their hosts. The immature stages of Macrodinychus multispinosus develop as ectoparasitoids of pupae of the invasive ant Paratrechina longicornis. Feeding stages show regressed locomotor appendages. These mites complete their development on a single host, sucking all of its body content and therefore killing it. Locally high proportions of parasitized host pupae suggest that M. multispinosus could serve as a biological control agent. This is the ninth species of Macrodinychus reported as ant parasite, and the third known as parasitoid of invasive ants, confirming a unique habit in the evolution of mite feeding strategies and suggesting that the entire genus might be parasitic on ants. Several mites' characteristics, such as their protective morphology, possible viviparity, lack of a specialized stage for phoretic dispersal, and low host specificity, combined with both the general low aggressiveness of invasive P. longicornis towards other ants and its possible susceptibility to generalist ectoparasites would account for the host shift in native macrodinychid mites.

  10. Species richness and trait composition of butterfly assemblages change along an altitudinal gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leingärtner, Annette; Krauss, Jochen; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf

    2014-06-01

    Species richness patterns along altitudinal gradients are well-documented ecological phenomena, yet very little data are available on how environmental filtering processes influence the composition and traits of butterfly assemblages at high altitudes. We have studied the diversity patterns of butterfly species at 34 sites along an altitudinal gradient ranging from 600 to 2,000 m a.s.l. in the National Park Berchtesgaden (Germany) and analysed traits of butterfly assemblages associated with dispersal capacity, reproductive strategies and developmental time from lowlands to highlands, including phylogenetic analyses. We found a linear decline in butterfly species richness along the altitudinal gradient, but the phylogenetic relatedness of the butterfly assemblages did not increase with altitude. Compared to butterfly assemblages at lower altitudes, those at higher altitudes were composed of species with larger wings (on average 9%) which laid an average of 68% more eggs. In contrast, egg maturation time in butterfly assemblages decreased by about 22% along the altitudinal gradient. Further, butterfly assemblages at higher altitudes were increasingly dominated by less widespread species. Based on our abundance data, but not on data in the literature, population density increased with altitude, suggesting a reversed density-distribution relationship, with higher population densities of habitat specialists in harsh environments. In conclusion, our data provide evidence for significant shifts in the composition of butterfly assemblages and for the dominance of different traits along the altitudinal gradient. In our study, these changes were mainly driven by environmental factors, whereas phylogenetic filtering played a minor role along the studied altitudinal range.

  11. Uniform functional structure across spatial scales in an intertidal benthic assemblage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, R S K; Hamylton, Sarah

    2015-05-01

    To investigate the causes of the remarkable similarity of emergent assemblage properties that has been demonstrated across disparate intertidal seagrass sites and assemblages, this study examined whether their emergent functional-group metrics are scale related by testing the null hypothesis that functional diversity and the suite of dominant functional groups in seagrass-associated macrofauna are robust structural features of such assemblages and do not vary spatially across nested scales within a 0.4 ha area. This was carried out via a lattice of 64 spatially referenced stations. Although densities of individual components were patchily dispersed across the locality, rank orders of importance of the 14 functional groups present, their overall functional diversity and evenness, and the proportions of the total individuals contained within each showed, in contrast, statistically significant spatial uniformity, even at areal scales functional groups in their geospatial context also revealed weaker than expected levels of spatial autocorrelation, and then only at the smaller scales and amongst the most dominant groups, and only a small number of negative correlations occurred between the proportional importances of the individual groups. In effect, such patterning was a surface veneer overlying remarkable stability of assemblage functional composition across all spatial scales. Although assemblage species composition is known to be homogeneous in some soft-sediment marine systems over equivalent scales, this combination of patchy individual components yet basically constant functional-group structure seems as yet unreported. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Spatial distribution of dominant arboreal ants in a malagasy coastal rainforest: gaps and presence of an invasive species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Dejean

    Full Text Available We conducted a survey along three belt transects located at increasing distances from the coast to determine whether a non-random arboreal ant assemblage, such as an ant mosaic, exists in the rainforest on the Masoala Peninsula, Madagascar. In most tropical rainforests, very populous colonies of territorially dominant arboreal ant species defend absolute territories distributed in a mosaic pattern. Among the 29 ant species recorded, only nine had colonies large enough to be considered potentially territorially dominant; the remaining species had smaller colonies and were considered non-dominant. Nevertheless, the null-model analyses used to examine the spatial structure of their assemblages did not reveal the existence of an ant mosaic. Inland, up to 44% of the trees were devoid of dominant arboreal ants, something not reported in other studies. While two Crematogaster species were not associated with one another, Brachymyrmex cordemoyi was positively associated with Technomyrmex albipes, which is considered an invasive species-a non-indigenous species that has an adverse ecological effect on the habitats it invades. The latter two species and Crematogaster ranavalonae were mutually exclusive. On the other hand, all of the trees in the coastal transect and at least 4 km of coast were occupied by T. albipes, and were interconnected by columns of workers. Technomyrmex albipes workers collected from different trees did not attack each other during confrontation tests, indicating that this species has formed a supercolony along the coast. Yet interspecific aggressiveness did occur between T. albipes and Crematogaster ranavalonae, a native species which is likely territorially dominant based on our intraspecific confrontation tests. These results suggest that the Masoala rainforest is threatened by a potential invasion by T. albipes, and that the penetration of this species further inland might be facilitated by the low density of native

  13. How many gamergates is an ant queen worth?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monnin, Thibaud; Peeters, Christian

    2008-02-01

    Ant reproductives exhibit different morphological adaptations linked to dispersal and fertility. By reviewing the literature on taxa where workers can reproduce sexually (i.e. become gamergates) we show that (1) species with a single gamergate generally have lost the winged queen caste, whereas only half of the species with several gamergates have, and (2) single-gamergate species have smaller colonies than multiple-gamergate species. Comparison with “classical” ants without gamergates, where having one vs having several winged queens are two distinct syndromes, suggests that having one vs having several gamergates are not. Gamergate number does not affect the success of colony fission, but retention of the queen caste permits the option of independent foundation.

  14. Canopy and litter ant assemblages share similar climate-species density relationships

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Weiser, M. D.; Sanders, N. J.; Agosti, D.; Andersen, A. N.; Ellison, A. M.; Fisher, B. L.; Gibb, H.; Gotelli, N. J.; Gove, A. D.; Gross, K.; Guénard, B.; Janda, Milan; Kaspari, M.; Lessard, J.-P.; Longino, J. T.; Majer, J. D.; Menke, S. B.; McGlynn, T. P.; Parr, C. L.; Philpott, S. M.; Retana, J.; Suarez, A. V.; Vasconcelos, H.L.; Yanoviak, P.; Dunn, R. R.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 6, č. 6 (2010), s. 769-772 ISSN 1744-9561 Grant - others: NASA Biodiversity Grant(US) ROSES-NNX09AK22G; National Science Foundation(US) NSF-OISE-0749047; National Science Foundation(US) NSF-DEB-0640015; National Science Foundation(US) NSF-0716966; National Science Foundation(US) NSF-DEB0842395 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : Formicidae * species richness * global diversity gradients Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.651, year: 2010

  15. What determines the importance of a species for ecosystem processes? Insights from tropical ant assemblages

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Houadria, Mickal; Menzel, F.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 184, č. 4 (2017), s. 885-899 ISSN 0029-8549 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : ecosystem processes * functional performance * functional redundancy Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 3.130, year: 2016 https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs00442-017-3900-x

  16. Are ant assemblages of Brazilian veredas characterised by location or habitat type?

    OpenAIRE

    Costa-Milanez,CB; Lourenço-Silva,G; Castro,PTA; Majer,JD; Ribeiro,SP

    2014-01-01

    Wetland areas in the Brazilian Cerrado, known as “veredas”, represent ecosystems formed on sandy soils with high concentrations of peat, and are responsible for the recharge of aquiferous reservoirs. They are currently under threat by various human activities, most notably the clearing of vegetation for Eucalyptus plantations. Despite their ecological importance and high conservation value, little is known about the actual effects of human disturbance on the animal community. To a...

  17. Dispersion Forces

    CERN Document Server

    Buhmann, Stefan Yoshi

    2012-01-01

    In this book, a modern unified theory of dispersion forces on atoms and bodies is presented which covers a broad range of advanced aspects and scenarios. Macroscopic quantum electrodynamics is shown to provide a powerful framework for dispersion forces which allows for discussing general properties like their non-additivity and the relation between microscopic and macroscopic interactions. It is demonstrated how the general results can be used to obtain dispersion forces on atoms in the presence of bodies of various shapes and materials. Starting with a brief recapitulation of volume I, this volume II deals especially with bodies of irregular shapes, universal scaling laws, dynamical forces on excited atoms, enhanced forces in cavity quantum electrodynamics, non-equilibrium forces in thermal environments and quantum friction. The book gives both the specialist and those new to the field a thorough overview over recent results in the field. It provides a toolbox for studying dispersion forces in various contex...

  18. The nature of culture: technological variation in chimpanzee predation on army ants revisited.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schöning, Caspar; Humle, Tatyana; Möbius, Yasmin; McGrew, W C

    2008-07-01

    Chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) predation on army ants (Dorylus, subgenus Anomma) is an impressive example of skillful use of elementary technology, and it has been suggested to reflect cultural differences among chimpanzee communities. Alternatively, the observed geographic diversity in army-ant-eating may represent local behavioral responses of the chimpanzees to the anti-predator traits of the army ant species present at the different sites. We examined assemblages of available prey species, their behavior and morphology, consumption by chimpanzees, techniques employed, and tool lengths at 14 sites in eastern, central, and western Africa. Where army ants are eaten, tool length and concomitant technique are a function of prey type. Epigaeically foraging species with aggressive workers that inflict painful bites are harvested with longer tools and usually by the "pull-through" technique; species foraging in leaf-litter with less aggressive workers that inflict less painful bites are harvested with short tools and by the "direct-mouthing" technique. However, prey species characteristics do not explain several differences in army-ant-eating between Bossou (Guinea) and Taï (Ivory Coast), where the same suite of prey species is available and is consumed. Moreover, the absence of army-ant-eating at five sites cannot be explained by the identity of available prey species, as all the species found at these sites are eaten elsewhere. We conclude that some of the observed variation in the predator-prey relationship of chimpanzees and army ants reflects environmental influences driven by the prey, while other variation is not linked to prey characteristics and may be solely sociocultural.

  19. Cerrado ground-dwelling ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae as indicators of edge effects

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Roberto F. Brandão

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Large-scale agricultural production in Brazil preferentially occupies plateaus reclaimed from areas originally covered by Cerrado (savanna. Depending on the region, a percentage of the pristine vegetation coverage must be preserved by law, resulting in the creation of fragmented legal Cerrado reserves. The geometry of these relatively small legal reserves creates new habitat edges and ecotones, whose effects on the invertebrate fauna are poorly understood. This study aimed to assess the effects of abrupt edges resulting from soy production on ground-dwelling ant assemblages in the Brazilian Cerrado. The study sites are located within the Amazon region, in the state of Maranhão, northern Brazil, but were covered by Cerrado on a relatively low plateau, irregularly inter-spaced with gallery forests along streams. We compared species richness and species composition of ground-dwelling ants along eight transects set 0, 50, 100, 150, 200, and 250 m into the sensu stricto Cerrado and 50 and 100 m into the soy field. The collecting periods covered the wet and dry seasons. Effects on ant species richness were non-significant, although composition of the assemblages was significantly affected by edge effects, which were, in part, found to be species specific. We hypothesize that edge effects are probably greater than estimated because of the shape and complexity of reserves. Consideration of edge effects in the Cerrado Biome should enable the design of appropriate reserve sizes and shapes to meet conservation goals.

  20. Male parentage in army ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, Daniel J C; Schöning, Caspar; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2006-01-01

    of active research in insect sociobiology. Here we present microsatellite data for 176 males from eight colonies of the African army ant Dorylus (Anomma) molestus. Comparison with worker genotypes and inferred queen genotypes from the same colonies show that workers do not or at best very rarely reproduce...

  1. A cellular automata model for ant trails

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    In this study, the unidirectional ant traffic flow with U-turn in an ant trail was investigated using one-dimensional cellular automata model. It is known that ants communicate with each other by dropping a chemical, called pheromone, on the substrate. Apart from the studies in the literature, it was considered in the model that ...

  2. Fungal Adaptations to Mutualistic Life with Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kooij, Pepijn Wilhelmus

    Fungus-growing ants (Attini) feed off a fungus they cultivate in a mutualistic symbiosis in underground chambers by providing it substrate they collect outside the colony. The tribe of Attine ants ranges from small colonies of the paleo- and basal Attine species with a few hundred workers that fo...... that the fungus evolved some incredible adaptations to a mutualistic life with the ants....

  3. Microsatellite Primers for Fungus-Growing Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen Fredsted, Palle; Gertsch, Pia J.; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan (Koos)

    2002-01-01

    We isolated five polymorphic microsatellite loci from a library of two thousand recombinant clones of two fungus-growing ant species, Cyphomyrmex longiscapus and Trachymyrmex cf. zeteki. Amplification and heterozygosity were tested in five species of higher attine ants using both the newly...... developed primers and earlier published primers that were developed for fungus-growing ants. A total of 20 variable microsatellite loci, developed for six different species of fungus-growing ants, are now available for studying the population genetics and colony kin-structure of these ants....

  4. Microsatellite primers for fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen, Palle; Gertsch, P J; Boomsma, JJ

    2002-01-01

    We isolated five polymorphic microsatellite loci from a library of two thousand recombinant clones of two fungus-growing ant species, Cyphomyrmex longiscapus and Trachymyrmex cf. zeteki. Amplification and heterozygosity were tested in five species of higher attine ants using both the newly...... developed primers and earlier published primers that were developed for fungus-growing ants. A total of 20 variable microsatellite loci, developed for six different species of fungus-growing ants, are now available for studying the population genetics and colony kin-structure of these ants....

  5. Arthropod diversity and assemblage structure response to deforestation and desertification in the Sahel of western Senegal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brandon J. Lingbeek

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Drylands are highly vulnerable to desertification and among the most endangered ecosystems. To understand how biodiversity responds to environmental degradation in these fragile ecosystems, we examined whether arthropod, beetle, spider and ant diversity and assemblage structure differed (1 between seasons, (2 among locations (3 between protected areas of tropical dry forest and adjacent communal lands suffering from desertification, as well as (4 how vegetation impacts assemblage structures. We established 12 plots spaced homogenously throughout each protected area and the adjacent communal land at three locations: Beersheba, Bandia and Ngazobil. Within each plot, we measured canopy closure, vegetation height, percent cover of bare ground, leaf litter, grasses and forbs and collected arthropods using pitfall traps during the 2014 dry (May and rainy (September seasons. We collected 123,705 arthropods representing 733 morphospecies, 10,849 beetles representing 216 morphospecies, 4969 spiders representing 91 morphospecies and 59,183 ants representing 45 morphospecies. Results showed greater arthropod and beetle diversities (P = 0.002–0.040 in the rainy season, no difference in diversity among locations for any taxonomic group and a difference (P ≤ 0.001 in diversity for all taxa between protected areas and communal lands. Assemblage structures of all taxa responded (P = 0.001 to vegetation characteristics, differed (P = 0.015–0.045 between seasons and, with a few exceptions, locations and fragments. Our results illustrate the importance of a multi-taxa approach in understanding biodiversity response to anthropogenic disturbances as well as the value of protected areas in preserving biodiversity of the Sahel.

  6. Larval assemblages of large and medium-sized pelagic species in the Straits of Florida

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, David E.; Llopiz, Joel K.; Guigand, Cedric M.; Cowen, Robert K.

    2010-07-01

    Critical gaps in our understanding of the distributions, interactions, life histories and preferred habitats of large and medium-size pelagic fishes severely constrain the implementation of ecosystem-based, spatially structured fisheries management approaches. In particular, spawning distributions and the environmental characteristics associated with the early life stages are poorly documented. In this study, we consider the diversity, assemblages, and associated habitat of the larvae of large and medium-sized pelagic species collected during 2 years of monthly surveys across the Straits of Florida. In total, 36 taxa and 14,295 individuals were collected, with the highest diversity occurring during the summer and in the western, frontal region of the Florida Current. Only a few species (e.g. Thunnus obesus, T. alalunga, Tetrapturus pfluegeri) considered for this study were absent. Small scombrids (e.g. T. atlanticus, Katsuwonus pelamis, Auxis spp.) and gempylids dominated the catch and were orders of magnitude more abundant than many of the rare species (e.g. Thunnus thynnus,Kajikia albida). Both constrained (CCA) and unconstrained (NMDS) multivariate analyses revealed a number of species groupings including: (1) a summer Florida edge assemblage (e.g. Auxis spp., Euthynnus alleterattus, Istiophorus platypterus); (2) a summer offshore assemblage (e.g. Makaira nigricans, T. atlanticus, Ruvettus pretiosus, Lampris guttatus); (3) an ubiquitous assemblage (e.g. K. pelamis, Coryphaena hippurus, Xiphias gladius); and (4) a spring/winter assemblage that was widely dispersed in space (e.g. trachipterids). The primary environmental factors associated with these assemblages were sea-surface temperature (highest in summer-early fall), day length (highest in early summer), thermocline depth (shallowest on the Florida side) and fluorescence (highest on the Florida side). Overall, the results of this study provide insights into how a remarkable diversity of pelagic species

  7. Chemical dispersants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rahsepar, Shokouhalsadat; Smit, Martijn P.J.; Murk, Albertinka J.; Rijnaarts, Huub H.M.; Langenhoff, Alette A.M.

    2016-01-01

    Chemical dispersants were used in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, both at the sea surface and the wellhead. Their effect on oil biodegradation is unclear, as studies showed both inhibition and enhancement. This study addresses the effect of Corexit on oil

  8. Revolutionizing Remote Exploration with ANTS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Rilee, M. L.; Curtis, S.; Truszkowski, W.

    2002-05-01

    We are developing the Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm (ANTS) architecture based on an insect colony analogue for the cost-effective, efficient, systematic survey of remote or inaccessible areas with multiple object targets, including planetary surface, marine, airborne, and space environments. The mission context is the exploration in the 2020s of the most compelling remaining targets in the solar system: main belt asteroids. Main belt asteroids harbor important clues to Solar System origins and evolution which are central to NASA's goals in Space Science. Asteroids are smaller than planets, but their number is far greater, and their combined surface area likely dwarfs the Earth's. An asteroid survey will dramatically increase our understanding of the local resources available for the Human Exploration and Development of Space. During the mission composition, shape, gravity, and orbit parameters could be returned to Earth for perhaps several thousand asteroids. A survey of this area will rival the great explorations that encircled this globe, opened up the New World, and laid the groundwork for the progress and challenges of the last centuries. The ANTS architecture for a main belt survey consists of a swarm of as many as a thousand or more highly specialized pico-spacecraft that form teams to survey as many as one hundred asteroids a month. Multi-level autonomy is critical for ANTS and the objective of the proposed study is to work through the implications and constraints this entails. ANTS couples biologically inspired autonomic control for basic functions to higher level artificial intelligence that together enable individual spacecraft to operate as specialized, cooperative, social agents. This revolutionary approach postulates highly advanced, but familiar, components integrated and operated in a way that uniquely transcends any evolutionary extrapolation of existing trends and enables thousand-spacecraft missions.

  9. Ant-plant mutualism: a dietary by-product of a tropical ant's macronutrient requirements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arcila Hernández, Lina M; Sanders, Jon G; Miller, Gabriel A; Ravenscraft, Alison; Frederickson, Megan E

    2017-12-01

    Many arboreal ants depend on myrmecophytic plants for both food and shelter; in return, these ants defend their host plants against herbivores, which are often insects. Ant-plant and other mutualisms do not necessarily involve the exchange of costly rewards or services; they may instead result from by-product benefits, or positive outcomes that do not entail a cost for one or both partners. Here, we examined whether the plant-ant Allomerus octoarticulatus pays a short-term cost to defend their host plants against herbivores, or whether plant defense is a by-product benefit of ant foraging for insect prey. Because the food offered by ant-plants is usually nitrogen-poor, arboreal ants may balance their diets by consuming insect prey or associating with microbial symbionts to acquire nitrogen, potentially shifting the costs and benefits of plant defense for the ant partner. To determine the effect of ant diet on an ant-plant mutualism, we compared the behavior, morphology, fitness, stable isotope signatures, and gaster microbiomes of A. octoarticulatus ants nesting in Cordia nodosa trees maintained for nearly a year with or without insect herbivores. At the end of the experiment, ants from herbivore exclosures preferred protein-rich baits more than ants in the control (i.e., herbivores present) treatment. Furthermore, workers in the control treatment were heavier than in the herbivore-exclusion treatment, and worker mass predicted reproductive output, suggesting that foraging for insect prey directly increased ant colony fitness. The gaster microbiome of ants was not significantly affected by the herbivore exclusion treatment. We conclude that the defensive behavior of some phytoecious ants is a by-product of their need for external protein sources; thus, the consumption of insect herbivores by ants benefits both the ant colony and the host plant. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  10. Myrmecochory and short-term seed fate in Rhamnus alaternus: Ant species and seed characteristics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bas, J. M.; Oliveras, J.; Gómez, C.

    2009-05-01

    Benefits conferred on plants in ant-mediated seed dispersal mutualisms (myrmecochory) depend on the fate of transported seeds. We studied the effects of elaiosome presence, seed size and seed treatment (with and without passage through a bird's digestive tract) on short-term seed fate in Rhamnus alaternus. In our study, we define short-term seed, or initial, seed fate, as the location where ants release the seeds after ant contact with it. The elaiosomes had the most influence on short-term fate, i.e. whether or not seeds were transported to the nest. The workers usually transported big seeds more often than small ones, but small ants did not transport large seeds. Effect of seed size on transport depended on the ant species and on the treatment of the seed (manual extraction simulating a direct fall from the parent plant vs. bird deposition corresponding to preliminary primary dispersal). Probability of removal of elaiosome-bearing seeds to the nest by Aphaenogaster senilis increased with increasing seed weight.

  11. Rapid biotic homogenization of marine fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Magurran, Anne E.; Dornelas, Maria; Moyes, Faye; Gotelli, Nicholas J.; McGill, Brian

    2015-01-01

    The role human activities play in reshaping biodiversity is increasingly apparent in terrestrial ecosystems. However, the responses of entire marine assemblages are not well-understood, in part, because few monitoring programs incorporate both spatial and temporal replication. Here, we analyse an exceptionally comprehensive 29-year time series of North Atlantic groundfish assemblages monitored over 5° latitude to the west of Scotland. These fish assemblages show no systematic change in species richness through time, but steady change in species composition, leading to an increase in spatial homogenization: the species identity of colder northern localities increasingly resembles that of warmer southern localities. This biotic homogenization mirrors the spatial pattern of unevenly rising ocean temperatures over the same time period suggesting that climate change is primarily responsible for the spatial homogenization we observe. In this and other ecosystems, apparent constancy in species richness may mask major changes in species composition driven by anthropogenic change. PMID:26400102

  12. Ecosystem services delivered by weaver ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    Weaver ants (Oecopgylla spp.) are increasingly being utilized as efficient biocontrol agents in a number of tropical tree crops, as they prey on pest insects and increase yields. However, recent studies and a review of the literature reveal that a number of other services may derive from the pres......Weaver ants (Oecopgylla spp.) are increasingly being utilized as efficient biocontrol agents in a number of tropical tree crops, as they prey on pest insects and increase yields. However, recent studies and a review of the literature reveal that a number of other services may derive from...... the presence of these ants. First of all, the chemical footprint left by the high density of ants in managed host trees may results in additional benefits. (i) Ant deposits may lead to improved fruit quality, e.g. increased sugar content, (ii) ant deposits may deter important pests (chemical deterrence) from...... crops, and lastly, (iii) ant waste products deposited ias anal spots contain urea that may be taken up by plant leaves and in this way fertilize ant-plants. On top of chemical services, weaver ants have been shown to reduce plant disease incidence via competitive exclusion of other ant species because...

  13. Microhabitat influence on larval fish assemblages within ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    We examined larval and juvenile fish assemblage structure in relation to microhabitat variables within the St. Louis River estuary, a drowned river mouth of Lake Superior. Fish were sampled in vegetated beds throughout the estuary, across a gradient of vegetation types and densities (including disturbed, preserved and post-restoration sites). Canonical correspondence analysis, relating species abundances to environmental variables revealed that plant species richness, turbidity and aquatic plant cover were most influential in structuring assemblages. Results from this microhabitat analysis at this crucial life stage has potential to inform wetland restoration efforts within the St. Louis River and other Great Lake coastal wetlands. not applicable

  14. Population responses to environmental change in a tropical ant: the interaction of spatial and temporal dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Doug; Vandermeer, John; Perfecto, Ivette; Philpott, Stacy M

    2014-01-01

    Spatial structure can have a profound, but often underappreciated, effect on the temporal dynamics of ecosystems. Here we report on a counterintuitive increase in the population of a tree-nesting ant, Azteca sericeasur, in response to a drastic reduction in the number of potential nesting sites. This surprising result is comprehensible when viewed in the context of the self-organized spatial dynamics of the ants and their effect on the ants' dispersal-limited natural enemies. Approximately 30% of the trees in the study site, a coffee agroecosystem in southern Mexico, were pruned or felled over a two-year period, and yet the abundance of the ant nests more than doubled over the seven-year study. Throughout the transition, the spatial distribution of the ants maintained a power-law distribution - a signal of spatial self organization - but the local clustering of the nests was reduced post-pruning. A cellular automata model incorporating the changed spatial structure of the ants and the resulting partial escape from antagonists reproduced the observed increase in abundance, highlighting how self-organized spatial dynamics can profoundly influence the responses of ecosystems to perturbations.

  15. Population responses to environmental change in a tropical ant: the interaction of spatial and temporal dynamics.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Doug Jackson

    Full Text Available Spatial structure can have a profound, but often underappreciated, effect on the temporal dynamics of ecosystems. Here we report on a counterintuitive increase in the population of a tree-nesting ant, Azteca sericeasur, in response to a drastic reduction in the number of potential nesting sites. This surprising result is comprehensible when viewed in the context of the self-organized spatial dynamics of the ants and their effect on the ants' dispersal-limited natural enemies. Approximately 30% of the trees in the study site, a coffee agroecosystem in southern Mexico, were pruned or felled over a two-year period, and yet the abundance of the ant nests more than doubled over the seven-year study. Throughout the transition, the spatial distribution of the ants maintained a power-law distribution - a signal of spatial self organization - but the local clustering of the nests was reduced post-pruning. A cellular automata model incorporating the changed spatial structure of the ants and the resulting partial escape from antagonists reproduced the observed increase in abundance, highlighting how self-organized spatial dynamics can profoundly influence the responses of ecosystems to perturbations.

  16. Ant Larval Demand Reduces Aphid Colony Growth Rates in an Ant-Aphid Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James M. Cook

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Ants often form mutualistic interactions with aphids, soliciting honeydew in return for protective services. Under certain circumstances, however, ants will prey upon aphids. In addition, in the presence of ants aphids may increase the quantity or quality of honeydew produced, which is costly. Through these mechanisms, ant attendance can reduce aphid colony growth rates. However, it is unknown whether demand from within the ant colony can affect the ant-aphid interaction. In a factorial experiment, we tested whether the presence of larvae in Lasius niger ant colonies affected the growth rate of Aphis fabae colonies. Other explanatory variables tested were the origin of ant colonies (two separate colonies were used and previous diet (sugar only or sugar and protein. We found that the presence of larvae in the ant colony significantly reduced the growth rate of aphid colonies. Previous diet and colony origin did not affect aphid colony growth rates. Our results suggest that ant colonies balance the flow of two separate resources from aphid colonies- renewable sugars or a protein-rich meal, depending on demand from ant larvae within the nest. Aphid payoffs from the ant-aphid interaction may change on a seasonal basis, as the demand from larvae within the ant colony waxes and wanes.

  17. The distribution and diversity of insular ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Roura-Pascual, Núria; Sanders, Nate; Hui, Cang

    2016-01-01

    Aim: To examine the relationship between island characteristics (area, distance to the nearest continent, climate and human population size) and ant species richness, as well as the factors underlying global geographical clustering of native and exotic ant composition on islands. Location: One...... hundred and two islands from 20 island groups around the world. Methods: We used spatial linear models that consider the spatial structure of islands to examine patterns of ant species richness. We also performed modularity analyses to identify clusters of islands hosting a similar suite of species...... and constructed conditional inference trees to assess the characteristics of islands that explain the formation of these island-ant groups. Results: Island area was the best predictor of ant species richness. However, distance to the nearest continent was an important predictor of native ant species richness...

  18. Bacterioplankton assemblages in coastal ponds reflect the influence of hydrology and geomorphological setting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huggett, Megan J; Kavazos, Christopher R J; Bernasconi, Rachele; Czarnik, Robert; Horwitz, Pierre

    2017-06-01

    The factors that shape microbial community assembly in aquatic ecosystems have been widely studied; yet it is still unclear how distinct communities within a connected landscape influence one another. Coastal lakes are recipients of, and thus are connected to, both marine and terrestrial environments. Thus, they may host microbial assemblages that reflect the relative degree of influence by, and connectivity to, either system. In order to address this idea, we interrogated microbial community diversity at 49 sites in seven ponds in two seasons in the Lake MacLeod basin, a system fed by seawater flowing inland through underground karst. Environmental and spatial variation within ponds explain <9% of the community structure, while identity of the pond that samples were taken from explains 50% of community variation. That is, ponds each host distinct assemblages despite similarities in size, environment and position in the landscape, indicating a dominant role for local species sorting. The ponds contain a substantial amount of previously unknown microbial taxa, reflecting the unusual nature of this inland system. Rare marine taxa, possibly dispersed from seawater assemblages via the underground karst connection, are abundant within the inland system, suggesting an important role for regional dispersal within the metacommunities. © FEMS 2017. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages in mangroves and open ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages in mangroves and open intertidal areas on the Dar es Salaam coast, Tanzania. ... it is recommended that conservation efforts along the Tanzanian coast should focus here. Keywords: benthic macrofauna, community structure, littoral zone, Tanganyika, Western Indian Ocean ...

  20. Benthic assemblages of mega epifauna on the Oregon continental margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemery, Lenaïg G.; Henkel, Sarah K.; Cochrane, Guy R.

    2018-01-01

    Environmental assessment studies are usually required by a country's administration before issuing permits for any industrial activities. One of the goals of such environmental assessment studies is to highlight species assemblages and habitat composition that could make the targeted area unique. A section of the Oregon continental slope that had not been previously explored was targeted for the deployment of floating wind turbines. We carried out an underwater video survey, using a towed camera sled, to describe its benthic assemblages. Organisms were identified to the lowest taxonomic level possible and assemblages described related to the nature of the seafloor and the depth. We highlighted six invertebrate assemblages and three fish assemblages. For the invertebrates within flat soft sediments areas we defined three different assemblages based on primarily depth: a broad mid-depth (98–315 m) assemblage dominated by red octopus, sea pens and pink shrimps; a narrower mid-depth (250–270 m) assemblage dominated by box crabs and various other invertebrates; and a deeper (310–600 m) assemblage dominated by sea urchins, sea anemones, various snails and zoroasterid sea stars. The invertebrates on mixed sediments also were divided into three different assemblages: a shallow (~100 m deep) assemblage dominated by plumose sea anemones, broad mid-depth (170–370 m) assemblage dominated by sea cucumbers and various other invertebrates; and, again, a narrower mid-depth (230–270 m) assemblage, dominated by crinoids and encrusting invertebrates. For the fish, we identified a rockfish assemblage on coarse mixed sediments at 170–370 m and another fish assemblage on smaller mixed sediments within that depth range (250–370 m) dominated by thornyheads, poachers and flatfishes; and we identified a wide depth-range (98–600 m) fish assemblage on flat soft sediments dominated by flatfishes, eelpouts and thornyheads. Three of these assemblages (the two

  1. Benthic assemblages of mega epifauna on the Oregon continental margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hemery, Lenaïg G.; Henkel, Sarah K.; Cochrane, Guy R.

    2018-05-01

    Environmental assessment studies are usually required by a country's administration before issuing permits for any industrial activities. One of the goals of such environmental assessment studies is to highlight species assemblages and habitat composition that could make the targeted area unique. A section of the Oregon continental slope that had not been previously explored was targeted for the deployment of floating wind turbines. We carried out an underwater video survey, using a towed camera sled, to describe its benthic assemblages. Organisms were identified to the lowest taxonomic level possible and assemblages described related to the nature of the seafloor and the depth. We highlighted six invertebrate assemblages and three fish assemblages. For the invertebrates within flat soft sediments areas we defined three different assemblages based on primarily depth: a broad mid-depth (98-315 m) assemblage dominated by red octopus, sea pens and pink shrimps; a narrower mid-depth (250-270 m) assemblage dominated by box crabs and various other invertebrates; and a deeper (310-600 m) assemblage dominated by sea urchins, sea anemones, various snails and zoroasterid sea stars. The invertebrates on mixed sediments also were divided into three different assemblages: a shallow ( 100 m deep) assemblage dominated by plumose sea anemones, broad mid-depth (170-370 m) assemblage dominated by sea cucumbers and various other invertebrates; and, again, a narrower mid-depth (230-270 m) assemblage, dominated by crinoids and encrusting invertebrates. For the fish, we identified a rockfish assemblage on coarse mixed sediments at 170-370 m and another fish assemblage on smaller mixed sediments within that depth range (250-370 m) dominated by thornyheads, poachers and flatfishes; and we identified a wide depth-range (98-600 m) fish assemblage on flat soft sediments dominated by flatfishes, eelpouts and thornyheads. Three of these assemblages (the two broad fish assemblages and the deep

  2. Antígona y la muerte

    OpenAIRE

    Pérez Alcolea, Simona Micaela

    2012-01-01

    La ponencia analiza la muerte de Antígona en la obra de Sófocles. Se propone que su suicidio es un acto consciente de voluntad preanunciado a lo largo de toda la obra y no una medida desesperada. Con ese fin se exploran las posibles motivaciones de Antígona para poner fin a su vida. En el análisis se proponen tres respuestas (no necesariamente excluyentes): -Antígona responde a la ética homérica. Está en lucha con Creón, y su suicidio es su golpe de gracia al poder del rey. -Antígona...

  3. Ant-plant symbioses: Stalking the chuyachaqui.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidson, D W; McKey, D

    1993-09-01

    According to Quechua-speaking peoples, orchard-like stands ('Supay Chacras') of two Amazonian ant-plant species are cultivated by the devil, or 'Chuyachaqui'. These "devil gardens" offer extreme examples of specializations that have evolved repeatedly in ant-plant associations. Numerous investigations are beginning to disclose the identity of the Chuyachaqui - the forces behind evolutionary specialization in ant-plant symbioses. These developments have important implications for our understanding of modes of coevolution in symbiotic mutualism, remarkable convergent similarities in the form of ant-plant symbioses on different continents, and pronounced intercontinental differences in the diversity and taxonomic composition of associates. Copyright © 1993. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  4. From Ant Trails to Pedestrian Dynamics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andreas Schadschneider

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a model for the simulation of pedestrian dynamics inspired by the behaviour of ants in ant trails. Ants communicate by producing a pheromone that can be smelled by other ants. In this model, pedestrians produce a virtual pheromone that influences the motion of others. In this way all interactions are strictly local, and so even large crowds can be simulated very efficiently. Nevertheless, the model is able to reproduce the collective effects observed empirically, eg the formation of lanes in counterflow. As an application, we reproduce a surprising result found in experiments of evacuation from an aircraft.

  5. Microorganisms transported by ants induce changes in floral nectar composition of an ant-pollinated plant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Vega, Clara; Herrera, Carlos M

    2013-04-01

    Interactions between plants and ants abound in nature and have significant consequences for ecosystem functioning. Recently, it has been suggested that nectar-foraging ants transport microorganisms to flowers; more specifically, they transport yeasts, which can potentially consume sugars and alter nectar composition. Therefore, ants could indirectly change nectar sugar profile, an important floral feature involved in the plant-pollinator mutualism. But this novel role for ants has never been tested. We here investigate the effects of nectarivorous ants and their associated yeasts on the floral nectar sugar composition of an ant-pollinated plant. Differences in the nectar sugar composition of ant-excluded and ant-visited flowers were examined in 278 samples by using high-performance liquid-chromatography. The importance of the genetic identity and density of ant-transported basidiomycetous and ascomycetous yeasts on the variation of nectar traits was also evaluated. Ant visitation had significant effects on nectar sugar composition. The nectar of ant-visited flowers contained significantly more fructose, more glucose, and less sucrose than the nectar of ant-excluded flowers, but these effects were context dependent. Nectar changes were correlated with the density of yeast cells in nectar. The magnitude of the effects of ant-transported ascomycetes was much higher than that of basiodiomycetes. Ants and their associated yeasts induce changes in nectar sugar traits, reducing the chemical control of the plant over this important floral trait. The potential relevance of this new role for ants as indirect nectar modifiers is a rich topic for future research into the ecology of ant-flower interactions.

  6. Pollination and facultative ant-association in the African leopard ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The role of extra-floral nectar appears to be recruitment of foraging ants to tend the flowers resulting in a facultative ant-association between the orchid and gregarious ants. Four different ant species were found to forage on A. africana's inflorescences. Ant-tended inflorescences suffered significantly less damage by insects.

  7. Michael Jackson antes del caos

    OpenAIRE

    Juan Luciano Nieves

    2015-01-01

    Michael Jackson es un buen ejemplo de cómo utilizar las relaciones públicas para realizar o manipular la imagen de un producto a través de los medios de comunicación. Este ensayo pretende analizar los eventos que tuvieron lugar antes de que el cantante fuera acusado de abuso sexual contra un menor. Dichos eventos formaron parte de un plan muy bien delineado para disminuir los efectos de la inminente crisis que se acercaba. Este trabajo combina la crítica retórica de temas de fantasía con teor...

  8. Viaje Antártico

    OpenAIRE

    Lasa, Gorka

    2017-01-01

    Ah, qué grandiosa sensación esta de poder caminar por los eternos hielos y dejar que mi vista se pierda en el horizonte crepuscular de esta desolada región! Aquellas solitarias islas, lamentos blancos en la distancia, aquellos azules glaciares llorando su neblina de frío y siglos. Al llamado lejano, mi alma se ve arrastrada por los vientos australes. Mítico ensueño que genera en mi imaginación el gran continente antártico. Belleza misteriosa e intimidante de la vastedad casi mágica que envuel...

  9. Mangrove macrobenthos: Assemblages, services, and linkages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, S. Y.

    2008-02-01

    Macrobenthic assemblages are relatively poorly known compared to other components of the mangrove ecosystem. Tropical mangroves support macrobenthic biodiversity resources yet to be properly documented and interpreted. Some methodological challenges, such as the generally high spatial heterogeneity and complexity of the habitat, evidently reduce sampling efficiency and accuracy, while also leaving some microhabitats under-sampled. Macrobenthic assemblage structure seems to be influenced by local environmental conditions, such as hydroperiod, organic matter availability and sediment characteristics. Brachyurans, gastropods and oligochaetes dominate in the sediment, with the former two groups also common on hard surfaces provided by tree trunks, while insects and arachnids inhabit the canopy. Traditionally, studies of mangrove macrobenthos have focused on assemblage structure or the biology of individual species, but more complex inter-specific interactions and the inter-relationship between habitat and the biota are recently being addressed. Brachyuran crabs are the best-studied macrobenthos group, but many issues about their role in mangrove ecosystem dynamics are still controversial. Despite many species of mangrove macrobenthos being referred to as 'trophic dead ends', most serve as important links between recalcitrant mangrove organic matter and estuarine secondary production, through feeding excursion by mobile nekton during the high tide, and macrobenthos-mediated processing and exportation of organic matter. A significant difference in the standing crop biomass of forests between the Indo-west-Pacific (IWP)' and Atlantic-east-Pacific (AEP) mangroves may be related to the difference in species richness of mangrove as well as macrobenthos diversity in the two bioregions. Such differences in assemblage structure may also result in different ecosystem functioning, but the nature of the links is, however, yet to be explored. There is also a strong need for

  10. Foliar uptake of nitrogen from ant fecal droplets: an overlooked service to ant plants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pinkalski, Christian Alexander Stidsen; Jensen, Karl-Martin Vagn; Damgaard, Christian Frølund

    2018-01-01

    and subsequently deposited fecal droplets on the seedlings, coffee leaves showed increased levels of 15N and total N compared to control plants without ants. This was evident for both exposed leaves and leaves covered in plastic bags (i.e. not directly exposed to ants). Thus, N from ant excretions was absorbed...

  11. The evolution of genome size in ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Spagna Joseph C

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Despite the economic and ecological importance of ants, genomic tools for this family (Formicidae remain woefully scarce. Knowledge of genome size, for example, is a useful and necessary prerequisite for the development of many genomic resources, yet it has been reported for only one ant species (Solenopsis invicta, and the two published estimates for this species differ by 146.7 Mb (0.15 pg. Results Here, we report the genome size for 40 species of ants distributed across 10 of the 20 currently recognized subfamilies, thus making Formicidae the 4th most surveyed insect family and elevating the Hymenoptera to the 5th most surveyed insect order. Our analysis spans much of the ant phylogeny, from the less derived Amblyoponinae and Ponerinae to the more derived Myrmicinae, Formicinae and Dolichoderinae. We include a number of interesting and important taxa, including the invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile, Neotropical army ants (genera Eciton and Labidus, trapjaw ants (Odontomachus, fungus-growing ants (Apterostigma, Atta and Sericomyrmex, harvester ants (Messor, Pheidole and Pogonomyrmex, carpenter ants (Camponotus, a fire ant (Solenopsis, and a bulldog ant (Myrmecia. Our results show that ants possess small genomes relative to most other insects, yet genome size varies three-fold across this insect family. Moreover, our data suggest that two whole-genome duplications may have occurred in the ancestors of the modern Ectatomma and Apterostigma. Although some previous studies of other taxa have revealed a relationship between genome size and body size, our phylogenetically-controlled analysis of this correlation did not reveal a significant relationship. Conclusion This is the first analysis of genome size in ants (Formicidae and the first across multiple species of social insects. We show that genome size is a variable trait that can evolve gradually over long time spans, as well as rapidly, through processes that may

  12. Hybrid chaotic ant swarm optimization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Li Yuying; Wen Qiaoyan; Li Lixiang; Peng Haipeng

    2009-01-01

    Chaotic ant swarm optimization (CASO) is a powerful chaos search algorithm that is used to find the global optimum solution in search space. However, the CASO algorithm has some disadvantages, such as lower solution precision and longer computational time, when solving complex optimization problems. To resolve these problems, an improved CASO, called hybrid chaotic swarm optimization (HCASO), is proposed in this paper. The new algorithm introduces preselection operator and discrete recombination operator into the CASO; meanwhile it replaces the best position found by own and its neighbors' ants with the best position found by preselection operator and discrete recombination operator in evolution equation. Through testing five benchmark functions with large dimensionality, the experimental results show the new method enhances the solution accuracy and stability greatly, as well as reduces the computational time and computer memory significantly when compared to the CASO. In addition, we observe the results can become better with swarm size increasing from the sensitivity study to swarm size. And we gain some relations between problem dimensions and swam size according to scalability study.

  13. Effects of dredged sediment disposal on the coastal marine macrobenthic assemblage in Southern Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. G. Angonesi

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to evaluate the deposition impact of dredged material from Patos lagoon estuary on a benthic macroinvertebrate assemblage structure in an adjacent coastal marine area. Nine sampling stations were chosen at random in the disposal area, and nine others in the same way in an adjacent control area. Samples were collected at a 19 m depth before sediment disposal (11 July 2000, during dredging and disposal operations (25 Oct. 2000, and three months thereafter (24 Aug. 2001. Statistical analysis indicated that sampling periods presented similar characteristics in both the control and disposal sites. Disposal of dredged sediment from Patos lagoon had no detectable detrimental effects upon macrobenthic faunal assemblage at the dumping site. This result is attributed both to adaptation of resident biota to dynamic sedimentary conditions and to the fine estuarine sediment dredged, the dispersion of which in the water column might have minimized sediment deposition and consequent damage to the benthic fauna.

  14. High Resilience of Seed Dispersal Webs Highlighted by the Experimental Removal of the Dominant Disperser.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timóteo, Sérgio; Ramos, Jaime Albino; Vaughan, Ian Phillip; Memmott, Jane

    2016-04-04

    The pressing need to conserve and restore habitats in the face of ongoing species loss [1, 2] requires a better understanding of what happens to communities when species are lost or reinstated [3, 4]. Theoretical models show that communities are relatively insensitive to species loss [5, 6]; however, they disagree with field manipulations showing a cascade of extinctions [7, 8] and have seldom been tested under field conditions (e.g., [9]). We experimentally removed the most abundant seed-dispersing ant species from seed dispersal networks in a Mediterranean landscape, replicating the experiment in three types of habitat, and then compared these communities to un-manipulated control communities. Removal did not result in large-scale changes in network structure. It revealed extensive structural plasticity of the remaining community, which rearranged itself through rewiring, while maintaining its functionality. The remaining ant species widened their diet breadth in a way that maintained seed dispersal, despite the identity of many interactions changing. The species interaction strength decreased; thus, the importance of each ant species for seed dispersal became more homogeneous, thereby reducing the dependence of seed species on one dominant ant species. Compared to the experimental results, a simulation model that included rewiring considerably overestimated the effect of species loss on network robustness. If community-level species loss models are to be of practical use in ecology or conservation, they need to include behavioral and population responses, and they need to be routinely tested under field conditions; doing this would be to the advantage of both empiricists and theoreticians. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Markedly Divergent Tree Assemblage Responses to Tropical Forest Loss and Fragmentation across a Strong Seasonality Gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orihuela, Rodrigo L L; Peres, Carlos A; Mendes, Gabriel; Jarenkow, João A; Tabarelli, Marcelo

    2015-01-01

    We examine the effects of forest fragmentation on the structure and composition of tree assemblages within three seasonal and aseasonal forest types of southern Brazil, including evergreen, Araucaria, and deciduous forests. We sampled three southernmost Atlantic Forest landscapes, including the largest continuous forest protected areas within each forest type. Tree assemblages in each forest type were sampled within 10 plots of 0.1 ha in both continuous forests and 10 adjacent forest fragments. All trees within each plot were assigned to trait categories describing their regeneration strategy, vertical stratification, seed-dispersal mode, seed size, and wood density. We detected differences among both forest types and landscape contexts in terms of overall tree species richness, and the density and species richness of different functional groups in terms of regeneration strategy, seed dispersal mode and woody density. Overall, evergreen forest fragments exhibited the largest deviations from continuous forest plots in assemblage structure. Evergreen, Araucaria and deciduous forests diverge in the functional composition of tree floras, particularly in relation to regeneration strategy and stress tolerance. By supporting a more diversified light-demanding and stress-tolerant flora with reduced richness and abundance of shade-tolerant, old-growth species, both deciduous and Araucaria forest tree assemblages are more intrinsically resilient to contemporary human-disturbances, including fragmentation-induced edge effects, in terms of species erosion and functional shifts. We suggest that these intrinsic differences in the direction and magnitude of responses to changes in landscape structure between forest types should guide a wide range of conservation strategies in restoring fragmented tropical forest landscapes worldwide.

  16. Markedly Divergent Tree Assemblage Responses to Tropical Forest Loss and Fragmentation across a Strong Seasonality Gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo L L Orihuela

    Full Text Available We examine the effects of forest fragmentation on the structure and composition of tree assemblages within three seasonal and aseasonal forest types of southern Brazil, including evergreen, Araucaria, and deciduous forests. We sampled three southernmost Atlantic Forest landscapes, including the largest continuous forest protected areas within each forest type. Tree assemblages in each forest type were sampled within 10 plots of 0.1 ha in both continuous forests and 10 adjacent forest fragments. All trees within each plot were assigned to trait categories describing their regeneration strategy, vertical stratification, seed-dispersal mode, seed size, and wood density. We detected differences among both forest types and landscape contexts in terms of overall tree species richness, and the density and species richness of different functional groups in terms of regeneration strategy, seed dispersal mode and woody density. Overall, evergreen forest fragments exhibited the largest deviations from continuous forest plots in assemblage structure. Evergreen, Araucaria and deciduous forests diverge in the functional composition of tree floras, particularly in relation to regeneration strategy and stress tolerance. By supporting a more diversified light-demanding and stress-tolerant flora with reduced richness and abundance of shade-tolerant, old-growth species, both deciduous and Araucaria forest tree assemblages are more intrinsically resilient to contemporary human-disturbances, including fragmentation-induced edge effects, in terms of species erosion and functional shifts. We suggest that these intrinsic differences in the direction and magnitude of responses to changes in landscape structure between forest types should guide a wide range of conservation strategies in restoring fragmented tropical forest landscapes worldwide.

  17. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Axel Touchard

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants (Formicidae represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents.

  18. Hey! A Fire Ant Stung Me!

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... Videos for Educators Search English Español Hey! A Fire Ant Stung Me! KidsHealth / For Kids / Hey! A ... Me picó una roja o colorada! What's a Fire Ant? There are many different types of fire ...

  19. The Biochemical Toxin Arsenal from Ant Venoms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Aili, Samira R.; Fox, Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson; Escoubas, Pierre; Orivel, Jérôme; Nicholson, Graham M.; Dejean, Alain

    2016-01-01

    Ants (Formicidae) represent a taxonomically diverse group of hymenopterans with over 13,000 extant species, the majority of which inject or spray secretions from a venom gland. The evolutionary success of ants is mostly due to their unique eusociality that has permitted them to develop complex collaborative strategies, partly involving their venom secretions, to defend their nest against predators, microbial pathogens, ant competitors, and to hunt prey. Activities of ant venom include paralytic, cytolytic, haemolytic, allergenic, pro-inflammatory, insecticidal, antimicrobial, and pain-producing pharmacologic activities, while non-toxic functions include roles in chemical communication involving trail and sex pheromones, deterrents, and aggregators. While these diverse activities in ant venoms have until now been largely understudied due to the small venom yield from ants, modern analytical and venomic techniques are beginning to reveal the diversity of toxin structure and function. As such, ant venoms are distinct from other venomous animals, not only rich in linear, dimeric and disulfide-bonded peptides and bioactive proteins, but also other volatile and non-volatile compounds such as alkaloids and hydrocarbons. The present review details the unique structures and pharmacologies of known ant venom proteinaceous and alkaloidal toxins and their potential as a source of novel bioinsecticides and therapeutic agents. PMID:26805882

  20. Understanding the effects of predictability, duration, and spatial pattern of drying on benthic invertebrate assemblages in two contrasting intermittent streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Schiller, Daniel; Barberá, Gonzalo G.; Díaz, Angela M.; Arce, Maria Isabel; del Campo, Rubén; Tockner, Klement

    2018-01-01

    In the present study, we examined the effects of different drying conditions on the composition, structure and function of benthic invertebrate assemblages. We approached this objective by comparing invertebrate assemblages in perennial and intermittent sites along two intermittent Mediterranean streams with contrasting predictability, duration, and spatial patterns of drying: Fuirosos (high predictability, short duration, downstream drying pattern) and Rogativa (low predictability, long duration, patchy drying pattern). Specifically, we quantified the contribution of individual taxa to those differences, the degree of nestedness, and shifts in the composition, structure and function of benthic invertebrate assemblages along flow intermittence gradients. We observed greater effects of drying on the benthic invertebrate composition in Fuirosos than in Rogativa, resulting in a higher dissimilarity of assemblages between perennial and intermittent sites, as well as a lower degree of nestedness. Furthermore, a higher number of biotic metrics related to richness, abundance and biological traits were significantly different between perennial and intermittent sites in Fuirosos, despite a shorter dry period compared to Rogativa. At the same time, slightly different responses were detected during post-drying (autumn) than pre-drying (spring) conditions in this stream. In Rogativa, shifts in benthic invertebrate assemblages along increasing gradients of flow intermittence were found for three metrics (Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera and Trichoptera (EPT) and Odonata, Coleoptera and Heteroptera (OCH) abundances and aerial active dispersal. Furthermore, we demonstrated that combined gradients of dry period duration and distance to nearest perennial reach can generate complex, and different, responses of benthic invertebrate assemblages, depending on the flow intermittence metric. Our study advances the notion that special attention should be paid to the predictability, duration and

  1. AntStar: Enhancing Optimization Problems by Integrating an Ant System and A⁎ Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed Faisal

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Recently, nature-inspired techniques have become valuable to many intelligent systems in different fields of technology and science. Among these techniques, Ant Systems (AS have become a valuable technique for intelligent systems in different fields. AS is a computational system inspired by the foraging behavior of ants and intended to solve practical optimization problems. In this paper, we introduce the AntStar algorithm, which is swarm intelligence based. AntStar enhances the optimization and performance of an AS by integrating the AS and A⁎ algorithm. Applying the AntStar algorithm to the single-source shortest-path problem has been done to ensure the efficiency of the proposed AntStar algorithm. The experimental result of the proposed algorithm illustrated the robustness and accuracy of the AntStar algorithm.

  2. Dispersion strengthening

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Scattergood, R.O.; Das, E.S.P.

    1976-01-01

    Using digital computer-based methods, models for dispersion strengthening can now be developed which take into account many of the important effects that have been neglected in the past. In particular, the self interaction of a dislocation can be treated, and a computer simulation method was developed to determine the flow stress of a random distribution of circular, impenetrable obstacles, taking into account all such interactions. The flow stress values depended on the obstacle sizes and spacings, over and above the usual 1/L dependence where L is the average obstacle spacing. From an analysis of the results, it was found that the main effects of the self interactions can be captured in a line tension analogue in which the obstacles appear to be penetrable

  3. Recurrence analysis of ant activity patterns.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Felipe Marcel Neves

    Full Text Available In this study, we used recurrence quantification analysis (RQA and recurrence plots (RPs to compare the movement activity of individual workers of three ant species, as well as a gregarious beetle species. RQA and RPs quantify the number and duration of recurrences of a dynamical system, including a detailed quantification of signals that could be stochastic, deterministic, or both. First, we found substantial differences between the activity dynamics of beetles and ants, with the results suggesting that the beetles have quasi-periodic dynamics and the ants do not. Second, workers from different ant species varied with respect to their dynamics, presenting degrees of predictability as well as stochastic signals. Finally, differences were found among minor and major caste of the same (dimorphic ant species. Our results underscore the potential of RQA and RPs in the analysis of complex behavioral patterns, as well as in general inferences on animal behavior and other biological phenomena.

  4. Ants defend aphids against lethal disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Charlotte; Agrawal, Anurag A.; Hajek, Ann E.

    2010-01-01

    Social insects defend their own colonies and some species also protect their mutualist partners. In mutualisms with aphids, ants typically feed on honeydew produced by aphids and, in turn guard and shelter aphid colonies from insect natural enemies. Here we report that Formica podzolica ants tending milkweed aphids, Aphis asclepiadis, protect aphid colonies from lethal fungal infections caused by an obligate aphid pathogen, Pandora neoaphidis. In field experiments, bodies of fungal-killed aphids were quickly removed from ant-tended aphid colonies. Ant workers were also able to detect infective conidia on the cuticle of living aphids and responded by either removing or grooming these aphids. Our results extend the long-standing view of ants as mutualists and protectors of aphids by demonstrating focused sanitizing and quarantining behaviour that may lead to reduced disease transmission in aphid colonies. PMID:19923138

  5. Different distribution patterns between putative ercoid mycorrhizal and other fungal assemblages in roots of Rhododendron decorum in the Southwest of China.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lifu Sun

    Full Text Available Fungal diversity within plant roots is affected by several factors such as dispersal limitation, habitat filtering, and plant host preference. Given the differences in life style between symbiotic and non-symbiotic fungi, the main factors affecting these two groups of fungi may be different. We assessed the diversity of root associated fungi of Rhododendron decorum using internal transcribed spacer (ITS sequencing and terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP analysis, and our aim was to evaluate the role of different factors in structuring ericoid mycorrhizal (ERM and non-ericoid mycorrhizal (NEM fungal communities. Thirty-five fungal operational taxonomic units (OTUs were found in roots of R. decorum, of which 25 were putative ERM fungal species. Of the two main groups of known ERM, helotialean fungi were more abundant and common than sebacinalean species. Geographic and host patterning of the fungal assemblages were different for ERM and NEM. The distribution of putative ERM fungal terminal restriction fragments (TRFs showed that there were more common species within ERM than in the NEM fungal assemblages. Results of Mantel tests indicated that the composition of NEM fungal assemblages correlated with geographic parameters while ERM fungal assemblages lacked a significant geographic pattern and instead were correlated with host genotype. Redundancy analysis (RDA showed that the NEM fungal assemblages were significantly correlated with latitude, longitude, elevation, mean annual precipitation (MAP, and axis 2 of a host-genetic principle component analysis (PCA, while ERM fungal assemblages correlated only with latitude and axis 1 of the host-genetic PCA. We conclude that ERM and NEM assemblages are affected by different factors, with the host genetic composition more important for ERM and geographic factors more important for NEM assemblages. Our results contribute to understanding the roles of dispersal limitation, abiotic

  6. Consumer–brand assemblages in advertising

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bjerrisgaard, Sofie Møller; Kjeldgaard, Dannie; Bengtson, Anders

    2013-01-01

    This paper discusses how the use of tattoos in advertising renders diverse brand–consumer assemblages visible. In considering advertising practitioners as professionals of entanglement, the paper emphasizes the embeddedness of practitioners’ use of tattoo symbolism in institutionalized marketing...... systems and in the cultural history of tattooing. In accordance with recent emphasis on the importance of material devices for understanding contemporary sociality, this paper presents a semiotic analysis of a convenience sample of advertisements depicting tattoos. Tattoos are productive for the study...... potency. This analysis demonstrates how the emergence of brand tattoos in advertising challenges the dominant consumer centrism in consumer research and suggests a networked, emerging understanding of the subject in which agency is distributed in socio-technical assemblages....

  7. Persistence of pollination mutualisms in the presence of ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yuanshi; Wang, Shikun

    2015-01-01

    This paper considers plant-pollinator-ant systems in which the plant-pollinator interaction is mutualistic but ants have both positive and negative effects on plants. The ants also interfere with pollinators by preventing them from accessing plants. While a Beddington-DeAngelis (BD) formula can describe the plant-pollinator interaction, the formula is extended in this paper to characterize the pollination mutualism under the ant interference. Then, a plant-pollinator-ant system with the extended BD functional response is discussed, and global dynamics of the model demonstrate the mechanisms by which pollination mutualism can persist in the presence of ants. When the ant interference is strong, it can result in extinction of pollinators. Moreover, if the ants depend on pollination mutualism for survival, the strong interference could drive pollinators into extinction, which consequently lead to extinction of the ants themselves. When the ant interference is weak, a cooperation between plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualisms could occur, which promotes survival of both ants and pollinators, especially in the case that ants (respectively, pollinators) cannot survive in the absence of pollinators (respectively, ants). Even when the level of ant interference remains invariant, varying ants' negative effect on plants can result in survival/extinction of both ants and pollinators. Therefore, our results provide an explanation for the persistence of pollination mutualism when there exist ants.

  8. Michael Jackson antes del caos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Luciano Nieves

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Michael Jackson es un buen ejemplo de cómo utilizar las relaciones públicas para realizar o manipular la imagen de un producto a través de los medios de comunicación. Este ensayo pretende analizar los eventos que tuvieron lugar antes de que el cantante fuera acusado de abuso sexual contra un menor. Dichos eventos formaron parte de un plan muy bien delineado para disminuir los efectos de la inminente crisis que se acercaba. Este trabajo combina la crítica retórica de temas de fantasía con teoría de comunicación.

  9. Individual Recognition in Ant Queens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    D'Ettorre, Patrizia; Heinze, Jürgen

    2005-01-01

    Personal relationships are the cornerstone of vertebrate societies, but insect societies are either too large for individual recognition, or their members were assumed to lack the necessary cognitive abilities 1 and 2 . This paradigm has been challenged by the recent discovery that paper wasps...... recognize each other's unique facial color patterns [3] . Individual recognition is advantageous when dominance hierarchies control the partitioning of work and reproduction 2 and 4 . Here, we show that unrelated founding queens of the ant Pachycondyla villosa use chemical cues to recognize each other...... individually. Aggression was significantly lower in pairs of queens that had previously interacted than in pairs with similar social history but no experience with one another. Moreover, subordinates discriminated familiar and unfamiliar dominants in choice experiments in which physical contact, but not odor...

  10. FDTD-ANT User Manual

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, Martin L.

    1995-01-01

    This manual explains the theory and operation of the finite-difference time domain code FDTD-ANT developed by Analex Corporation at the NASA Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. This code can be used for solving electromagnetic problems that are electrically small or medium (on the order of 1 to 50 cubic wavelengths). Calculated parameters include transmission line impedance, relative effective permittivity, antenna input impedance, and far-field patterns in both the time and frequency domains. The maximum problem size may be adjusted according to the computer used. This code has been run on the DEC VAX and 486 PC's and on workstations such as the Sun Sparc and the IBM RS/6000.

  11. Multivariate and Spatial Visualisation of Archaeological Assemblages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Sterry

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Multivariate analyses, in particular correspondence analysis (CA, have become a standard exploratory tool for analysing and interpreting variance in archaeological assemblages. While they have greatly helped analysts, they unfortunately remain abstract to the viewer, all the more so if the viewer has little or no experience with multivariate statistics. A second issue with these analyses can arise from the detachment of archaeological material from its geo-referenced location and typically considered only in terms of arbitrary classifications (e.g. North Europe, Central Europe, South Europe instead of the full range of local conditions (e.g. proximity to other assemblages, relationships with other spatial phenomena. This article addresses these issues by presenting a novel method for spatially visualising CA so that these analyses can be interpreted intuitively. The method works by transforming the resultant bi-plots of the CA into colour maps using the HSV colour model, in which the similarity and difference between assemblages directly corresponds to the similarity and difference of the colours used to display them. Utilising two datasets – ceramics from the excavations of the Roman fortress of Vetera I, and terra sigillata forms collected as part of 'The Samian Project' – the article demonstrates how the method is applied and how it can be used to draw out spatial and temporal trends.

  12. Assemblaged by desire: Potterheads’ productive consumption

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    André Luiz Maranhão de Souza Leão

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The Harry Potter saga became one of the cultural products with a major impact on the twenty-first century. Its fans, called potterheads, relate in a social space known as fandom. Their practices are based on the appropriation of the cultural text in a productive consumption process within a context of participatory culture. Assuming desire from the perspective of Deleuzian assemblage theory, which presents this concept as a flow of productive energy that is articulated through a collective force, this study aimed to understand how potterheads’ productive consumption is assemblaged by desire. We therefore explored multifocal data concerning practices of potterheads available on digital platforms using Foucauldian Discourse Analysis. Our results revealed that potterheads’ desire assemblage maintains their bond with the canonical universe of the saga, as a way of maintaining identity and security in the transition to adult life, through relationships in the fandom and in pursuit of broader social legitimacy. The study contributes theoretically by adopting the Deleuzian notion of desire as a lens to understand the collective action of consumers in cultural contexts of practice.

  13. How do ants make sense of gravity? A Boltzmann Walker analysis of Lasius niger trajectories on various inclines.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anaïs Khuong

    Full Text Available The goal of this study is to describe accurately how the directional information given by support inclinations affects the ant Lasius niger motion in terms of a behavioral decision. To this end, we have tracked the spontaneous motion of 345 ants walking on a 0.5×0.5 m plane canvas, which was tilted with 5 various inclinations by [Formula: see text] rad ([Formula: see text] data points. At the population scale, support inclination favors dispersal along uphill and downhill directions. An ant's decision making process is modeled using a version of the Boltzmann Walker model, which describes an ant's random walk as a series of straight segments separated by reorientation events, and was extended to take directional influence into account. From the data segmented accordingly ([Formula: see text] segments, this extension allows us to test separately how average speed, segments lengths and reorientation decisions are affected by support inclination and current walking direction of the ant. We found that support inclination had a major effect on average speed, which appeared approximately three times slower on the [Formula: see text] incline. However, we found no effect of the walking direction on speed. Contrastingly, we found that ants tend to walk longer in the same direction when they move uphill or downhill, and also that they preferentially adopt new uphill or downhill headings at turning points. We conclude that ants continuously adapt their decision making about where to go, and how long to persist in the same direction, depending on how they are aligned with the line of maximum declivity gradient. Hence, their behavioral decision process appears to combine klinokinesis with geomenotaxis. The extended Boltzmann Walker model parameterized by these effects gives a fair account of the directional dispersal of ants on inclines.

  14. Army ants dynamically adjust living bridges in response to a cost-benefit trade-off.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reid, Chris R; Lutz, Matthew J; Powell, Scott; Kao, Albert B; Couzin, Iain D; Garnier, Simon

    2015-12-08

    The ability of individual animals to create functional structures by joining together is rare and confined to the social insects. Army ants (Eciton) form collective assemblages out of their own bodies to perform a variety of functions that benefit the entire colony. Here we examine ‟bridges" of linked individuals that are constructed to span gaps in the colony's foraging trail. How these living structures adjust themselves to varied and changing conditions remains poorly understood. Our field experiments show that the ants continuously modify their bridges, such that these structures lengthen, widen, and change position in response to traffic levels and environmental geometry. Ants initiate bridges where their path deviates from their incoming direction and move the bridges over time to create shortcuts over large gaps. The final position of the structure depended on the intensity of the traffic and the extent of path deviation and was influenced by a cost-benefit trade-off at the colony level, where the benefit of increased foraging trail efficiency was balanced by the cost of removing workers from the foraging pool to form the structure. To examine this trade-off, we quantified the geometric relationship between costs and benefits revealed by our experiments. We then constructed a model to determine the bridge location that maximized foraging rate, which qualitatively matched the observed movement of bridges. Our results highlight how animal self-assemblages can be dynamically modified in response to a group-level cost-benefit trade-off, without any individual unit's having information on global benefits or costs.

  15. Hydrodynamic dispersion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pryce, M.H.L.

    1985-01-01

    A dominant mechanism contributing to hydrodynamic dispersion in fluid flow through rocks is variation of travel speeds within the channels carrying the fluid, whether these be interstices between grains, in granular rocks, or cracks in fractured crystalline rocks. The complex interconnections of the channels ensure a mixing of those parts of the fluid which travel more slowly and those which travel faster. On a macroscopic scale this can be treated statistically in terms of the distribution of times taken by a particle of fluid to move from one surface of constant hydraulic potential to another, lower, potential. The distributions in the individual channels are such that very long travel times make a very important contribution. Indeed, while the mean travel time is related to distance by a well-defined transport speed, the mean square is effectively infinite. This results in an asymmetrical plume which differs markedly from a gaussian shape. The distribution of microscopic travel times is related to the distribution of apertures in the interstices, or in the microcracks, which in turn are affected in a complex way by the stresses acting on the rock matrix

  16. Collective search by ants in microgravity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie M. Countryman

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The problem of collective search is a tradeoff between searching thoroughly and covering as much area as possible. This tradeoff depends on the density of searchers. Solutions to the problem of collective search are currently of much interest in robotics and in the study of distributed algorithms, for example to design ways that without central control robots can use local information to perform search and rescue operations. Ant colonies operate without central control. Because they can perceive only local, mostly chemical and tactile cues, they must search collectively to find resources and to monitor the colony's environment. Examining how ants in diverse environments solve the problem of collective search can elucidate how evolution has led to diverse forms of collective behavior. An experiment on the International Space Station in January 2014 examined how ants (Tetramorium caespitum perform collective search in microgravity. In the ISS experiment, the ants explored a small arena in which a barrier was lowered to increase the area and thus lower ant density. In microgravity, relative to ground controls, ants explored the area less thoroughly and took more convoluted paths. It appears that the difficulty of holding on to the surface interfered with the ants’ ability to search collectively. Ants frequently lost contact with the surface, but showed a remarkable ability to regain contact with the surface.

  17. Ant-lepidopteran associations along African forest edges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Azémar, Frédéric; Libert, Michel; Compin, Arthur; Hérault, Bruno; Orivel, Jérôme; Bouyer, Thierry; Corbara, Bruno

    2017-02-01

    Working along forest edges, we aimed to determine how some caterpillars can co-exist with territorially dominant arboreal ants (TDAAs) in tropical Africa. We recorded caterpillars from 22 lepidopteran species living in the presence of five TDAA species. Among the defoliator and/or nectarivorous caterpillars that live on tree foliage, the Pyralidae and Nymphalidae use their silk to protect themselves from ant attacks. The Notodontidae and lycaenid Polyommatinae and Theclinae live in direct contact with ants; the Theclinae even reward ants with abundant secretions from their Newcomer gland. Lichen feeders (lycaenid; Poritiinae), protected by long bristles, also live among ants. Some lycaenid Miletinae caterpillars feed on ant-attended membracids, including in the shelters where the ants attend them; Lachnocnema caterpillars use their forelegs to obtain trophallaxis from their host ants. Caterpillars from other species live inside weaver ant nests. Those of the genus Euliphyra (Miletinae) feed on ant prey and brood and can obtain trophallaxis, while those from an Eberidae species only prey on host ant eggs. Eublemma albifascia (Erebidae) caterpillars use their thoracic legs to obtain trophallaxis and trophic eggs from ants. Through transfer bioassays of last instars, we noted that herbivorous caterpillars living in contact with ants were always accepted by alien conspecific ants; this is likely due to an intrinsic appeasing odor. Yet, caterpillars living in ant shelters or ant nests probably acquire cues from their host colonies because they were considered aliens and killed. We conclude that co-evolution with ants occurred similarly in the Heterocera and Rhopalocera.

  18. Breaking out of biogeographical modules: range expansion and taxon cycles in the hyperdiverse ant genus Pheidole

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Economo, E. P.; Sarnat, E. M.; Janda, Milan; Clouse, R.; Klimov, P. B.; Fischer, G.; Blanchard, B. D.; Ramirez, L. N.; Andersen, A. N.; Berman, M.; Guénard, B.; Lucky, A.; Rabeling, C.; Wilson, E. O.; Knowles, L. L.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 42, č. 12 (2015), s. 2289-2301 ISSN 0305-0270 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/12/2467 Grant - others:Marie Curie Felloswhip(CZ) PIOFGA2009-25448 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : ants * colonization * dispersal Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.997, year: 2015 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jbi.12592/epdf

  19. Food resource and temporal partitioning amongst a guild of predatory agroecosystem - inhabiting ant species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vivek Mohan AGARWAL, Neelkamal RASTOGI

    2009-10-01

    . The agroecosystem-inhabiting ant species prey on a large number and wide variety of insect herbivores as evident from the differences in the peak foraging times and the proportion of each type of prey hunted. Overall, our results indicate that the structure of agroecosystem-inhabiting ant assemblage may be influenced by a variety of factors including competition, temporal heterogeneities, prey availability and its characteristics such as size and mobility [Current Zoology 55 (5 : –, 2009].

  20. Fish stomach contents in benthic macroinvertebrate assemblage assessments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    TH. Tupinambás

    Full Text Available The choice of sampling gears to assess benthic macroinvertebrate communities depends on environmental characteristics, study objectives, and cost effectiveness. Because of the high foraging capacity and diverse habitats and behaviors of benthophagous fishes, their stomach contents may offer a useful sampling tool in studies of benthic macroinvertebrates, especially in large, deep, fast rivers that are difficult to sample with traditional sediment sampling gear. Our objective was to compare the benthic macroinvertebrate communities sampled from sediments with those sampled from fish stomachs. We collected benthic macroinvertebrates and fish from three different habitat types (backwater, beach, riffle in the wet season, drying season, and dry season along a single reach of the Grande River (Paraná River Basin, southeast Brazil. We sampled sediments through use of a Petersen dredge (total of 216 grabs and used gill nets to sample fish (total of 36 samples. We analyzed the stomach contents of three commonly occurring benthophagous fish species (Eigenmannia virescens, Iheringichthys labrosus, Leporinus amblyrhynchus. Chironomids dominated in both sampling methods. Macroinvertebrate taxonomic composition and abundances from fish stomachs differed from those from sediment samples, but less so from riffles than from backwater and beach habitats. Macroinvertebrate taxa from E. virescens stomachs were more strongly correlated with sediment samples from all three habitats than were those from the other two species. The species accumulation curves and higher mean dispersion values, compared with with sediment samples suggest that E. virescens is more efficient than sediment samples and the other fish studied at collecting benthic taxa. We conclude that by analyzing the stomach contents of benthophagous fishes it is possible to assess important characteristics of benthic communities (dispersion, taxonomic composition and diversity. This is especially true

  1. Fossil evidence for serpentinization fluids fueling chemosynthetic assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lartaud, Franck; Little, Crispin T S; de Rafelis, Marc; Bayon, Germain; Dyment, Jerome; Ildefonse, Benoit; Gressier, Vincent; Fouquet, Yves; Gaill, Françoise; Le Bris, Nadine

    2011-05-10

    Among the deep-sea hydrothermal vent sites discovered in the past 30 years, Lost City on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge (MAR) is remarkable both for its alkaline fluids derived from mantle rock serpentinization and the spectacular seafloor carbonate chimneys precipitated from these fluids. Despite high concentrations of reduced chemicals in the fluids, this unique example of a serpentinite-hosted hydrothermal system currently lacks chemosynthetic assemblages dominated by large animals typical of high-temperature vent sites. Here we report abundant specimens of chemosymbiotic mussels, associated with gastropods and chemosymbiotic clams, in approximately 100 kyr old Lost City-like carbonates from the MAR close to the Rainbow site (36 °N). Our finding shows that serpentinization-related fluids, unaffected by high-temperature hydrothermal circulation, can occur on-axis and are able to sustain high-biomass communities. The widespread occurrence of seafloor ultramafic rocks linked to likely long-range dispersion of vent species therefore offers considerably more ecospace for chemosynthetic fauna in the oceans than previously supposed.

  2. Simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages in response to increasing urbanization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaac, Bronwyn; White, John; Ierodiaconou, Daniel; Cooke, Raylene

    2014-01-01

    Arboreal marsupials play an essential role in ecosystem function including regulating insect and plant populations, facilitating pollen and seed dispersal and acting as a prey source for higher-order carnivores in Australian environments. Primarily, research has focused on their biology, ecology and response to disturbance in forested and urban environments. We used presence-only species distribution modelling to understand the relationship between occurrences of arboreal marsupials and eco-geographical variables, and to infer habitat suitability across an urban gradient. We used post-proportional analysis to determine whether increasing urbanization affected potential habitat for arboreal marsupials. The key eco-geographical variables that influenced disturbance intolerant species and those with moderate tolerance to disturbance were natural features such as tree cover and proximity to rivers and to riparian vegetation, whereas variables for disturbance tolerant species were anthropogenic-based (e.g., road density) but also included some natural characteristics such as proximity to riparian vegetation, elevation and tree cover. Arboreal marsupial diversity was subject to substantial change along the gradient, with potential habitat for disturbance-tolerant marsupials distributed across the complete gradient and potential habitat for less tolerant species being restricted to the natural portion of the gradient. This resulted in highly-urbanized environments being inhabited by a few generalist arboreal marsupial species. Increasing urbanization therefore leads to functional simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages, thus impacting on the ecosystem services they provide.

  3. Simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages in response to increasing urbanization.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bronwyn Isaac

    Full Text Available Arboreal marsupials play an essential role in ecosystem function including regulating insect and plant populations, facilitating pollen and seed dispersal and acting as a prey source for higher-order carnivores in Australian environments. Primarily, research has focused on their biology, ecology and response to disturbance in forested and urban environments. We used presence-only species distribution modelling to understand the relationship between occurrences of arboreal marsupials and eco-geographical variables, and to infer habitat suitability across an urban gradient. We used post-proportional analysis to determine whether increasing urbanization affected potential habitat for arboreal marsupials. The key eco-geographical variables that influenced disturbance intolerant species and those with moderate tolerance to disturbance were natural features such as tree cover and proximity to rivers and to riparian vegetation, whereas variables for disturbance tolerant species were anthropogenic-based (e.g., road density but also included some natural characteristics such as proximity to riparian vegetation, elevation and tree cover. Arboreal marsupial diversity was subject to substantial change along the gradient, with potential habitat for disturbance-tolerant marsupials distributed across the complete gradient and potential habitat for less tolerant species being restricted to the natural portion of the gradient. This resulted in highly-urbanized environments being inhabited by a few generalist arboreal marsupial species. Increasing urbanization therefore leads to functional simplification of arboreal marsupial assemblages, thus impacting on the ecosystem services they provide.

  4. Imported fire ants near the edge of their range: disturbance and moisture determine prevalence and impact of an invasive social insect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    LeBrun, Edward G; Plowes, Robert M; Gilbert, Lawrence E

    2012-07-01

    1. Habitat disturbance and species invasions interact in natural systems, making it difficult to isolate the primary cause of ecosystem degradation. A general understanding requires case studies of how disturbance and invasion interact across a variety of ecosystem - invasive species combinations. 2. Dramatic losses in ant diversity followed the invasion of central Texas by red imported fire ants (Solenopsis invicta). However, recent manipulative studies in Florida revealed no effect on ant diversity following the removal of S. invicta from a disturbed pasture habitat, but moderate loss of diversity associated with their introduction into undisturbed habitat and no invasion occurred without disturbance. Thus, the importance of S. invicta in driving diversity loss and its ability to invade undisturbed systems is unresolved. 3. We examine the distribution and abundance of a large monogyne S. invicta population and its association with the co-occurring ant assemblage at a site in south Texas close to the aridity tolerance limit of S. invicta. 4. We document that moisture modulates S. invicta densities. Further, soil disturbing habitat manipulations greatly increase S. invicta population densities. However, S. invicta penetrates all habitats regardless of soil disturbance history. In contrast, controlled burns depress S. invicta densities. 5. In habitats where S. invicta is prevalent, it completely replaces native fire ants. However, S. invicta impacts native ants as a whole less strongly. Intriguingly, native ants responded distinctly to S. invicta in different environments. In wet, undisturbed environments, high S. invicta abundance disrupts the spatial structure of the ant assemblage by increasing clumping and is associated with reduced species density, while in dry-disturbed habitats, sites with high S. invicta abundance possess high numbers of native species. Analyses of co-occurrence indicate that reduced species density in wet

  5. What do myrmecophagous geckos eat when ants are not available ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Like other Pristurus species, P. samhaensis on Samha and P. sokotranus on Socotra were highly myrmecophagous (76.7% and 38.6% ants, respectively). However, ants were absent from the diet of P. samhaensis on Darsa. In contrast to the rich native ant fauna of the other islands, only one ant species was reported for ...

  6. Ants as tools in sustainable agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    1. With an expanding human population placing increasing pressure on the environment, agriculture needs sustainable production that can match conventional methods. Integrated pest management (IPM) is more sustainable, but not necessarily as efficient as conventional non-sustainable measures. 2...... in multiple crops. Their efficiency is comparable to chemical pesticides or higher, while at lower costs. They provide a rare example of documented efficient conservation biological control. 3. Weaver ants share beneficial traits with almost 13 000 other ant species and are unlikely to be unique...... of agricultural systems, this review emphasizes the potential of managing ants to achieve sustainable pest management solutions. The synthesis suggests future directions and may catalyse a research agenda on the utilization of ants, not only against arthropod pests, but also against weeds and plant diseases...

  7. Kunstikriitik Ants Juske sai doktoriks / Neeme Korv

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Korv, Neeme, 1974-

    2003-01-01

    Tartu Kõrgema Kunstikooli rektor Ants Juske kaitses 7. veebruaril Tallinnas Kunstiakadeemias edukalt doktoriväitekirja, juhendajaks oli professor Boris Bernštein ning oponeerisid doktor Altti Kuusamo Soomest ja professor Peeter Tulviste

  8. Fungal enzymes in the attine ant symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Schiøtt, Morten; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    the more basal attine genera use substrates such as flowers, plant debris, small twigs, insect feces and insect carcasses. This diverse array of fungal substrates across the attine lineage implies that the symbiotic fungus needs different enzymes to break down the plant material that the ants provide...... or different efficiencies of enzyme function. Fungal enzymes that degrade plant cell walls may have functionally co-evolved with the ants in this scenario. We explore this hypothesis with direct measurements of enzyme activity in fungus gardens in 12 species across 8 genera spanning the entire phylogeny...... and diversity of life-styles within the attine clade. We find significant differences in enzyme activity between different genera and life-styles of the ants. How these findings relate to attine ant coevolution and crop optimization are discussed....

  9. Do landscape factors affect brownfield carabid assemblages?

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Small, Emma; Sadler, Jon P.; Telfer, Mark

    2006-01-01

    The carabid fauna of 28 derelict sites in the West Midlands (England) were sampled over the course of one growing season (April-October, 1999). The study aimed to investigate the relationship between carabid assemblages and five measures of landscape structure pertinent to derelict habitat. At each site measurements of landscape features pertinent to derelict habitat were made: (i) the proximity of habitat corridors; (ii) the density of surrounding derelict land; (iii) the distance between the site and the rural fringe; and (iv) the size of the site. Concurrent surveys of the soil characteristics, vegetation type, and land use history were conducted. The data were analysed using a combination of ordination (DCA, RDA), variance partitioning (using pRDA) and binary linear regression. The results suggest that:1.There is very little evidence that the carabid assemblages of derelict sites were affected by landscape structure, with assemblages instead being principally related to within-site habitat variables, such as site age (since last disturbance), substrate type and vegetation community. 2.No evidence was found to support the hypothesis that sites away from railway corridors are more impoverished in their carabid fauna than sites on corridors. 3.There are some suggestions from this study that rarer and non-flying specialist species may be affected by isolation, taking longer to reach sites. We infer from this that older sites with retarded succession, and sites in higher densities of surrounding derelict land may eventually become more species rich and that these sites may be important for maintaining populations of rarer and flightless species. 4.Conservation efforts to maintain populations of these species should focus principally on habitat quality issues, such as maintaining early successional habitats that have a diversity of seed producing annuals and perennial plants and enhancing substrate variability rather than landscape issues

  10. Moral assemblages of volunteer tourism development in Cusco, Peru

    OpenAIRE

    Burrai, Elisa.; Mostafanezhad, Mary.; Hannam, Kevin.

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we develop a conceptual approach from which to examine the moral landscape of volunteer tourism development in Cusco, Peru. Drawing from recent work on assemblage theory in geography and tourism studies, we explore how assemblage thinking can facilitate new understandings of volunteer tourism development. Using assemblage as an analytical framework allows us to understand volunteer tourism as a series of relational, processual, unequal and mobile practices. These practices, we ...

  11. Exotic ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Ohio

    OpenAIRE

    Ivanov,Kal

    2016-01-01

    The worldwide transfer of plants and animals outside their native ranges is an ever increasing problem for global biodiversity. Ants are no exception and many species have been transported to new locations often with profound negative impacts on local biota. The current study is based on data gathered since the publication of the “Ants of Ohio” in 2005. Here I expand on our knowledge of Ohio’s myrmecofauna by contributing new records, new distributional information and natural history notes. ...

  12. Improving Emergency Management by Modeling Ant Colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-03-01

    perform functions such as nursing the brood or maintaining the nest. The more mature workers will begin to travel outside the nest to perform foraging...small sized ants predominantly act in functional roles such as nurses or transport services within the nest. The larger sizes predominantly function...stages: the founding stage, the ergonomic stage, and the reproductive stage. The founding stage is marked by a queen ant successful mating and laying

  13. Extrafloral nectar fuels ant life in deserts

    OpenAIRE

    Aranda-Rickert, Adriana; Diez, Patricia; Marazzi, Brigitte

    2014-01-01

    Interactions mediated by extrafloral nectary (EFN)-bearing plants that reward ants with a sweet liquid secretion are well documented in temperate and tropical habitats. However, their distribution and abundance in deserts are poorly known. In this study, we test the predictions that biotic interactions between EFN plants and ants are abundant and common also in arid communities and that EFNs are only functional when new vegetative and reproductive structures are developing. In a seasonal dese...

  14. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adams, Rachelle Martha Marie; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A.

    2013-01-01

    guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit......The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated...... parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few...

  15. Demersal and larval fish assemblages in the Chukchi Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norcross, Brenda L.; Holladay, Brenda A.; Busby, Morgan S.; Mier, Kathryn L.

    2010-01-01

    A multidisciplinary research cruise was conducted in the Chukchi Sea in summer 2004 during which we investigated assemblages of small demersal fishes and ichthyoplankton and the water masses associated with these assemblages. This study establishes a baseline of 30 demersal fish and 25 ichthyoplankton taxa in US and Russian waters of the Chukchi Sea. Presence/absence of small demersal fish clustered into four assemblages: Coastal Fishes, Western Chukchi Fishes, South Central Chukchi Fishes, and North Central Chukchi Fishes. Habitats occupied by small demersal fishes were characterized by sediment type, bottom salinity, and bottom temperature. Abundance of ichthyoplankton grouped into three assemblages with geographical extent similar to that of the bottom assemblages, except that there was a single assemblage for Central Chukchi Fishes. Water-column temperature and salinity characterized ichthyoplankton habitats. Three water masses, Alaska Coastal Water, Bering Sea Water, and Winter Water, were identified from both bottom and depth-averaged water-column temperature and salinity. A fourth water mass, Resident Chukchi Water, was identified only in the bottom water. The water mass and habitat characteristics with which demersal and larval fish assemblages were associated create a baseline to measure anticipated effects of climate change that are expected to be most severe at high latitudes. Monitoring fish assemblages could be a tool for assessing the effects of climate change. Climate-induced changes in distributions of species would result in a restructuring of fish assemblages in the Chukchi Sea.

  16. Toxic industrial deposit remediation by ant activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jilkova, Veronika; Frouz, Jan

    2016-04-01

    Toxic industrial deposits are often contaminated by heavy metals and the substrates have low pH values. In such systems, soil development is thus slowed down by high toxicity and acidic conditions which are unfavourable to soil fauna. Ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) are considered tolerant to heavy metal pollution and are known to increase organic matter content and microbial activity in their nests. Here, we focused on soil remediation caused by three ant species (Formica sanguinea, Lasius niger, and Tetramorium sp.) in an ore-washery sedimentation basin near Chvaletice (Czech Republic). Soil samples were taken from the centre of ant nests and from the nest surroundings (>3 m from nests). Samples were then analyzed for microbial activity and biomass and contents of organic matter and nutrients. As a result, ant species that most influenced soil properties was F. sanguinea as there were higher microbial activity and total nitrogen and ammonia contents in ant nests than in the surrounding soil. We expected such a result because F. sanguinea builds conspicuous large nests and is a carnivorous species that brings substantial amounts of nitrogen in insect prey to their nests. Effects of the other two ant species might be lower because of smaller nests and different feeding habits as they rely mainly on honeydew from aphids or on plant seeds that do not contain much nutrients.

  17. Congestion and communication in confined ant traffic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gravish, Nick; Gold, Gregory; Zangwill, Andrew; Goodisman, Michael A. D.; Goldman, Daniel I.

    2014-03-01

    Many social animals move and communicate within confined spaces. In subterranean fire ants Solenopsis invicta, mobility within crowded nest tunnels is important for resource and information transport. Within confined tunnels, communication and traffic flow are at odds: trafficking ants communicate through tactile interactions while stopped, yet ants that stop to communicate impose physical obstacles on the traffic. We monitor the bi-directional flow of fire ant workers in laboratory tunnels of varied diameter D. The persistence time of communicating ant aggregations, τ, increases approximately linearly with the number of participating ants, n. The sensitivity of traffic flow increases as D decreases and diverges at a minimum diameter, Dc. A cellular automata model incorporating minimal traffic features--excluded volume and communication duration--reproduces features of the experiment. From the model we identify a competition between information transfer and the need to maintain jam-free traffic flow. We show that by balancing information transfer and traffic flow demands, an optimum group strategy exists which maximizes information throughput. We acknowledge funding from NSF PoLS #0957659 and #PHY-1205878.

  18. Fire ants perpetually rebuild sinking towers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phonekeo, Sulisay; Mlot, Nathan; Monaenkova, Daria; Hu, David L.; Tovey, Craig

    2017-07-01

    In the aftermath of a flood, fire ants, Solenopsis invicta, cluster into temporary encampments. The encampments can contain hundreds of thousands of ants and reach over 30 ants high. How do ants build such tall structures without being crushed? In this combined experimental and theoretical study, we investigate the shape and rate of construction of ant towers around a central support. The towers are bell shaped, consistent with towers of constant strength such as the Eiffel tower, where each element bears an equal load. However, unlike the Eiffel tower, the ant tower is built through a process of trial and error, whereby failed portions avalanche until the final shape emerges. High-speed and novel X-ray videography reveal that the tower constantly sinks and is rebuilt, reminiscent of large multicellular systems such as human skin. We combine the behavioural rules that produce rafts on water with measurements of adhesion and attachment strength to model the rate of growth of the tower. The model correctly predicts that the growth rate decreases as the support diameter increases. This work may inspire the design of synthetic swarms capable of building in vertical layers.

  19. Seed dispersal in fens

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Middleton, Beth; van Diggelen, Rudy; Jensen, Kai

    Question: How does seed dispersal reduce fen isolation and contribute to biodiversity? Location: European and North American fens. Methods: This paper reviews the literature on seed dispersal to fens. Results: Landscape fragmentation may reduce dispersal opportunities thereby isolating fens and

  20. Principal determinants of species and functional diversity of carabid beetle assemblages during succession at post-industrial sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sipos, J; Hodecek, J; Kuras, T; Dolny, A

    2017-08-01

    Although ecological succession is one of the principal focuses of recent restoration ecology research, it is still unclear which factors drive this process and positively influence species richness and functional diversity. In this study we sought to elucidate how species traits and functional diversity change during forest succession, and to identify important factors that determine the species in the observed assemblages. We analyzed species richness and functional diversity of ground beetle assemblages in relation to succession on post-industrial localities after habitat deterioration caused by spoil deposition. We selected ground beetles as they are known to be sensitive to landscape changes (with a large range of responses), and their taxonomy and ecology are generally well-known. Ground beetles were sampled on the spoil heaps during the last 30 years when spontaneous succession occurred. To calculate functional diversity, we used traits related to habitat and trophic niche, i.e. food specialization, wing morphology, trophic level, and bio-indication value. Ground beetle species were found to be distributed non-randomly in the assemblages in the late phase of succession. Ordination analyses revealed that the ground beetle assemblage was significantly associated with the proportion of forested area. Environmental heterogeneity generated assemblages that contained over-dispersed species traits. Our findings indicated that environmental conditions at late successional stages supported less mobile carnivorous species. Overall, we conclude that the decline in species richness and functional diversity in the middle of the studied succession gradient indicated that the assemblages of open habitats had been replaced by species typical of forest ecosystems.

  1. Biogeographic origins of the viviparous sea snake assemblage (Elapidae) of the Indian Ocean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ukuwela, D P; Lee, Michael S. Y.; Redsted Rasmussen, Arne

    2017-01-01

    Abstract: One of the primary goals in biogeography is to understand how different biotas have been assembled in different regions of the world. The presence of the viviparous sea snakes in the Indian Ocean (IO) poses a unique question in this regard due to their evolutionary origins in Australasia...... (Australia and New Guinea). Here, we examined the origins and patterns of colonization of the IO sea snake assemblage through time-calibrated molecular phylogenies and ancestral area reconstructions. We further evaluated how past and present barriers to dispersal affect genetic diversity of IO sea snakes...... by examining the population genetic structure of the widespread sea snake, Hydrophis curtus. Our phylogenetic analyses and ancestral area reconstructions strongly indicate that the majority of the IO sea snakes are derived from the Southeast Asian (SEA) sea snake fauna through dispersal and colonization...

  2. Holocene molluscan assemblages in the Magellan region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Gordillo

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available In the Magellan region, much of the shoreline of the Beagle Channel coast (54°53´S; 67° - 68°W is bordered by Holocene raised beaches, which contain a large number of molluscs and other shelled taxa. The purpose of this work is to document the presence of various molluscan assemblages deposited with little or no postmortem transportation. An epifaunal Chlamys patagonica palaeocommunity (ca. 8,000 - 7,000 BP and three infaunal (Tawera gayi, Ameghinomya antiqua - Hiatella solida and Ameghinomya antiqua - Ensis macha palaeocommunities (ca. 4,400 - 4,000 BP were recognized. All the assemblages studied represent shallow, subtidal, cold-temperate environments. Based on comparisons with modern benthic communities in this region, these associations show that no remarkable ecologic and climatic changes occurred during the period ca. 8,000 - 4,000 BP. Thus, an apparent stability of modern marine communities over a period of several thousand years is suggested.

  3. Techniques de formage et d'assemblage

    CERN Document Server

    Favre, G; CERN. Geneva. TS Department

    2004-01-01

    Les sections Techniques d'Assemblage du groupe EST/MF et Brasage du groupe EST/SM ont été groupées en un seul service dans un but de rationalisation accrue des ressources et méthodes. Ce service dispose de nombreux moyens : soudure et découpe LASER (YAG, 350 W), soudure par faisceau d'électrons (deux installations, 35 et 7.5 kW), équipements TIG orbital, jet line, MIG, soudure plasma, boîte à gants, portique de soudage trois axes multiprocédés, presses plieuses, rouleuses, moyens de repoussage, alimentation à induction 12 kW et divers fours sous vide et à air. Le service est composé de 17 personnes dont la polyvalence est encouragée. Les activités de la section seront décrites à travers quelques exemples significatifs récents, notamment : l'assemblage des amenées de courant HTS, la réalisation des chambres LSS, des tubes HET, d'enveloppes céramiques pour détecteurs PET-HPD, le brasage de RFQ, la soudure du Barrel d'ATLAS ou encore le soudage des lignes de thermalisation du toroïde d'AT...

  4. Reservoir floodplains support distinct fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Leandro E.; Wigen, S. L.; Dagel, Jonah D.

    2014-01-01

    Reservoirs constructed on floodplain rivers are unique because the upper reaches of the impoundment may include extensive floodplain environments. Moreover, reservoirs that experience large periodic water level fluctuations as part of their operational objectives seasonally inundate and dewater floodplains in their upper reaches, partly mimicking natural inundations of river floodplains. In four flood control reservoirs in Mississippi, USA, we explored the dynamics of connectivity between reservoirs and adjacent floodplains and the characteristics of fish assemblages that develop in reservoir floodplains relative to those that develop in reservoir bays. Although fish species richness in floodplains and bays were similar, species composition differed. Floodplains emphasized fish species largely associated with backwater shallow environments, often resistant to harsh environmental conditions. Conversely, dominant species in bays represented mainly generalists that benefit from the continuous connectivity between the bay and the main reservoir. Floodplains in the study reservoirs provided desirable vegetated habitats at lower water level elevations, earlier in the year, and more frequently than in bays. Inundating dense vegetation in bays requires raising reservoir water levels above the levels required to reach floodplains. Therefore, aside from promoting distinct fish assemblages within reservoirs and helping promote diversity in regulated rivers, reservoir floodplains are valued because they can provide suitable vegetated habitats for fish species at elevations below the normal pool, precluding the need to annually flood upland vegetation that would inevitably be impaired by regular flooding. Published 2013. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  5. Nestedness and successional trajectories of macroinvertebrate assemblages in man-made wetlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruhí, Albert; Boix, Dani; Gascón, Stéphanie; Sala, Jordi; Quintana, Xavier D

    2013-02-01

    Current successional models, primarily those based on floral succession, propose several distinct trajectories based on the integration of two key hypotheses from succession theory: convergence versus divergence in species composition among successional sites, and progression towards versus deviation from a desired reference state. We applied this framework to faunal succession, including differential colonization between active and passive dispersers, and the nested patterns generated as a consequence of this peculiarity. Nine man-made wetlands located in three different areas, from 0-3 years from wetland creation, were assessed. In addition, 91 wetlands distributed throughout the region were used as references for natural macroinvertebrate communities. We predicted the following: (1) highly nested structures in pioneering assemblages will decrease to lower mid-term values due to a shift from active pioneering taxa to passive disperser ones; (2) passive idiosyncratic taxa will elicit divergent successional trajectories among areas; (3) the divergent trajectories will provoke lower local and higher regional diversity values in the mid-term assemblages than in pioneer assemblages. Our results were largely congruent with hypotheses (1) and (2), diverging from the anticipated patterns only in the case of the temporary wetlands area. However, overall diversity trends based on hypothesis (3) did not follow the expected pattern. The divergent successional trajectories did not compensate for regional biodiversity losses that occurred as a consequence of pioneering colonizer decline over time. Consequently, we suggest reconsidering wetland construction for mitigation purposes within mid-term time frames (≤ 3 years). Wetlands may not offset, within this temporal scenario, regional biodiversity loss because the ecosystem may not support idiosyncratic taxa from natural wetlands.

  6. Here Comes the Sun ... and I Say, "It' an Assemblage"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skophammer, Karen

    2011-01-01

    In this article, the author discusses how she combines science lesson with a hands-on art project. She used the wonderfully creative suns shown on the Sunday edition of "The CBS Morning Show" to give the students fodder for thought. She describes how to create an assemblage. An assemblage is like a collage, but it moves past the two-dimensional…

  7. The distribution of weaver ant pheromones on host trees

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Joachim

    2007-01-01

    The visible anal spots deposited by Oecophylla smaragdina ants have been suggested to deter ant prey, affect interspecific competition and facilitate mutualists and parasites in tracking down Oecophylla ants. I measured the density of anal spots on host trees with and without ants and tested for ...... to leaves. Also there was a positive correlation between spot density and the likelihood of being detected by ants. Anal spots may thus function as reliable cues to interacting species and be an important factor in shaping the community around Oecophylla colonies.......The visible anal spots deposited by Oecophylla smaragdina ants have been suggested to deter ant prey, affect interspecific competition and facilitate mutualists and parasites in tracking down Oecophylla ants. I measured the density of anal spots on host trees with and without ants and tested...... for correlations between spot density, ant activity and the likelihood of being detected by an ant. Spots were only found on trees with ants. On ant-trees, spots were distributed throughout the trees but with higher densities in areas with high ant activity and pheromone densities were higher on twigs compared...

  8. Meiofaunal assemblages associated with native and non-indigenous macroalgae

    Science.gov (United States)

    Veiga, Puri; Sousa-Pinto, Isabel; Rubal, Marcos

    2016-07-01

    Meiofauna is a useful tool to detect effects of different disturbances; however, its relevance in the frame of biological invasions has been almost fully neglected. Meiofaunal assemblages associated with the invasive macroalga Sargassum muticum were studied and compared with those associated with two native macroalgae (Bifurcaria bifurcata and Chondrus crispus). We used a linear mixed model to determine the influence of habitat size (i.e. macroalgal biomass) in shaping meiofaunal assemblages. Results showed that habitat size (i.e. macroalgal biomass) shaped meiofaunal assemblages influencing its abundance, richness and structure. However, the identity of macroalga (i.e. species) appears also to play a significant role, particularly the differences of complexity among the studied species may shape their meiofaunal assemblages. Finally, the invasive macroalga appears to influence positively species richness. Our results highlight the need of including different faunal components to achieve a comprehensive knowledge on effects of invasive macroalgae and that meiofaunal assemblages may be a valuable tool to examine them.

  9. Fuzzy Rules for Ant Based Clustering Algorithm

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amira Hamdi

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper provides a new intelligent technique for semisupervised data clustering problem that combines the Ant System (AS algorithm with the fuzzy c-means (FCM clustering algorithm. Our proposed approach, called F-ASClass algorithm, is a distributed algorithm inspired by foraging behavior observed in ant colonyT. The ability of ants to find the shortest path forms the basis of our proposed approach. In the first step, several colonies of cooperating entities, called artificial ants, are used to find shortest paths in a complete graph that we called graph-data. The number of colonies used in F-ASClass is equal to the number of clusters in dataset. Hence, the partition matrix of dataset founded by artificial ants is given in the second step, to the fuzzy c-means technique in order to assign unclassified objects generated in the first step. The proposed approach is tested on artificial and real datasets, and its performance is compared with those of K-means, K-medoid, and FCM algorithms. Experimental section shows that F-ASClass performs better according to the error rate classification, accuracy, and separation index.

  10. Range expansion drives dispersal evolution in an equatorial three-species symbiosis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guillaume Léotard

    Full Text Available Recurrent climatic oscillations have produced dramatic changes in species distributions. This process has been proposed to be a major evolutionary force, shaping many life history traits of species, and to govern global patterns of biodiversity at different scales. During range expansions selection may favor the evolution of higher dispersal, and symbiotic interactions may be affected. It has been argued that a weakness of climate fluctuation-driven range dynamics at equatorial latitudes has facilitated the persistence there of more specialized species and interactions. However, how much the biology and ecology of species is changed by range dynamics has seldom been investigated, particularly in equatorial regions.We studied a three-species symbiosis endemic to coastal equatorial rainforests in Cameroon, where the impact of range dynamics is supposed to be limited, comprised of two species-specific obligate mutualists--an ant-plant and its protective ant--and a species-specific ant parasite of this mutualism. We combined analyses of within-species genetic diversity and of phenotypic variation in a transect at the southern range limit of this ant-plant system. All three species present congruent genetic signatures of recent gradual southward expansion, a result compatible with available regional paleoclimatic data. As predicted, this expansion has been accompanied by the evolution of more dispersive traits in the two ant species. In contrast, we detected no evidence of change in lifetime reproductive strategy in the tree, nor in its investment in food resources provided to its symbiotic ants.Despite the decreasing investment in protective workers and the increasing investment in dispersing females by both the mutualistic and the parasitic ant species, there was no evidence of destabilization of the symbiosis at the colonization front. To our knowledge, we provide here the first evidence at equatorial latitudes that biological traits associated

  11. Range expansion drives dispersal evolution in an equatorial three-species symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Léotard, Guillaume; Debout, Gabriel; Dalecky, Ambroise; Guillot, Sylvain; Gaume, Laurence; McKey, Doyle; Kjellberg, Finn

    2009-01-01

    Recurrent climatic oscillations have produced dramatic changes in species distributions. This process has been proposed to be a major evolutionary force, shaping many life history traits of species, and to govern global patterns of biodiversity at different scales. During range expansions selection may favor the evolution of higher dispersal, and symbiotic interactions may be affected. It has been argued that a weakness of climate fluctuation-driven range dynamics at equatorial latitudes has facilitated the persistence there of more specialized species and interactions. However, how much the biology and ecology of species is changed by range dynamics has seldom been investigated, particularly in equatorial regions. We studied a three-species symbiosis endemic to coastal equatorial rainforests in Cameroon, where the impact of range dynamics is supposed to be limited, comprised of two species-specific obligate mutualists--an ant-plant and its protective ant--and a species-specific ant parasite of this mutualism. We combined analyses of within-species genetic diversity and of phenotypic variation in a transect at the southern range limit of this ant-plant system. All three species present congruent genetic signatures of recent gradual southward expansion, a result compatible with available regional paleoclimatic data. As predicted, this expansion has been accompanied by the evolution of more dispersive traits in the two ant species. In contrast, we detected no evidence of change in lifetime reproductive strategy in the tree, nor in its investment in food resources provided to its symbiotic ants. Despite the decreasing investment in protective workers and the increasing investment in dispersing females by both the mutualistic and the parasitic ant species, there was no evidence of destabilization of the symbiosis at the colonization front. To our knowledge, we provide here the first evidence at equatorial latitudes that biological traits associated with dispersal are

  12. Mating with stressed males increases the fitness of ant queens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra Schrempf

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: According to sexual conflict theory, males can increase their own fitness by transferring substances during copulation that increase the short-term fecundity of their mating partners at the cost of the future life expectancy and re-mating capability of the latter. In contrast, sexual cooperation is expected in social insects. Mating indeed positively affects life span and fecundity of young queens of the male-polymorphic ant Cardiocondyla obscurior, even though males neither provide nuptial gifts nor any other care but leave their mates immediately after copulation and die shortly thereafter. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we show that mating with winged disperser males has a significantly stronger impact on life span and reproductive success of young queens of C. obscurior than mating with wingless fighter males. CONCLUSIONS: Winged males are reared mostly under stressful environmental conditions, which force young queens to disperse and found their own societies independently. In contrast, queens that mate with wingless males under favourable conditions usually start reproducing in the safety of the established maternal nest. Our study suggests that males of C. obscurior have evolved mechanisms to posthumously assist young queens during colony founding under adverse ecological conditions.

  13. Kin-informative recognition cues in ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nehring, Volker; Evison, Sophie E F; Santorelli, Lorenzo A

    2011-01-01

    behaviour is thought to be rare in one of the classic examples of cooperation--social insect colonies--because the colony-level costs of individual selfishness select against cues that would allow workers to recognize their closest relatives. In accord with this, previous studies of wasps and ants have...... found little or no kin information in recognition cues. Here, we test the hypothesis that social insects do not have kin-informative recognition cues by investigating the recognition cues and relatedness of workers from four colonies of the ant Acromyrmex octospinosus. Contrary to the theoretical...... prediction, we show that the cuticular hydrocarbons of ant workers in all four colonies are informative enough to allow full-sisters to be distinguished from half-sisters with a high accuracy. These results contradict the hypothesis of non-heritable recognition cues and suggest that there is more potential...

  14. Ant parasite queens revert to mating singly

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sumner, Seirian; Hughes, William Owen Hamar; Pedersen, Jes Søe

    2004-01-01

    quantified and they tend to be similar in related species. Here we compare the mating strategies of the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex echinatior and its recently derived social parasite Acromyrmex insinuator, which is also its closest relative 2 (see Fig. 1 ). We find that although the host queens mate with up......A parasitic ant has abandoned the multiple mating habit of the queens of its related host. Multiple mating (polyandry) is widespread among animal groups, particularly insects 1 . But the factors that maintain it and underlie its evolution are hard to verify because benefits and costs are not easily...... to a dozen different males, the social parasite mates only singly. This rapid and surprising reversion to single mating in a socially parasitic ant indicates that the costs of polyandry are probably specific to a free-living lifestyle....

  15. The worldwide expansion of the Argentine ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vogel, Valerie; Pedersen, Jes Søe; Giraud, Tatiana

    2010-01-01

    Aim The aim of this study was to determine the number of successful establishments of the invasive Argentine ant outside native range and to see whether introduced supercolonies have resulted from single or multiple introductions. We also compared the genetic diversity of native versus introduced...... supercolonies to assess the size of the propagules (i.e. the number of founding individuals) at the origin of the introduced supercolonies. Location Global. Methods We used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) markers and microsatellite loci to study 39 supercolonies of the Argentine ant Linepithema humile covering both......) and secondary introductions (from sites with established invasive supercolonies) were important in the global expansion of the Argentine ant. In combination with the similar social organization of colonies in the native and introduced range, this indicates that invasiveness did not evolve recently as a unique...

  16. Desert ants learn vibration and magnetic landmarks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cornelia Buehlmann

    Full Text Available The desert ants Cataglyphis navigate not only by path integration but also by using visual and olfactory landmarks to pinpoint the nest entrance. Here we show that Cataglyphis noda can additionally use magnetic and vibrational landmarks as nest-defining cues. The magnetic field may typically provide directional rather than positional information, and vibrational signals so far have been shown to be involved in social behavior. Thus it remains questionable if magnetic and vibration landmarks are usually provided by the ants' habitat as nest-defining cues. However, our results point to the flexibility of the ants' navigational system, which even makes use of cues that are probably most often sensed in a different context.

  17. Ant-plants and fungi: a new threeway symbiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defossez, Emmanuel; Selosse, Marc-André; Dubois, Marie-Pierre; Mondolot, Laurence; Faccio, Antonella; Djieto-Lordon, Champlain; McKey, Doyle; Blatrix, Rumsaïs

    2009-06-01

    Symbioses between plants and fungi, fungi and ants, and ants and plants all play important roles in ecosystems. Symbioses involving all three partners appear to be rare. Here, we describe a novel tripartite symbiosis in which ants and a fungus inhabit domatia of an ant-plant, and present evidence that such interactions are widespread. We investigated 139 individuals of the African ant-plant Leonardoxa africana for occurrence of fungus. Behaviour of mutualist ants toward the fungus within domatia was observed using a video camera fitted with an endoscope. Fungi were identified by sequencing a fragment of their ribosomal DNA. Fungi were always present in domatia occupied by mutualist ants but never in domatia occupied by opportunistic or parasitic ants. Ants appear to favour the propagation, removal and maintenance of the fungus. Similar fungi were associated with other ant-plants in Cameroon. All belong to the ascomycete order Chaetothyriales; those from L. africana formed a monophyletic clade. These new plant-ant-fungus associations seem to be specific, as demonstrated within Leonardoxa and as suggested by fungal phyletic identities. Such tripartite associations are widespread in African ant-plants but have long been overlooked. Taking fungal partners into account will greatly enhance our understanding of symbiotic ant-plant mutualisms.

  18. No correlation between the diversity and productivity of assemblages: evidence from the phytophage and predator assemblages in various cotton agroecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Feng; Men, XingYuan; Ge, Feng

    2014-09-01

    Biodiversity research has shown that primary productivity increases with plant species number, especially in many experimental grassland systems. Here, we assessed the correlation between productivity and diversity of phytophages and natural enemy assemblages associated with planting date and intercropping in four cotton agroecosystems. Twenty-one pairs of data were used to determine Pearson correlations between species richness, total number of individuals, diversity indices and productivity for each assemblage every five days from 5 June to 15 September 2012. At the same trophic level, the productivity exhibited a significant positive correlation with species richness of the phytophage or predator assemblage. A significant correlation was found between productivity and total number of individuals in most cotton fields. However, no significant correlations were observed between productivity and diversity indices (including indices of energy flow diversity and numerical diversity) in most cotton fields for either the phytophage or the predator assemblages. Species richness of phytophage assemblage and total individual numbers were significantly correlated with primary productivity. Also, species richness of natural enemy assemblage and total number of individuals correlated with phytophage assemblage productivity. A negative but not significant correlation occurred between the indices of numerical diversity and energy flow diversity and lower trophic-level productivity in the cotton-phytophage and phytophage-predator assemblages for most intercropped cotton agroecosystems. Our results clearly showed that there were no correlations between diversity indices and productivity within the same or lower trophic levels within the phytophage and predator assemblages in cotton agroecosystems, and inter-cropped cotton fields had a stronger ability to support the natural enemy assemblage and potentially to reduce phytophages.

  19. Ants of the Peloponnese, Greece (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Borowiec Lech

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper relates to material obtained during two field trips to the Peloponnese in 2013 and 2016. With the inclusion of some hitherto unpublished ant material, it gives new records from a total of 92 sampling localities. 129 species (including morphospecies not attributed to any known taxon of ants have been recorded from the Peloponnese (southern Greece, 27 of which have been recorded from this region for the first time. Lasius reginae and 5 other morphospecies attributed only to species complexes are new to Greece.

  20. Image Edge Tracking via Ant Colony Optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ruowei; Wu, Hongkun; Liu, Shilong; Rahman, M. A.; Liu, Sanchi; Kwok, Ngai Ming

    2018-04-01

    A good edge plot should use continuous thin lines to describe the complete contour of the captured object. However, the detection of weak edges is a challenging task because of the associated low pixel intensities. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) has been employed by many researchers to address this problem. The algorithm is a meta-heuristic method developed by mimicking the natural behaviour of ants. It uses iterative searches to find the optimal solution that cannot be found via traditional optimization approaches. In this work, ACO is employed to track and repair broken edges obtained via conventional Sobel edge detector to produced a result with more connected edges.

  1. Biodiversity patterns of crustacean suprabenthic assemblages along an oligotrophic gradient in the bathyal Mediterranean Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, Mariana; Frutos, Inmaculada; Tecchio, Samuele; Lampadariou, Nikolaos; Company, Joan B.; Ramirez-Llodra, Eva; Cunha, Marina R.

    2017-03-01

    Crustacean suprabenthic abundance, community structure, α-diversity (both taxonomic and trophic) and β-diversity were studied along a West-East gradient of oligotrophy in the deep Mediterranean Sea. The assemblages were sampled with a suprabenthic sledge in three regions (western, central and eastern basins) at three water depths (1200, 2000 and 3000 m) in May-June 2009. Environmental data were obtained at each sampling location including sediment properties, oceanographic variables near the seafloor and in the water column, and proxies of epipelagic productivity at the surface. Our results, concerning the crustacean component of the suprabenthos, showed complex trends in community structure and biodiversity across different spatial scales (longitudinal, bathymetric, and near-bottom distribution). A decrease in the number of species and abundance, accompanied by changes in the trophic structure of the assemblages were observed from West to East. In the eastern region the assemblages were impoverished in number of trophic guilds and trophic diversity. The West-East oligotrophic gradient was identified as the main driver in community structure as shown by the significant correlation with trophic environmental variables. Differences in community structure across regions were more marked at greater depths, while at the shallower sites assemblages were more similar. Within each basin, abundance, number of species and number of trophic groups decreased with depth, showing high turnover rates between 1200 and 2000 m depths. The small-scale (0-150 cm) vertical distribution of the suprabenthos was interpreted in relation to the species' functional traits (e.g. swimming activity, migratory behaviour, bottom dependence, feeding habits). Bottom-dependent and more mobile components of the suprabenthos were apparently responding differently to the various environmental challenges imposed by the large-scale longitudinal and bathymetric gradients. We propose that the bathyal

  2. Male fighting and ``territoriality'' within colonies of the ant Cardiocondyla venustula

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frohschammer, Sabine; Heinze, Jürgen

    2009-01-01

    The ant genus Cardiocondyla is characterized by a bizarre male polymorphism with wingless fighter males and winged disperser males. Winged males have been lost convergently in several clades, and in at least one of them, wingless males have evolved mutual tolerance. To better understand the evolutionary pathways of reproductive tactics, we investigated Cardiocondyla venustula, a species, which in a phylogenetic analysis clusters with species with fighting and species with mutually tolerant, wingless males. Wingless males of C. venustula use their strong mandibles to kill freshly eclosed rival males and also engage in short fights with other adult males, but in addition show a novel behavior hitherto not reported from social insect males: they spread out in the natal nest and defend “territories” against other males. Ant males therefore show a much larger variety of reproductive tactics than previously assumed.

  3. Male fighting and "territoriality" within colonies of the ant Cardiocondyla venustula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frohschammer, Sabine; Heinze, Jürgen

    2009-01-01

    The ant genus Cardiocondyla is characterized by a bizarre male polymorphism with wingless fighter males and winged disperser males. Winged males have been lost convergently in several clades, and in at least one of them, wingless males have evolved mutual tolerance. To better understand the evolutionary pathways of reproductive tactics, we investigated Cardiocondyla venustula, a species, which in a phylogenetic analysis clusters with species with fighting and species with mutually tolerant, wingless males. Wingless males of C. venustula use their strong mandibles to kill freshly eclosed rival males and also engage in short fights with other adult males, but in addition show a novel behavior hitherto not reported from social insect males: they spread out in the natal nest and defend "territories" against other males. Ant males therefore show a much larger variety of reproductive tactics than previously assumed.

  4. The evolution of intermediate castration virulence and ant coexistence in a spatially structured environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szilágyi, András; Scheuring, István; Edwards, David P; Orivel, Jerome; Yu, Douglas W

    2009-12-01

    Theory suggests that spatial structuring should select for intermediate levels of virulence in parasites, but empirical tests are rare and have never been conducted with castration (sterilizing) parasites. To test this theory in a natural landscape, we construct a spatially explicit model of the symbiosis between the ant-plant Cordia nodosa and its two, protecting ant symbionts, Allomerus and Azteca. Allomerus is also a castration parasite, preventing fruiting to increase colony fecundity. Limiting the dispersal of Allomerus and host plant selects for intermediate castration virulence. Increasing the frequency of the mutualist, Azteca, selects for higher castration virulence in Allomerus, because seeds from Azteca-inhabited plants are a public good that Allomerus exploits. These results are consistent with field observations and, to our knowledge, provide the first empirical evidence supporting the hypothesis that spatial structure can reduce castration virulence and the first such evidence in a natural landscape for either mortality or castration virulence.

  5. Oecophylla smaragdina food conversion efficiency: prospects for ant farming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim

    2011-01-01

    can be combined with the use of the ants in biological control programmes in tropical plantations where pest insects are converted into ant biomass. To assess the cost-benefits of ant farming based on artificial feeding, food consumption and food conversion efficiency (ECI) of Oecophylla smaragdina......Oecophylla ants are sold at high prices on several commercial markets as a human delicacy, as pet food or as traditional medicine. Currently markets are supplied by ants collected from the wild; however, an increasing interest in ant farming exists as all harvest is easily sold and as ant farming...... selling prices these efficiencies led to rates of return from 1.52 to 4.56, respectively, if: (i) protein is supplied from commercial products; or (ii) alternatively supplied from free sources such as insects and kitchen waste. These results suggest that Oecophylla ant farming may become highly profitable...

  6. Hybrid Bee Ant Colony Algorithm for Effective Load Balancing And ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROF. OLIVER OSUAGWA

    Ant Colony algorithm is used in this hybrid Bee Ant Colony algorithm to solve load balancing issues ... Genetic Algorithm (MO-GA) for dynamic job scheduling that .... Information Networking and Applications Workshops. [7]. M. Dorigo & T.

  7. The use of weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) in tropical agriculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim

    2011-01-01

    by the consumed pest insects, can be harvested and utilised for nutrition as they are tasty and high in proteins, vitamins and minerals. Thus, plantations may function as ant farms and in addition to plant production also hosts the production of edible animal protein. In this setup harmful pest insects are turned...... farming as a way forward to solve an increasing future demand for protein. Weaver ant farming may build on natural food collected by the ants or alternatively be boosted by feeding the ant colonies actively with protein and sugar. In both cases, when ant biocontrol is combined with ant farming......, the environmental cost of protein production may fall even lower than for other insects as the ants feed on pests that would otherwise reduce the plant yield and since the farming area is simultaneously in use for plant production. In this presentation I provide data showing (i) how the harvest of ants can...

  8. Dealing with water deficit in Atta ant colonies: large ants scout for water while small ants transport it

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Carlos Da-Silva

    2012-07-01

    Leafcutter ants (Atta sexdens rubropilosa (Forel 1908 have an elaborate social organization, complete with caste divisions. Activities carried out by specialist groups contribute to the overall success and survival of the colony when it is confronted with environmental challenges such as dehydration. Ants detect variations in humidity inside the nest and react by activating several types of behavior that enhance water uptake and decrease water loss, but it is not clear whether or not a single caste collects water regardless of the cost of bringing this resource back to the colony. Accordingly, we investigated water collection activities in three colonies of Atta sexdens rubropilosa experimentally exposed to water stress. Specifically, we analyzed whether or not the same ant caste foraged for water, regardless of the absolute energetic cost (distance of transporting this resource back to the colony. Our experimental design offered water sources at 0 m, 1 m and 10 m from the nest. We studied the body size of ants near the water sources from the initial offer of water (time  =  0 to 120 min, and tested for specialization. We observed a reduction in the average size and variance of ants that corroborated the specialization hypothesis. Although the temporal course of specialization changed with distance, the final outcome was similar among distances. Thus, we conclude that, for this species, a specialist (our use of the word “specialist” does not mean exclusive task force is responsible for collecting water, regardless of the cost of transporting water back to the colony.

  9. Global assemblages and structural models of International Relations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Corry, Olaf

    2014-01-01

    -category of assemblages – those constructed as malleable and governable which I call ‘governance-objects’ – is central to structure in international relations. The chapter begins with standard definitions of what structures are – patterns of interaction between elements – and briefly covers the range of models currently...... used to simplify different structures. Next the chapter points to the blindness of most structural theories of IR to the role of assemblages in general and governance-objects in particular. Thirdly, the idea that a polity is constituted precisely by the assemblage of a governance...

  10. Histrionicotoxin alkaloids finally detected in an ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jones, Tappey H.; Adams, Rachelle Martha Marie; Spande, Thomas F.

    2012-01-01

    Workers of the ant Carebarella bicolor collected in Panama were found to have two major poison-frog alkaloids, cis- and trans-fused decahydroquinolines (DHQs) of the 269AB type, four minor 269AB isomers, two minor 269B isomers, and three isomers of DHQ 271D. For the first time in an ant, however......) sp., were found to have a very similar DHQ complex but failed to show HTXs. Several new DHQ alkaloids of MW 271 (named in the frog as 271G) are reported from the above ants that have both m/z 202 and 204 as major fragment ions, unlike the spectrum seen for the poison-frog alkaloid 271D, which has...... only an m/z 204 base peak. Found also for the first time in skin extracts from the comparison frog Oophaga granulifera of Costa Rica is a trace DHQ of MW 273. It is coded as 273F in the frog; a different isomer is found in the ant....

  11. Ants, rodents and seed predation in Proteaceae

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... their nests extremely rapidly. One benefit of the ant-plant interaction may be seed escape ... (odourless to humans when dry) household glue or, b) placing seed in a Petri dish ... the layout of exclosures was completed. Response was not as.

  12. The evolution of invasiveness in garden ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cremer, Sylvia; Ugelvig, Line Vej; Drijfhout, Falko P

    2008-01-01

    It is unclear why some species become successful invaders whilst others fail, and whether invasive success depends on pre-adaptations already present in the native range or on characters evolving de-novo after introduction. Ants are among the worst invasive pests, with Lasius neglectus and its ra...

  13. The ejaculatory biology of leafcutter ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    den Boer, Susanne; Stürup, Marlene; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2015-01-01

    understanding of the fundamental biology of ejaculate production, transfer and physiological function remains extremely limited. We studied the ejaculation process in the leafcutter ant Atta colombica and found that it starts with the appearance of a clear pre-ejaculatory fluid (PEF) at the tip...

  14. Mating, hybridisation and introgression in Lasius ants

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Have, van der T.M.; Pedersen, J.S.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2011-01-01

    Recent reviews have shown that hybridisation among ant species is likely to be more common than previously appreciated. but that documented cases of introgression remain rare. After molecular phylogenetic work had shown that European Lasius niger (LINNAEUS, 1758) and L. psammophilus SEIFERT, 1992

  15. Ants recognize foes and not friends

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guerrieri, Fernando J.; Nehring, Volker; Jørgensen, Charlotte G.; Nielsen, John; Galizia, C. Giovanni; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2009-01-01

    Discriminating among individuals and rejecting non-group members is essential for the evolution and stability of animal societies. Ants are good models for studying recognition mechanisms, because they are typically very efficient in discriminating ‘friends’ (nest-mates) from ‘foes’ (non-nest-mates). Recognition in ants involves multicomponent cues encoded in cuticular hydrocarbon profiles. Here, we tested whether workers of the carpenter ant Camponotus herculeanus use the presence and/or absence of cuticular hydrocarbons to discriminate between nest-mates and non-nest-mates. We supplemented the cuticular profile with synthetic hydrocarbons mixed to liquid food and then assessed behavioural responses using two different bioassays. Our results show that (i) the presence, but not the absence, of an additional hydrocarbon elicited aggression and that (ii) among the three classes of hydrocarbons tested (unbranched, mono-methylated and dimethylated alkanes; for mono-methylated alkanes, we present a new synthetic pathway), only the dimethylated alkane was effective in eliciting aggression. Our results suggest that carpenter ants use a fundamentally different mechanism for nest-mate recognition than previously thought. They do not specifically recognize nest-mates, but rather recognize and reject non-nest-mates bearing odour cues that are novel to their own colony cuticular hydrocarbon profile. This begs for a reappraisal of the mechanisms underlying recognition systems in social insects. PMID:19364750

  16. Recognition of social identity in ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bos, Nick; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2012-01-01

    Recognizing the identity of others, from the individual to the group level, is a hallmark of society. Ants, and other social insects, have evolved advanced societies characterized by efficient social recognition systems. Colony identity is mediated by colony specific signature mixtures, a blend...

  17. Plasmodium parasitaemia among pregnant women attending ante ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... Ante-Natal Clinic at Military Hospital Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria using the Standard parasitological technique. Venous blood was collected from 200 pregnant women, both thick and thin blood films were made on clean greese-free glass slide and stained with 10% Giemsa stains diluted with 7.2 buffered water for ...

  18. Operant conditioning in the ant Myrmica sabuleti.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cammaerts, M C

    2004-11-30

    Operant conditioning could be obtained in the ant Myrmica sabuleti by presenting to the workers, during a six-day period, an apparatus containing either sugared water or meat as a reward. The conditioning obtained using sugared water as a reward was short lasting. A reconditioning was more persistent and lasted four hours. The ants' response was very precise, since they exhibited it only in front of an apparatus identical to that used during the training phase. Operant conditioning obtained using meat as a reward was more pronounced than that obtained by using sugared water, probably because meat is more valuable as a reward than sugar for the species studied, which is essentially a carnivorous one. Such a conditioning was rather persistent. Indeed, a first operant conditioning obtained by using meat as a reward could still be detected after seven hours, and a reconditioning was still significant after eight hours. One day after this eight-hour period without rewarding the ants, the response was higher again and a further day later, it was still significant. Since the operant conditioning is easy to perform and quantify and since the ants' response is very precise, such a conditioning can be used for further studying M. sabuleti workers' visual perception.

  19. Functional structure of ant and termite assemblages in old growth forest, logged forest and oil palm plantation in Malaysian Borneo

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Luke, S. H.; Fayle, Tom Maurice; Eggleton, P.; Turner, E. C.; Davies, R. G.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 23, č. 11 (2014), s. 2817-2832 ISSN 0960-3115 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA14-32302S Grant - others:European Social Fund(CZ) CZ.1.07/2.3.00/20.0064; Australïan Research Council Discovery Grant(AU) DP140101541 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : feeding groups * formicidae * functional groups Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 2.365, year: 2014 http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10531-014-0750-2

  20. An ant genus-group (Prenolepis) illuminates the biogeography and drivers of insect diversification in the Indo-Pacific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matos-Maraví, Pável; Clouse, Ronald M; Sarnat, Eli M; Economo, Evan P; LaPolla, John S; Borovanska, Michaela; Rabeling, Christian; Czekanski-Moir, Jesse; Latumahina, Fransina; Wilson, Edward O; Janda, Milan

    2018-06-01

    The Malay Archipelago and the tropical South Pacific (hereafter the Indo-Pacific region) are considered biodiversity hotspots, yet a general understanding of the origins and diversification of species-rich groups in the region remains elusive. We aimed to test hypotheses for the evolutionary processes driving insect species diversity in the Indo-Pacific using a higher-level and comprehensive phylogenetic hypothesis for an ant clade consisting of seven genera. We estimated divergence times and reconstructed the biogeographical history of ant species in the Prenolepis genus-group (Formicidae: Formicinae: Lasiini). We used a fossil-calibrated phylogeny to infer ancestral geographical ranges utilizing a biogeographic model that includes founder-event speciation. Ancestral state reconstructions of the ants' ecological preferences, and diversification rates were estimated for selected Indo-Pacific clades. Overall, we report that faunal interchange between Asia and Australia has occurred since at least 20-25 Ma, and early dispersal to the Fijian Basin happened during the early and mid-Miocene (ca. 10-20 Ma). Differences in diversification rates across Indo-Pacific clades may be related to ecological preference breadth, which in turn may have facilitated geographical range expansions. Ancient dispersal routes suggested by our results agree with the palaeogeography of the region. For this particular group of ants, the rapid orogenesis in New Guinea and possibly subsequent ecological shifts may have promoted their rapid diversification and widespread distribution across the Indo-Pacific. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Studies on the environmental implications of ants (Hymenoptera ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A study of ants associated wh two synanthropcenvironments in Awka was carried out in 2008 using pitfall and bait traps. The study yelded a total of 561 ants wth 409 obtaned from the hemisynanthrophic environment while 192 ants were collected from the endophilic environment. The percentage occurrence, total dstribution ...

  2. Dynamics of an ant-plant-pollinator model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yuanshi; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Nathaniel Holland, J.

    2015-03-01

    In this paper, we consider plant-pollinator-ant systems in which plant-pollinator interaction and plant-ant interaction are both mutualistic, but there also exists interference of pollinators by ants. The plant-pollinator interaction can be described by a Beddington-DeAngelis formula, so we extend the formula to characterize plant-pollinator mutualisms, including the interference by ants, and form a plant-pollinator-ant model. Using dynamical systems theory, we show uniform persistence of the model. Moreover, we demonstrate conditions under which boundary equilibria are globally asymptotically stable. The dynamics exhibit mechanisms by which the three species could coexist when ants interfere with pollinators. We define a threshold in ant interference. When ant interference is strong, it can drive plant-pollinator mutualisms to extinction. Furthermore, if the ants depend on pollination mutualism for their persistence, then sufficiently strong ant interference could lead to their own extinction as well. Yet, when ant interference is weak, plant-ant and plant-pollinator mutualisms can promote the persistence of one another.

  3. Ants Orasest ja Anne Lange monograafiast / Jüri Talvet

    Index Scriptorium Estoniae

    Talvet, Jüri, 1945-

    2005-01-01

    Arvustus: Oras, Ants. Luulekool. I, Apoloogia / koostajad Hando Runnel ja Jaak Rähesoo. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2003 ; Oras, Ants. Luulekool II, Meistriklass. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2004 ; Lange, Anne. Ants Oras : [kirjandusteadlane, -kriitik ja tõlkija (1900-1982)]. Tartu : Ilmamaa, 2004

  4. Are ant feces nutrients for plants? A metabolomics approach to elucidate the nutritional effects on plants hosting weaver ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Vidkjær, Nanna Hjort; Wollenweber, Bernd; Gislum, René

    2015-01-01

    Weaver ants (genus Oecophylla) are tropical carnivorous ant species living in high numbers in the canopies of trees. The ants excrete copious amounts of fecal matter on leaf surfaces, and these feces may provide nutrients to host trees. This hypothesis is supported by studies of ant......-plant interactions involving other ant species that have demonstrated the transfer of nutrients from ants to plants. In this 7-months study, a GC–MS-based metabolomics approach along with an analysis of total nitrogen and carbon levels was used to study metabolic changes in ant-hosting Coffea arabica plants compared...... with control plants. The results showed elevated levels of total nitrogen, amino acids, fatty acids, caffeine, and secondary metabolites of the phenylpropanoid pathway in leaves from ant-hosting plants. Minor effects were observed for sugars, whereas little or no effect was observed for organic acids, despite...

  5. Plant lock and ant key: pairwise coevolution of an exclusion filter in an ant-plant mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brouat, C; Garcia, N; Andary, C; McKey, D

    2001-10-22

    Although observations suggest pairwise coevolution in specific ant-plant symbioses, coevolutionary processes have rarely been demonstrated. We report on, what is to the authors' knowledge, the strongest evidence yet for reciprocal adaptation of morphological characters in a species-specific ant-plant mutualism. The plant character is the prostoma, which is a small unlignified organ at the apex of the domatia in which symbiotic ants excavate an entrance hole. Each myrmecophyte in the genus Leonardoxa has evolved a prostoma with a different shape. By performing precise measurements on the prostomata of three related myrmecophytes, on their specific associated ants and on the entrance holes excavated by symbiotic ants at the prostomata, we showed that correspondence of the plant and ant traits forms a morphological and behavioural filter. We have strong evidence for coevolution between the dimensions and shape of the symbiotic ants and the prostoma in one of the three ant-Leonardoxa associations.

  6. Clock synchronization and dispersion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Giovannetti, Vittorio; Lloyd, Seth; Maccone, Lorenzo; Wong, Franco N C

    2002-01-01

    We present a method to defeat effects of dispersion of timing signals when synchronizing clocks. It is based on the recently proposed 'conveyor belt synchronization' scheme and on the quantum dispersion cancellation effect

  7. Evaluating effects of habitat loss and land-use continuity on ant species richness in seminatural grassland remnants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dauber, Jens; Bengtsson, Jan; Lenoir, Lisette

    2006-08-01

    Seminatural grasslands in Europe are susceptible to habitat destruction and fragmentation that result in negative effects on biodiversity because of increased isolation and area effects on extinction rate. However even small habitatpatches of seminatural grasslands might be of value for conservation and restoration of species richness in a landscape with a long history of management, which has been argued to lead to high species richness. We tested whether ant communities have been negatively affected by habitat loss and increased isolation of seminatural grasslands during the twentieth century. We examined species richness and community composition in seminatural grasslands of different size in a mosaic landscape in Central Sweden. Grasslands managed continuously over centuries harbored species-rich and ecologically diverse ant communities. Grassland remnant size had no effect on ant species richness. Small grassland remnants did not harbor a nested subset of the ant species of larger habitats. Community composition of ants was mainly affected by habitat conditions. Our results suggest that the abandonment of traditional land use and the encroachment of trees, rather than the effects of fragmentation, are important for species composition in seminatural grasslands. Our results highlight the importance of considering land-use continuity and dispersal ability of thefocal organisms when examining the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation on biodiversity. Landscape history should be considered in conservation programs focusing on effects of land-use change.

  8. Dispersing powders in liquids

    CERN Document Server

    Nelson, RD

    1988-01-01

    This book provides powder technologists with laboratory procedures for selecting dispersing agents and preparing stable dispersions that can then be used in particle size characterization instruments. Its broader goal is to introduce industrial chemists and engineers to the phenomena, terminology, physical principles, and chemical considerations involved in preparing and handling dispersions on a commercial scale. The book introduces novices to: - industrial problems due to improper degree of dispersion; - the nomenclature used in describing particles; - the basic physica

  9. Gaeolaelaps Invictianus, a new and unusual species of Hypoaspidine Mite (Acari: Mesostigmata: Laelapidae) phoretic on the red imported fire ant Solenopsis Invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Louisiana, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    David Walter; John Moser

    2010-01-01

    A new species ofhypoaspidine laelapid mite, Gaeolaelaps invictianus, associated with the red imported fire ant Solenopsis invicta Buren in the southern United States of America is described. This new species is unusual among the gamasine Mesostigmata in lacking a postanal seta in adults of both sexes and among species of Gaeolaelaps in being phoretic on dispersing male...

  10. Partitioning taxonomic diversity of aquatic insect assemblages ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biological diversity can be divided into: alpha (α, local), beta (β, difference in assemblage composition among locals), and gamma (γ, total diversity). We assessed the partitioning of taxonomic diversity of Ephemeroptera, Plecoptera and Trichoptera (EPT) and of functional feeding groups (FFG) in Neotropical Savanna (southeastern Brazilian Cerrado) streams. To do so, we considered three diversity components: stream site (α), among stream sites (β1), and among hydrologic units (β2). We also evaluated the association of EPT genera composition with heterogeneity in land use, instream physical habitat structure, and instream water quality variables. The percent of EPT taxonomic α diversity (20.7%) was lower than the β1 and β2 diversities (53.1% and 26.2%, respectively). The EPT FFG α diversity (26.5%) was lower than the β1 diversity (55.8%) and higher than the β2 (17.7%) diversity. The collector-gatherer FFG was predominant and had the greatest β diversity among stream sites (β1, 55.8%). Our findings support the need for implementing regional scale conservation strategies in the Cerrado biome, which has been degraded by anthropogenic activities. Using adaptations of the US EPA’s National Aquatic Resource Survey (NARS) designs and methods, Ferreira and colleagues examined the distribution of taxonomic and functional diversity of aquatic insects among basins, stream sites within basins, and within stream sample reaches. They sampled 160 low-order stre

  11. Geographical assemblages of European raptors and owls

    Science.gov (United States)

    López-López, Pascual; Benavent-Corai, José; García-Ripollés, Clara

    2008-09-01

    In this work we look for geographical structure patterns in European raptors (Order: Falconiformes) and owls (Order: Strigiformes). For this purpose we have conducted our research using freely available tools such as statistical software and databases. To perform the study, presence-absence data for the European raptors and owl species (Class Aves) were downloaded from the BirdLife International website. Using the freely available "pvclust" R-package, we applied similarity Jaccard index and cluster analysis in order to delineate biogeographical relationships for European countries. According to the cluster of similarity, we found that Europe is structured into two main geographical assemblages. The larger length branch separated two main groups: one containing Iceland, Greenland and the countries of central, northern and northwestern Europe, and the other group including the countries of eastern, southern and southwestern Europe. Both groups are divided into two main subgroups. According to our results, the European raptors and owls could be considered structured into four meta-communities well delimited by suture zones defined by Remington (1968) [Remington, C.L., 1968. Suture-zones of hybrid interaction between recently joined biotas. Evol. Biol. 2, 321-428]. Climatic oscillations during the Quaternary Ice Ages could explain at least in part the modern geographical distribution of the group.

  12. Privatization by Other Means: Social Power, Tankers and Techno-Assemblages of Water Supply in Amman, Jordan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mustafa, D.

    2016-12-01

    Combined piped and tanker based water supply systems have become a ubiquitous feature of urban waterscapes in the global South. Jordanian water sector, and Amman in particular has been a recipient of considerable international financial and technical assistance over the past decades. The international assistance has coupled with the Jordanian state's own pro-market ideological stance, and its political compulsions to spawn a techno-social assemblage of water supply that represents a hybrid state and commercial water supply system. I present the results of a field study in Amman, Jordan on water tankers and water users to understand the techno-political underpinnings of the hybrid system and its impact on differential access to water. I explore how Actor Network Theory (ANT) based analysis of tankers, suction pumps and piped water system and their materiality may explain differential access to water. But that exploration is inflected by a larger political ecological concern with questions of power and discourses about citizenship and claim making on the state. I find that ANT based focus on water technologies, while ontologically fertile, and epistemologically innovative, is nevertheless politically barren. Much richer political insights are to be gained from structural and post-structurally based investigations of the discursive and material drivers of the techno-social assemblages of water supply. The technologies don't just neutrally impact water access, but seem to almost intentionally favour the powerful over the powerless. Surely the political agency must not reside in inanimate technologies but in the social actors and structures that fashion those technologies, and configure them such to reinforce geographies of power. I call for a renewed focus on social power and how its impact on lived geographies is mediated by technology.

  13. Ground-foraging ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae and rainfall effect on pitfall trapping in a deciduous thorn woodland (Caatinga, Northeastern Brazil

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    Francyregis A Nunes

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The semi-arid Caatinga is the fourth largest biome of Brazil, which biota still remains one of the most poorly known, especially with regard to invertebrate groups. In this study, a ground-foraging ant assemblage was surveyed during one year and the effect of rainfall on pitfall trapping was assessed. The study was performed in an area located in the municipality of Pentecoste (3º48’ S - 39º20’ W, in the State of Ceará. A 200m transect with 20 equidistant sampling points was established. Transect sampling was performed once a month during 12 months, over the period August 2008-August 2009. At each sampling point, a pitfall trap partially filled with a mixture of ethanol and monoethylene glycol was placed at the beginning of each month and remained in the field for seven days. 39 species belonging to six subfamilies and 19 genera, plus two unidentified species, were collected, with Pheidole (10 spp. and Camponotus (8 spp. being the taxa with the most species. 23 species were frequent, being found in more than 50% of the 12 transect samplings. Five species had an intermediate frequency (25 to 50%, while 13 were relatively infrequent (less than 25%. Most of the species (22 showed low occurrence, being found in less than 10% of the 240 samples (20 samples each month, during 12 months. Only five species were collected in more than 50% of the samples, those species being also responsible for most of the total abundance (number of captured individuals of all species observed each month. The speciesaccumulation curves (observed and estimated indicated that sampling sufficiency was attained, and that about 92% of the estimated ground-foraging ant fauna had been collected. 40 and 29 species were collected in the dry and rainy season, respectively, with monthly species richness ranging from 13 to 28. The total ant abundance showed a drastic decrease during the rainy season, and a negative linear correlation was found between rainfall and total ant

  14. Interactive effects of soil-dwelling ants, ant mounds and simulated grazing on local plant community composition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Veen, G.F.; Olff, H.

    2011-01-01

    Interactions between aboveground vertebrate herbivores and subterranean yellow meadow ants (Lasius flavus) can drive plant community patterns in grassland ecosystems. Here, we study the relative importance of the presence of ants (L. flavus) and ant mounds under different simulated grazing regimes

  15. Taxonomic and Phylogenetic Determinants of Functional Composition of Bolivian Bat Assemblages.

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    Luis F Aguirre

    Full Text Available Understanding diversity patterns and the potential mechanisms driving them is a fundamental goal in ecology. Examination of different dimensions of biodiversity can provide insights into the relative importance of different processes acting upon biotas to shape communities. Unfortunately, patterns of diversity are still poorly understood in hyper-diverse tropical countries. Here, we assess spatial variation of taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity of bat assemblages in one of the least studied Neotropical countries, Bolivia, and determine whether changes in biodiversity are explained by the replacement of species or functional groups, or by differences in richness (i.e., gain or loss of species or functional groups. Further, we evaluate the contribution of phylogenetic and taxonomic changes in the resulting patterns of functional diversity of bats. Using well-sampled assemblages from published studies we examine noctilionoid bats at ten study sites across five ecoregions in Bolivia. Bat assemblages differed from each other in all dimensions of biodiversity considered; however, diversity patterns for each dimension were likely structured by different mechanisms. Within ecoregions, differences were largely explained by species richness, suggesting that the gain or loss of species or functional groups (as opposed to replacement was driving dissimilarity patterns. Overall, our results suggest that whereas evolutionary processes (i.e., historical connection and dispersal routes across Bolivia create a template of diversity patterns across the country, ecological mechanisms modify these templates, decoupling the observed patterns of functional, taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity in Bolivian bats. Our results suggests that elevation represents an important source of variability among diversity patterns for each dimension of diversity considered. Further, we found that neither phylogenetic nor taxonomic diversity can fully account for

  16. Taxonomic and Phylogenetic Determinants of Functional Composition of Bolivian Bat Assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aguirre, Luis F; Montaño-Centellas, Flavia A; Gavilanez, M Mercedes; Stevens, Richard D

    2016-01-01

    Understanding diversity patterns and the potential mechanisms driving them is a fundamental goal in ecology. Examination of different dimensions of biodiversity can provide insights into the relative importance of different processes acting upon biotas to shape communities. Unfortunately, patterns of diversity are still poorly understood in hyper-diverse tropical countries. Here, we assess spatial variation of taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic diversity of bat assemblages in one of the least studied Neotropical countries, Bolivia, and determine whether changes in biodiversity are explained by the replacement of species or functional groups, or by differences in richness (i.e., gain or loss of species or functional groups). Further, we evaluate the contribution of phylogenetic and taxonomic changes in the resulting patterns of functional diversity of bats. Using well-sampled assemblages from published studies we examine noctilionoid bats at ten study sites across five ecoregions in Bolivia. Bat assemblages differed from each other in all dimensions of biodiversity considered; however, diversity patterns for each dimension were likely structured by different mechanisms. Within ecoregions, differences were largely explained by species richness, suggesting that the gain or loss of species or functional groups (as opposed to replacement) was driving dissimilarity patterns. Overall, our results suggest that whereas evolutionary processes (i.e., historical connection and dispersal routes across Bolivia) create a template of diversity patterns across the country, ecological mechanisms modify these templates, decoupling the observed patterns of functional, taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity in Bolivian bats. Our results suggests that elevation represents an important source of variability among diversity patterns for each dimension of diversity considered. Further, we found that neither phylogenetic nor taxonomic diversity can fully account for patterns of functional

  17. Maintaining animal assemblages through single-species management: the case of threatened caribou in boreal forest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bichet, Orphé; Dupuch, Angélique; Hébert, Christian; Le Borgne, Hélène Le; Fortin, Daniel

    2016-03-01

    With the intensification of human activities, preserving animal populations is a contemporary challenge of critical importance. In this context, the umbrella species concept is appealing because preserving a single species should result in the protection of multiple co-occurring species. Practitioners, though, face the task of having to find suitable umbrellas to develop single-species management guidelines. In North America, boreal forests must be managed to facilitate the recovery of the threatened boreal caribou (Rangifer tarandus). Yet, the effect of caribou conservation on co-occurring animal species remains poorly documented. We tested if boreal caribou can constitute an effective umbrella for boreal fauna. Birds, small mammals, and insects were sampled along gradients of post-harvest and post-fire forest succession. Predictive models of occupancy were developed from the responses of 95 species to characteristics of forest stands and their surroundings. We then assessed the similarity of species occupancy expected between simulated harvested landscapes and a 90 000-km2 uncut landscape. Managed landscapes were simulated based on three levels of disturbance, two timber-harvest rotation cycles, and dispersed or aggregated cut-blocks. We found that management guidelines that were more likely to maintain caribou populations should also better preserve animal assemblages. Relative to fragmentation or harvest cycle, we detected a stronger effect of habitat loss on species assemblages. Disturbing 22%, 35%, and 45% of the landscape should result, respectively, in 80%, 60%, and 40% probability for caribou populations to be sustainable; in turn, this should result in regional species assemblages with Jaccard similarity indices of 0.86, 0.79, and 0.74, respectively, relative to the uncut landscape. Our study thus demonstrates the value of single-species management for animal conservation. Our quantitative approach allows for the evaluation of management guidelines prior

  18. Individual variation in habitat use in two stream fish assemblages

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    Luisa Resende Manna

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The habitat use is an individual choice that is influenced by physical conditions such as substrate type, food resources availability and adequate depth. However, habitat use is often measured only through interspecific variability because intraspecific variability is supposed to be low. Here, the differences in habitat use by two stream fish assemblages in two different environments (Brazilian rainforest and semiarid were investigated at both interspecific and intraspecific levels. We performed 55 hours of underwater observation in a 200 meters long stretch in each stream and quantified the following habitat descriptors: (i water velocity, (ii distance from the stream bank, (iii substratum, (iv water column depth, (v aquatic cover, and (vi canopy percentage. To compare intra and interspecific variability we summarized the multivariate habitat use databases using Principal Components Analysis (PCA on Euclidean distance. An Analysis of Similarity (ANOSIM was performed to test the differences in habitat use by the two assemblages. Besides, in each fish community we did an Analysis of Variance (ANOVA to test within vs between species variability for individual position on each PCA axes. To go further than these univariate tests, the differences among the species and assemblages were tested with Permutational Multivariate Analysis of Variance (PERMANOVA. The habitat use between assemblages was significantly different (ANOSIM – R=0.14; p<0.001. PERMANOVA revealed significant differences among species in both assemblages (Rainforest - F=7.25; p<0.001; semiarid - F=4.84; p<0.001. Lower F values in the semiarid assemblage revealed a higher level of intraspecific variability for this assemblage. Our findings showed high intra and interspecific variability in both stream fish assemblages and highlight the importance of measuring individual’s differences for this feature of fish biodiversity. Additionally, the versatility described for tropical

  19. Determinants of fish assemblage structure in Northwestern Great Plains streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mullen, J.A.; Bramblett, R.G.; Guy, C.S.; Zale, A.V.; Roberts, D.W.

    2011-01-01

    Prairie streams are known for their harsh and stochastic physical conditions, and the fish assemblages therein have been shown to be temporally variable. We assessed the spatial and temporal variation in fish assemblage structure in five intermittent, adventitious northwestern Great Plains streams representing a gradient of watershed areas. Fish assemblages and abiotic conditions varied more spatially than temporally. The most important variables explaining fish assemblage structure were longitudinal position and the proportion of fine substrates. The proportion of fine substrates increased proceeding upstream, approaching 100% in all five streams, and species richness declined upstream with increasing fine substrates. High levels of fine substrate in the upper reaches appeared to limit the distribution of obligate lithophilic fish species to reaches further downstream. Species richness and substrates were similar among all five streams at the lowermost and uppermost sites. However, in the middle reaches, species richness increased, the amount of fine substrate decreased, and connectivity increased as watershed area increased. Season and some dimensions of habitat (including thalweg depth, absolute distance to the main-stem river, and watershed size) were not essential in explaining the variation in fish assemblages. Fish species richness varied more temporally than overall fish assemblage structure did because common species were consistently abundant across seasons, whereas rare species were sometimes absent or perhaps not detected by sampling. The similarity in our results among five streams varying in watershed size and those from other studies supports the generalization that spatial variation exceeds temporal variation in the fish assemblages of prairie and warmwater streams. Furthermore, given longitudinal position, substrate, and stream size, general predictions regarding fish assemblage structure and function in prairie streams are possible. ?? American

  20. Edge detection in digital images using Ant Colony Optimization

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    Marjan Kuchaki Rafsanjani

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is an optimization algorithm inspired by the behavior of real ant colonies to approximate the solutions of difficult optimization problems. In this paper, ACO is introduced to tackle the image edge detection problem. The proposed approach is based on the distribution of ants on an image; ants try to find possible edges by using a state transition function. Experimental results show that the proposed method compared to standard edge detectors is less sensitive to Gaussian noise and gives finer details and thinner edges when compared to earlier ant-based approaches.

  1. Theory of dispersive microlenses

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman, B.; Gal, George

    1993-01-01

    A dispersive microlens is a miniature optical element which simultaneously focuses and disperses light. Arrays of dispersive mircolenses have potential applications in multicolor focal planes. They have a 100 percent optical fill factor and can focus light down to detectors of diffraction spot size, freeing up areas on the focal plane for on-chip analog signal processing. Use of dispersive microlenses allows inband color separation within a pixel and perfect scene registration. A dual-color separation has the potential for temperature discrimination. We discuss the design of dispersive microlenses and present sample results for efficient designs.

  2. A Brazilian population of the asexual fungus-growing ant Mycocepurus smithii (Formicidae, Myrmicinae, Attini cultivates fungal symbionts with gongylidia-like structures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia E Masiulionis

    Full Text Available Attine ants cultivate fungi as their most important food source and in turn the fungus is nourished, protected against harmful microorganisms, and dispersed by the ants. This symbiosis evolved approximately 50-60 million years ago in the late Paleocene or early Eocene, and since its origin attine ants have acquired a variety of fungal mutualists in the Leucocoprineae and the distantly related Pterulaceae. The most specialized symbiotic interaction is referred to as "higher agriculture" and includes leafcutter ant agriculture in which the ants cultivate the single species Leucoagaricus gongylophorus. Higher agriculture fungal cultivars are characterized by specialized hyphal tip swellings, so-called gongylidia, which are considered a unique, derived morphological adaptation of higher attine fungi thought to be absent in lower attine fungi. Rare reports of gongylidia-like structures in fungus gardens of lower attines exist, but it was never tested whether these represent rare switches of lower attines to L. gonglyphorus cultivars or whether lower attine cultivars occasionally produce gongylidia. Here we describe the occurrence of gongylidia-like structures in fungus gardens of the asexual lower attine ant Mycocepurus smithii. To test whether M. smithii cultivates leafcutter ant fungi or whether lower attine cultivars produce gongylidia, we identified the M. smithii fungus utilizing molecular and morphological methods. Results shows that the gongylidia-like structures of M. smithii gardens are morphologically similar to gongylidia of higher attine fungus gardens and can only be distinguished by their slightly smaller size. A molecular phylogenetic analysis of the fungal ITS sequence indicates that the gongylidia-bearing M. smithii cultivar belongs to the so-called "Clade 1"of lower Attini cultivars. Given that M. smithii is capable of cultivating a morphologically and genetically diverse array of fungal symbionts, we discuss whether asexuality of

  3. Climate change and body size shift in Mediterranean bivalve assemblages: unexpected role of biological invasions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nawrot, Rafał; Albano, Paolo G; Chattopadhyay, Devapriya; Zuschin, Martin

    2017-08-16

    Body size is a synthetic functional trait determining many key ecosystem properties. Reduction in average body size has been suggested as one of the universal responses to global warming in aquatic ecosystems. Climate change, however, coincides with human-enhanced dispersal of alien species and can facilitate their establishment. We address effects of species introductions on the size structure of recipient communities using data on Red Sea bivalves entering the Mediterranean Sea through the Suez Canal. We show that the invasion leads to increase in median body size of the Mediterranean assemblage. Alien species are significantly larger than native Mediterranean bivalves, even though they represent a random subset of the Red Sea species with respect to body size. The observed patterns result primarily from the differences in the taxonomic composition and body-size distributions of the source and recipient species pools. In contrast to the expectations based on the general temperature-size relationships in marine ectotherms, continued warming of the Mediterranean Sea indirectly leads to an increase in the proportion of large-bodied species in bivalve assemblages by accelerating the entry and spread of tropical aliens. These results underscore complex interactions between changing climate and species invasions in driving functional shifts in marine ecosystems. © 2017 The Author(s).

  4. The Pied Piper: A Parasitic Beetle's Melodies Modulate Ant Behaviours.

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    Andrea Di Giulio

    Full Text Available Ants use various communication channels to regulate their social organisation. The main channel that drives almost all the ants' activities and behaviours is the chemical one, but it is long acknowledged that the acoustic channel also plays an important role. However, very little is known regarding exploitation of the acoustical channel by myrmecophile parasites to infiltrate the ant society. Among social parasites, the ant nest beetles (Paussus are obligate myrmecophiles able to move throughout the colony at will and prey on the ants, surprisingly never eliciting aggression from the colonies. It has been recently postulated that stridulatory organs in Paussus might be evolved as an acoustic mechanism to interact with ants. Here, we survey the role of acoustic signals employed in the Paussus beetle-Pheidole ant system. Ants parasitised by Paussus beetles produce caste-specific stridulations. We found that Paussus can "speak" three different "languages", each similar to sounds produced by different ant castes (workers, soldiers, queen. Playback experiments were used to test how host ants respond to the sounds emitted by Paussus. Our data suggest that, by mimicking the stridulations of the queen, Paussus is able to dupe the workers of its host and to be treated as royalty. This is the first report of acoustic mimicry in a beetle parasite of ants.

  5. The interactions of ants with their biotic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chomicki, Guillaume; Renner, Susanne S

    2017-03-15

    This s pecial feature results from the symposium 'Ants 2016: ant interactions with their biotic environments' held in Munich in May 2016 and deals with the interactions between ants and other insects, plants, microbes and fungi, studied at micro- and macroevolutionary levels with a wide range of approaches, from field ecology to next-generation sequencing, chemical ecology and molecular genetics. In this paper, we review key aspects of these biotic interactions to provide background information for the papers of this s pecial feature After listing the major types of biotic interactions that ants engage in, we present a brief overview of ant/ant communication, ant/plant interactions, ant/fungus symbioses, and recent insights about ants and their endosymbionts. Using a large molecular clock-dated Formicidae phylogeny, we map the evolutionary origins of different ant clades' interactions with plants, fungi and hemiptera. Ants' biotic interactions provide ideal systems to address fundamental ecological and evolutionary questions about mutualism, coevolution, adaptation and animal communication. © 2017 The Author(s).

  6. Ant species confer different partner benefits on two neotropical myrmecophytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederickson, Megan E

    2005-04-01

    The dynamics of mutualistic interactions involving more than a single pair of species depend on the relative costs and benefits of interaction among alternative partners. The neotropical myrmecophytes Cordia nodosa and Duroia hirsuta associate with several species of obligately symbiotic ants. I compared the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia with respect to two benefits known to be important in ant-myrmecophyte interactions: protection against herbivores provided by ants, and protection against encroaching vegetation provided by ants. Azteca spp., Myrmelachista schumanni, and Allomerus octoarticulatus demerarae ants all provide the leaves of Cordia and Duroia some protection against herbivores. However, Azteca and Allomerus provide more protection than does Myrmelachista to the leaves of their host plants. Although Allomerus protects the leaves of its hosts, plants occupied by Allomerus suffer more attacks by herbivores to their stems than do plants occupied by other ants. Relative to Azteca or Allomerus, Myrmelachista ants provide better protection against encroaching vegetation, increasing canopy openness over their host plants. These differences in benefits among the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia are reflected in the effect of each ant species on host plant size, growth rate, and reproduction. The results of this study show how mutualistic ant partners can differ with respect to both the magnitude and type of benefits they provide to the same species of myrmecophytic host.

  7. Local host specialization, host-switching, and dispersal shape the regional distributions of avian haemosporidian parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Vincenzo A; Collins, Michael D; Medeiros, Matthew C I; Sari, Eloisa H R; Coffey, Elyse D; Dickerson, Rebecca C; Lugarini, Camile; Stratford, Jeffrey A; Henry, Donata R; Merrill, Loren; Matthews, Alix E; Hanson, Alison A; Roberts, Jackson R; Joyce, Michael; Kunkel, Melanie R; Ricklefs, Robert E

    2015-09-08

    The drivers of regional parasite distributions are poorly understood, especially in comparison with those of free-living species. For vector-transmitted parasites, in particular, distributions might be influenced by host-switching and by parasite dispersal with primary hosts and vectors. We surveyed haemosporidian blood parasites (Plasmodium and Haemoproteus) of small land birds in eastern North America to characterize a regional parasite community. Distributions of parasite populations generally reflected distributions of their hosts across the region. However, when the interdependence between hosts and parasites was controlled statistically, local host assemblages were related to regional climatic gradients, but parasite assemblages were not. Moreover, because parasite assemblage similarity does not decrease with distance when controlling for host assemblages and climate, parasites evidently disperse readily within the distributions of their hosts. The degree of specialization on hosts varied in some parasite lineages over short periods and small geographic distances independently of the diversity of available hosts and potentially competing parasite lineages. Nonrandom spatial turnover was apparent in parasite lineages infecting one host species that was well-sampled within a single year across its range, plausibly reflecting localized adaptations of hosts and parasites. Overall, populations of avian hosts generally determine the geographic distributions of haemosporidian parasites. However, parasites are not dispersal-limited within their host distributions, and they may switch hosts readily.

  8. Mites (Acari Associated with the Desert Seed Harvester Ant, Messor pergandei (Mayr

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaitlin A. Uppstrom

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Mites (Acari associated with the seed harvester ant Messor pergandei were investigated in the Sonoran desert of Arizona. At least seven representatives of the mite genera Armacarus, Lemanniella, Petalomium, Forcellinia, Histiostoma, Unguidispus, and Cosmoglyphus are phoretically associated with M. pergandei. Most of these morphospecies show preference for specific phoretic attachment sites and primarily use female alates rather than male alates for dispersal. Five mite morphospecies were found in low numbers inhabiting the chaff piles: Tydeidae sp., Procaeculus sp., Anystidae sp., Bakerdania sp., and Tetranychidae sp. The phoretic Petalomium sp. was observed consuming fungus growing on a dead queen, but the roles of the other mite species remain mostly unresolved.

  9. Fast and flexible: argentine ants recruit from nearby trails.

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    Tatiana P Flanagan

    Full Text Available Argentine ants (Linepithema humile live in groups of nests connected by trails to each other and to stable food sources. In a field study, we investigated whether some ants recruit directly from established, persistent trails to food sources, thus accelerating food collection. Our results indicate that Argentine ants recruit nestmates to food directly from persistent trails, and that the exponential increase in the arrival rate of ants at baits is faster than would be possible if recruited ants traveled from distant nests. Once ants find a new food source, they walk back and forth between the bait and sometimes share food by trophallaxis with nestmates on the trail. Recruiting ants from nearby persistent trails creates a dynamic circuit, like those found in other distributed systems, which facilitates a quick response to changes in available resources.

  10. Host ant independent oviposition in the parasitic butterfly Maculinea alcon

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fürst, Matthias A; Nash, David Richard

    2010-01-01

    to host-ant nests and non-host-ant nests, and the number and position of eggs attached were assessed. Our results show no evidence for host-ant-based oviposition in M. alcon, but support an oviposition strategy based on plant characteristics. This suggests that careful management of host-ant distribution......Parasitic Maculinea alcon butterflies can only develop in nests of a subset of available Myrmica ant species, so female butterflies have been hypothesized to preferentially lay eggs on plants close to colonies of the correct host ants. Previous correlational investigations of host......-ant-dependent oviposition in this and other Maculinea species have, however, shown equivocal results, leading to a long-term controversy over support for this hypothesis. We therefore conducted a controlled field experiment to study the egg-laying behaviour of M. alcon. Matched potted Gentiana plants were set out close...

  11. Exploring with PAM: Prospecting ANTS Missions for Solar System Surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, P. E.; Rilee, M. L.; Curtis, S. A.

    2003-01-01

    ANTS (Autonomous Nano-Technology Swarm), a large (1000 member) swarm of nano to picoclass (10 to 1 kg) totally autonomous spacecraft, are being developed as a NASA advanced mission concept. ANTS, based on a hierarchical insect social order, use an evolvable, self-similar, hierarchical neural system in which individual spacecraft represent the highest level nodes. ANTS uses swarm intelligence attained through collective, cooperative interactions of the nodes at all levels of the system. At the highest levels this can take the form of cooperative, collective behavior among the individual spacecraft in a very large constellation. The ANTS neural architecture is designed for totally autonomous operation of complex systems including spacecraft constellations. The ANTS (Autonomous Nano Technology Swarm) concept has a number of possible applications. A version of ANTS designed for surveying and determining the resource potential of the asteroid belt, called PAM (Prospecting ANTS Mission), is examined here.

  12. Fast and flexible: argentine ants recruit from nearby trails.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flanagan, Tatiana P; Pinter-Wollman, Noa M; Moses, Melanie E; Gordon, Deborah M

    2013-01-01

    Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) live in groups of nests connected by trails to each other and to stable food sources. In a field study, we investigated whether some ants recruit directly from established, persistent trails to food sources, thus accelerating food collection. Our results indicate that Argentine ants recruit nestmates to food directly from persistent trails, and that the exponential increase in the arrival rate of ants at baits is faster than would be possible if recruited ants traveled from distant nests. Once ants find a new food source, they walk back and forth between the bait and sometimes share food by trophallaxis with nestmates on the trail. Recruiting ants from nearby persistent trails creates a dynamic circuit, like those found in other distributed systems, which facilitates a quick response to changes in available resources.

  13. Global warming transforms coral reef assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Terry P; Kerry, James T; Baird, Andrew H; Connolly, Sean R; Dietzel, Andreas; Eakin, C Mark; Heron, Scott F; Hoey, Andrew S; Hoogenboom, Mia O; Liu, Gang; McWilliam, Michael J; Pears, Rachel J; Pratchett, Morgan S; Skirving, William J; Stella, Jessica S; Torda, Gergely

    2018-04-01

    Global warming is rapidly emerging as a universal threat to ecological integrity and function, highlighting the urgent need for a better understanding of the impact of heat exposure on the resilience of ecosystems and the people who depend on them 1 . Here we show that in the aftermath of the record-breaking marine heatwave on the Great Barrier Reef in 2016 2 , corals began to die immediately on reefs where the accumulated heat exposure exceeded a critical threshold of degree heating weeks, which was 3-4 °C-weeks. After eight months, an exposure of 6 °C-weeks or more drove an unprecedented, regional-scale shift in the composition of coral assemblages, reflecting markedly divergent responses to heat stress by different taxa. Fast-growing staghorn and tabular corals suffered a catastrophic die-off, transforming the three-dimensionality and ecological functioning of 29% of the 3,863 reefs comprising the world's largest coral reef system. Our study bridges the gap between the theory and practice of assessing the risk of ecosystem collapse, under the emerging framework for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Ecosystems 3 , by rigorously defining both the initial and collapsed states, identifying the major driver of change, and establishing quantitative collapse thresholds. The increasing prevalence of post-bleaching mass mortality of corals represents a radical shift in the disturbance regimes of tropical reefs, both adding to and far exceeding the influence of recurrent cyclones and other local pulse events, presenting a fundamental challenge to the long-term future of these iconic ecosystems.

  14. Using pleometrosis (multiple queens) and pupae transplantation to boost weaver ant (Oecophylla smaragdina) colony growth in ant nurseries

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Offenberg, Hans Joachim; Nielsen, Mogens Gissel; Peng, Renkang

    2011-01-01

    Weaver ants (Oecophylla spp.) are increasingly being used for biocontrol and are targeted for future production of insect protein in ant farms. An efficient production of live ant colonies may facilitate the utilization of these ants but the production of mature colonies is hampered by the long...... and no transplantation. Thus, in ant nurseries the use of multiple queens during nest founding as well as transplantation of pupae from foreign colonies may be utilised to decrease the time it takes to produce a colony ready for implementation....

  15. The Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Koufos, G. D.

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available The Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece includes a great number of taxa, described in numerous articles since the first decades of the 19th Century. The present article is a revision of all these taxa, providing information about their history, localities, age, as well as their stratigraphic distribution and palaeoenvironment. The Early/Middle Miocene carnivore record of Greece is poor as the available fossiliferous sites and material are rare. However, the Late Miocene one is quite rich, including numerous taxa. The Miocene localities with carnivores and their age are given in a stratigraphic table covering the European Mammal zones from MN 4 to MN 13. The type locality, holotype, and some historical and morphological remarks are given for each taxon. Several carnivore taxa were erected from Greek material and new photos of their holotypes are given. The stratigraphic distribution of the Greek carnivore taxa indicates that they are covering the time span from ~19.0-5.3Ma. The majority of the Miocene taxa (Adcrocuta, Hyaenictitherium, Plioviverrops, Protictitherium, Ictitherium, Indarctos, Dinocrocuta, Promephitis disappeared at the end of Miocene. The composition of the Early/Middle Miocene carnivore assemblage of Greece includes mainly viverrids (Lophocyon, Euboictis, while the hyaenids, percrocutids, felids and mustelids are very few. On the contrary the Late Miocene assemblage is richer, including more subfamilies and species; the hyaenids and mustelids dominate, while the viverrids are absent. The Late Miocene carnivore guild structure is similar to that of the modern Serengeti, indicating a relatively open, savannah-like environment.

    La asociación de carnívoros miocenos de Grecia incluye un gran número de taxones, descritos en numerosos artículos desde las primeras décadas del siglo XIX. El presente artículo supone un esfuerzo de síntesis de todos estos taxones, suministrando información sobre su

  16. Oil Spills and Dispersants Can Cause the Initiation of Potentially Harmful Dinoflagellate Blooms ("Red Tides")

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Almeda, Rodrigo; Cosgrove, Sarah; Buskey, Edward J.

    2018-01-01

    After oil spills and dispersant applications the formation of red tides or harmful algal blooms (HABs) has been observed, which can cause additional negative impacts in areas affected by oil spills. However, the link between oil spills and HABs is still unknown. Here, we present experimental...... evidence that demonstrates a connection between oil spills and HABs. We determined the effects of oil, dispersant-treated oil, and dispersant alone on the structure of natural plankton assemblages in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. In coastal waters, large tintinnids and oligotrich ciliates, major grazers...

  17. Optic disc detection using ant colony optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dias, Marcy A.; Monteiro, Fernando C.

    2012-09-01

    The retinal fundus images are used in the treatment and diagnosis of several eye diseases, such as diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma. This paper proposes a new method to detect the optic disc (OD) automatically, due to the fact that the knowledge of the OD location is essential to the automatic analysis of retinal images. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) is an optimization algorithm inspired by the foraging behaviour of some ant species that has been applied in image processing for edge detection. Recently, the ACO was used in fundus images to detect edges, and therefore, to segment the OD and other anatomical retinal structures. We present an algorithm for the detection of OD in the retina which takes advantage of the Gabor wavelet transform, entropy and ACO algorithm. Forty images of the retina from DRIVE database were used to evaluate the performance of our method.

  18. A global database of ant species abundances

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gibb, H.; Dunn, R. R.; Sanders, N. J.; Grossman, B. F.; Photakis, M.; Abril, S.; Agosti, D.; Andersen, A. N.; Angulo, E.; Armbrecht, I.; Arnan, X.; Baccaro, F. B.; Bishop, T. R.; Boulay, R.; Brühl, C.; Castracani, C.; Cerdá, X.; Del Toro, I.; Delsinne, T.; Diaz, M.; Donoso, D. A.; Ellison, A. M.; Enríquez, M. L.; Fayle, Tom Maurice; Feener, D. H.; Fisher, B. L.; Fisher, R. N.; Fitzpatrick, M. C.; Gómez, C.; Gotelli, N. J.; Gove, A.; Grasso, D. A.; Groc, S.; Guenard, B.; Gunawardene, N.; Heterick, B.; Hoffmann, B.; Janda, Milan; Jenkins, C.; Kaspari, M.; Klimeš, Petr; Lach, L.; Laeger, T.; Lattke, J.; Leponce, M.; Lessard, J.-P.; Longino, J.; Lucky, A.; Luke, S. H.; Majer, J.; McGlynn, T. P.; Menke, S.; Mezger, D.; Mori, A.; Moses, Jimmy; Munyai, T. C.; Pacheco, R.; Paknia, O.; Pearce-Duvet, J.; Pfeiffer, M.; Philpott, S. M.; Resasco, J.; Retana, J.; Silva, R. R.; Sorger, M. D.; Souza, J.; Suarez, A.; Tista, M.; Vasconcelos, H. L.; Vonshak, M.; Weisser, M. D.; Yates, M.; Parr, C. L.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 98, č. 3 (2017), s. 883-884 ISSN 0012-9658 R&D Projects: GA ČR GB14-36098G; GA ČR GAP505/12/2467; GA ČR GPP505/12/P875 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : abundance * ants * database Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 4.809, year: 2016 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ecy.1682/abstract

  19. Public goods dilemma in asexual ant societies

    OpenAIRE

    Dobata, Shigeto; Tsuji, Kazuki

    2013-01-01

    This study reports experimental evidence for the “public goods dilemma” between cooperators and cheaters in an asexual ant society, in which cheating is always more rewarding for individuals but cooperation at the cost of individual fitness leads to better performance of groups. Although this dilemma provides the basic principle of social evolution, its experimental demonstration with underlying genetics and fitness evaluation for both cooperators and cheaters still lacks in societies other t...

  20. Ant colony optimization and constraint programming

    CERN Document Server

    Solnon, Christine

    2013-01-01

    Ant colony optimization is a metaheuristic which has been successfully applied to a wide range of combinatorial optimization problems. The author describes this metaheuristic and studies its efficiency for solving some hard combinatorial problems, with a specific focus on constraint programming. The text is organized into three parts. The first part introduces constraint programming, which provides high level features to declaratively model problems by means of constraints. It describes the main existing approaches for solving constraint satisfaction problems, including complete tree search

  1. Precision Rescue Behavior in North American Ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine Taylor

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Altruistic behavior, in which one individual provides aid to another at some cost to itself, is well documented. However, some species engage in a form of altruism, called rescue, that places the altruist in immediate danger. Here we investigate one such example, namely rescuing victims captured by predators. In a field experiment with two North American ant species, Tetramorium sp. E and Prenolepis imparis, individuals were held in artificial snares simulating capture. T. sp. E, but not P. imparis, exhibited digging, pulling, and snare biting, the latter precisely targeted to the object binding the victim. These results are the first to document precision rescue in a North American ant species; moreover, unlike rescue in other ants, T. sp. E rescues conspecifics from different colonies, mirroring their atypical social behavior, namely the lack of aggression between non-nestmate (heterocolonial conspecifics. In a second, observational study designed to demonstrate rescue from an actual predator, T. sp. E victims were dropped into an antlion's pit and the behavior of a single rescuer was observed. Results showed that T. sp. E not only attempted to release the victim, but also risked attacking the predator, suggesting that precision rescue may play an important role in this species' antipredator behavior.

  2. El periodista, ante la espiral de silencio

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dr. Fermín Galindo Arranz

    1998-01-01

    Full Text Available La percepción de la profesión periodística y de su influencia cambia mucho a lo largo del tiempo, de las coyunturas históricas y de los diferentes países y sociedades en los que desempeñan su labor. En un contexto mundial, la gravedad de las situaciones de riesgo periodístico se encuadran en situaciones políticas, económicas o sociales también conflictivas; es entonces cuando se suele reproducir con facilidad en la opinión pública el fenómeno de la espiral del silencio, ante el que inevitablemente se sitúa el periodista. Por definición, el trabajo del periodista consiste en ser portavoz de las novedades que se producen, en dar informaciones y emitir opiniones en la esfera pública, se tiene que situar, por tanto, de forma individual y notoriamente pública ante los fenómenos de espiral de silencio que puedan producirse en la opinión pública. Antonio Tabucchi nos presenta en su novela "Sostiene Pereira" un ejemplo magnífico del dilema del periodista ante este tipo de situaciones.

  3. Recognition of social identity in ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick eBos

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Recognizing the identity of others, from the individual to the group level, is a hallmark of society. Ants, and other social insects, have evolved advanced societies characterized by efficient social recognition systems. Colony identity is mediated by colony specific signature mixtures, a blend of hydrocarbons present on the cuticle of every individual (the label. Recognition occurs when an ant encounters another individual, and compares the label it perceives to an internal representation of its own colony odor (the template. A mismatch between label and template leads to rejection of the encountered individual. Although advances have been made in our understanding of how the label is produced and acquired, contradictory evidence exists about information processing of recognition cues. Here, we review the literature on template acquisition in ants and address how and when the template is formed, where in the nervous system it is localized, and the possible role of learning. We combine seemingly contradictory evidence in to a novel, parsimonious theory for the information processing of nestmate recognition cues.

  4. The invasive ant, Solenopsis invicta, reduces herpetofauna richness and abundance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Craig R.; Birge, Hannah E.; Slater, J.; Wiggers, E.

    2017-01-01

    Amphibians and reptiles are declining globally. One potential cause of this decline includes impacts resulting from co-occurrence with non-native red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta. Although a growing body of anecdotal and observational evidence from laboratory experiments supports this hypothesis, there remains a lack of field scale manipulations testing the effect of fire ants on reptile and amphibian communities. We addressed this gap by measuring reptile and amphibian (“herpetofauna”) community response to successful fire ant reductions over the course of 2 years following hydramethylnon application to five 100–200 ha plots in southeastern coastal South Carolina. By assessing changes in relative abundance and species richness of herpetofauna in response to fire ant reductions, we were able to assess whether some species were particularly vulnerable to fire ant presence, and whether this sensitivity manifested at the community level. We found that herpetofauna abundance and species richness responded positively to fire ant reductions. Our results document that even moderate populations of red imported fire ants decrease both the abundance and diversity of herpetofauna. Given global herpetofauna population declines and continued spread of fire ants, there is urgency to understand the impacts of fire ants beyond anecdotal and singles species studies. Our results provides the first community level investigation addressing these dynamics, by manipulating fire ant abundance to reveal a response in herpetofauna species abundance and richness.

  5. Predaceous ants, beach replenishment, and nest placement by sea turtles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wetterer, James K; Wood, Lawrence D; Johnson, Chris; Krahe, Holly; Fitchett, Stephanie

    2007-10-01

    Ants known for attacking and killing hatchling birds and reptiles include the red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren), tropical fire ant [Solenopsis geminata (Fabr.)], and little fire ant [Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger)]. We tested whether sea turtle nest placement influenced exposure to predaceous ants. In 2000 and 2001, we surveyed ants along a Florida beach where green turtles (Chelonia mydas L.), leatherbacks (Dermochelys coriacea Vandelli), and loggerheads (Caretta caretta L.) nest. Part of the beach was artificially replenished between our two surveys. As a result, mean beach width experienced by nesting turtles differed greatly between the two nesting seasons. We surveyed 1,548 sea turtle nests (2000: 909 nests; 2001: 639 nests) and found 22 ant species. S. invicta was by far the most common species (on 431 nests); S. geminata and W. auropunctata were uncommon (on 3 and 16 nests, respectively). In 2000, 62.5% of nests had ants present (35.9% with S. invicta), but in 2001, only 30.5% of the nests had ants present (16.4% with S. invicta). Turtle nests closer to dune vegetation had significantly greater exposure to ants. Differences in ant presence on turtle nests between years and among turtle species were closely related to differences in nest placement relative to dune vegetation. Beach replenishment significantly lowered exposure of nests to ants because on the wider beaches turtles nested farther from the dune vegetation. Selective pressures on nesting sea turtles are altered both by the presence of predaceous ants and the practice of beach replenishment.

  6. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Rachelle M. M.; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A.; Jones, Tappey H.; Nash, David R.; Boomsma, Jacobus J.

    2013-01-01

    The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit from their costly guest ants behaving as a functional soldier caste to meet lethal threats from agro-predator raiders. The fundamentally different life histories of the agro-predators and guest ants appear to facilitate their coexistence in a negative frequency-dependent manner. Because a guest ant colony is committed for life to a single host colony, the guests would harm their own interests by not defending the host that they continue to exploit. This conditional mutualism is analogous to chronic sickle cell anemia enhancing the resistance to malaria and to episodes in human history when mercenary city defenders offered either net benefits or imposed net costs, depending on the level of threat from invading armies. PMID:24019482

  7. Chemically armed mercenary ants protect fungus-farming societies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Rachelle M M; Liberti, Joanito; Illum, Anders A; Jones, Tappey H; Nash, David R; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2013-09-24

    The ants are extraordinary in having evolved many lineages that exploit closely related ant societies as social parasites, but social parasitism by distantly related ants is rare. Here we document the interaction dynamics among a Sericomyrmex fungus-growing ant host, a permanently associated parasitic guest ant of the genus Megalomyrmex, and a raiding agro-predator of the genus Gnamptogenys. We show experimentally that the guest ants protect their host colonies against agro-predator raids using alkaloid venom that is much more potent than the biting defenses of the host ants. Relatively few guest ants are sufficient to kill raiders that invariably exterminate host nests without a cohabiting guest ant colony. We also show that the odor of guest ants discourages raider scouts from recruiting nestmates to host colonies. Our results imply that Sericomyrmex fungus-growers obtain a net benefit from their costly guest ants behaving as a functional soldier caste to meet lethal threats from agro-predator raiders. The fundamentally different life histories of the agro-predators and guest ants appear to facilitate their coexistence in a negative frequency-dependent manner. Because a guest ant colony is committed for life to a single host colony, the guests would harm their own interests by not defending the host that they continue to exploit. This conditional mutualism is analogous to chronic sickle cell anemia enhancing the resistance to malaria and to episodes in human history when mercenary city defenders offered either net benefits or imposed net costs, depending on the level of threat from invading armies.

  8. Partitioning the impact of environment and spatial structure on alpha and beta components of taxonomic, functional, and phylogenetic diversity in European ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnan, Xavier; Cerdá, Xim; Retana, Javier

    2015-01-01

    We analyze the relative contribution of environmental and spatial variables to the alpha and beta components of taxonomic (TD), phylogenetic (PD), and functional (FD) diversity in ant communities found along different climate and anthropogenic disturbance gradients across western and central Europe, in order to assess the mechanisms structuring ant biodiversity. To this aim we calculated alpha and beta TD, PD, and FD for 349 ant communities, which included a total of 155 ant species; we examined 10 functional traits and phylogenetic relatedness. Variation partitioning was used to examine how much variation in ant diversity was explained by environmental and spatial variables. Autocorrelation in diversity measures and each trait's phylogenetic signal were also analyzed. We found strong autocorrelation in diversity measures. Both environmental and spatial variables significantly contributed to variation in TD, PD, and FD at both alpha and beta scales; spatial structure had the larger influence. The different facets of diversity showed similar patterns along environmental gradients. Environment explained a much larger percentage of variation in FD than in TD or PD. All traits demonstrated strong phylogenetic signals. Our results indicate that environmental filtering and dispersal limitations structure all types of diversity in ant communities. Strong dispersal limitations appear to have led to clustering of TD, PD, and FD in western and central Europe, probably because different historical and evolutionary processes generated different pools of species. Remarkably, these three facets of diversity showed parallel patterns along environmental gradients. Trait-mediated species sorting and niche conservatism appear to structure ant diversity, as evidenced by the fact that more variation was explained for FD and that all traits had strong phylogenetic signals. Since environmental variables explained much more variation in FD than in PD, functional diversity should be a

  9. Latitudinal changes of euphausiid assemblages related to the morphological variability of the sound scattering layer along Baja California, October 1994

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Gómez-Gutiérrez

    1999-03-01

    Full Text Available Latitudinal changes in the euphausiid assemblages were compared to the morphological structure (size and compactness of the sound scattering layer (SSL during ten 24-h surveys made in October 1994 along the west coast of Baja California, México. During October, upwelling was found in the northern area from Punta Eugenia (28°N to Ensenada (30°N dominated by temperate species from the California Current System. In the southern sector of the peninsula, a northward movement of tropical waters transports a tropical zooplankton assemblage near Bahia Magdalena (24°N. The aggregation and the dispersion of the whole SSL (plankton and nekton were investigated using a single beam vertical echosounder, Simrad EY-200, working at 200 kHz and the Hydro Acoustic Data Acquisition System (HADAS that estimates patch variables of density and compactness. The size and shape of the SSL were obtained from the echogram visualization. The euphausiid species composition was obtained using an Isaacs-Kidd midwater trawl, bongo nets, and opening-closing nets. At Ensenada and Punta Eugenia, an area inhabited by a temperate euphausiid assemblage, large and dense SSLs were recorded over the continental shelf (mean sizes were 10-km and 7-km long with mean compactness of 15% and 19%. These regions were dominated by the neritic species Nyctiphanes simplex and the temperate species Nematoscelis difficilis, Euphausia pacifica, and Thysanoessa spinifera. In the southern area, a tropical euphausiid assemblage, dominated by Euphausia eximia, E tenera, and E. distinguenda, inhabits smaller and dispersed SSLs (mean size 5-km long and 11% compactness located in the offshore area. The euphausiid biomass of the most abundant species indicated, N. simplex and N. difficilis, had their highest standing stock in the north (393 and 643 mg C 1000 m-3, with E. eximia in the southern area (186 mg C 1000 m-3. Euphausiid assemblage development in different biological environments, is evidenced

  10. When invasive ants meet: effects of outbreeding on queen performance in the tramp ant Cardiocondyla itsukii.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinze, Jürgen; Frohschammer, Sabine; Bernadou, Abel

    2017-08-18

    Most disturbed habitats in the tropics and subtropics harbor numerous species of invasive ants, and occasionally the same species has been introduced repeatedly from multiple geographical sources. We examined how experimental crossbreeding between sexuals from different populations affects the fitness of queens of the tramp ant Cardiocondyla itsukii, which is widely distributed in Asia and the Pacific Islands. Eggs laid by queens that mated with nestmate males had a higher hatching rate than eggs laid by queens mated to males from neighboring (Hawaii × Kauai) or distant introduced populations (Hawaii/Kauai × Okinawa). Furthermore, inbreeding queens had a longer lifespan and produced a less female-biased offspring sex ratio than queens from allopatric mating. This suggests that the genetic divergence between different source populations may already be so large that in case of multiple invasions eventual crossbreeding might negatively affect the fitness of tramp ants. © 2017 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  11. Exploring coral microbiome assemblages in the South China Sea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, Lin; Tian, Ren-Mao; Zhou, Guowei; Tong, Haoya; Wong, Yue Him; Zhang, Weipeng; Chui, Apple Pui Yi; Xie, James Y; Qiu, Jian-Wen; Ang, Put O; Liu, Sheng; Huang, Hui; Qian, Pei-Yuan

    2018-02-05

    Coral reefs are significant ecosystems. The ecological success of coral reefs relies on not only coral-algal symbiosis but also coral-microbial partnership. However, microbiome assemblages in the South China Sea corals remain largely unexplored. Here, we compared the microbiome assemblages of reef-building corals Galaxea (G. fascicularis) and Montipora (M. venosa, M. peltiformis, M. monasteriata) collected from five different locations in the South China Sea using massively-parallel sequencing of 16S rRNA gene and multivariate analysis. The results indicated that microbiome assemblages for each coral species were unique regardless of location and were different from the corresponding seawater. Host type appeared to drive the coral microbiome assemblages rather than location and seawater. Network analysis was employed to explore coral microbiome co-occurrence patterns, which revealed 61 and 80 co-occurring microbial species assembling the Galaxea and Montipora microbiomes, respectively. Most of these co-occurring microbial species were commonly found in corals and were inferred to play potential roles in host nutrient metabolism; carbon, nitrogen, sulfur cycles; host detoxification; and climate change. These findings suggest that the co-occurring microbial species explored might be essential to maintain the critical coral-microbial partnership. The present study provides new insights into coral microbiome assemblages in the South China Sea.

  12. Public sphere as assemblage: the cultural politics of roadside memorialization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Elaine

    2013-09-01

    This paper investigates contemporary academic accounts of the public sphere. In particular, it takes stock of post-Habermasian public sphere scholarship, and acknowledges a lively and variegated debate concerning the multiple ways in which individuals engage in contemporary political affairs. A critical eye is cast over a range of key insights which have come to establish the parameters of what 'counts' as a/the public sphere, who can be involved, and where and how communicative networks are established. This opens up the conceptual space for re-imagining a/the public sphere as an assemblage. Making use of recent developments in Deleuzian-inspired assemblage theory - most especially drawn from DeLanda's (2006) 'new philosophy of society' - the paper sets out an alternative perspective on the notion of the public sphere, and regards it as a space of connectivity brought into being through a contingent and heterogeneous assemblage of discursive, visual and performative practices. This is mapped out with reference to the cultural politics of roadside memorialization. However, a/the public sphere as an assemblage is not simply a 'social construction' brought into being through a logic of connectivity, but is an emergent and ephemeral space which reflexively nurtures and assembles the cultural politics (and political cultures) of which it is an integral part. The discussion concludes, then, with a consideration of the contribution of assemblage theory to public sphere studies. (Also see Campbell 2009a). © London School of Economics and Political Science 2013.

  13. GlobalAnts: a new database on the geography of ant traits (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Parr, C. L.; Dunn, R. R.; Sanders, N. J.; Weisser, M. D.; Photakis, M.; Bishop, T. R.; Fitzpatrick, M. C.; Arnan, X.; Baccaro, F. B.; Brandao, C. R. F.; Chick, L.; Donoso, D. A.; Fayle, Tom Maurice; Gómez, C.; Grossman, B. F.; Munyai, T. C.; Pacheco, R.; Retana, J.; Robinson, A.; Sagata, K.; Silva, R. R.; Tista, M.; Vasconcelos, H.; Yates, M.; Gibb, H.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 10, č. 1 (2017), s. 5-20 ISSN 1752-458X Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : assemblages * ecology * functional trait Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 1.840, year: 2016 http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/icad.12211/full

  14. How much crude oil can zooplankton ingest? Estimating the quantity of dispersed crude oil defecated by planktonic copepods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Almeda, Rodrigo; Connelly, Tara L.; Buskey, Edward J.

    2016-01-01

    % of the analyzed fecal pellets from three species of copepods and a natural copepod assemblage exposed for 48 h to physically or chemically dispersed light crude oil contained crude oil droplets. Crude oil droplets inside fecal pellets were smaller (median diameter: 2.4-3.5 mu m) than droplets in the physically...

  15. Food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Flores, Rocío Vianey; Aguirre, Armando; Anjos, Diego V.; Neves, Frederico S.; Campos, Ricardo I.; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2018-02-01

    In this study, we conducted a series of experiments in a population of Vachellia constricta (Fabaceae) in the arid Tehuacan-Cuicatláan valley, Mexico, in order to evaluate if the food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions. Using an experiment with artificial nectaries, we observed that ants foraging on food sources with higher concentration of sugar are quicker in finding and attacking potential herbivorous insects. More specifically, we found that the same ant species may increase their defence effectiveness according to the quality of food available. These findings indicate that ant effectiveness in plant protection is context-dependent and may vary according to specific individual characteristics of plants. In addition, we showed that competitively superior ant species tend to dominate plants in periods with high nectar activity, emphasizing the role of the dominance hierarchy structuring ant-plant interactions. However, when high sugar food sources were experimentally available ad libitum, the nocturnal and competitively superior ant species, Camponotus atriceps, did not dominate the artificial nectaries during the day possibly due to limitation of its thermal tolerance. Therefore, temporal niche partitioning may be allowing the coexistence of two dominant ant species (Camponotus rubritorax during the day and C. atriceps at night) on V. constricta. Our findings indicate that the quality of the food source, and temporal shifts in ant dominance are key factors which structure the biotic plant defences in an arid environment.

  16. Genetic clusters and sex-biased gene flow in a unicolonial Formica ant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chapuisat Michel

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Animal societies are diverse, ranging from small family-based groups to extraordinarily large social networks in which many unrelated individuals interact. At the extreme of this continuum, some ant species form unicolonial populations in which workers and queens can move among multiple interconnected nests without eliciting aggression. Although unicoloniality has been mostly studied in invasive ants, it also occurs in some native non-invasive species. Unicoloniality is commonly associated with very high queen number, which may result in levels of relatedness among nestmates being so low as to raise the question of the maintenance of altruism by kin selection in such systems. However, the actual relatedness among cooperating individuals critically depends on effective dispersal and the ensuing pattern of genetic structuring. In order to better understand the evolution of unicoloniality in native non-invasive ants, we investigated the fine-scale population genetic structure and gene flow in three unicolonial populations of the wood ant F. paralugubris. Results The analysis of geo-referenced microsatellite genotypes and mitochondrial haplotypes revealed the presence of cryptic clusters of genetically-differentiated nests in the three populations of F. paralugubris. Because of this spatial genetic heterogeneity, members of the same clusters were moderately but significantly related. The comparison of nuclear (microsatellite and mitochondrial differentiation indicated that effective gene flow was male-biased in all populations. Conclusion The three unicolonial populations exhibited male-biased and mostly local gene flow. The high number of queens per nest, exchanges among neighbouring nests and restricted long-distance gene flow resulted in large clusters of genetically similar nests. The positive relatedness among clustermates suggests that kin selection may still contribute to the maintenance of altruism in unicolonial

  17. Just follow your nose: homing by olfactory cues in ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steck, Kathrin

    2012-04-01

    How is an ant-equipped with a brain that barely exceeds the size of a pinhead-capable of achieving navigational marvels? Even though evidences suggest that navigation is a multimodal process, ants heavily depend on olfactory cues-of pheromonal and non-pheromonal nature-for foraging and orientation. Recent studies have directed their attention to the efficiency of pheromone trail networks. Advances in neurophysiological techniques make it possible to investigate trail pheromone processing in the ant's brain. In addition to relying on pheromone odours, ants also make use of volatiles emanating from the nest surroundings. Deposited in the vicinity of the nest, these home-range markings help the ants to home after a foraging run. Furthermore, olfactory landmarks associated with the nest enhance ants' homing abilities. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Ant tending influences soldier production in a social aphid.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shingleton, A W; Foster, W A

    2000-09-22

    The aphid Pseudoregma sundanica (Van der Goot) (Homoptera: Aphididae) has two defence strategies. It is obligatorily tended by various species of ant and also produces sterile soldiers. We investigated how they allocate their investment in these two strategies. We measured the size, number of soldiers, number and species of tending ant, and number and species of predators in P. sundanica populations. We found that the level of ant tending correlated negatively with soldier investment in P. sundanica. The species of tending ant also influenced soldier investment. We excluded ants from aphid populations and recorded changes in population size and structure over four weeks. Ant exclusion led to population decline and extinction. At the same time, surviving populations showed a significant increase in soldier investment. The data demonstrate that social aphids can adjust their investment in soldiers in direct response to environmental change.

  19. Shaping up: a geometric morphometric approach to assemblage ecomorphology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bower, L M; Piller, K R

    2015-09-01

    This study adopts an ecomorphological approach to test the utility of body shape as a predictor of niche relationships among a stream fish assemblage of the Tickfaw River (Lake Pontchartrain Basin) in southeastern Louisiana, U.S.A. To examine the potential influence of evolutionary constraints, analyses were performed with and without the influence of phylogeny. Fish assemblages were sampled throughout the year, and ecological data (habitat and tropic guild) and body shape (geometric morphometric) data were collected for each fish specimen. Multivariate analyses were performed to examine relationships and differences between body shape and ecological data. Results indicate that a relationship exists between body shape and trophic guild as well as flow regime, but no significant correlation between body shape and substratum was found. Body shape was a reliable indicator of position within assemblage niche space. © 2015 The Fisheries Society of the British Isles.

  20. Dispersal of forest insects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcmanus, M. L.

    1979-01-01

    Dispersal flights of selected species of forest insects which are associated with periodic outbreaks of pests that occur over large contiguous forested areas are discussed. Gypsy moths, spruce budworms, and forest tent caterpillars were studied for their massive migrations in forested areas. Results indicate that large dispersals into forested areas are due to the females, except in the case of the gypsy moth.

  1. Improved new generation dispersants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1993-01-01

    The use of dispersants to combat oil spills has attracted controversy over the years, and there has been a number of accusations of the chemicals involved doing more harm than good. A new study by the International Petroleum Industry Environmental Conservation Association discusses the positive and the negatives of dispersant use to be considered when drawing up spill contingency plans. (author)

  2. Seed dispersal in fens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Middleton, B.; Van Diggelen, R.; Jensen, K.

    2006-01-01

    Question: How does seed dispersal reduce fen isolation and contribute to biodiversity? Location: European and North American fens. Methods: This paper reviews the literature on seed dispersal to fens. Results: Landscape fragmentation may reduce dispersal opportunities thereby isolating fens and reducing genetic exchange. Species in fragmented wetlands may have lower reproductive success, which can lead to biodiversity loss. While fens may have always been relatively isolated from each other, they have become increasingly fragmented in modern times within agricultural and urban landscapes in both Europe and North America. Dispersal by water, animals and wind has been hampered by changes related to development in landscapes surrounding fens. Because the seeds of certain species are long-lived in the seed bank, frequent episodes of dispersal are not always necessary to maintain the biodiversity of fens. However, of particular concern to restoration is that some dominant species, such as the tussock sedge Carex stricta, may not disperse readily between fens. Conclusions: Knowledge of seed dispersal can be used to maintain and restore the biodiversity of fens in fragmented landscapes. Given that development has fragmented landscapes and that this situation is not likely to change, the dispersal of seeds might be enhanced by moving hay or cattle from fens to damaged sites, or by reestablishing lost hydrological connections. ?? IAVS; Opulus Press.

  3. Consuming fire ants reduces northern bobwhite survival and weight gain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, P.E.; Allen, Craig R.; Birge, Hannah E.

    2014-01-01

    Northern bobwhite quail, Colinus virginianus (L.) (Galliformes: Odontophoridae), population declines are well documented, but pinpointing the reasons for these decreases has proven elusive. Bobwhite population declines are attributed primarily to loss of habitat and land use changes. This, however, does not entirely explain population declines in areas intensively managed for bobwhites. Although previous research demonstrates the negative impact of red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on northern bobwhites, the mechanisms underlying this effect are largely unknown. To meet the protein demands of early growth and development, bobwhite chicks predominantly consume small insects, of which ants are a substantial proportion. Fire ants alter ant community dynamics by often reducing native ant diversity and abundance while concurrently increasing the abundance of individuals. Fire ants have negative effects on chicks, but they are also a large potential protein source, making it difficult to disentangle their net effect on bobwhite chicks. To help investigate these effects, we conducted a laboratory experiment to understand (1) whether or not bobwhites consume fire ants, and (2) how the benefits of this consumption compare to the deleterious impacts of bobwhite chick exposure to fire ants. Sixty bobwhite chicks were separated into two groups of 30; one group was provided with starter feed only and the second group was provided with feed and fire ants. Bobwhite chicks were observed feeding on fire ants. Chicks that fed on fire ants had reduced survival and weight gain. Our results show that, while fire ants increase potential food sources for northern bobwhite, their net effect on bobwhite chicks is deleterious. This information will help inform land managers and commercial bobwhite rearing operations.

  4. Cercomacra and related antbirds (Aves, Formicariidae as army ant followers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edwin O. Willis

    1984-01-01

    Full Text Available Cercomacra and Schistocichla antbirds (Formicariidae favor dense foliage and seldom follow army ants for flushed prey, since the ants move through open forest understory as well as through dense zones. Two other lineages, the Drymophila-Hypocnemis lineage (of dense woodland understory and the Formicivora lineage (of dense bushes in dry or semiopen zones, also cannot follow ants regularly through open forest understory.

  5. Do herbivores eavesdrop on ant chemical communication to avoid predation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David J Gonthier

    Full Text Available Strong effects of predator chemical cues on prey are common in aquatic and marine ecosystems, but are thought to be rare in terrestrial systems and specifically for arthropods. For ants, herbivores are hypothesized to eavesdrop on ant chemical communication and thereby avoid predation or confrontation. Here I tested the effect of ant chemical cues on herbivore choice and herbivory. Using Margaridisa sp. flea beetles and leaves from the host tree (Conostegia xalapensis, I performed paired-leaf choice feeding experiments. Coating leaves with crushed ant liquids (Azteca instabilis, exposing leaves to ant patrolling prior to choice tests (A. instabilis and Camponotus textor and comparing leaves from trees with and without A. instabilis nests resulted in more herbivores and herbivory on control (no ant-treatment relative to ant-treatment leaves. In contrast to A. instabilis and C. textor, leaves previously patrolled by Solenopsis geminata had no difference in beetle number and damage compared to control leaves. Altering the time A. instabilis patrolled treatment leaves prior to choice tests (0-, 5-, 30-, 90-, 180-min. revealed treatment effects were only statistically significant after 90- and 180-min. of prior leaf exposure. This study suggests, for two ecologically important and taxonomically diverse genera (Azteca and Camponotus, ant chemical cues have important effects on herbivores and that these effects may be widespread across the ant family. It suggests that the effect of chemical cues on herbivores may only appear after substantial previous ant activity has occurred on plant tissues. Furthermore, it supports the hypothesis that herbivores use ant chemical communication to avoid predation or confrontation with ants.

  6. A Theoretic Basis for IS? The Contribution of ANT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jim Underwood

    2002-11-01

    Full Text Available Representation is a key issue of IS design and operation that is often ignored. Actor-network theory (ANT, a semiotic theory of stakeholders, provides a way of dealing with representation. Combining aspects of ANT and Foucault's discourse theory allows us to include concepts as actors and promises a flexible and durable foundation for IS practice, but ANT itself indicates that the search for a purely theoretical foundation for IS is misguided.

  7. Mass coral bleaching causes biotic homogenization of reef fish assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, Laura E; Graham, Nicholas A J; Pratchett, Morgan S; Eurich, Jacob G; Hoey, Andrew S

    2018-04-06

    Global climate change is altering community composition across many ecosystems due to nonrandom species turnover, typically characterized by the loss of specialist species and increasing similarity of biological communities across spatial scales. As anthropogenic disturbances continue to alter species composition globally, there is a growing need to identify how species responses influence the establishment of distinct assemblages, such that management actions may be appropriately assigned. Here, we use trait-based analyses to compare temporal changes in five complementary indices of reef fish assemblage structure among six taxonomically distinct coral reef habitats exposed to a system-wide thermal stress event. Our results revealed increased taxonomic and functional similarity of previously distinct reef fish assemblages following mass coral bleaching, with changes characterized by subtle, but significant, shifts toward predominance of small-bodied, algal-farming habitat generalists. Furthermore, while the taxonomic or functional richness of fish assemblages did not change across all habitats, an increase in functional originality indicated an overall loss of functional redundancy. We also found that prebleaching coral composition better predicted changes in fish assemblage structure than the magnitude of coral loss. These results emphasize how measures of alpha diversity can mask important changes in the structure and functioning of ecosystems as assemblages reorganize. Our findings also highlight the role of coral species composition in structuring communities and influencing the diversity of responses of reef fishes to disturbance. As new coral species configurations emerge, their desirability will hinge upon the composition of associated species and their capacity to maintain key ecological processes in spite of ongoing disturbances. © 2018 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  8. Habitat specialization in tropical continental shelf demersal fish assemblages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ben M Fitzpatrick

    Full Text Available The implications of shallow water impacts such as fishing and climate change on fish assemblages are generally considered in isolation from the distribution and abundance of these fish assemblages in adjacent deeper waters. We investigate the abundance and length of demersal fish assemblages across a section of tropical continental shelf at Ningaloo Reef, Western Australia, to identify fish and fish habitat relationships across steep gradients in depth and in different benthic habitat types. The assemblage composition of demersal fish were assessed from baited remote underwater stereo-video samples (n = 304 collected from 16 depth and habitat combinations. Samples were collected across a depth range poorly represented in the literature from the fringing reef lagoon (1-10 m depth, down the fore reef slope to the reef base (10-30 m depth then across the adjacent continental shelf (30-110 m depth. Multivariate analyses showed that there were distinctive fish assemblages and different sized fish were associated with each habitat/depth category. Species richness, MaxN and diversity declined with depth, while average length and trophic level increased. The assemblage structure, diversity, size and trophic structure of demersal fishes changes from shallow inshore habitats to deeper water habitats. More habitat specialists (unique species per habitat/depth category were associated with the reef slope and reef base than other habitats, but offshore sponge-dominated habitats and inshore coral-dominated reef also supported unique species. This suggests that marine protected areas in shallow coral-dominated reef habitats may not adequately protect those species whose depth distribution extends beyond shallow habitats, or other significant elements of demersal fish biodiversity. The ontogenetic habitat partitioning which is characteristic of many species, suggests that to maintain entire species life histories it is necessary to protect corridors of

  9. Downstream impacts of dams: shifts in benthic invertivorous fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granzotti, Rafaela Vendrametto; Miranda, Leandro E.; Agostinho, Angelo A.; Gomes, Luiz Carlos

    2018-01-01

    Impoundments alter connectivity, sediment transport and water discharge in rivers and floodplains, affecting recruitment, habitat and resource availability for fish including benthic invertivorous fish, which represent an important link between primary producers and higher trophic levels in tropical aquatic ecosystems. We investigated long-term changes to water regime, water quality, and invertivorous fish assemblages pre and post impoundment in three rivers downstream of Porto Primavera Reservoir in south Brazil: Paraná, Baía and Ivinhema rivers. Impacts were distinct in the Paraná River, which is fully obstructed by the dam, less evident in the Baía River which is partially obstructed by the dam, but absent in the unimpounded Ivinhema River. Changes in water regime were reflected mainly as changes in water-level fluctuation with little effect on timing. Water transparency increased in the Paraná River post impoundment but did not change in the Baía and Ivinhema rivers. Changes in fish assemblages included a decrease in benthic invertivorous fish in the Paraná River and a shift in invertivorous fish assemblage structure in the Baía and Paraná rivers but not in the unimpounded Ivinhema River. Changes in water regime and water transparency, caused by impoundment, directly or indirectly impacted invertivorous fish assemblages. Alterations of fish assemblages following environmental changes have consequences over the entire ecosystem, including a potential decrease in the diversity of mechanisms for energy flow. We suggest that keeping existing unimpounded tributaries free of dams, engineering artificial floods, and intensive management of fish habitat within the floodplain may preserve native fish assemblages and help maintain functionality and ecosystem services in highly impounded rivers.

  10. Patterns in reef fish assemblages: Insights from the Chagos Archipelago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samoilys, Melita; Roche, Ronan; Koldewey, Heather; Turner, John

    2018-01-01

    Understanding the drivers of variability in the composition of fish assemblages across the Indo-Pacific region is crucial to support coral reef ecosystem resilience. Whilst numerous relationships and feedback mechanisms between the functional roles of coral reef fishes and reef benthic composition have been investigated, certain key groups, such as the herbivores, are widely suggested to maintain reefs in a coral-dominated state. Examining links between fishes and reef benthos is complicated by the interactions between natural processes, disturbance events and anthropogenic impacts, particularly fishing pressure. This study examined fish assemblages and associated benthic variables across five atolls within the Chagos Archipelago, where fishing pressure is largely absent, to better understand these relationships. We found high variability in fish assemblages among atolls and sites across the archipelago, especially for key groups such as a suite of grazer-detritivore surgeonfish, and the parrotfishes which varied in density over 40-fold between sites. Differences in fish assemblages were significantly associated with variable levels of both live and recently dead coral cover and rugosity. We suggest these results reflect differing coral recovery trajectories following coral bleaching events and a strong influence of 'bottom-up' control mechanisms on fish assemblages. Species level analyses revealed that Scarus niger, Acanthurus nigrofuscus and Chlorurus strongylocephalos were key species driving differences in fish assemblage structure. Clarifying the trophic roles of herbivorous and detritivorous reef fishes will require species-level studies, which also examine feeding behaviour, to fully understand their contribution in maintaining reef resilience to climate change and fishing impacts.

  11. Phytoplankton Assemblage Patterns in the Southern Mid-Atlantic Bight

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makinen, Carla; Moisan, Tiffany A. (Editor)

    2012-01-01

    As part of the Wallops Coastal Oceans Observing Laboratory (Wa-COOL) Project, we sampled a time-series transect in the southern Mid-Atlantic Bight (MAB) biweekly. Our 2-year time-series data included physical parameters, nutrient concentrations, and chlorophyll a concentrations. A detailed phytoplankton assemblage structure was examined in the second year. During the 2-year study, chlorophyll a concentration (and ocean color satellite imagery) indicated that phytoplankton blooms occurred in January/February during mixing conditions and in early autumn under stratified conditions. The chlorophyll a concentrations ranged from 0.25 microgram 1(exp -1) to 15.49 microgram 1(exp -1) during the 2-year period. We were able to discriminate approximately 116 different species under phase contrast microscopy. Dominant phytoplankton included Skeletonema costatum, Rhizosolenia spp., and Pseudo-nitzschia pungens. In an attempt to determine phytoplankton species competition/succession within the assemblage, we calculated a Shannon Weaver diversity index for our diatom microscopy data. Diatom diversity was greatest during the winter and minimal during the spring. Diatom diversity was also greater at nearshore stations than at offshore stations. Individual genera appeared patchy, with surface and subsurface patches appearing abruptly and persisting for only 1-2 months at a time. The distribution of individual species differed significantly from bulk variables of the assemblage (chlorophyll a ) and total phytoplankton assemblage (cells), which indicates that phytoplankton species may be limited in growth in ways that differ from those of the total assemblage. Our study demonstrated a highly diverse phytoplankton assemblage throughout the year, with opportunistic species dominating during spring and fall in response to seasonal changes in temperature and nutrients in the southern MAB.

  12. Patterns in reef fish assemblages: Insights from the Chagos Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roche, Ronan; Koldewey, Heather; Turner, John

    2018-01-01

    Understanding the drivers of variability in the composition of fish assemblages across the Indo-Pacific region is crucial to support coral reef ecosystem resilience. Whilst numerous relationships and feedback mechanisms between the functional roles of coral reef fishes and reef benthic composition have been investigated, certain key groups, such as the herbivores, are widely suggested to maintain reefs in a coral-dominated state. Examining links between fishes and reef benthos is complicated by the interactions between natural processes, disturbance events and anthropogenic impacts, particularly fishing pressure. This study examined fish assemblages and associated benthic variables across five atolls within the Chagos Archipelago, where fishing pressure is largely absent, to better understand these relationships. We found high variability in fish assemblages among atolls and sites across the archipelago, especially for key groups such as a suite of grazer-detritivore surgeonfish, and the parrotfishes which varied in density over 40-fold between sites. Differences in fish assemblages were significantly associated with variable levels of both live and recently dead coral cover and rugosity. We suggest these results reflect differing coral recovery trajectories following coral bleaching events and a strong influence of ‘bottom-up’ control mechanisms on fish assemblages. Species level analyses revealed that Scarus niger, Acanthurus nigrofuscus and Chlorurus strongylocephalos were key species driving differences in fish assemblage structure. Clarifying the trophic roles of herbivorous and detritivorous reef fishes will require species-level studies, which also examine feeding behaviour, to fully understand their contribution in maintaining reef resilience to climate change and fishing impacts. PMID:29351566

  13. Insecticide transfer efficiency and lethal load in Argentine ants

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hooper-Bui, L.M. [Department of Environmental Science, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 (United States); Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Kwok, E.S.C. [Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Buchholz, B.A., E-mail: buchholz2@llnl.gov [Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94551 (United States); Department of Environmental Toxicology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 (United States); Rust, M.K. [Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Eastmond, D.A. [Department of Cell Biology and Neuroscience, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521 (United States); Vogel, J.S. [Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA 94551 (United States)

    2015-10-15

    Trophallaxis between individual worker ants and the toxicant load in dead and live Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) in colonies exposed to fipronil and hydramethylnon experimental baits were examined using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). About 50% of the content of the crop containing trace levels of {sup 14}C-sucrose, {sup 14}C-hydramethylnon, and {sup 14}C-fipronil was shared between single donor and recipient ants. Dead workers and queens contained significantly more hydramethylnon (122.7 and 22.4 amol/μg ant, respectively) than did live workers and queens (96.3 and 10.4 amol/μg ant, respectively). Dead workers had significantly more fipronil (420.3 amol/μg ant) than did live workers (208.5 amol/μg ant), but dead and live queens had equal fipronil levels (59.5 and 54.3 amol/μg ant, respectively). The distribution of fipronil differed within the bodies of dead and live queens; the highest amounts of fipronil were recovered in the thorax of dead queens whereas live queens had the highest levels in the head. Resurgence of polygynous ant colonies treated with hydramethylnon baits may be explained by queen survival resulting from sublethal doses due to a slowing of trophallaxis throughout the colony. Bait strategies and dose levels for controlling insect pests need to be based on the specific toxicant properties and trophic strategies for targeting the entire colony.

  14. Improved Ant Colony Clustering Algorithm and Its Performance Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Clustering analysis is used in many disciplines and applications; it is an important tool that descriptively identifies homogeneous groups of objects based on attribute values. The ant colony clustering algorithm is a swarm-intelligent method used for clustering problems that is inspired by the behavior of ant colonies that cluster their corpses and sort their larvae. A new abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm using a data combination mechanism is proposed to improve the computational efficiency and accuracy of the ant colony clustering algorithm. The abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm is used to cluster benchmark problems, and its performance is compared with the ant colony clustering algorithm and other methods used in existing literature. Based on similar computational difficulties and complexities, the results show that the abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm produces results that are not only more accurate but also more efficiently determined than the ant colony clustering algorithm and the other methods. Thus, the abstraction ant colony clustering algorithm can be used for efficient multivariate data clustering. PMID:26839533

  15. Insecticide transfer efficiency and lethal load in Argentine ants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hooper-Bui, L.M.; Kwok, E.S.C.; Buchholz, B.A.; Rust, M.K.; Eastmond, D.A.; Vogel, J.S.

    2015-01-01

    Trophallaxis between individual worker ants and the toxicant load in dead and live Argentine ants (Linepithema humile) in colonies exposed to fipronil and hydramethylnon experimental baits were examined using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). About 50% of the content of the crop containing trace levels of 14 C-sucrose, 14 C-hydramethylnon, and 14 C-fipronil was shared between single donor and recipient ants. Dead workers and queens contained significantly more hydramethylnon (122.7 and 22.4 amol/μg ant, respectively) than did live workers and queens (96.3 and 10.4 amol/μg ant, respectively). Dead workers had significantly more fipronil (420.3 amol/μg ant) than did live workers (208.5 amol/μg ant), but dead and live queens had equal fipronil levels (59.5 and 54.3 amol/μg ant, respectively). The distribution of fipronil differed within the bodies of dead and live queens; the highest amounts of fipronil were recovered in the thorax of dead queens whereas live queens had the highest levels in the head. Resurgence of polygynous ant colonies treated with hydramethylnon baits may be explained by queen survival resulting from sublethal doses due to a slowing of trophallaxis throughout the colony. Bait strategies and dose levels for controlling insect pests need to be based on the specific toxicant properties and trophic strategies for targeting the entire colony.

  16. Disease dynamics in a specialized parasite of ant societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Sandra Breum; Ferrari, Matthew; Evans, Harry C.

    2012-01-01

    Coevolution between ant colonies and their rare specialized parasites are intriguing, because lethal infections of workers may correspond to tolerable chronic diseases of colonies, but the parasite adaptations that allow stable coexistence with ants are virtually unknown. We explore the trade......-offs experienced by Ophiocordyceps parasites manipulating ants into dying in nearby graveyards. We used field data from Brazil and Thailand to parameterize and fit a model for the growth rate of graveyards. We show that parasite pressure is much lower than the abundance of ant cadavers suggests...

  17. A classic Late Frasnian chondrichthyan assemblage from southern Belgium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginter, Michał; Gouwy, Sofie; Goolaerts, Stijn

    2017-09-01

    Samples from the Upper Frasnian (Devonian) of Lompret Quarry and Nismes railway section in Dinant Synclinorium, southern Belgium, yielded several chondrichthyan teeth and scales. The teeth belong to three genera: Phoebodus, Cladodoides and Protacrodus. The comparison with selected Late Frasnian chondrichthyan assemblages from the seas between Laurussia and Gondwana revealed substantial local differences of taxonomic composition due to palaeoenvironmental conditions, such as depth, distance to submarine platforms, oxygenation of water, and possibly also temperature. The assemblage from Belgium, with its high frequency of phoebodonts, is the most similar to that from the Ryauzyak section, South Urals, Russia, and the Horse Spring section, Canning Basin, Australia.

  18. Modelling of acid-base titration curves of mineral assemblages

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stamberg Karel

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The modelling of acid-base titration curves of mineral assemblages was studied with respect to basic parameters of their surface sites to be obtained. The known modelling approaches, component additivity (CA and generalized composite (GC, and three types of different assemblages (fucoidic sandstones, sedimentary rock-clay and bentonite-magnetite samples were used. In contrary to GC-approach, application of which was without difficulties, the problem of CA-one consisted in the credibility and accessibility of the parameters characterizing the individual mineralogical components.

  19. [Syagrus romanzoffiana (Arecaceae) seed utilization by ants in a secondary forest in South Brazil].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Silva, Fernanda R; Begnini, Romualdo M; Klier, Vinícius A; Scherer, Karla Z; Lopes, Benedito C; Castellani, Tânia T

    2009-01-01

    Ants can nest in a wide variety of substracts. This paper shows Syagrus romanzoffiana seed utilization by ants in an Atlantic secondary forest. We report 29 seeds occupied by small-bodied ants, with 27 of them showing at least two ant development stages. Although a large number of seeds were sampled, a low level of ant occupation was observed.

  20. Relative effects of disturbance on red imported fire ants and native ant species in a longleaf pine ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Stuble, Katharine L.; Kirkman, L. Katherine; Carroll, C. Ronald

    2011-01-01

    and cases in which non-native species become established in intact (lacking extensive anthropogenic soil disturbance) communities and subsequently diminish the abundance and richness of native species is challenging on the basis of observation alone. The red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta......), an invasive species that occurs throughout much of the southeastern United States, is such an example. Rather than competitively displacing native species, fire ants may become established only in disturbed areas in which native species richness and abundance are already reduced. We used insecticide to reduce......, the abundance of native ants increased to levels comparable to those in control plots after 1 year. Our findings suggest that factors other than large reductions in ant abundance and species density (number of species per unit area) may affect the establishment of fire ants and that the response of native ants...

  1. La escritura como espada ante el machismo

    OpenAIRE

    Rottoli, Sofía

    2016-01-01

    Cuando se trata de expresar una postura que abarque una temática demasiado amplia o controversial, recurrir a la escritura puede ser una buena opción de abordaje. Sobre todo cuando son discusiones que llevan años de vigencia. Las luchas feministas ante la violencia de género no son una excepción. Sus discusiones siempre tuvieron presencia en diversos campos, uno de ellos es la ya mencionada escritura. Centro de Investigación en Lectura y Escritura (CILE)

  2. Ecology: 'Devil's gardens' bedevilled by ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frederickson, Megan E; Greene, Michael J; Gordon, Deborah M

    2005-09-22

    'Devil's gardens' are large stands of trees in the Amazonian rainforest that consist almost entirely of a single species, Duroia hirsuta, and, according to local legend, are cultivated by an evil forest spirit. Here we show that the ant Myrmelachista schumanni, which nests in D. hirsuta stems, creates devil's gardens by poisoning all plants except its host plants with formic acid. By killing these other plants, M. schumanni provides its colonies with abundant nest sites--a long-lasting benefit as colonies can live for 800 years.

  3. Ante-natal ionising radiation and cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1988-01-01

    This editorial comments on the latest reports of the Oxford Survey of Childhood Cancer (now based on Birmingham). With 14759 pairs, the latest survey is over 10-fold larger than the 1958 report and the calculation of fatal childhood cancer rate at one case in 990 ante-natal radiographic examinations is rather larger than the early estimates, in spite of the fetal radiation dose having been halved and the cure rate for childhood leukemia being much improved. Comments are made on the comparisons with bomb survivors, and on the much increased fatal cancer incidence after first trimester radiography. (UK)

  4. Ant Systems for a Dynamic TSP - Ants Caught in a Traffic Jam

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eyckelhof, C.J.; Dorigo, M.; Caro Di, G.; Snoek, M.; Sampels, M.

    2002-01-01

    In this paper we present a new Ants System approach to a dynamic Travelling Salesman Problem. Here the travel times between the cities are subject to change. To handle this dynamism several ways of adapting the pheromone matrix both locally and globally are considered. We show that the strategy of

  5. Nectar Theft and Floral Ant-Repellence: A Link between Nectar Volume and Ant-Repellent Traits?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballantyne, Gavin; Willmer, Pat

    2012-01-01

    As flower visitors, ants rarely benefit a plant. They are poor pollinators, and can also disrupt pollination by deterring other flower visitors, or by stealing nectar. Some plant species therefore possess floral ant-repelling traits. But why do particular species have such traits when others do not? In a dry forest in Costa Rica, of 49 plant species around a third were ant-repellent at very close proximity to a common generalist ant species, usually via repellent pollen. Repellence was positively correlated with the presence of large nectar volumes. Repellent traits affected ant species differently, some influencing the behaviour of just a few species and others producing more generalised ant-repellence. Our results suggest that ant-repellent floral traits may often not be pleiotropic, but instead could have been selected for as a defence against ant thieves in plant species that invest in large volumes of nectar. This conclusion highlights to the importance of research into the cost of nectar production in future studies into ant-flower interactions. PMID:22952793

  6. Partial incompatibility between ants and symbiotic fungi in two sympatric species of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bot, A N; Rehner, S A; Boomsma, J J

    2001-10-01

    We investigate the nature and duration of incompatibility between certain combinations of Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants and symbiotic fungi, taken from sympatric colonies of the same or a related species. Ant-fungus incompatibility appeared to be largely independent of the ant species involved, but could be explained partly by genetic differences among the fungus cultivars. Following current theoretical considerations, we develop a hypothesis, originally proposed by S. A. Frank, that the observed incompatibilities are ultimately due to competitive interactions between genetically different fungal lineages, and we predict that the ants should have evolved mechanisms to prevent such competition between cultivars within a single garden. This requires that the ants are able to recognize unfamiliar fungi, and we show that this is indeed the case. Amplified fragment length polymorphism genotyping further shows that the two sympatric Acromyrmex species share each other's major lineages of cultivar, confirming that horizontal transfer does occasionally take place. We argue and provide some evidence that chemical substances produced by the fungus garden may mediate recognition of alien fungi by the ants. We show that incompatibility between ants and transplanted, genetically different cultivars is indeed due to active killing of the novel cultivar by the ants. This incompatibility disappears when ants are force-fed the novel cultivar for about a week, a result that is consistent with our hypothesis of recognition induced by the resident fungus and eventual replacement of incompatibility compounds during force-feeding.

  7. The importance of ants in cave ecology, with new records and behavioral observations of ants in Arizona caves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert B. Pape

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The importance of ants as elements in cave ecology has been mostly unrecognized. A global list of ant species recorded from caves, compiled from a review of existing literature, is presented. This paper also reviews what is currently known about ants occurring in Arizona (USA caves. The diversity and distribution represented in these records suggests ants are relatively common cave visitors (trogloxenes. A general utilization of caves by ants within both temperate and tropical latitudes may be inferred from this combined evidence. Observations of ant behavior in Arizona caves demonstrate a low level and sporadic, but persistent, use of these habitats and their contained resources by individual ant colonies. Documentation of Neivamyrmex sp. preying on cave-inhabiting arthropods is reported here for the first time. Observations of hypogeic army ants in caves suggests they may not penetrate to great vertical depth in search of prey, but can be persistent occupants in relatively shallow, horizontal sections of caves where they may prey on endemic cave animals. First cave records for ten ant species are reported from Arizona caves. These include two species of Neivamyrmex (N. nigrescens Cresson and Neivamyrmex sp.; Formicidae: Dorylinae, four myrmicines (Pheidole portalensis Wilson, Pheidole cf. porcula Wheeler, Solenopsis aurea Wheeler and Stenamma sp. Westwood, one dolichoderine (Forelius keiferi Wheeler and three formicines (Lasius arizonicus Wheeler, L. sitiens Wilson, and Camponotus sp. Mayr.

  8. Dispersal and metapopulation stability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shaopeng Wang

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Metapopulation dynamics are jointly regulated by local and spatial factors. These factors may affect the dynamics of local populations and of the entire metapopulation differently. Previous studies have shown that dispersal can stabilize local populations; however, as dispersal also tends to increase spatial synchrony, its net effect on metapopulation stability has been controversial. Here we present a simple metapopulation model to study how dispersal, in interaction with other spatial and local processes, affects the temporal variability of metapopulations in a stochastic environment. Our results show that in homogeneous metapopulations, the local stabilizing and spatial synchronizing effects of dispersal cancel each other out, such that dispersal has no effect on metapopulation variability. This result is robust to moderate heterogeneities in local and spatial parameters. When local and spatial dynamics exhibit high heterogeneities, however, dispersal can either stabilize or destabilize metapopulation dynamics through various mechanisms. Our findings have important theoretical and practical implications. We show that dispersal functions as a form of spatial intraspecific mutualism in metapopulation dynamics and that its effect on metapopulation stability is opposite to that of interspecific competition on local community stability. Our results also suggest that conservation corridors should be designed with appreciation of spatial heterogeneities in population dynamics in order to maximize metapopulation stability.

  9. Competition and opportunity shape the reproductive tactics of males in the ant Cardiocondyla obscurior.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sylvia Cremer

    Full Text Available Context-dependent adjustment of mating tactics can drastically increase the mating success of behaviourally flexible animals. We used the ant Cardiocondyla obscurior as a model system to study adaptive adjustment of male mating tactics. This species shows a male diphenism of wingless fighter males and peaceful winged males. Whereas the wingless males stay and exclusively mate in the maternal colony, the mating behaviour of winged males is plastic. They copulate with female sexuals in their natal nests early in life but later disperse in search for sexuals outside. In this study, we observed the nest-leaving behaviour of winged males under different conditions and found that they adaptively adjust the timing of their dispersal to the availability of mating partners, as well as the presence, and even the type of competitors in their natal nests. In colonies with virgin female queens winged males stayed longest when they were the only male in the nest. They left earlier when mating partners were not available or when other males were present. In the presence of wingless, locally mating fighter males, winged males dispersed earlier than in the presence of docile, winged competitors. This suggests that C. obscurior males are capable of estimating their local breeding chances and adaptively adjust their dispersal behaviour in both an opportunistic and a risk-sensitive way, thus showing hitherto unknown behavioural plasticity in social insect males.

  10. ANT tuner retrofit for LEB cavity

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walling, L.; Goren, Y.; Kwiatkowski, S.

    1994-03-01

    This report describes a ferrite tuner design for the LEB cavity that utilizes techniques for bonding ferrite to metallic cooling plates that is utilized in the high-power rf and microwave industry. A test tuner was designed to fit into the existing LEB-built magnet and onto the Grimm LEB Cavity. It will require a new vacuum window in order to attain maximal tuning range and high voltage capability and a new center conductor of longer length and a different vacuum window connection than the Grimm center conductor. However, the new center conductor will be essentially identical to the Grimm center conductor in its basic construction and in the way it connects to the stand for support. The tuner is mechanically very similar to high-power stacked circulators built by ANT of Germany and was designed according to ANT's established engineering and design criteria and SSC LEB tuning and power requirements. The tuner design incorporates thin tiles of ferrite glued using a high-radiation-resistance epoxy to copper-plated stainless steel cooling plates of thickness 6.5 mm with water cooling channels inside the plates. The cooling plates constitute 16 pie-shaped segments arranged in a disk. They are electrically isolated from each other to suppress eddy currents. Five of these disks are arranged in parallel with high-pressure rf contacts between the plates at the outer radius. The end walls are slotted copper-plated stainless steel of thickness 3 mm

  11. Loading pattern optimization using ant colony algorithm

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoareau, Fabrice

    2008-01-01

    Electricite de France (EDF) operates 58 nuclear power plants (NPP), of the Pressurized Water Reactor type. The loading pattern optimization of these NPP is currently done by EDF expert engineers. Within this framework, EDF R and D has developed automatic optimization tools that assist the experts. LOOP is an industrial tool, developed by EDF R and D and based on a simulated annealing algorithm. In order to improve the results of such automatic tools, new optimization methods have to be tested. Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) algorithms are recent methods that have given very good results on combinatorial optimization problems. In order to evaluate the performance of such methods on loading pattern optimization, direct comparisons between LOOP and a mock-up based on the Max-Min Ant System algorithm (a particular variant of ACO algorithms) were made on realistic test-cases. It is shown that the results obtained by the ACO mock-up are very similar to those of LOOP. Future research will consist in improving these encouraging results by using parallelization and by hybridizing the ACO algorithm with local search procedures. (author)

  12. Ant Foraging Behavior for Job Shop Problem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahad Diyana Abdul

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is a new algorithm approach, inspired by the foraging behavior of real ants. It has frequently been applied to many optimization problems and one such problem is in solving the job shop problem (JSP. The JSP is a finite set of jobs processed on a finite set of machine where once a job initiates processing on a given machine, it must complete processing and uninterrupted. In solving the Job Shop Scheduling problem, the process is measure by the amount of time required in completing a job known as a makespan and minimizing the makespan is the main objective of this study. In this paper, we developed an ACO algorithm to minimize the makespan. A real set of problems from a metal company in Johor bahru, producing 20 parts with jobs involving the process of clinching, tapping and power press respectively. The result from this study shows that the proposed ACO heuristics managed to produce a god result in a short time.

  13. Reproduction and dispersal in an ant-associated root aphid community

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ivens, A. B. F.; Kronauer, D. J. C.; Pen, I.; Weissing, F. J.; Boomsma, J. J.

    Clonal organisms with occasional sex are important for our general understanding of the costs and benefits that maintain sexual reproduction. Cyclically parthenogenetic aphids are highly variable in their frequency of sexual reproduction. However, studies have mostly focused on free-living aphids

  14. Dispersal and population structure of a New World predator, the army ant Eciton burchellii

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berghoff, S M; Kronauer, D J C; Edwards, K J

    2008-01-01

    barriers, which might have severe impacts on population structure and lead to population decline. Using nuclear microsatellite markers and mitochondrial sequences, we investigated genetic differentiation in a fragmented population in the Panama Canal area. While nuclear markers showed little...

  15. The effect of diet and opponent size on aggressive interactions involving caribbean crazy ants (Nylanderia fulva.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katherine C Horn

    Full Text Available Biotic interactions are often important in the establishment and spread of invasive species. In particular, competition between introduced and native species can strongly influence the distribution and spread of exotic species and in some cases competition among introduced species can be important. The Caribbean crazy ant, Nylanderia fulva, was recently introduced to the Gulf Coast of Texas, and appears to be spreading inland. It has been hypothesized that competition with the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta, may be an important factor in the spread of crazy ants. We investigated the potential of interspecific competition among these two introduced ants by measuring interspecific aggression between Caribbean crazy ant workers and workers of Solenopsis invicta. Specifically, we examined the effect of body size and diet on individual-level aggressive interactions among crazy ant workers and fire ants. We found that differences in diet did not alter interactions between crazy ant workers from different nests, but carbohydrate level did play an important role in antagonistic interactions with fire ants: crazy ants on low sugar diets were more aggressive and less likely to be killed in aggressive encounters with fire ants. We found that large fire ants engaged in fewer fights with crazy ants than small fire ants, but fire ant size affected neither fire ant nor crazy ant mortality. Overall, crazy ants experienced higher mortality than fire ants after aggressive encounters. Our findings suggest that fire ant workers might outcompete crazy ant workers on an individual level, providing some biotic resistance to crazy ant range expansion. However, this resistance may be overcome by crazy ants that have a restricted sugar intake, which may occur when crazy ants are excluded from resources by fire ants.

  16. Demersal Assemblages on the Soft Bottoms off the Catalan-Levante Coast of the Spanish Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariano García-Rodríguez

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The analysis of 255 bottom trawl samples obtained in annual experimental surveys (2007–2010 along the western Mediterranean shows the existence of five well-defined demersal assemblages that follow a depth distribution: (a upper shelf assemblages, including two assemblages differentiated by the type of substrate (sand-muddy and terrigenous muddy bottoms; (b a middle shelf assemblage; (c an upper slope assemblage; (d a middle slope assemblage. Faunally, they are dominated by fish (37% of 452 total species, followed by crustaceans (22%, molluscs (17%, echinoderms (9%, and other invertebrates (15%. The assemblages identified showed major alterations on the shelf and shelf edge and less pronounced ones on the upper and middle slope. The average diversity values were more or less high, evidencing the high species richness in the western Mediterranean. The identified assemblages may facilitate future multispecies fisheries management based on an ecosystem approach.

  17. The Liana assemblage of a Congolian rainforest : diversity, structure and dynamics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ewango Ekokinya, Corneille

    2010-01-01

    Key words: Liana assemblage, species composition, community, dynamics, canopy openness, Manniophyton fulvum, functional traits, population density, pervasive change.

    This study analyzes the diversity, composition, and dynamics of the liana assemblage of the Ituri rain forest in

  18. Benthic Macroinvertebrate Assemblages in the Near Coastal Zone of Lake Erie

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benthic macroinvertebrate assemblages have been used as indicators of ecological condition because their responses integrate localized environmental conditions of the sediments and overlying water. Assemblages of benthic invertebrates in the near coastal region are of particular...

  19. [Characteristics of ichthyoplankton assemblages in Yangtze Estuary and adjacent waters in spring].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Shu-De; Xian, Wei-Wei; Liu, Dong

    2008-10-01

    Based on the investigation data of ichthyoplankton assemblages and environmental factors in Yangtze Estuary and adjacent waters in May 1999 and 2001, the characteristics of ichthyoplankton assemblages in these areas in spring were studied by using TWINSPAN (two-way indicator species analysis) and CCA (canonical correspondence analysis). A total of 11 540 ichthyoplankton individuals were taxonomically identified, belonging to 11 orders, 18 families and 32 species, of which, Coilia mystus, Engraulis japonicus, Chaeturichthys hexanema, Allanetta bleekeri, and Trachidermis fasciatus were the dominant species. The ichthyoplankton communities were classified into three assemblages by using TWINSPAN, i.e., estuarine assemblage dominated by C. mystus, coastal assemblage dominated by A. bleekeri and T. fasciatus; and shelf assemblage featured by E. japonicus and C. hexanema. The CCA ordination of the interrelations among the three assemblages and their correlations to the environmental variables revealed that salinity, depth, dissolved oxygen, and total suspended particulate matter were the major factors affecting the ichthyoplankton assemblages in the study areas.

  20. Aphid egg protection by ants: a novel aspect of the mutualism between the tree-feeding aphid Stomaphis hirukawai and its attendant ant Lasius productus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuura, Kenji; Yashiro, Toshihisa

    2006-10-01

    Aphids often form mutualistic associations with ants, in which the aphids provide the ants with honeydew and the ants defend the aphids from predators. In this paper, we report aphid egg protection by ants as a novel aspect of the deeply interdependent relationship between a tree-feeding aphid and its attendant ant. The ant Lasius productus harbours oviparous females, males, and eggs of the hinoki cypress-feeding aphid Stomaphis hirukawai in its nests in winter. We investigated the behaviour of ants kept with aphid eggs in petri dishes to examine whether the ants recognise the aphid eggs and tend them or only provide a refuge for the aphids. Workers carried almost all of the aphid eggs into the nest within 24 h. The ants indiscriminately tended aphid eggs collected from their own colonies and those from other ant colonies. The ants cleaned the eggs and piled them up in the nest, and egg tending by ants dramatically increased aphid egg survival rates. Starving the ants showed no significant effect on aphid egg survivorship. Without ants, aphid eggs were rapidly killed by fungi. These results suggested that grooming by the ants protected the aphid eggs, at least, against pathogenic fungi. This hygienic service afforded by the ants seems indispensable for egg survival of these aphids in an environment rich in potentially pathogenic microorganisms.

  1. Learning in the "Platform Society": Disassembling an Educational Data Assemblage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Ben

    2017-01-01

    Schools are increasingly involved in diverse forms of student data collection. This article provides a sociotechnical survey of a data assemblage used in education. ClassDojo is a commercial platform for tracking students' behaviour data in classrooms and a social media network for connecting teachers, students, and parents. The hybridization of…

  2. The distribution patterns of Red Sea Chaetodontid assemblages

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zekeria, ZA; Afeworki, Y; Videler, JJ; Zekeria, A.

    2005-01-01

    1. The occurrence and abundance of butterflyfishes were investigated in northern, central and southern areas of the Eritrean Red Sea coast. Visual census was used to estimate the presence and abundance of the species along 100-metre long transects. 2. The assemblages of buttertlyfishes from the

  3. Temporal variability in epifaunal assemblages associated with temperate gorgonian gardens

    KAUST Repository

    Dias, I.M.; Curdia, Joao; Cunha, M.R.; Santos, M.N.; Carvalho, Susana

    2015-01-01

    The present study is one of the few that investigate the temporal variability of epifaunal assemblages associated with coral species, particularly the octocorals Eunicella gazella and Leptogorgia lusitanica in south Portugal. The results suggest time rather than colony size as a primary driver of the ecological patterns of these assemblages, which were dominated by amphipods, molluscs and polychaetes. Temporal variability was linked to changes in environmental parameters, namely temperature, chlorophyll a and particulate organic carbon. Hence, temporal variability must be taken into account for the design of future biodiversity assessment studies, as different patterns may be observed depending on the sampling time. Associated epifaunal assemblages were consistently dominated by resident species (i.e. species present in all sampling periods) and a peak of rare species was observed in the transition from spring to summer following the increase of seawater temperature. Turnover was particularly high in the transition between the spring and summer periods. In both hosts, turnover was higher in the small sized colonies, which generally harboured less diverse and less abundant assemblages which also differed from those inhabiting larger size colonies. The high levels of diversity associated with gorgonian colonies highlights the need for the conservation of this priority habitat.

  4. The ichthyoplankton assemblage of the Algoa Bay nearshore region ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The ichthyoplankton assemblage of the Algoa Bay nearshore region in relation to coastal zone utilization by juvenile fish. ... The various taxa occurring in the ichthyoplankton are discussed in terms of distribution of adults and juveniles, breeding biology and available information on early life history. The paucity of larvae of ...

  5. Changes in density and composition of algal assemblages in certain ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The water purification plants at Virginia and Bothaville, South Africa, experience problems with cyanobacteria and other algae. Their algal assemblages were studied during 2010 and 2011 to determine the dominant species that may pose problems in purification. Cyanobacteria, diatoms and green algae were the dominant ...

  6. Shikarpur lithic assemblage: New questions regarding Rohri chert blade production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charusmita Gadekar

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Recent excavations at Shikarpur, a fortified Harappan site situated near the Gulf of Kuchchh in Gujarat, Western India, brought to light a large collection of Rohri chert blades.  Chert found in the Rohri hill near Sukkur in Sindh, central Pakistan is distinctive and easily identifiable. The wide distribution of standardized Rohri chert blades is often regarded as a testimony to the Harappan efficiency in long distance trade and craft production.  The possibility of localized production of Rohri chert blades in Gujarat is often negated due to the constraints of raw-material availability.  The absence of Rohri chert working debitage from most of the sites in Gujarat, has lent support to this position. The Shikarpur Rohri blade assemblage however incorporates more than 650 blades, a large fluted blade-core and a few Rohri chert debitage.  These have led the excavators to suggest that some of the blades found at Shikarpur were locally produced from raw materials brought to the site from the Rohri hills.  Typo-technological features of the Rohri chert assemblage from Shikarpur have been analysed in this background. These along with metrical features of the assemblage are compared with Rohri chert assemblages from other major Harappan sites in the region to check the validity of the proposed ‘limited local production’.

  7. Cinema Experiences at School: Assemblages as Encounters with Subjectivities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infante, Marta

    2018-01-01

    The aim of this article is to analyse how 15 students at a public elementary school detach from immobile representations of identity through aesthetic self-expressive work with cinema. Drawing on Deleuze and Guattari's concept of assemblage, I interrogate students' experiences of discrimination and challenge their processes of developing a short…

  8. THE INFLUENCE OF SUBMERGED MACROPHYTES ON SEDIMENTARY DIATOM ASSEMBLAGES(1).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermaire, Jesse C; Prairie, Yves T; Gregory-Eaves, Irene

    2011-12-01

    Submerged macrophytes are a central component of lake ecosystems; however, little is known regarding their long-term response to environmental change. We have examined the potential of diatoms as indicators of past macrophyte biomass. We first sampled periphyton to determine whether habitat was a predictor of diatom assemblage. We then sampled 41 lakes in Quebec, Canada, to evaluate whether whole-lake submerged macrophyte biomass (BiomEpiV) influenced surface sediment diatom assemblages. A multivariate regression tree (MRT) was used to construct a semiquantitative model to reconstruct past macrophyte biomass. We determined that periphytic diatom assemblages on macrophytes were significantly different from those on wood and rocks (ANOSIM R = 0.63, P macrophyte, nutrient-limited lakes (BiomEpiV ≥525 μg · L(-1) ; total phosphorus [TP] macrophyte, nutrient-limited lakes (BiomEpiV macrophytes have a significant influence on diatom community structure and that sedimentary diatom assemblages can be used to infer past macrophyte abundance. © 2011 Phycological Society of America.

  9. UV EXPOSURE OF CORAL ASSEMBLAGES IN THE FLORIDA KEYS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Recent studies have indicated that solar radiation can be a significant stressor of coral assemblages in tropical and subtropical marine environments. Here we review the scientific literature related to the interactions of solar radiation with coral reefs, with emphasis on harm...

  10. Microfloral assemblage, age and paleoenvironment of the Upper ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Microfloral assemblage, age and paleoenvironment of the Upper Cretaceous Patti Formation, southeastern Bida Basin, Nigeria. OJ Ojo, SO Akande. Abstract. No Abstract. Journal of Mining and Geology Vol. 44 (1) 2008: pp. 71-82. Full Text: EMAIL FULL TEXT EMAIL FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD ...

  11. Effects of oil pollution on aquatic macroinvertebrate assemblages in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Macroinvertebrate assemblages from uncontaminated and contaminated sites in the Gamba Complex (Gabon) were compared, the latter sites having been subjected to ongoing oil spills since the 1970s. Vegetation communities surrounding the sites included savannah, shrub–scrub, palm forest, gallery forest and thick ...

  12. Temporal variability in epifaunal assemblages associated with temperate gorgonian gardens

    KAUST Repository

    Dias, I.M.

    2015-10-19

    The present study is one of the few that investigate the temporal variability of epifaunal assemblages associated with coral species, particularly the octocorals Eunicella gazella and Leptogorgia lusitanica in south Portugal. The results suggest time rather than colony size as a primary driver of the ecological patterns of these assemblages, which were dominated by amphipods, molluscs and polychaetes. Temporal variability was linked to changes in environmental parameters, namely temperature, chlorophyll a and particulate organic carbon. Hence, temporal variability must be taken into account for the design of future biodiversity assessment studies, as different patterns may be observed depending on the sampling time. Associated epifaunal assemblages were consistently dominated by resident species (i.e. species present in all sampling periods) and a peak of rare species was observed in the transition from spring to summer following the increase of seawater temperature. Turnover was particularly high in the transition between the spring and summer periods. In both hosts, turnover was higher in the small sized colonies, which generally harboured less diverse and less abundant assemblages which also differed from those inhabiting larger size colonies. The high levels of diversity associated with gorgonian colonies highlights the need for the conservation of this priority habitat.

  13. Insect assemblage and the pollination system in cocoa ecosystems

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SARAH

    2013-02-27

    Feb 27, 2013 ... Key words: Cocoa, pollinators, insect assemblage, Forcipomyia spp, pollination system. INTRODUCTION ... that the ecological prediction of plant reproductive successes and ..... non-interaction between some resident insects and the cocoa plant might be as a result of evolution of floral structure of the ...

  14. The health of benthic diatom assemblages in lower stretch

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    This study examines the ecological state of epilithic diatom assemblages along the lower stretch of Mandakini, a glacier-fed Himalayan river. The diatoms were sampled at four stations during winter and summer, only once in each season. Valve counts were obtained from Naphrax mounts prepared from each sample.

  15. Marine heatwaves and optimal temperatures for microbial assemblage activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Joint, Ian; Smale, Dan A

    2017-02-01

    The response of microbial assemblages to instantaneous temperature change was measured in a seasonal study of the coastal waters of the western English Channel. On 18 occasions between November 1999 and December 2000, bacterial abundance was assessed and temperature responses determined from the incorporation of 3 H leucine, measured in a temperature gradient from 5°C to 38°C. Q 10 values varied, being close to 2 in spring and summer but were >3 in autumn. There was a seasonal pattern in the assemblage optimum temperature (T opt ), which was out of phase with sea surface temperature. In July, highest 3 H-leucine incorporation rates were measured at temperatures that were only 2.8°C greater than ambient sea surface temperature but in winter, T opt was ∼20°C higher than the ambient sea surface temperature. Sea surface temperatures for the adjacent English Channel and Celtic Sea for 1982-2014 have periodically been >3°C higher than climatological mean temperatures. This suggests that discrete periods of anomalously high temperatures might be close to, or exceed, temperatures at which maximum microbial assemblage activity occurs. The frequency and magnitude of marine heatwaves are likely to increase as a consequence of anthropogenic climate change and extreme temperatures may influence the role of bacterial assemblages in biogeochemical processes. © FEMS 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  16. Reef fish and coral assemblages at Maptaput, Rayong Province

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Voravit Cheevaporn

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available This study describes the structure of coral and fish assemblages of a group of small islands and pinnacles in the vicinity of Maptaput deep sea port, Rayong Province, Thailand during 2002. The coral and fish assemblages at Saket Island and nearby pinnacle, Hin-Yai, which are located less than 1 km from the deep sea port, had changed. Living coral cover in 2002 was 8% at Hin-Yai and 4% at Saket Island which decreased from 33% and 64%, respectively in the previous report in 1992. Numbers of coral species at Saket Island decreased from 41 species to 13 species. Acropora spp. that previously dominated the area had nearly disappeared. For fishes, a total of 40 species were found in 2002 the numbers decreased to only 6 species at Saket Island and 36 species at Hin-Yai. Fishes that dominated the area are small pomacentrids. After 1997, the conditions of coral and fish assemblages at Saket Island and Hin-Yai had markedly changed, whereas, the conditions found in the nearby area are much better. Sediment load from port construction was the primary cause of the degradation. This should indicate the adverse effect of sedimentation on coral and reef fish assemblages at Maptaput. Coral communities developed on rock pinnacles west of Maptaput deep-sea port are reported and described herein for the first time.

  17. Response of phytoplankton assemblages isolated for short periods ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The response of phytoplankton assemblages isolated in enclosures for short periods of time was examined in hyper-eutrophic Lake Chivero (Harare, Zimbabwe), to determine the factors that influenced the structure of the phytoplankton community, after noticing a marked decline in the dominance of Microcystis aeruginosa ...

  18. Relationships between structural complexity, coral traits, and reef fish assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Darling, Emily S.; Graham, Nicholas A. J.; Januchowski-Hartley, Fraser A.; Nash, Kirsty L.; Pratchett, Morgan S.; Wilson, Shaun K.

    2017-06-01

    With the ongoing loss of coral cover and the associated flattening of reef architecture, understanding the links between coral habitat and reef fishes is of critical importance. Here, we investigate whether considering coral traits and functional diversity provides new insights into the relationship between structural complexity and reef fish communities, and whether coral traits and community composition can predict structural complexity. Across 157 sites in Seychelles, Maldives, the Chagos Archipelago, and Australia's Great Barrier Reef, we find that structural complexity and reef zone are the strongest and most consistent predictors of reef fish abundance, biomass, species richness, and trophic structure. However, coral traits, diversity, and life histories provided additional predictive power for models of reef fish assemblages, and were key drivers of structural complexity. Our findings highlight that reef complexity relies on living corals—with different traits and life histories—continuing to build carbonate skeletons, and that these nuanced relationships between coral assemblages and habitat complexity can affect the structure of reef fish assemblages. Seascape-level estimates of structural complexity are rapid and cost effective with important implications for the structure and function of fish assemblages, and should be incorporated into monitoring programs.

  19. A costal dispersion model

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rahm, L.; Nyberg, L.; Gidhagen, L.

    1990-01-01

    A dispersion model to be used off costal waters has been developed. The model has been applied to describe the migration of radionuclides in the Baltic sea. A summary of the results is presented here. (K.A.E)

  20. Wave-equation dispersion inversion

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Jing; Feng, Zongcai; Schuster, Gerard T.

    2016-01-01

    We present the theory for wave-equation inversion of dispersion curves, where the misfit function is the sum of the squared differences between the wavenumbers along the predicted and observed dispersion curves. The dispersion curves are obtained

  1. Ultrastructure of antennal sensillae of the samsum ant ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Black ant (Samsum), Pachycodyla sennarrensis, stings and injects venom and inflicts allergy (a rare clinical problem) due to its local and systemic reaction, which is considered as a health hazard amongst Saudi society. Thus, black ant is a source of serious concern for the government and experts as well.

  2. Development of a Bait System for the Pharaoh's Ant, Monomorium ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The infestation of the Pharaoh's ant, Monomorium pharaonis L. is widespread and, sometimes, very serious in homes, hospitals, restaurants, factories, etc. People are helpless because effective baited traps are not available locally, and little has been done locally to develop effective control strategies for these ants.

  3. A preliminary checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    A preliminary species checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of. Kakamega Forest, Western Kenya, is presented. The species list is based on specimens sampled from 1999 until 2009, which are deposited in the ant collection of the Zoological Research Museum Koenig, Bonn, Germany, and the Natural History ...

  4. Ant species richness of fynbos and forest ecosystems in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The ant fauna in fynbos and forest habitats in the southern Cape are compared. There is no significant difference in ant species richness between the two undisturbed habitat types, and the only two species common to both are Acantholepis capensis and Camponotus maculatus. The degree of Hakea sericea infestation in ...

  5. Volatile chemicals in glands of the carpenter ant, Camponotus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Volatile chemicals in glands of the carpenter ant, Camponotus arminius. J.M. Brand, L.V. Mabinya, E.D. Morgan. Abstract. Camponotus arminius is a large black carpenter ant that occurs in tropical and sub-tropical Africa and has extensive foraging trails both in trees and on the ground. Analysis of excised mandibular glands ...

  6. Novel Phialophora species from leaf-cutting ants (tribe Attini)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Attili-Angelis, D.; Duarte, A.P.M.; Pagnocca, F.C.; Nagamoto, N.S.; de Vries, M.; Stielow, J.B.; de Hoog, G.S.

    2014-01-01

    Ants in the tribe Attini (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) maintain a 50 million-year-old lifestyle of co-evolution with symbiotic basidiomycetous fungi which they cultivate as essential source of nutrition. However, other microorganisms have been reported from ant habitats indicating a higher diversity of

  7. Why do house-hunting ants recruit in both directions?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Planqué, R.; Dechaume-Moncharmont, F.-X.; Franks, N.R.; Kovacs, T.; Marshall, J.A.R.

    2007-01-01

    To perform tasks, organisms often use multiple procedures. Explaining the breadth of such behavioural repertoires is not always straightforward. During house hunting, colonies of Temnothorax albipennis ants use a range of behaviours to organise their emigrations. In particular, the ants use tandem

  8. Tracing the rise of ants - out of the ground.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Lucky

    Full Text Available The evolution of ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae is increasingly well-understood due to recent phylogenetic analyses, along with estimates of divergence times and diversification rates. Yet, leading hypotheses regarding the ancestral habitat of ants conflict with new findings that early ant lineages are cryptic and subterranean. Where the ants evolved, in respect to habitat, and how habitat shifts took place over time have not been formally tested. Here, we reconstruct the habitat transitions of crown-group ants through time, focusing on where they nest and forage (in the canopy, litter, or soil. Based on ancestral character reconstructions, we show that in contrast to the current consensus based on verbal arguments that ants evolved in tropical leaf litter, the soil is supported as the ancestral stratum of all ants. We also find subsequent movements up into the litter and, in some cases, into the canopy. Given the global importance of ants, because of their diversity, ecological influence and status as the most successful eusocial lineage on Earth, understanding the early evolution of this lineage provides insight into the factors that made this group so successful today.

  9. In vitro studies of ante-mortem proliferation kinetics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McBride, W.H.; Withers, H.R.

    1986-01-01

    Using K562 human erythroblastoid cells, it was concluded that dose fractionation has no discrepant effect on the ante-mortem proliferation kinetics of doomed cells as opposed to clonogenic cell survival and that effects on ante-mortem proliferation kinetics cannot be solely responsible for the differences in fractionation response between early and late responding tissues. (UK)

  10. Reciprocal genomic evolution in the ant-fungus agricultural symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nygaard, Sanne; Hu, Haofu; Li, Cai

    2016-01-01

    The attine ant-fungus agricultural symbiosis evolved over tens of millions of years, producing complex societies with industrial-scale farming analogous to that of humans. Here we document reciprocal shifts in the genomes and transcriptomes of seven fungus-farming ant species and their fungal...

  11. Life-Histories of Sub-Arctic Ants

    OpenAIRE

    Heinze, Jürgen

    1993-01-01

    Ant species belonging to seven genera occur in habitats near the tree line in the Northern Hemisphere. An analysis of colony founding strategies suggests that in addition to physiological cold resistance, behavioral and sociometric adaptations might be important for survival and propagation of ants in subarctic biomes.

  12. Studies of laboulbeniales (Fungi, Ascomycota) on myrmica ants (II)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Haelewaters, Danny; Boer, Peter; Gort, Gerrit; Noordijk, Jinze

    2015-01-01

    One group of important insect parasites are the Laboulbeniales (Ascomycota), microscopic fungi that live attached to the exterior of their hosts, mainly beetles, but also mites, millipedes, earwigs, and ants. Rickia wasmannii is a common fungus in Europe and is limited to the ant genus Myrmica

  13. ADAPTIVE ANT COLONY OPTIMIZATION BASED GRADIENT FOR EDGE DETECTION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Febri Liantoni

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Ant Colony Optimization (ACO is a nature-inspired optimization algorithm which is motivated by ants foraging behavior. Due to its favorable advantages, ACO has been widely used to solve several NP-hard problems, including edge detection. Since ACO initially distributes ants at random, it may cause imbalance ant distribution which later affects path discovery process. In this paper an adaptive ACO is proposed to optimize edge detection by adaptively distributing ant according to gradient analysis. Ants are adaptively distributed according to gradient ratio of each image regions. Region which has bigger gradient ratio, will have bigger number of ant distribution. Experiments are conducted using images from various datasets. Precision and recall are used to quantitatively evaluate performance of the proposed algorithm. Precision and recall of adaptive ACO reaches 76.98 % and 96.8 %. Whereas highest precision and recall for standard ACO are 69.74 % and 74.85 %. Experimental results show that the adaptive ACO outperforms standard ACO which randomly distributes ants.

  14. Patterns of male parentage in the fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Villesen, Palle; Boomsma, JJ

    2003-01-01

    Ant queens from eight species, covering three genera of lower and two genera of higher attine ants, have exclusively or predominantly single mating. The ensuing full-sib colonies thus have a strong potential reproductive conflict between the queen and the workers over male production...

  15. Odorous house ants (Tapinoma sessile as back-seat drivers of localized ant decline in urban habitats.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Salyer

    Full Text Available Invasive species and habitat disturbance threaten biodiversity worldwide by modifying ecosystem performance and displacing native organisms. Similar homogenization impacts manifest locally when urbanization forces native species to relocate or reinvade perpetually altered habitat. This study investigated correlations between ant richness and abundance in response to urbanization and the nearby presence of invasive ant species, odorous house ants (Tapinoma sessile, within its native region. Surveying localized ant composition within natural, semi-natural, and urban habitat supported efforts to determine whether T. sessile appear to be primary (drivers threats as instigators or secondary (passengers threats as inheritors of indigenous ant decline. Sampling 180 sites, evenly split between all habitats with and without T. sessile present, yielded 45 total species. Although urbanization and T. sessile presence factors were significantly linked to ant decline, their interaction correlated to the greatest reduction of total ant richness (74% and abundance (81%. Total richness appeared to decrease from 27 species to 18 when natural habitat is urbanized and from 18 species to 7 with T. sessile present in urban plots. Odorous house ant presence minimally influenced ant communities within natural and semi-natural habitat, highlighting the importance of habitat alteration and T. sessile presence interactions. Results suggest urbanization releases T. sessile from unknown constraints by decreasing ant richness and competition. Within urban environment, T. sessile are pre-adapted to quickly exploit new resources and grow to supercolony strength wherein T. sessile drive adjacent biodiversity loss. Odorous house ants act as passengers and drivers of ecological change throughout different phases of urban 'invasion'. This progression through surviving habitat alteration, exploiting new resources, thriving, and further reducing interspecific competition supports a

  16. Nematode assemblages in the rhizosphere of spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) depended on fertilisation and plant growth phase

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Mette Vestergård

    2004-01-01

    rhizosphere; nitrogen and phosphorus fertilisation; nematode assemblages; plant parasites; barley......rhizosphere; nitrogen and phosphorus fertilisation; nematode assemblages; plant parasites; barley...

  17. Reactimeter dispersion equation

    OpenAIRE

    A.G. Yuferov

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this work is to derive and analyze a reactimeter metrological model in the form of the dispersion equation which connects reactimeter input/output signal dispersions with superimposed random noise at the inlet. It is proposed to standardize the reactimeter equation form, presenting the main reactimeter computing unit by a convolution equation. Hence, the reactimeter metrological characteristics are completely determined by this unit hardware function which represents a transient re...

  18. Improving the energy efficiency of mine fan assemblages

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Souza, Euler

    2015-01-01

    Energy associated with ventilating an underground operation comprises a significant portion of a mine operation's base energy demand and is consequently responsible for a large percentage of the total operating costs. Ventilation systems may account from 25 to 40% of the total energy costs and 40–50% of the energy consumption of a mine operation. Fans are the most important mechanical devices used to ventilate underground mines and the total fan power installed in a single mine operation can easily exceed 10,000 kW. Investigations of a number of mine main fan installations have determined their assemblage to be, in general, very energy inefficient. The author has found that 40–80% of the energy consumed by a main fan is used to overcome the resistance of fan assemblage components. This paper presents how engineering design principles can be applied to improve the performance and efficiency of fan installations, resulting in substantial reductions in power consumption, operating cost and greenhouse gas emissions. A detailed case study is presented to demonstrate that, by designing fan assemblages using proper engineering concepts of fluid physics and industrial ventilation design, main fan systems will operate at efficiencies well above 80–90% (compared to common operating efficiencies of between 20 and 65%), resulting in a drastic reduction in a mine's overall costs and base electrical and energy loads. - Highlights: • Increases in fan assemblage efficiencies with minimum capital investment. • Improved designs for substantial fan power and operating cost savings. • General solutions and tactics for improving existing main fan installations. • Case study presented to demonstrate proper design of fan assemblages.

  19. Depth as an organizer of fish assemblages in floodplain lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, L.E.

    2011-01-01

    Depth reduction is a natural process in floodplain lakes, but in many basins has been accelerated by anthropogenic disturbances. A diverse set of 42 floodplain lakes in the Yazoo River Basin (Mississippi, USA) was examined to test the hypothesis of whether depth reduction was a key determinant of water quality and fish assemblage structure. Single and multiple variable analyses were applied to 10 commonly monitored water variables and 54 fish species. Results showed strong associations between depth and water characteristics, and between depth and fish assemblages. Deep lakes provided less variable environments, clearer water, and a wider range of microhabitats than shallow lakes. The greater environmental stability was reflected by the dominant species in the assemblages, which included a broader representation of large-body species, species less tolerant of extreme water quality, and more predators. Stability in deep lakes was further reflected by reduced among-lake variability in taxa representation. Fish assemblages in shallow lakes were more variable than deep lakes, and commonly dominated by opportunistic species that have early maturity, extended breeding seasons, small adult size, and short lifespan. Depth is a causal factor that drives many physical and chemical variables that contribute to organizing fish assemblages in floodplain lakes. Thus, correlations between fish and water transparency, temperature, oxygen, trophic state, habitat structure, and other environmental descriptors may ultimately be totally or partly regulated by depth. In basins undergoing rapid anthropogenic modifications, local changes forced by depth reductions may be expected to eliminate species available from the regional pool and could have considerable ecological implications. ?? 2010 Springer Basel AG (outside the USA).

  20. Fickian dispersion is anomalous

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cushman, John H.; O'Malley, Dan

    2015-12-01

    The thesis put forward here is that the occurrence of Fickian dispersion in geophysical settings is a rare event and consequently should be labeled as anomalous. What people classically call anomalous is really the norm. In a Lagrangian setting, a process with mean square displacement which is proportional to time is generally labeled as Fickian dispersion. With a number of counter examples we show why this definition is fraught with difficulty. In a related discussion, we show an infinite second moment does not necessarily imply the process is super dispersive. By employing a rigorous mathematical definition of Fickian dispersion we illustrate why it is so hard to find a Fickian process. We go on to employ a number of renormalization group approaches to classify non-Fickian dispersive behavior. Scaling laws for the probability density function for a dispersive process, the distribution for the first passage times, the mean first passage time, and the finite-size Lyapunov exponent are presented for fixed points of both deterministic and stochastic renormalization group operators. The fixed points of the renormalization group operators are p-self-similar processes. A generalized renormalization group operator is introduced whose fixed points form a set of generalized self-similar processes. Power-law clocks are introduced to examine multi-scaling behavior. Several examples of these ideas are presented and discussed.

  1. Eurajoki Olkiluoto study on species of ground beetles and ants 2008

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santaharju, J.; Helminen, S.-L.; Yrjoelae, R.

    2009-02-01

    beetles and ants found in the pitfall trap study represented a quite usual range of species for southern Finland and no rare or endangered species were detected amongst the individuals defined to their particular species. The number of individual ants appeared to be higher in biotopes that were predominantly forested with conifers but as far as the amount of species was concerned, the dispersion between different biotopes was great. The amounts of species and individuals concerning the ground beetles were higher in open field-and meadow habitats. The differences in sizes amongst the ground beetles are remarkable. The weight of a large individual Carabus hortensis is the same as the weight of several individuals of smaller species together. These species, together with Pterostichus niger and Patrobus atrorufus, make up the majority of the communities of ground beetles in Olkiluoto, both in numbers and in weight. (orig.)

  2. Eurajoki Olkiluoto study on species of ground beetles and ants 2008

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Santaharju, J.; Helminen, S.-L.; Yrjoelae, R. (Environmental Research Yrjoelae Ltd, Helsinki (Finland))

    2009-02-15

    beetles and ants found in the pitfall trap study represented a quite usual range of species for southern Finland and no rare or endangered species were detected amongst the individuals defined to their particular species. The number of individual ants appeared to be higher in biotopes that were predominantly forested with conifers but as far as the amount of species was concerned, the dispersion between different biotopes was great. The amounts of species and individuals concerning the ground beetles were higher in open field-and meadow habitats. The differences in sizes amongst the ground beetles are remarkable. The weight of a large individual Carabus hortensis is the same as the weight of several individuals of smaller species together. These species, together with Pterostichus niger and Patrobus atrorufus, make up the majority of the communities of ground beetles in Olkiluoto, both in numbers and in weight. (orig.)

  3. Weaver Ants to Control Fruit Fly Damage to Tanzanian Mangoes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirkegaard, Nina

    in Australia and West Africa. In this study, small scale farmers did not think weaver ants protected their mangoes from fruit flies. Observational studies confirmed the farmers’ views. No volatile compounds, likely to be responsible for the weaver ants’ deterrent effect, were identified. This study focused...... mangoes varied a lot with zero infestation in some fruits and more than 100 pupae emerging from other fruits, indicating that other factors than the presence of weaver ants affect the fruit flies’ decision on where to oviposit. It was not uncommon for farmers to place newly harvested mangoes below mango...... not shown to be effectively deterring fruit flies, there is no great motivation for farmers to adopt weaver ants. Assuming the weaver ants could be managed in a way that made weaver ants deter fruit flies effectively there are still some economic aspects which should be studied further. It is necessary...

  4. Behind every great ant, there is a great gut

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Poulsen, Michael; Sapountzis, Panagiotis

    2012-01-01

    on the potential contribution of the ants’ gut symbionts. This issue of Molecular Ecology contains a study by Anderson et al. (2012), who take a comparative approach to explore the link between trophic levels and ant microbiomes, specifically, to address three main questions: (i) Do closely related herbivorous...... conserved gut microbiomes, suggesting symbiont functions that directly relate to dietary preference of the ant host. These findings suggest an ecological role of gut symbionts in ants, for example, in metabolism and/or protection, and the comparative approach taken supports a model of co-evolution between...... ant species and specific core symbiont microbiomes. This study, thereby, highlights the omnipresence and importance of gut symbioses—also in the Hymenoptera—and suggests that these hitherto overlooked microbes likely have contributed to the ecological success of the ants....

  5. Endophytic fungi reduce leaf-cutting ant damage to seedlings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bittleston, L. S.; Brockmann, F.; Wcislo, W.; Van Bael, S. A.

    2011-01-01

    Our study examines how the mutualism between Atta colombica leaf-cutting ants and their cultivated fungus is influenced by the presence of diverse foliar endophytic fungi (endophytes) at high densities in tropical leaf tissues. We conducted laboratory choice trials in which ant colonies chose between Cordia alliodora seedlings with high (Ehigh) or low (Elow) densities of endophytes. The Ehigh seedlings contained 5.5 times higher endophyte content and a greater diversity of fungal morphospecies than the Elow treatment, and endophyte content was not correlated with leaf toughness or thickness. Leaf-cutting ants cut over 2.5 times the leaf area from Elow relative to Ehigh seedlings and had a tendency to recruit more ants to Elow plants. Our findings suggest that leaf-cutting ants may incur costs from cutting and processing leaves with high endophyte loads, which could impact Neotropical forests by causing variable damage rates within plant communities. PMID:20610420

  6. Egg-laying butterflies distinguish predaceous ants by sight.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sendoya, Sebastián F; Freitas, André V L; Oliveira, Paulo S

    2009-07-01

    Information about predation risks is critical for herbivorous insects, and natural selection favors their ability to detect predators before oviposition and to select enemy-free foliage when offspring mortality risk is high. Food plants are selected by ovipositing butterflies, and offspring survival frequently varies among plants because of variation in the presence of predators. Eunica bechina butterflies oviposit on Caryocar brasiliense, an ant-defended plant. Experiments with dried Camponotus and Cephalotes ants pinned to leaves revealed that butterflies use ant size and form as visual cues to avoid ovipositing on plant parts occupied by ants more likely to kill larval offspring. Presence of sap-sucking bugs did not affect butterfly oviposition. This is the first demonstration that visual recognition of predators can mediate egg-laying decisions by an insect herbivore and that an insect will discriminate among different species of potential predators. This unusual behavioral capability permits specialization on a risky, ant-defended food plant.

  7. Middle-Upper Triassic and Middle Jurassic tetrapod track assemblages of southern Tunisia, Sahara Platform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niedźwiedzki, Grzegorz; Soussi, Mohamed; Boukhalfa, Kamel; Gierliński, Gerard D.

    2017-05-01

    Three tetrapod track assemblages from the early-middle Mesozoic of southern Tunisia are reported. The strata exposed at the Tejra 2 clay-pit near the Medenine and Rehach site, located in the vicinity of Kirchaou, contain the first tetrapod tracks found in the Triassic of Tunisia. The Middle Jurassic (early Aalenian) dinosaur tracks are reported from the Mestaoua plain near Tataouine. In the Middle Triassic outcrop of the Tejra 2 clay-pit, tridactyl tracks of small and medium-sized dinosauromorphs, were discovered. These tracks represent the oldest evidence of dinosaur-lineage elements in the Triassic deposits of Tunisia. Similar tracks have been described from the Middle Triassic of Argentina, France and Morocco. An isolated set of the manus and pes of a quadrupedal tetrapod discovered in Late Triassic Rehach tracksite is referred to a therapsid tracemaker. The Middle Jurassic deposits of the Mestaoua plain reveal small and large tridactyl theropod dinosaur tracks (Theropoda track indet. A-C). Based on comparison with the abundant record of Triassic tetrapod ichnofossils from Europe and North America, the ichnofauna described here indicates the presence of a therapsid-dinosauromorph ichnoassociation (without typical Chirotheriidae tracks) in the Middle and Late Triassic, which sheds light on the dispersal of the Middle-Upper Triassic tetrapod ichnofaunas in this part of Gondwana. The reported Middle Jurassic ichnofauna show close similarities to dinosaur track assemblages from the Lower and Middle Jurassic of northwestern Africa, North America, Europe and also southeastern Asia. Sedimentological and lithostratigraphic data of each new tracksite have been defined on published data and new observations. Taken together, these discoveries present a tantalizing window into the evolutionary history of tetrapods from the Triassic and Jurassic of southern Tunisia. Given the limited early Mesozoic tetrapod record from the region, these discoveries are of both temporal and

  8. ANT International chemistry update and best practices

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nordmann, F.; Odar, S.; Venz, H.; Kysela, J.; Ruehle, W.; Riess, R.

    2010-01-01

    There is an increasing number of Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) in various countries. Their chemistry practices are different due to the variety of designs and experiences while in the past the view was more monolithic. This is allowing a very rich experience that is extremely difficult to fully be aware of. ANT International is now collecting and evaluating these data as well as related R and D Information. This allows interested parties to have an easier access to the various sources of information. The chemistry experts associated to ANT International have been gathering a comprehensive detailed view of: The numerous laboratory data gained all over the world during the past decades; The extensive plant operating experiences with various types of chemistry strategies, crosschecked for various types of reactors designs and materials; An experienced international knowledge able to give the comprehensive overview that young engineers now in charge of many other activities are unable to fully cover. This paper gives the core conclusions of the detailed ANT International reports and results that have recently been gathered in the area of chemistry. It particularly covers: The primary water chemistry and its relation with radionuclides, dose rates and fuel behaviour; The secondary water chemistry focusing on its rationale selection depending on materials, design and other constraints; The start up and shutdown chemistry with it large variety of practices hardly understandable even for some experts; and, The maintenance remedies such as decontamination, steam generator cleaning and its alternate options. Various types of Reactor designs (PWR, VVER, BWR, CANDU®) are considered. The different materials, for example the impact of steam generator tubing and its evolution on the secondary water chemistry rationale or on the radioactivity built-up in the primary coolant, are described. The ways to improve the plant operation with a long term reliability as well as the most

  9. The regulation of ant colony foraging activity without spatial information.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Balaji Prabhakar

    Full Text Available Many dynamical networks, such as the ones that produce the collective behavior of social insects, operate without any central control, instead arising from local interactions among individuals. A well-studied example is the formation of recruitment trails in ant colonies, but many ant species do not use pheromone trails. We present a model of the regulation of foraging by harvester ant (Pogonomyrmex barbatus colonies. This species forages for scattered seeds that one ant can retrieve on its own, so there is no need for spatial information such as pheromone trails that lead ants to specific locations. Previous work shows that colony foraging activity, the rate at which ants go out to search individually for seeds, is regulated in response to current food availability throughout the colony's foraging area. Ants use the rate of brief antennal contacts inside the nest between foragers returning with food and outgoing foragers available to leave the nest on the next foraging trip. Here we present a feedback-based algorithm that captures the main features of data from field experiments in which the rate of returning foragers was manipulated. The algorithm draws on our finding that the distribution of intervals between successive ants returning to the nest is a Poisson process. We fitted the parameter that estimates the effect of each returning forager on the rate at which outgoing foragers leave the nest. We found that correlations between observed rates of returning foragers and simulated rates of outgoing foragers, using our model, were similar to those in the data. Our simple stochastic model shows how the regulation of ant colony foraging can operate without spatial information, describing a process at the level of individual ants that predicts the overall foraging activity of the colony.

  10. A quantification of predation rates, indirect positive effects on plants, and foraging variation of the giant tropical ant, Paraponera clavata

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee A. Dyer

    2002-09-01

    Full Text Available While a clear consensus is emerging that predators can play a major role in shaping terrestrial communities, basic natural history observations and simple quantifications of predation rates in complex terrestrial systems are lacking. The potential indirect effect of a large predatory ant, Paraponera clavata Fabricius (Formicidae: Ponerinae, on herbivores was determined on rainforest trees at La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica and Barro Colorado Island in Panama. Prey and other food brought back to nests by 75 colonies of P. clavata were quantified, taking into account temporal, seasonal, and microhabitat variation for both foraging activity and composition of foraging booty. The dispersion and density of ant colonies and combined density with the mean amounts of prey retrieval were used to calculate rates of predation per hectare in the two forests. In addition, herbivory was measured on trees containing P. clavata and on trees where the ants were not foraging. Colonies at La Selva brought back significantly more nectar plus prey than those at Barro Colorado Island, but foraging patterns were similar in the two forests. At both forests, the ants were more active at night, and there was no significant seasonal or colonial variation in consumption of nectar, composition of foraging booty, and overall activity of the colonies. At La Selva, trees containing P. clavata colonies had the same levels of folivory as nearest neighbor trees without P. clavata but had significantly lower folivory than randomly selected trees. Predation by this ant was high in both forests, despite its omnivorous diet. This insect predator is part of potentially important top-down controls in these wet and moist forests.

  11. Colony structure in a plant-ant: behavioural, chemical and genetic study of polydomy in Cataulacus mckeyi (Myrmicinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debout, Gabriel; Provost, Erick; Renucci, Marielle; Tirard, Alain; Schatz, Bertrand; McKey, Doyle

    2003-10-01

    Social organisation of colonies of obligate plant-ants can affect their interaction with myrmecophyte hosts and with other ants competing for the resources they offer. An important parameter of social organisation is whether nest sites of a colony include one or several host individuals. We determined colony boundaries in a plant-ant associated with the rainforest understorey tree Leonardoxa africana subsp. africana, found in coastal forests of Cameroon (Central Africa). This myrmecophyte is strictly associated with two ants, Petalomyrmex phylax and Cataulacus mckeyi. Plants provide food and nesting sites for P. phylax, which protects young leaves against insect herbivores. This mutualism is often parasitised by C. mckeyi, which uses but does not protect the host. The presence of C. mckeyi on a tree excludes the mutualistic ant. Because Petalomyrmex-occupied trees are better protected, their growth and survival are superior to those of Cataulacus-occupied trees, giving P. phylax an advantage in occupation of nest sites. C. mckeyi often colonises trees that have lost their initial associate P. phylax, as a result of injury to the tree caused by disturbance. Polydomy may allow C. mckeyi to occupy small clumps of trees, without the necessity of claustral colony foundation in each tree. Investigating both the proximate (behavioural repertoire, colony odour) and the ultimate factors (genetic structure) that may influence colony closure, we precisely defined colony boundaries. We show that colonies of C. mckeyi are monogynous and facultatively polydomous, i.e. a colony occupies one to several Leonardoxa trees. Workers do not produce males. Thus, the hypothesis that polydomy allows workers in queenless nests to evade queen control for their reproduction is not supported in this instance. This particular colony structure may confer on C. mckeyi an advantage in short-distance dispersal, and this could help explain its persistence within the dynamic Leonardoxa system.

  12. Protocol for Monitoring Fish Assemblages in Pacific Northwest National Parks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brenkman, Samuel J.; Connolly, Patrick J.

    2008-01-01

    Rivers and streams that drain from Olympic, Mount Rainier, and North Cascades National Parks are among the most protected corridors in the lower 48 States, and represent some of the largest tracts of contiguous, undisturbed habitat throughout the range of several key fish species of the Pacific Northwest. These watersheds are of high regional importance as freshwater habitat sanctuaries for native fish, where habitat conditions are characterized as having little to no disturbance from development, channelization, impervious surfaces, roads, diversions, or hydroelectric projects. Fishery resources are of high ecological and cultural importance in Pacific Northwest National Parks, and significantly contribute to economically important recreational, commercial, and tribal fisheries. This protocol describes procedures to monitor trends in fish assemblages, fish abundance, and water temperature in eight rivers and five wadeable streams in Olympic National Park during summer months, and is based on 4 years of field testing. Fish assemblages link freshwater, marine, and terrestrial ecosystems. They also serve as focal resources of national parks and are excellent indicators of ecological conditions of rivers and streams. Despite the vital importance of native anadromous and resident fish populations, there is no existing monitoring program for fish assemblages in the North Coast and Cascades Network. Specific monitoring objectives of this protocol are to determine seasonal and annual trends in: (1) fish species composition, (2) timing of migration of adult fish, (3) relative abundance, (4) age and size structure, (5) extent of non-native and hatchery fish, and (6) water temperature. To detect seasonal and annual trends in fish assemblages in reference sites, we rely on repeated and consistent annual sampling at each monitoring site. The general rationale for the repeated sampling of reference sites is to ensure that we account for the high interannual variability in fish

  13. Immune defense in leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Armitage, Sophie A O; Broch, Jens F; Marín, Hermogenes Fernández

    2011-01-01

    To ameliorate the impact of disease, social insects combine individual innate immune defenses with collective social defenses. This implies that there are different levels of selection acting on investment in immunity, each with their own trade-offs. We present the results of a cross......-fostering experiment designed to address the influences of genotype and social rearing environment upon individual and social immune defenses. We used a multiply mating leaf-cutting ant, enabling us to test for patriline effects within a colony, as well as cross-colony matriline effects. The worker's father influenced...... both individual innate immunity (constitutive antibacterial activity) and the size of the metapleural gland, which secretes antimicrobial compounds and functions in individual and social defense, indicating multiple mating could have important consequences for both defense types. However, the primarily...

  14. Ex-ante Evaluation von Investitionsalternativen

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Müller

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Der Beitrag zeigt, wie mit Hilfe der Methode der agentenbasierten Modellierung und Simulation (ABMS ein Beitrag zur ex-ante Policy-Beratung geleistet werden kann. Anhand eines exemplarischen Anwendungsfalls, der VISIBLE Simulationsumgebung („Virtual Simulation Lab for the Analysis of Investments in Learning and Education“, diskutieren wir die Konsequenzen unterschiedlicher Kooperationsförderinstrumente für Wissensdiffusionsprozesse in Netzwerken am Beispiel der Region Heilbronn-Franken. Die Simulationsergebnisse zeigen, dass die strukturelle Konfiguration eines regionalen Innovationssystems eine zentrale Bedeutung für die Gestaltung von Kooperationsfördermaßnahmen hat und dass Interventionen, die darauf abzielen, Wissenstransfer zwischen den Akteuren anzuregen, genau die entgegengesetzten Wirkungen entfalten können.

  15. Swarm controlled emergence for ant clustering

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Scheidler, Alexander; Merkle, Daniel; Middendorf, Martin

    2013-01-01

    .g. moving robots, and clustering algorithms. Design/methodology/approach: Different types of control agents for that ant clustering model are designed by introducing slight changes to the behavioural rules of the normal agents. The clustering behaviour of the resulting swarms is investigated by extensive...... for future research to investigate the application of the method in other swarm systems. Swarm controlled emergence might be applied to control emergent effects in computing systems that consist of many autonomous components which make decentralized decisions based on local information. Practical...... simulation studies. Findings: It is shown that complex behavior can emerge in systems with two types of agents (normal agents and control agents). For a particular behavior of the control agents, an interesting swarm size dependent effect was found. The behaviour prevents clustering when the number...

  16. Discrimination Behavior in the Supercolonial Pharaoh Ant

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pontieri, Luigi

    The majority of eusocial insect species live in small, kin structured colonies that are mutually aggressive and rarely interact. By contrast, a restricted group of ant species show a peculiar social organization called unicoloniality, where colonies can grow to vast networks of geographically...... and genetic distance between colony pairs, further confirming the important role of endogenous cues in the nestmate recognition of this species. The third chapter presents a methodological study on the best procedures for identifying chemical compounds used for nestmate recognition in social insects. We first...... evaluated the power of different combinations of data transformation and chemical distance calculation in differentiating between true nestmate recognition (NMR) cues and other compounds. We found that particular combinations of statistical procedures are more effective in differentiating NMR cues from...

  17. Inter-assemblage facilitation: the functional diversity of cavity-producing beetles drives the size diversity of cavity-nesting bees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sydenham, Markus A K; Häusler, Lise D; Moe, Stein R; Eldegard, Katrine

    2016-01-01

    Inter-specific interactions are important drivers and maintainers of biodiversity. Compared to trophic and competitive interactions, the role of non-trophic facilitation among species has received less attention. Cavity-nesting bees nest in old beetle borings in dead wood, with restricted diameters corresponding to the body size of the bee species. The aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that the functional diversity of cavity-producing wood boring beetles - in terms of cavity diameters - drives the size diversity of cavity-nesting bees. The invertebrate communities were sampled in 30 sites, located in forested landscapes along an elevational gradient. We regressed the species richness and abundance of cavity nesting bees against the species richness and abundance of wood boring beetles, non-wood boring beetles and elevation. The proportion of cavity nesting bees in bee species assemblage was regressed against the species richness and abundance of wood boring beetles. We also tested the relationships between the size diversity of cavity nesting bees and wood boring beetles. The species richness and abundance of cavity nesting bees increased with the species richness and abundance of wood boring beetles. No such relationship was found for non-wood boring beetles. The abundance of wood boring beetles was also related to an increased proportion of cavity nesting bee individuals. Moreover, the size diversity of cavity-nesting bees increased with the functional diversity of wood boring beetles. Specifically, the mean and dispersion of bee body sizes increased with the functional dispersion of large wood boring beetles. The positive relationships between cavity producing bees and cavity nesting bees suggest that non-trophic facilitative interactions between species assemblages play important roles in organizing bee species assemblages. Considering a community-wide approach may therefore be required if we are to successfully understand and conserve wild bee

  18. Faunistic assemblages of a sublittoral coarse sand habitat of the northwestern Mediterranean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Pubill

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available The sublittoral megabenthic assemblages of a northwestern Mediterranean coarse sandy beach exploited for the bivalve Callista chione were studied. The spatial and bathymetric variability of its distinctive faunal assemblages was characterised by quantitative sampling performed with a clam dredge. The taxa studied were Mollusca Bivalvia and Gastropoda, Crustacea Decapoda, Echinodermata and Pisces, which accounted for over 99% of the total biomass. Three well-differentiated species assemblages were identified: (1 assemblage MSS (Medium Sand Shallow in medium sand (D50=0.37 mm and shallow waters (mean depth =6.5 m, (2 assemblage CSS (Coarse Sand Shallow in coarse sand (D50=0.62 mm in shallow waters (mean depth =6.7 m, and (3 assemblage CSD (Coarse Sand Deep in coarse sand (D50=0.64 mm in deeper waters (mean depth =16.2 m. Assemblage MSS was characterised by the codominance of the bivalves Mactra stultorum and Acanthocardia tuberculata. C. chione was dominant in both density and biomass in assemblages CSS and CSD. The occurrence of the crab Thia scutellata also characterised assemblage CSS, whereas the occurrence of the sea urchin Echinocardium mediterraneum characterised assemblage CSD. A depth breaking point of around 10 m determined the discontinuity between assemblages CSS and CSD, which was related to the closure depth of the beaches in the study area. Species richness was highest in the coarse sand communities; however, Shannon-Wiener diversity and Pielou equitability indexes were higher in the shallow fine sand community.

  19. Entomopathogens Isolated from Invasive Ants and Tests of Their Pathogenicity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Fernanda Miori de Zarzuela

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Some ant species cause severe ecological and health impact in urban areas. Many attempts have been tested to control such species, although they do not always succeed. Biological control is an alternative to chemical control and has gained great prominence in research, and fungi and nematodes are among the successful organisms controlling insects. This study aimed to clarify some questions regarding the biological control of ants. Invasive ant species in Brazil had their nests evaluated for the presence of entomopathogens. Isolated entomopathogens were later applied in colonies of Monomorium floricola under laboratory conditions to evaluate their effectiveness and the behavior of the ant colonies after treatment. The entomopathogenic nematodes Heterorhabditis sp. and Steinernema sp. and the fungi Beauveria bassiana, Metarhizium anisopliae, and Paecilomyces sp. were isolated from the invasive ant nests. M. floricola colonies treated with Steinernema sp. and Heterorhabditis sp. showed a higher mortality of workers than control. The fungus Beauveria bassiana caused higher mortality of M. floricola workers. However, no colony reduction or elimination was observed in any treatment. The defensive behaviors of ants, such as grooming behavior and colony budding, must be considered when using fungi and nematodes for biological control of ants.

  20. The diversity of microorganisms associated with Acromyrmex leafcutter ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Boomsma Jacobus J

    2002-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Molecular biological techniques are dramatically changing our view of microbial diversity in almost any environment that has so far been investigated. This study presents a systematic survey of the microbial diversity associated with a population of Acromyrmex leafcutter ants. In contrast to previous studies on social insects, which targeted specific groups of symbionts occurring in the gut (termites, Tetraponera ants or in specialised cells (Camponotus ants the objective of our present study was to do a total screening of all possible micro-organisms that can be found inside the bodies of these leafcutter ants. Results We amplified, cloned and sequenced SSU rRNA encoding gene fragments from 9 microbial groups known to have insect-associated representatives, and show that: (1 representatives of 5 out of 9 tested groups are present, (2 mostly several strains per group are present, adding up to a total of 33 different taxa. We present the microbial taxa associated with Acromymex ants in a phylogenetic context (using sequences from GenBank to assess and illustrate to which known microorganisms they are closely related. The observed microbial diversity is discussed in the light of present knowledge on the evolutionary history of Acromyrmex leafcutter ants and their known mutualistic and parasitic symbionts. Conclusions The major merits of the screening approach documented here is its high sensitivity and specificity, which allowed us to identify several microorganisms that are promising candidates for further study of their interactions with Acromyrmex leafcutter ants or their gardens.

  1. USING ANT COMMUNITIES FOR RAPID ASSESSMENT OF TERRESTRIAL ECOSYSTEM HEALTH

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wike, L; Doug Martin, D; Michael Paller, M; Eric Nelson, E

    2007-01-12

    Ecosystem health with its near infinite number of variables is difficult to measure, and there are many opinions as to which variables are most important, most easily measured, and most robust, Bioassessment avoids the controversy of choosing which physical and chemical parameters to measure because it uses responses of a community of organisms that integrate all aspects of the system in question. A variety of bioassessment methods have been successfully applied to aquatic ecosystems using fish and macroinvertebrate communities. Terrestrial biotic index methods are less developed than those for aquatic systems and we are seeking to address this problem here. This study had as its objective to examine the baseline differences in ant communities at different seral stages from clear cut back to mature pine plantation as a precursor to developing a bioassessment protocol. Comparative sampling was conducted at four seral stages; clearcut, 5 year, 15 year and mature pine plantation stands. Soil and vegetation data were collected at each site. All ants collected were preserved in 70% ethyl alcohol and identified to genus. Analysis of the ant data indicates that ants respond strongly to the habitat changes that accompany ecological succession in managed pine forests and that individual genera as well as ant community structure can be used as an indicator of successional change. Ants exhibited relatively high diversity in both early and mature seral stages. High ant diversity in the mature seral stages was likely related to conditions on the forest floor which favored litter dwelling and cool climate specialists.

  2. Interactions Increase Forager Availability and Activity in Harvester Ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Evlyn Pless

    Full Text Available Social insect colonies use interactions among workers to regulate collective behavior. Harvester ant foragers interact in a chamber just inside the nest entrance, here called the 'entrance chamber'. Previous studies of the activation of foragers in red harvester ants show that an outgoing forager inside the nest experiences an increase in brief antennal contacts before it leaves the nest to forage. Here we compare the interaction rate experienced by foragers that left the nest and ants that did not. We found that ants in the entrance chamber that leave the nest to forage experienced more interactions than ants that descend to the deeper nest without foraging. Additionally, we found that the availability of foragers in the entrance chamber is associated with the rate of forager return. An increase in the rate of forager return leads to an increase in the rate at which ants descend to the deeper nest, which then stimulates more ants to ascend into the entrance chamber. Thus a higher rate of forager return leads to more available foragers in the entrance chamber. The highest density of interactions occurs near the nest entrance and the entrances of the tunnels from the entrance chamber to the deeper nest. Local interactions with returning foragers regulate both the activation of waiting foragers and the number of foragers available to be activated.

  3. Coping with power dispersion?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    2014-01-01

    The last decades have witnessed a significant shift in policy competences away from central governments in Europe. The reallocation of competences spans over three dimensions: upwards; sideways; and downwards. This collection takes the dispersion of powers as a starting point and seeks to assess...... how the actors involved cope with the new configurations. In this introduction, we discuss the conceptualization of power dispersion and highlight the ways in which the contributions add to this research agenda. We then outline some general conclusions and end by indicating future avenues of research....... Taken together, the collection contributes some answers to the challenge of defining and measuring – in a comparative way – the control and co-ordination mechanisms which power dispersion generates. It also explores the tension between political actors' quest for autonomy and the acknowledgement...

  4. Competitive assembly of South Pacific invasive ant communities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarty Megan

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The relative importance of chance and determinism in structuring ecological communities has been debated for nearly a century. Evidence for determinism or assembly rules is often evaluated with null models that randomize the occurrence of species in particular locales. However, analyses of the presence or absence of species ignores the potential influence of species abundances, which have long been considered of major importance on community structure. Here, we test for community assembly rules in ant communities on small islands of the Tokelau archipelago using both presence-absence and abundance data. We conducted three sets of analyses on two spatial scales using three years of sampling data from 39 plots on 11 islands. Results First, traditional null model tests showed support for negative species co-occurrence patterns among plots within islands, but not among islands. A plausible explanation for this result is that analyses at larger spatial scales merge heterogeneous habitats that have considerable effects on species occurrences. Second, analyses of ant abundances showed that samples with high ant abundances had fewer species than expected by chance, both within and among islands. One ant species, the invasive yellow crazy ant Anoplolepis gracilipes, appeared to have a particularly strong effect on community structure correlated with its abundance. Third, abundances of most ant species were inversely correlated with the abundances of all other ants at both spatial scales. This result is consistent with competition theory, which predicts species distributions are affected by diffuse competition with suites of co-occurring species. Conclusion Our results support a pluralistic explanation for ant species abundances and assembly. Both stochastic and deterministic processes interact to determine ant community assembly, though abundance patterns clearly drive the deterministic patterns in this community. These deterministic

  5. Movers and stayers: Novel assemblages in changing environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hobbs, Richard L.; Valentine, Leonie E.; Standish, Rachel J.; Jackson, Stephen T.

    2018-01-01

    How species will respond to ongoing climate and other change is of increasing concern.Most attention is given to how species move or are moved, but many species stay.Understanding the dynamics of new species combinations is essential for successful conservation in a changing climate.Increased attention to species movement in response to environmental change highlights the need to consider changes in species distributions and altered biological assemblages. Such changes are well known from paleoecological studies, but have accelerated with ongoing pervasive human influence. In addition to species that move, some species will stay put, leading to an array of novel interactions. Species show a variety of responses that can allow movement or persistence. Conservation and restoration actions have traditionally focused on maintaining or returning species in particular places, but increasingly also include interventions that facilitate movement. Approaches are required that incorporate the fluidity of biotic assemblages into the goals set and interventions deployed.

  6. Hybrid carbon nanostructure assemblage for high performance pseudo-capacitors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. K. Mishra

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Investigation of novel nanocomposites for pseudo-capacitors with high capacitance and energy density is the spotlight of current energy research. In the present work, hybrid carbon nanostructure assemblage of graphene and multiwalled carbon nanotubes has been used as carbon support to nanostructured RuO2 and polyaniline for high energy supercapacitors. Maximum specific capacitances of 110, 235 and 440 F g−1 at the voltage sweep rate of 10 mV s−1 and maximum energy densities of 7, 12.5 and 20.5 Wh kg−1 were observed for carbon assemblage and its RuO2 and polyanilne decorated nanocomposites, respectively, with 1M H2SO4 as electrolyte.

  7. Individual variation in habitat use in two stream fish assemblages

    OpenAIRE

    Luisa Resende Manna; Carla Ferreira Rezende

    2015-01-01

    The habitat use is an individual choice that is influenced by physical conditions such as substrate type, food resources availability and adequate depth. However, habitat use is often measured only through interspecific variability because intraspecific variability is supposed to be low. Here, the differences in habitat use by two stream fish assemblages in two different environments (Brazilian rainforest and semiarid) were investigated at both interspecific and intraspecific levels. We perfo...

  8. Temporal variation in fish assemblage composition on a tidal flat

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henry L. Spach

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available Annual variation in the fish assemblage characteristics on a tidal flat was studied in coastal Paraná, in southern Brazil. Fish were collected between August 1998 and July 1999, during the diurnal high tide and diurnal and nocturnal low tide of the syzygial (full moon and quadrature (waning moon tides, to characterize temporal change in assemblage composition. A total of 64,265 fish in 133 species were collected. The average number of species and individuals, biomass, species richness, diversity (mass and equitability varied significantly over time . The dissimilarity of the assemblage was greatest in August, September and October in contrast with the period from November to January, with the lowest dissimilarity. The combined action of water temperature, salinity and wind intensity had a great influence over the structure of the fish assemblage.Os peixes de uma planície de maré da praia Balneário de Pontal do Sul, Paraná, foram coletados, na preamar diurna e na baixa-mar diurna e noturna das marés de sizígia e de quadratura, visando caracterizar as mudanças temporais entre agosto de 1998 e julho de 1999. As coletas totalizaram 64.265 peixes de 133 espécies. Foram observadas diferenças significativas na captura média em número de espécies e de peixes, peso total e nos índices de riqueza, diversidade (H' peso e eqüitatividade entre os meses de coleta. A dissimilaridade da ictiofauna foi maior entre os meses de agosto, setembro e outubro em comparação com o período de novembro a janeiro. A ação combinada da temperatura da água, salinidade e intensidade do vento, influenciaram mais sobre a estrutura da assembléia de peixes.

  9. Phylogenetic community structure: temporal variation in fish assemblage

    OpenAIRE

    Santorelli, Sergio; Magnusson, William; Ferreira, Efrem; Caramaschi, Erica; Zuanon, Jansen; Amadio, Sidnéia

    2014-01-01

    Hypotheses about phylogenetic relationships among species allow inferences about the mechanisms that affect species coexistence. Nevertheless, most studies assume that phylogenetic patterns identified are stable over time. We used data on monthly samples of fish from a single lake over 10 years to show that the structure in phylogenetic assemblages varies over time and conclusions depend heavily on the time scale investigated. The data set was organized in guild structures and temporal scales...

  10. Seasonal dynamics of fish assemblage in a pond canal

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Musil, J.; Adámek, Zdeněk; Baranyi, Ch.

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 15, č. 3-4 (2007), s. 217-226 ISSN 0967-6120. [New Challenges in Pond Aquaculture. České Budějovice, 26.04.2005-28.04.2005] Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : fish assemblage * pond canal * species richness * seasonal dynamics * alien species Subject RIV: GL - Fishing Impact factor: 0.828, year: 2007

  11. Characterizing lentic freshwater fish assemblages using multiple sampling methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Jesse R.; Quist, Michael C.

    2014-01-01

    Characterizing fish assemblages in lentic ecosystems is difficult, and multiple sampling methods are almost always necessary to gain reliable estimates of indices such as species richness. However, most research focused on lentic fish sampling methodology has targeted recreationally important species, and little to no information is available regarding the influence of multiple methods and timing (i.e., temporal variation) on characterizing entire fish assemblages. Therefore, six lakes and impoundments (48–1,557 ha surface area) were sampled seasonally with seven gear types to evaluate the combined influence of sampling methods and timing on the number of species and individuals sampled. Probabilities of detection for species indicated strong selectivities and seasonal trends that provide guidance on optimal seasons to use gears when targeting multiple species. The evaluation of species richness and number of individuals sampled using multiple gear combinations demonstrated that appreciable benefits over relatively few gears (e.g., to four) used in optimal seasons were not present. Specifically, over 90 % of the species encountered with all gear types and season combinations (N = 19) from six lakes and reservoirs were sampled with nighttime boat electrofishing in the fall and benthic trawling, modified-fyke, and mini-fyke netting during the summer. Our results indicated that the characterization of lentic fish assemblages was highly influenced by the selection of sampling gears and seasons, but did not appear to be influenced by waterbody type (i.e., natural lake, impoundment). The standardization of data collected with multiple methods and seasons to account for bias is imperative to monitoring of lentic ecosystems and will provide researchers with increased reliability in their interpretations and decisions made using information on lentic fish assemblages.

  12. Evolution of Fungal enzymes in the attine ant symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    de Fine Licht, Henrik Hjarvard; Schiøtt, Morten; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    The attine ant symbiosis is characterized by ancient but varying degrees of diffuse co-evolution between the ants and their fungal cultivars. Domesticated fungi became dependent on vertical transmission by queens and the ant colonies came to rely on their symbiotic fungus for food and thus...... as garden substrate, whereas the more basal genera use leaf litter, insect feces and insect carcasses. We hypothesized that enzyme activity of fungal symbionts has co-evolved with substrate use and we measured enzyme activities of fungus gardens in the field to test this, focusing particularly on plant...... essential for the symbiosis in general, but have contributed specifically to the evolution of the symbiosis....

  13. Comparative studies of the secretome of fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Linde, Tore; Grell, Morten Nedergaard; Schiøtt, Morten

    2009-01-01

    Leafcutter ants of the species Acromyrmex echinatior live in symbiosis with the fungus Leucoagaricus gongylophorus. The ants harvest fragments of leaves and carry them to the nest where they place the material on the fungal colony. The fungus secretes a wide array of proteins to degrade the leaves...... into nutrients that the ants can feed on. The focus of this study is to discover, characterize and compare the secreted proteins. In order to do so cDNA libraries are constructed from mRNA extracted from the fungus material. The most efficient technology to screen cDNA libraries selectively for secreted...

  14. Warehouse stocking optimization based on dynamic ant colony genetic algorithm

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiao, Xiaoxu

    2018-04-01

    In view of the various orders of FAW (First Automotive Works) International Logistics Co., Ltd., the SLP method is used to optimize the layout of the warehousing units in the enterprise, thus the warehouse logistics is optimized and the external processing speed of the order is improved. In addition, the relevant intelligent algorithms for optimizing the stocking route problem are analyzed. The ant colony algorithm and genetic algorithm which have good applicability are emphatically studied. The parameters of ant colony algorithm are optimized by genetic algorithm, which improves the performance of ant colony algorithm. A typical path optimization problem model is taken as an example to prove the effectiveness of parameter optimization.

  15. Ant colony algorithm for clustering in portfolio optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Subekti, R.; Sari, E. R.; Kusumawati, R.

    2018-03-01

    This research aims to describe portfolio optimization using clustering methods with ant colony approach. Two stock portfolios of LQ45 Indonesia is proposed based on the cluster results obtained from ant colony optimization (ACO). The first portfolio consists of assets with ant colony displacement opportunities beyond the defined probability limits of the researcher, where the weight of each asset is determined by mean-variance method. The second portfolio consists of two assets with the assumption that each asset is a cluster formed from ACO. The first portfolio has a better performance compared to the second portfolio seen from the Sharpe index.

  16. Automating ActionScript Projects with Eclipse and Ant

    CERN Document Server

    Koning, Sidney

    2011-01-01

    Automating repetitive programming tasks is easier than many Flash/AS3 developers think. With the Ant build tool, the Eclipse IDE, and this concise guide, you can set up your own "ultimate development machine" to code, compile, debug, and deploy projects faster. You'll also get started with versioning systems, such as Subversion and Git. Create a consistent workflow for multiple machines, or even complete departments, with the help of extensive Ant code samples. If you want to work smarter and take your skills to a new level, this book will get you on the road to automation-with Ant. Set up y

  17. The invasion biology and sociogenetics of pharaoh ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Anna Mosegaard

    Social insect colonies perform a number of tasks affecting the environments they live in. Some unintentionally introduced species have attracted the attention of scientists and general public alike when causing a number of changes to the composition and functioning of ecosystems. Such ?invaders...... laboratory lineages, thus building the foundation for future research on the species. In addition, I have started a selection experiment (still ongoing in collaboration with Dr. T. Linksvayer) using pharaoh ants, which is the first time artificial selection is attempted in an ant species. Pharaoh ants have...

  18. Ecological release in lizard assemblages of neotropical savannas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mesquita, Daniel Oliveira; Colli, Guarino Rinaldi; Vitt, Laurie J

    2007-08-01

    We compare lizard assemblages of Cerrado and Amazonian savannas to test the ecological release hypothesis, which predicts that niche dimensions and abundance should be greater in species inhabiting isolated habitat patches with low species richness (Amazonian savannas and isolated Cerrado patches) when compared with nonisolated areas in central Cerrado with greater species richness. We calculated microhabitat and diet niche breadths with data from 14 isolated Cerrado patches and Amazon savanna areas and six central Cerrado populations. Morphological data were compared using average Euclidean distances, and lizard abundance was estimated using the number of lizards captured in pitfall traps over an extended time period. We found no evidence of ecological release with respect to microhabitat use, suggesting that historical factors are better microhabitat predictors than ecological factors. However, data from individual stomachs indicate that ecological release occurs in these areas for one species (Tropidurus) but not others (Ameiva ameiva, Anolis, Cnemidophorus, and Micrablepharus), suggesting that evolutionary lineages respond differently to environmental pressures, with tropidurids being more affected by ecological factors than polychrotids, teiids, and gymnophthalmids. We found no evidence that ecological release occurs in these areas using morphological data. Based on abundance data, our results indicate that the ecological release (density compensation) hypothesis is not supported: lizard species are not more abundant in isolated areas than in nonisolated areas. The ecology of species is highly conservative, varying little from assemblage to assemblage. Nevertheless, increases in niche breadth for some species indicate that ecological release occurs as well.

  19. Seagrass Parameter Affect the Fish Assemblages in Karimunjawa Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sri Susilo, Endang; Nugroho Sugianto, Denny; Munasik; Nirwani; Adhi Suryono, Chrisna

    2018-02-01

    Seagrass beds promote high species diversity, abundance and biomass, and become important habitats for some economically important fishes. Plants of seagrasses result in structurally highly complex habitats and offering feeding grounds, shelter from predation as well as nursery areas for diverse fish assemblages. However, research on fish communities in Southeast Asian seagrass bed is rarely conducted. In the present study fish assemblages in seagrass beds with different parameters (cover, diversity and similarity indices, domination) was investigated in the Karimunjawa Islands, Indonesia. The purpose of this study were to assess whether fish assemblages differ concerning on the abundance and the species number. This study was conducted on the seagrass bed on Karimunjawa Islands in Java Sea, particularly in the water of Menjangan Besar and Menjangan Kecil Island. Line-quadrant transect was used to assess seagrass data, while the occurrence and individual number of fish harboured in the selected seagrass bed was counted by using underwater visual census in the stationary point count transects. Seagrass cover in Menjangan Kecil Island (41%) with various canopy included both upper and lower canopy was considerable higher than those in Menjangan Besar Island (5%). Fish diversity, species composition and abundance are considerably different between the two study sites. This study revealed that seagrass density or cover and canopy structure affected the fish abundance and species number harboured.

  20. Altered vegetative assemblage trajectories within an urban brownfield

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gallagher, Frank J., E-mail: Gallagher@sebs.rutgers.edu [Urban Forestry Program, Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, Rutgers, State University, 14 College Farm Road, New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8551 (United States); Pechmann, Ildiko; Holzapfel, Claus [Department of Biological Sciences, Rutgers, State University, 195 University Avenue, Newark, NJ 07102 (United States); Grabosky, Jason [Urban Forestry Program, Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources, Rutgers, State University, 14 College Farm Road, New Brunswick, NJ 08901-8551 (United States)

    2011-05-15

    Recognizing the growing importance of both structure (maintenance of biodiversity) and function (fostering natural cycles) of urban ecologies, we examine coarse scale (herbaceous, shrub and forest) beta guild trajectory in an urban brownfield. The distribution of the pioneer forest assemblage dominated by Betula populifolia Marsh. and Populus spp. could be correlated positively with total soil metal load (arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, zinc, lead and vanadium),whereas herbaceous and shrub guilds were negatively correlated. Distinct assemblage development trajectories above and below a critical soil metal threshold are demonstrated. In addition, we postulate that the translocation of metals into the plant tissue of several dominant species may provide a positive feedback loop, maintaining relatively high concentrations of metals in the litter and soil. Therefore assembly theory, which allows for the development of alternate stable states, may provide a better model for the establishment of restoration objectives on degraded urban sites. - Highlights: > Forest distribution and total soil metal load yield strong positive correlations. > Shrub and herbaceous guild distribution and TML are negative and weaker. > Below a critical TML threshold transition between guilds exhibit a standard trajectory. > Above the critical TML threshold the shrub guild is virtually absent. > Metal cycling has the potential to lead to an alternative steady state. - High concentrationsof soil metals, impact the trajectory of vegetative assemblages in an urban brownfield leading to the speculation of an alternate stable state.

  1. Altered vegetative assemblage trajectories within an urban brownfield

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gallagher, Frank J.; Pechmann, Ildiko; Holzapfel, Claus; Grabosky, Jason

    2011-01-01

    Recognizing the growing importance of both structure (maintenance of biodiversity) and function (fostering natural cycles) of urban ecologies, we examine coarse scale (herbaceous, shrub and forest) beta guild trajectory in an urban brownfield. The distribution of the pioneer forest assemblage dominated by Betula populifolia Marsh. and Populus spp. could be correlated positively with total soil metal load (arsenic, cadmium, chromium, copper, lead, zinc, lead and vanadium),whereas herbaceous and shrub guilds were negatively correlated. Distinct assemblage development trajectories above and below a critical soil metal threshold are demonstrated. In addition, we postulate that the translocation of metals into the plant tissue of several dominant species may provide a positive feedback loop, maintaining relatively high concentrations of metals in the litter and soil. Therefore assembly theory, which allows for the development of alternate stable states, may provide a better model for the establishment of restoration objectives on degraded urban sites. - Highlights: → Forest distribution and total soil metal load yield strong positive correlations. → Shrub and herbaceous guild distribution and TML are negative and weaker. → Below a critical TML threshold transition between guilds exhibit a standard trajectory. → Above the critical TML threshold the shrub guild is virtually absent. → Metal cycling has the potential to lead to an alternative steady state. - High concentrationsof soil metals, impact the trajectory of vegetative assemblages in an urban brownfield leading to the speculation of an alternate stable state.

  2. Gradients in Catostomid assemblages along a reservoir cascade

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miranda, Leandro E.; Keretz, Kevin R.; Gilliland, Chelsea R.

    2017-01-01

    Serial impoundment of major rivers leads to alterations of natural flow dynamics and disrupts longitudinal connectivity. Catostomid fishes (suckers, family Catostomidae) are typically found in riverine or backwater habitats yet are able to persist in impounded river systems. To the detriment of conservation, there is limited information about distribution of catostomid fishes in impounded rivers. We examined the longitudinal distribution of catostomid fishes over 23 reservoirs of the Tennessee River reservoir cascade, encompassing approximately 1600 km. Our goal was to develop a basin-scale perspective to guide conservation efforts. Catostomid species composition and assemblage structure changed longitudinally along the reservoir cascade. Catostomid species biodiversity was greatest in reservoirs lower in the cascade. Assemblage composition shifted from dominance by spotted sucker Minytrema melanops and buffalos Ictiobus spp. in the lower reservoirs to carpsuckers Carpiodes spp. midway through the cascade and redhorses Moxostoma spp. in the upper reservoirs. Most species did not extend the length of the cascade, and some species were rare, found in low numbers and in few reservoirs. The observed gradients in catostomid assemblages suggest the need for basin-scale conservation measures focusing on three broad areas: (1) conservation and management of the up-lake riverine reaches of the lower reservoirs, (2) maintenance of the access to quality habitat in tributaries to the upper reservoirs and (3) reintroductions into currently unoccupied habitat within species' historic distributions

  3. Brood size modifications affect plumage bacterial assemblages of European starlings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucas, Françoise S; Moureau, Benoit; Jourdie, Violaine; Heeb, Philipp

    2005-02-01

    During reproduction, birds face trade-offs between time and energy devoted to parental effort and traits associated with self-maintenance. We manipulated brood sizes to investigate the effects of such trade-offs on feather bacterial densities and the structure of bacterial assemblages on feathers in adult European starlings, Sturnus vulgaris, and in vitro feather degradation. As predicted by a trade-off between parental effort and self-maintenance, we found that birds with enlarged broods had more free-living bacteria on their feathers than birds with reduced broods. Furthermore, we found a significant interaction between brood manipulation and original brood size on free-living bacterial densities suggesting that the trade-off is mediated by the adults' initial reproductive investment. In contrast, brood size manipulations had no significant effect on densities of attached bacteria. Using ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis (RISA), we demonstrated that brood manipulations significantly modified the structure (band pattern) of feather-degrading bacterial assemblages, but had no significant effect on their richness (number of bands) or the in vitro feather degradation. In vitro feather degradation varied in relation to the premanipulation brood size and positively with the richness of the feather degrading bacterial community. Besides brood manipulation effect, we found that ecological factors and individual traits, such as the age, the nest location or the capture date, shaped bacterial assemblages and feather degradation capacities.

  4. Symbiotic mutualism with a community of opportunistic ants: protection, competition, and ant occupancy of the myrmecophyte Barteria nigritana (Passifloraceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Djiéto-Lordon, Champlain; Dejean, Alain; Gibernau, Marc; Hossaert-McKey, Martine; McKey, Doyle

    2004-10-01

    Barteria nigritana is a myrmecophyte tree of Lower Guinea coastal vegetation. Unlike the more specialised B. fistulosa, which harbours a single host-specific mutualistic ant, B. nigritana is associated with several opportunistic ants. Such symbiotic, yet opportunistic, ant-plant associations have been little studied. On 113 clumps of B. nigritana, we censused ant associates and herbivores and compared herbivory on plants occupied by different ants. In addition to these correlative data, protection conferred by different ant species was compared by herbivore-placement experiments. Identity of ant associate changed predictably over plant ontogeny. Pheidole megacephala was restricted to very small plants; saplings were occupied by either Oecophylla longinoda or Crematogaster sp., and the latter species was the sole occupant of larger trees. Damage by caterpillars of the nymphalid butterfly Acraea zetes accounted for much of the herbivory to leaves. Ant species differed in the protection provided to hosts. While P. megacephala provided no significant protection, plants occupied by O. longinoda and Crematogaster sp. suffered less damage than did unoccupied plants or those occupied by P. megacephala. Furthermore, O. longinoda provided more effective protection than did Crematogaster sp. Herbivore-placement experiments confirmed these results. Workers of O. longinoda killed or removed all larval instars of A. zetes. Crematogaster preyed on only the two first larval instars, and P. megacephala preyed mainly on eggs, only rarely attacking the two first larval instars. Opportunistic ants provided significant protection to this relatively unspecialised myrmecophyte. The usual associate of mature trees was not the species that provided most protection.

  5. Biological Control of Solenopsis Fire Ants by Pseudacteon Parasitoids: Theory and Practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lloyd W. Morrison

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Pseudacteon parasitoids are potential biocontrol agents of invasive Solenopsis fire ants. Pseudacteon species that parasitize the invasive S. invicta Buren and S. richteri Forel have been introduced to, and naturally dispersed across, the southeastern USA, although there is no evidence yet that Solenopsis host ant populations have decreased. The ability of introduced Pseudacteon species to regulate Solenopsis populations will depend upon the relative importance of top-down effects in the recipient communities. In this paper, I examine the characteristics of the Pseudacteon/Solenopsis parasitoid/host system and evaluate the extent to which research findings are consistent with top-down control. Laboratory and field experiments evaluating Solenopsis population regulation have been equivocal, and overall the available evidence provides little support for strong top-down effects in this system. Competitive exclusion may occur among introduced Pseudacteon species, and future efforts at biological control are likely to be more efficacious if they focus on other types of natural enemies.

  6. Vascular epiphytes and host trees of ant-gardens in an anthropic landscape in southeastern Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Linares, Jonas; García-Franco, José G.; Flores-Palacios, Alejandro; Valenzuela-González, Jorge E.; Mata-Rosas, Martín; Díaz-Castelazo, Cecilia

    2016-12-01

    Ant-gardens (AGs) are considered one of the most complex mutualist systems between ants and plants, since interactions involving dispersal, protection, and nutrition occur simultaneously in them; however, little is known about the effects of the transformation of ecosystems on their diversity and interactions. In five environments with different land use within an anthropic landscape in southeastern Mexico, we investigated the diversity and composition of epiphytes and host trees of AGs built by Azteca gnava. A total of 10,871 individuals of 26 epiphytic species, associating with 859 AGs located in 161 host trees, were recorded. The diversity and composition of epiphytes tended to be different between environments; however, Aechmea tillandsioides and Codonanthe uleana were the most important species and considered true AG epiphytes, because they were the most frequent, abundant, and occurred exclusively in AGs. Other important species were the orchids Epidendrum flexuosum, Coryanthes picturata, and Epidendrum pachyrachis, and should also be considered true AG epiphytes, because they occurred almost exclusively in the AGs. The AG abundance in agroforestry plantations was similar or even greater than in riparian vegetation (natural habitat). The AGs were registered in 37 host species but were more frequent in Mangifera indica and Citrus sinensis. We conclude that true epiphytes of A. gnava AGs persist in different environments and host trees, and even these AGs could proliferate in agroforestry plantations of anthropic landscapes.

  7. Imperfect chemical female mimicry in males of the ant Cardiocondyla obscurior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cremer, Sylvia; D'Ettorre, Patrizia; Drijfhout, Falko P.; Sledge, Matthew F.; Turillazzi, Stefano; Heinze, Jürgen

    2008-11-01

    Winged and wingless males coexist in the ant Cardiocondyla obscurior. Wingless (“ergatoid”) males never leave their maternal colony and fight remorselessly among each other for the access to emerging females. The peaceful winged males disperse after about 10 days, but beforehand also mate in the nest. In the first 5 days of their life, winged males perform a chemical female mimicry that protects them against attack and even makes them sexually attractive to ergatoid males. When older, the chemical profile of winged males no longer matches that of virgin females; nevertheless, they are still tolerated, which so far has been puzzling. Contrasting this general pattern, we have identified a single aberrant colony in which all winged males were attacked and killed by the ergatoid males. A comparative analysis of the morphology and chemical profile of these untypical attacked winged males and the tolerated males from several normal colonies revealed that normal old males are still performing some chemical mimicry to the virgin queens, though less perfect than in their young ages. The anomalous attacked winged males, on the other hand, had a very different odour to the females. Our study thus exemplifies that the analysis of rare malfunctioning can add valuable insight on functioning under normal conditions and allows the conclusion that older winged males from normal colonies of the ant C. obscurior are guarded through an imperfect chemical female mimicry, still close enough to protect against attacks by the wingless fighters yet dissimilar enough not to elicit their sexual interest.

  8. Interface, a dispersed architecture

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vissers, C.A.

    1976-01-01

    Past and current specification techniques use timing diagrams and written text to describe the phenomenology of an interface. This paper treats an interface as the architecture of a number of processes, which are dispersed over the related system parts and the message path. This approach yields a

  9. Psychorheology of food dispersions

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Štern, Petr; Panovská, Z.; Pokorný, J.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 58, č. 1 (2010), s. 29-35 ISSN 0042-790X R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA2060404 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z20600510 Keywords : psychorheology * food dispersions * tomato ketchup * rheology * sensory analysis Subject RIV: BK - Fluid Dynamics Impact factor: 0.553, year: 2010

  10. Dispersal of sticky particles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Ramana; Kumar, Sanjeev

    2007-12-01

    In this paper, we show through simulations that when sticky particles are broken continually, particles are dispersed into fine dust only if they are present in a narrow range of volume fractions. The upper limit of this range is 0.20 in the 2D and 0.10 in the 3D space. An increase in the dimensionality of space reduces the upper limit nearly by a factor of two. This scaling holds for dispersal of particles in hyperdimensional space of dimensions up to ten, the maximum dimension studied in this work. The maximum values of volume fractions obtained are significantly lower than those required for close packing and random packing of discs in 2D and spheres in 3D space. These values are also smaller than those required for critical phenomena of cluster percolation. The results obtained are attributed to merger cascades of sticky particles, triggered by breakup events. A simple theory that incorporates this cascade is developed to quantitatively explain the observed scaling of the upper limit with the dimensionality of space. The theory also captures the dynamics of the dispersal process in the corresponding range of particle volume fractions. The theory suggests that cascades of order one and two predominantly decide the upper limit for complete dispersal of particles.

  11. Selenium exposure results in reduced reproduction in an invasive ant species and altered competitive behavior for a native ant species

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De La Riva, Deborah G.; Trumble, John T.

    2016-01-01

    Competitive ability and numerical dominance are important factors contributing to the ability of invasive ant species to establish and expand their ranges in new habitats. However, few studies have investigated the impact of environmental contamination on competitive behavior in ants as a potential factor influencing dynamics between invasive and native ant species. Here we investigated the widespread contaminant selenium to investigate its potential influence on invasion by the exotic Argentine ant, Linepithema humile, through effects on reproduction and competitive behavior. For the fecundity experiment, treatments were provided to Argentine ant colonies via to sugar water solutions containing one of three concentrations of selenium (0, 5 and 10 μg Se mL −1 ) that fall within the range found in soil and plants growing in contaminated areas. Competition experiments included both the Argentine ant and the native Dorymyrmex bicolor to determine the impact of selenium exposure (0 or 15 μg Se mL −1 ) on exploitation- and interference-competition between ant species. The results of the fecundity experiment revealed that selenium negatively impacted queen survival and brood production of Argentine ants. Viability of the developing brood was also affected in that offspring reached adulthood only in colonies that were not given selenium, whereas those in treated colonies died in their larval stages. Selenium exposure did not alter direct competitive behaviors for either species, but selenium exposure contributed to an increased bait discovery time for D. bicolor. Our results suggest that environmental toxins may not only pose problems for native ant species, but may also serve as a potential obstacle for establishment among exotic species. - Highlights: • Argentine ant colonies exposed to selenium had reduced fecundity compared to unexposed colonies. • Viability of offspring was negatively impacted by selenium. • Queen survival was reduced in colonies

  12. The introduction history of invasive garden ants in Europe: integrating genetic, chemical and behavioural approaches

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ugelvig, Line; Drijfhout, Falko; Kronauer, Daniel

    2008-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The invasive garden ant, Lasius neglectus, is the most recently detected pest ant and the first known invasive ant able to become established and thrive in the temperate regions of Eurasia. In this study, we aim to reconstruct the invasion history of this ant in Europe analysing 14 po...

  13. Stealthy invaders: the biology of Cardiocondyla tramp ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Heinze, J.; Cremer, Sylvia; Eckl, N.

    2006-01-01

    Many invasive ant species, such as the Argentine ant or the red imported fire ant, have huge colonies with thousands of mass-foraging workers, which quickly monopolise resources and therefore represent a considerable threat to the native ant fauna. Cardiocondyla obscurior and several other specie...

  14. A novel method to analyze social transmission in chronologically sequenced assemblages, implemented on cultural inheritance of the art of cooking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaksson, Sven; Funcke, Alexander; Envall, Ida; Enquist, Magnus; Lindenfors, Patrik

    2015-01-01

    Here we present an analytical technique for the measurement and evaluation of changes in chronologically sequenced assemblages. To illustrate the method, we studied the cultural evolution of European cooking as revealed in seven cook books dispersed over the past 800 years. We investigated if changes in the set of commonly used ingredients were mainly gradual or subject to fashion fluctuations. Applying our method to the data from the cook books revealed that overall, there is a clear continuity in cooking over the ages--cooking is knowledge that is passed down through generations, not something (re-)invented by each generation on its own. Looking at three main categories of ingredients separately (spices, animal products and vegetables), however, disclosed that all ingredients do not change according to the same pattern. While choice of animal products was very conservative, changing completely sequentially, changes in the choices of spices, but also of vegetables, were more unbounded. We hypothesize that this may be due a combination of fashion fluctuations and changes in availability due to contact with the Americas during our study time period. The presented method is also usable on other assemblage type data, and can thus be of utility for analyzing sequential archaeological data from the same area or other similarly organized material.

  15. A novel method to analyze social transmission in chronologically sequenced assemblages, implemented on cultural inheritance of the art of cooking.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sven Isaksson

    Full Text Available Here we present an analytical technique for the measurement and evaluation of changes in chronologically sequenced assemblages. To illustrate the method, we studied the cultural evolution of European cooking as revealed in seven cook books dispersed over the past 800 years. We investigated if changes in the set of commonly used ingredients were mainly gradual or subject to fashion fluctuations. Applying our method to the data from the cook books revealed that overall, there is a clear continuity in cooking over the ages--cooking is knowledge that is passed down through generations, not something (re-invented by each generation on its own. Looking at three main categories of ingredients separately (spices, animal products and vegetables, however, disclosed that all ingredients do not change according to the same pattern. While choice of animal products was very conservative, changing completely sequentially, changes in the choices of spices, but also of vegetables, were more unbounded. We hypothesize that this may be due a combination of fashion fluctuations and changes in availability due to contact with the Americas during our study time period. The presented method is also usable on other assemblage type data, and can thus be of utility for analyzing sequential archaeological data from the same area or other similarly organized material.

  16. A Novel Method to Analyze Social Transmission in Chronologically Sequenced Assemblages, Implemented on Cultural Inheritance of the Art of Cooking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaksson, Sven; Funcke, Alexander; Envall, Ida; Enquist, Magnus; Lindenfors, Patrik

    2015-01-01

    Here we present an analytical technique for the measurement and evaluation of changes in chronologically sequenced assemblages. To illustrate the method, we studied the cultural evolution of European cooking as revealed in seven cook books dispersed over the past 800 years. We investigated if changes in the set of commonly used ingredients were mainly gradual or subject to fashion fluctuations. Applying our method to the data from the cook books revealed that overall, there is a clear continuity in cooking over the ages – cooking is knowledge that is passed down through generations, not something (re-)invented by each generation on its own. Looking at three main categories of ingredients separately (spices, animal products and vegetables), however, disclosed that all ingredients do not change according to the same pattern. While choice of animal products was very conservative, changing completely sequentially, changes in the choices of spices, but also of vegetables, were more unbounded. We hypothesize that this may be due a combination of fashion fluctuations and changes in availability due to contact with the Americas during our study time period. The presented method is also usable on other assemblage type data, and can thus be of utility for analyzing sequential archaeological data from the same area or other similarly organized material. PMID:25970578

  17. FMR measurements in fire ants: evidence of magnetic material

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Esquivel, Darci M.S.; Acosta-Avalos, Daniel; El-Jaick, Lea J.; Cunha, Alexandra D.M.; Malheiros, Maria G.; Wajnberg, Eliane [Centro Brasileiro de Pesquisas Fisicas (CBPF), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil); Linhares, Marilia P. [Centro de Ciencias do Estado, do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)

    1998-01-01

    Based on the behavioral and the localization of iron-containing tissue fire ants were examined by EPR for magnetic material. Results suggest the presence of magnetite particles. (author) 12 refs., 1 fig.

  18. Sperm length evolution in the fungus-growing ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Baer, B.; Dijkstra, M. B.; Mueller, U. G.

    2009-01-01

    -growing ants, representing 9 of the 12 recognized genera, and mapped these onto the ant phylogeny. We show that average sperm length across species is highly variable and decreases with mature colony size in basal genera with singly mated queens, suggesting that sperm production or storage constraints affect...... the evolution of sperm length. Sperm length does not decrease further in multiply mating leaf-cutting ants, despite substantial further increases in colony size. In a combined analysis, sexual dimorphism explained 63.1% of the variance in sperm length between species. As colony size was not a significant...... predictor in this analysis, we conclude that sperm production trade-offs in males have been the major selective force affecting sperm length across the fungus-growing ants, rather than storage constraints in females. The relationship between sperm length and sexual dimorphism remained robust...

  19. Myrmeciza and related antbirds (Aves, Formicariidae as army ant followers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Edwin O. Willis

    1984-01-01

    Full Text Available Antbirds of the genera Myrmeciza (including Sipia and Myrmoborus, Gymnocichla, and Sclateria hop near or on the ground in fairly dense vegetation, "pounding" their tails downward. Where dense understory vegetation is widespread and ants move in it for long distances, certain of these antbirds become regular ant followers: M. immaculata and M. fortis in cluttered moist foothill forest from Costa Rica to upper Amazonia; Gymnocichla nudiceps in moist cluttered second growth of Central America to Colombia. Where the forest understory is more open, Myrmeciza species follow ants mainly in cluttered patches: M. exsul in lowland forest west of the Andes, M. myotherina east of the Andes. Myrmeciza or relatives that specialize on water-edge or very dense zones rarely follow ants.

  20. Ant groups optimally amplify the effect of transiently informed individuals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gelblum, Aviram; Pinkoviezky, Itai; Fonio, Ehud; Ghosh, Abhijit; Gov, Nir; Feinerman, Ofer

    2015-07-01

    To cooperatively transport a large load, it is important that carriers conform in their efforts and align their forces. A downside of behavioural conformism is that it may decrease the group's responsiveness to external information. Combining experiment and theory, we show how ants optimize collective transport. On the single-ant scale, optimization stems from decision rules that balance individuality and compliance. Macroscopically, these rules poise the system at the transition between random walk and ballistic motion where the collective response to the steering of a single informed ant is maximized. We relate this peak in response to the divergence of susceptibility at a phase transition. Our theoretical models predict that the ant-load system can be transitioned through the critical point of this mesoscopic system by varying its size; we present experiments supporting these predictions. Our findings show that efficient group-level processes can arise from transient amplification of individual-based knowledge.

  1. Florida alternative NTCIP testing software (ANTS) for actuated signal controllers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2009-01-01

    The scope of this research project did include the development of a software tool to test devices for NTCIP compliance. Development of the Florida Alternative NTCIP Testing Software (ANTS) was developed by the research team due to limitations found w...

  2. Novel fungal disease in complex leaf-cutting ant societies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hughes, David Peter; Evans, Harry C.; Hywel-Jones, Nigel

    2009-01-01

    1. The leaf-cutting ants practise an advanced system of mycophagy where they grow a fungus as a food source. As a consequence of parasite threats to their crops, they have evolved a system of morphological, behavioural, and chemical defences, particularly against fungal pathogens (mycopathogens). 2....... Specific fungal diseases of the leaf-cutting ants themselves have not been described, possibly because broad spectrum anti-fungal defences against mycopathogens have reduced their susceptibility to entomopathogens. 3. Using morphological and molecular tools, the present study documents three rare infection...... events of Acromyrmex and Atta leaf-cutting ants by Ophiocordyceps fungi, agenus of entomopathogens that is normally highly specific in its host choice. 4. As leaf-cutting ants have been intensively studied, the absence of prior records of Ophiocordyceps suggests that these infections may be a novel event...

  3. Heavy metal pollution disturbs immune response in wild ant populations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sorvari, Jouni; Rantala, Liisa M.; Rantala, Markus J.; Hakkarainen, Harri; Eeva, Tapio

    2007-01-01

    Concern about the effects of environmental contaminants on immune function in both humans and wildlife is growing and practically nothing is known about this impact on terrestrial invertebrates, even though they are known to easily accumulate pollutants. We studied the effect of industrial heavy metal contamination on immune defense of a free-living wood ant (Formica aquilonia). To find out whether ants show an adapted immune function in a polluted environment, we compared encapsulation responses between local and translocated colonies. Local colonies showed higher heavy metal levels than the translocated ones but the encapsulation response was similar between the two groups, indicating that the immune system of local ants has not adapted to high contamination level. The encapsulation response was elevated in moderate whereas suppressed in high heavy metal levels suggesting higher risk for infections in heavily polluted areas. - Heavy metal pollution affects immune function in ants

  4. Ant colony search algorithm for optimal reactive power optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lenin K.

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper presents an (ACSA Ant colony search Algorithm for Optimal Reactive Power Optimization and voltage control of power systems. ACSA is a new co-operative agents’ approach, which is inspired by the observation of the behavior of real ant colonies on the topic of ant trial formation and foraging methods. Hence, in the ACSA a set of co-operative agents called "Ants" co-operates to find good solution for Reactive Power Optimization problem. The ACSA is applied for optimal reactive power optimization is evaluated on standard IEEE, 30, 57, 191 (practical test bus system. The proposed approach is tested and compared to genetic algorithm (GA, Adaptive Genetic Algorithm (AGA.

  5. application of ant colony optimisation in distribution transformer sizing

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    HP

    Keywords: ant colony, optimization, transformer sizing, distribution transformer. 1. INTRODUCTION ... more intensive pheromone and higher probability to be chosen [12]. ..... pp.29-41, 1996. [7] EC global market place, “Technical Parameters”,.

  6. Fluid intake rates in ants correlate with their feeding habits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, J; Roces, F

    2003-04-01

    This study investigates the techniques of nectar feeding in 11 different ant species, and quantitatively compares fluid intake rates over a wide range of nectar concentrations in four species that largely differ in their feeding habits. Ants were observed to employ two different techniques for liquid food intake, in which the glossa works either as a passive duct-like structure (sucking), or as an up- and downwards moving shovel (licking). The technique employed for collecting fluids at ad libitum food sources was observed to be species-specific and to correlate with the presence or absence of a well-developed crop in the species under scrutiny. Workers of ponerine ants licked fluid food during foraging and transported it as a droplet between their mandibles, whereas workers of species belonging to phylogenetically more advanced subfamilies, with a crop capable of storing liquids, sucked the fluid food, such as formicine ants of the genus Camponotus. In order to evaluate the performance of fluid collection during foraging, intake rates for sucrose solutions of different concentrations were measured in four ant species that differ in their foraging ecology. Scaling functions between fluid intake rates and ant size were first established for the polymorphic species, so as to compare ants of different size across species. Results showed that fluid intake rate depended, as expected and previously reported in the literature, on sugar concentration and the associated fluid viscosity. It also depended on both the species-specific feeding technique and the extent of specialization on foraging on liquid food. For similarly-sized ants, workers of two nectar-feeding ant species, Camponotus rufipes (Formicinae) and Pachycondyla villosa (Ponerinae), collected fluids with the highest intake rates, while workers of the leaf-cutting ant Atta sexdens (Myrmicinae) and a predatory ant from the Rhytidoponera impressa-complex (Ponerinae) did so with the lowest rate. Calculating the

  7. Ichthyoplankton assemblage structure of springs in the Yangtze Estuary revealed by biological and environmental visions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Hui; Xian, Weiwei; Liu, Shude

    2015-01-01

    The ichthyoplankton assemblage structure in the Yangtze Estuary was analyzed based on four springs in 1999, 2001, 2004 and 2007 in order to provide detailed characterizations of the ichthyoplankton assemblage in springs, examine the long-term dynamics of spring ichthyoplankton assemblages, and evaluate the influence of environmental factors on the spatial distribution and inter-annual variations of ichthyoplankton assemblages associated with the Yangtze Estuary. Forty-two ichthyoplankton species belonging to 23 families were collected. Engraulidae was the most abundant family, including six species and comprising 67.91% of the total catch. Only four species (Coilia mystus, Engraulis japonicus, Trachidermis fasciatus and Allanetta bleekeri) could be considered dominant, accounting for 88.70% of total abundance. The structure of the ichthyoplankton spring assemblage persisted on an annual basis, with the dominant species reappearing consistently even though their abundance fluctuated from year to year. This inter-annual variation probably reflects variable environmental conditions influenced by jellyfish blooms, declining river flow, and overfishing. Canonical correspondence analysis indicated aspatial structure of the ichthyoplankton assemblage in three areas: (1) an inner assemblage dominated by C. mystus; (2) a central assemblage dominated by A. bleekeri and T. fasciatus; and (3) a shelf assemblage featuring E. japonicus. The observed ichthyoplankton assemblage structure appears to be strongly influenced by depth, salinity and suspended particulate matter gradients.

  8. Climatic warming destabilizes forest ant communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diamond, Sarah E; Nichols, Lauren M; Pelini, Shannon L; Penick, Clint A; Barber, Grace W; Cahan, Sara Helms; Dunn, Robert R; Ellison, Aaron M; Sanders, Nathan J; Gotelli, Nicholas J

    2016-10-01

    How will ecological communities change in response to climate warming? Direct effects of temperature and indirect cascading effects of species interactions are already altering the structure of local communities, but the dynamics of community change are still poorly understood. We explore the cumulative effects of warming on the dynamics and turnover of forest ant communities that were warmed as part of a 5-year climate manipulation experiment at two sites in eastern North America. At the community level, warming consistently increased occupancy of nests and decreased extinction and nest abandonment. This consistency was largely driven by strong responses of a subset of thermophilic species at each site. As colonies of thermophilic species persisted in nests for longer periods of time under warmer temperatures, turnover was diminished, and species interactions were likely altered. We found that dynamical (Lyapunov) community stability decreased with warming both within and between sites. These results refute null expectations of simple temperature-driven increases in the activity and movement of thermophilic ectotherms. The reduction in stability under warming contrasts with the findings of previous studies that suggest resilience of species interactions to experimental and natural warming. In the face of warmer, no-analog climates, communities of the future may become increasingly fragile and unstable.

  9. Recognition in ants: social origin matters.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joël Meunier

    Full Text Available The ability of group members to discriminate against foreigners is a keystone in the evolution of sociality. In social insects, colony social structure (number of queens is generally thought to influence abilities of resident workers to discriminate between nestmates and non-nestmates. However, whether social origin of introduced individuals has an effect on their acceptance in conspecific colonies remains poorly explored. Using egg-acceptance bioassays, we tested the influence of social origin of queen-laid eggs on their acceptance by foreign workers in the ant Formica selysi. We showed that workers from both single- and multiple-queen colonies discriminated against foreign eggs from single-queen colonies, whereas they surprisingly accepted foreign eggs from multiple-queen colonies. Chemical analyses then demonstrated that social origins of eggs and workers could be discriminated on the basis of their chemical profiles, a signal generally involved in nestmate discrimination. These findings provide the first evidence in social insects that social origins of eggs interfere with nestmate discrimination and are encoded by chemical signatures.

  10. Nasa's Ant-Inspired Swarmie Robots

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leucht, Kurt W.

    2016-01-01

    As humans push further beyond the grasp of earth, robotic missions in advance of human missions will play an increasingly important role. These robotic systems will find and retrieve valuable resources as part of an in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) strategy. They will need to be highly autonomous while maintaining high task performance levels. NASA Kennedy Space Center has teamed up with the Biological Computation Lab at the University of New Mexico to create a swarm of small, low-cost, autonomous robots to be used as a ground-based research platform for ISRU missions. The behavior of the robot swarm mimics the central-place foraging strategy of ants to find and collect resources in a previously unmapped environment and return those resources to a central site. This talk will guide the audience through the Swarmie robot project from its conception by students in a New Mexico research lab to its robot trials in an outdoor parking lot at NASA. The software technologies and techniques used on the project will be discussed, as well as various challenges and solutions that were encountered by the development team along the way.

  11. Carbohydrate supply limits invasion of natural communities by Argentine ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowles, Alexei D; Silverman, Jules

    2009-08-01

    The ability of species to invade new habitats is often limited by various biotic and physical factors or interactions between the two. Invasive ants, frequently associated with human activities, flourish in disturbed urban and agricultural environments. However, their ability to invade and establish in natural habitats is more variable. This is particularly so for the invasive Argentine ant (Linepithema humile). While biotic resistance and low soil moisture limits their invasion of natural habitats in some instances, the effect of food availability has been poorly explored. We conducted field experiments to determine if resource availability limits the spread and persistence of Argentine ants in remnant natural forest in North Carolina. Replicated transects paired with and without sucrose solution feeding stations were run from invaded urban edges into forest remnants and compared over time using baits and direct counts at feeding stations. Repeated under different timing regimes in 2006 and 2007, access to sucrose increased local Argentine ant abundances (1.6-2.5 fold) and facilitated their progression into the forest up to 73 +/- 21% of 50-m transects. Resource removal caused an expected decrease in Argentine ant densities in 2006, in conjunction with their retreat to the urban/forest boundary. However, in 2007, Argentine ant numbers unexpectedly continued to increase in the absence of sugar stations, possibly through access to alternative resources or conditions not available the previous year such as honeydew-excreting Hemiptera. Our results showed that supplementing carbohydrate supply facilitates invasion of natural habitat by Argentine ants. This is particularly evident where Argentine ants continued to thrive following sugar station removal.

  12. Hybridization in East African swarm-raiding army ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, Daniel Jc; Peters, Marcell K; Schöning, Caspar

    2011-01-01

    Hybridization can have complex effects on evolutionary dynamics in ants because of the combination of haplodiploid sex-determination and eusociality. While hybrid non-reproductive workers have been found in a range of species, examples of gene-flow via hybrid queens and males are rare. We studied...... hybridization in East African army ants (Dorylus subgenus Anomma) using morphology, mitochondrial DNA sequences, and nuclear microsatellites....

  13. An Improved Ant Colony Matching by Using Discrete Curve Evolution

    OpenAIRE

    Saadi, Younes; Sari, Eka,; Herawan, Tutut

    2014-01-01

    Part 1: Information & Communication Technology-EurAsia Conference 2014, ICT-EurAsia 2014; International audience; In this paper we present an improved Ant Colony Optimization (ACO) for contour matching, which can be used to match 2D shapes. Discrete Curve Evolution (DCE) technique is used to simplify the extracted contour. In order to find the best correspondence between shapes, the match process is formulated as a Quadratic Assignment Problem (QAP) and resolved by using Ant Colony Optimizati...

  14. Behavior of ergatoid males in the ant, Cardiocondyla nuda

    OpenAIRE

    Heinze, Jürgen; Künholz, S.; Schilder, K.; Hölldobler, B.

    1993-01-01

    Ergatoid males of the ant, Cardiocondyla nuda, attack and frequently kill young males during or shortly after eclosion. Smaller colonies therefore contain typically only one adult male, which may inseminate all alate queens which are reared in the colony over a few weeks. In larger colonies, several males may be present, however, fighting among adult males was not observed. We discuss the significance of male fighting behavior in ants.

  15. Mating behaviour in a slave-making ant, Rossomyrmex minuchae (Hymenoptera, Formicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruano, Francisca; Tinaut, Alberto

    2005-07-01

    The mating behaviour of the ant Rossomyrmex minuchae, a rare, protected slave-making species in Spain, seems to be significantly affected by its particular life history and patchy habitat. The mating behaviour of the entire genus Rossomyrmex is virtually unknown. We present here the results of a 3-year study of mating behaviour in R. minuchae.Behavioural observations and limited nest excavations revealed that R. minuchae does not produce sexuals every year, the number of sexuals is low, and the sex ratio tends to be female biased. Females typically exhibit two distinct activity periods. The first, the mating period, takes place in early afternoon: the ants "call" near the natal nest, mate and then return to their nest. The second, the dispersal period takes place in late afternoon: the mated females exit their nest and fly in search of a new, non-parasitized Proformica longiseta host nest. Males are highly active during the mating period, but will remain inactive in the dispersal period even if experimentally presented with virgin females. It appears that females are monogamous, while males are polygamous. When males are late arriving at the female calling site, the females will frequently congregate presumably calling in chorus. The low reproductive efficiency exhibited by R. minuchae, coupled with the postulated low genetic variation in the population, as sisters may mate with the same male, could result in a low survival rate and risk of eventual extinction. The observed decrease in nest density we observed during the 2004 season may be indicative of such a process.

  16. No sex in fungus-farming ants or their crops.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Himler, Anna G; Caldera, Eric J; Baer, Boris C; Fernández-Marín, Hermógenes; Mueller, Ulrich G

    2009-07-22

    Asexual reproduction imposes evolutionary handicaps on asexual species, rendering them prone to extinction, because asexual reproduction generates novel genotypes and purges deleterious mutations at lower rates than sexual reproduction. Here, we report the first case of complete asexuality in ants, the fungus-growing ant Mycocepurus smithii, where queens reproduce asexually but workers are sterile, which is doubly enigmatic because the clonal colonies of M. smithii also depend on clonal fungi for food. Degenerate female mating anatomy, extensive field and laboratory surveys, and DNA fingerprinting implicate complete asexuality in this widespread ant species. Maternally inherited bacteria (e.g. Wolbachia, Cardinium) and the fungal cultivars can be ruled out as agents inducing asexuality. M. smithii societies of clonal females provide a unique system to test theories of parent-offspring conflict and reproductive policing in social insects. Asexuality of both ant farmer and fungal crop challenges traditional views proposing that sexual farmer ants outpace coevolving sexual crop pathogens, and thus compensate for vulnerabilities of their asexual crops. Either the double asexuality of both farmer and crop may permit the host to fully exploit advantages of asexuality for unknown reasons or frequent switching between crops (symbiont reassociation) generates novel ant-fungus combinations, which may compensate for any evolutionary handicaps of asexuality in M. smithii.

  17. [Ants as carriers of microorganisms in hospital environments].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Rogério Dos Santos; Ueno, Mariko

    2008-01-01

    Concern exists regarding the real possibility of public health threats caused by pathogenic agents that are carried by urban ants. The present study had the objective of isolating and identifying the microorganisms that are associated with ants in hospital environments. One hundred and twenty-five ants of the same species were collected from different units of a university hospital. Each ant was collected using a swab soaked with physiological solution and was transferred to a tube containing brain heart infusion broth and incubated at 35 degrees C for 24 hours. From each tube, with growth, inoculations were made into specific culturing media, to isolate any microorganisms. The ants presented a high capacity for carrying microorganism groups: spore-producing Gram-positive bacilli 63.5%, Gram-negative bacilli 6.3%, Gram-positive cocci 23.1%, filamentous fungi 6.7% and yeast 0.5%. Thus, it can be inferred that ants may be one of the agents responsible for disseminating microorganisms in hospital environments.

  18. Species-Specific Effects of Ant Inhabitants on Bromeliad Nutrition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Z Gonçalves

    Full Text Available Predator activities may lead to the accumulation of nutrients in specific areas of terrestrial habitats where they dispose of prey carcasses. In their feeding sites, predators may increase nutrient availability in the soil and favor plant nutrition and growth. However, the translocation of nutrients from one habitat to another may depend on predator identity and diet, as well as on the amount of prey intake. Here we used isotopic (15N and physiological methods in greenhouse experiments to evaluate the effects of the identity of predatory ants (i.e., the consumption of prey and nest sites on the nutrition and growth of the bromeliad Quesnelia arvensis. We showed that predatory ants with protein-based nutrition (i.e., Odontomachus hastatus, Gnamptogenys moelleri improved the performance of their host bromeliads (i.e., increased foliar N, production of soluble proteins and growth. On the other hand, the contribution of Camponotus crassus for the nutritional status of bromeliads did not differ from bromeliads without ants, possibly because this ant does not have arthropod prey as a preferred food source. Our results show, for the first time, that predatory ants can translocate nutrients from one habitat to another within forests, accumulating nutrients in their feeding sites that become available to bromeliads. Additionally, we highlight that ant contribution to plant nutrition may depend on predator identity and its dietary requirements. Nest debris may be especially important for epiphytic and terrestrial bromeliads in nutrient-poor environments.

  19. Aversive learning of odor-heat associations in ants.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desmedt, Lucie; Baracchi, David; Devaud, Jean-Marc; Giurfa, Martin; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2017-12-15

    Ants have recently emerged as useful models for the study of olfactory learning. In this framework, the development of a protocol for the appetitive conditioning of the maxilla-labium extension response (MaLER) provided the possibility of studying Pavlovian odor-food learning in a controlled environment. Here we extend these studies by introducing the first Pavlovian aversive learning protocol for harnessed ants in the laboratory. We worked with carpenter ants Camponotus aethiops and first determined the capacity of different temperatures applied to the body surface to elicit the typical aversive mandible opening response (MOR). We determined that 75°C is the optimal temperature to induce MOR and chose the hind legs as the stimulated body region because of their high sensitivity. We then studied the ability of ants to learn and remember odor-heat associations using 75°C as the unconditioned stimulus. We studied learning and short-term retention after absolute (one odor paired with heat) and differential conditioning (a punished odor versus an unpunished odor). Our results show that ants successfully learn the odor-heat association under a differential-conditioning regime and thus exhibit a conditioned MOR to the punished odor. Yet, their performance under an absolute-conditioning regime is poor. These results demonstrate that ants are capable of aversive learning and confirm previous findings about the different attentional resources solicited by differential and absolute conditioning in general. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  20. Water stress strengthens mutualism among ants, trees, and scale insects.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth G Pringle

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Abiotic environmental variables strongly affect the outcomes of species interactions. For example, mutualistic interactions between species are often stronger when resources are limited. The effect might be indirect: water stress on plants can lead to carbon stress, which could alter carbon-mediated plant mutualisms. In mutualistic ant-plant symbioses, plants host ant colonies that defend them against herbivores. Here we show that the partners' investments in a widespread ant-plant symbiosis increase with water stress across 26 sites along a Mesoamerican precipitation gradient. At lower precipitation levels, Cordia alliodora trees invest more carbon in Azteca ants via phloem-feeding scale insects that provide the ants with sugars, and the ants provide better defense of the carbon-producing leaves. Under water stress, the trees have smaller carbon pools. A model of the carbon trade-offs for the mutualistic partners shows that the observed strategies can arise from the carbon costs of rare but extreme events of herbivory in the rainy season. Thus, water limitation, together with the risk of herbivory, increases the strength of a carbon-based mutualism.

  1. Water stress strengthens mutualism among ants, trees, and scale insects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pringle, Elizabeth G; Akçay, Erol; Raab, Ted K; Dirzo, Rodolfo; Gordon, Deborah M

    2013-11-01

    Abiotic environmental variables strongly affect the outcomes of species interactions. For example, mutualistic interactions between species are often stronger when resources are limited. The effect might be indirect: water stress on plants can lead to carbon stress, which could alter carbon-mediated plant mutualisms. In mutualistic ant-plant symbioses, plants host ant colonies that defend them against herbivores. Here we show that the partners' investments in a widespread ant-plant symbiosis increase with water stress across 26 sites along a Mesoamerican precipitation gradient. At lower precipitation levels, Cordia alliodora trees invest more carbon in Azteca ants via phloem-feeding scale insects that provide the ants with sugars, and the ants provide better defense of the carbon-producing leaves. Under water stress, the trees have smaller carbon pools. A model of the carbon trade-offs for the mutualistic partners shows that the observed strategies can arise from the carbon costs of rare but extreme events of herbivory in the rainy season. Thus, water limitation, together with the risk of herbivory, increases the strength of a carbon-based mutualism.

  2. Revisiting the ants of Melanesia and the taxon cycle: historical and human-mediated invasions of a tropical archipelago.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Economo, Evan P; Sarnat, Eli M

    2012-07-01

    Understanding the historical evolution of biotas and the dynamics of contemporary human-mediated species introductions are two central tasks of biology. One hypothesis may address both-the taxon cycle. Taxon cycles are phases of range expansion and contraction coupled to ecological and evolutionary niche shifts. These historical invasion processes resemble human-mediated invasions in pattern and possibly mechanism, but both the existence of historical cycles and the roles of recent introductions are in question. We return to the system that originally inspired the taxon cycle-Melanesian ants-and perform novel tests of the hypothesis. We analyze (i) the habitat distributions of Fiji's entire ant fauna (183 species), (ii) ecological shifts associated with the in situ radiation of Fijian Pheidole in a phylogenetic context, and (iii) the ecological structure of a massive exotic ant invasion of the archipelago. Our analyses indicate lineages shift toward primary habitats, higher elevation, rarity, and ecological specialization with increasing level of endemism, consistent with taxon cycle predictions. The marginal habitats that historically formed a dispersal conduit in the Pacific are now mostly replaced by human-modified habitats dominated by a colonization pulse of exotic species. We propose this may represent the first phase of an incipient global cycle of human-mediated colonization, ecological shifts, and diversification.

  3. Environmental filtering structures tree functional traits combination and lineages across space in tropical tree assemblages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asefa, Mengesha; Cao, Min; Zhang, Guocheng; Ci, Xiuqin; Li, Jie; Yang, Jie

    2017-03-09

    Environmental filtering consistently shapes the functional and phylogenetic structure of species across space within diverse forests. However, poor descriptions of community functional and lineage distributions across space hamper the accurate understanding of coexistence mechanisms. We combined environmental variables and geographic space to explore how traits and lineages are filtered by environmental factors using extended RLQ and fourth-corner analyses across different spatial scales. The dispersion patterns of traits and lineages were also examined in a 20-ha tropical rainforest dynamics plot in southwest China. We found that environmental filtering was detected across all spatial scales except the largest scale (100 × 100 m). Generally, the associations between functional traits and environmental variables were more or less consistent across spatial scales. Species with high resource acquisition-related traits were associated with the resource-rich part of the plot across the different spatial scales, whereas resource-conserving functional traits were distributed in limited-resource environments. Furthermore, we found phylogenetic and functional clustering at all spatial scales. Similar functional strategies were also detected among distantly related species, suggesting that phylogenetic distance is not necessarily a proxy for functional distance. In summary, environmental filtering considerably structured the trait and lineage assemblages in this species-rich tropical rainforest.

  4. Spatial autocorrelation in farmland grasshopper assemblages (Orthoptera: Acrididae) in western France.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badenhausser, I; Gouat, M; Goarant, A; Cornulier, T; Bretagnolle, V

    2012-10-01

    Agricultural intensification in western Europe has caused a dramatic loss of grassland surfaces in farmlands, which have resulted in strong declines in grassland invertebrates, leading to cascade effects at higher trophic levels among consumers of invertebrates. Grasshoppers are important components of grassland invertebrate assemblages in European agricultural ecosystems, particularly as prey for bird species. Understanding how grasshopper populations are distributed in fragmented landscapes with low grassland availability is critical for both studies in biodiversity conservation and insect management. We assessed the range and strength of spatial autocorrelation for two grasshopper taxa (Gomphocerinae subfamily and Calliptamus italicus L.) across an intensive farmland in western France. Data from surveys carried out over 8 yr in 1,715 grassland fields were analyzed using geostatistics. Weak spatial patterns were observed at small spatial scales, suggesting important local effects of management practices on grasshopper densities. Spatial autocorrelation patterns for both grasshopper taxa were only detected at intermediate scales. For Gomphocerinae, the range of spatial autocorrelation varied from 802 to 2,613 m according to the year, depending both on grasshopper density and on grassland surfaces in the study site, whereas spatial patterns for the Italian locust were more variable and not related to grasshopper density or grassland surfaces. Spatial patterns in the distribution of Gomphocerinae supported our hypothesis that habitat availability was a major driver of grasshopper distribution in the landscape, and suggested it was related to density-dependent processes such as dispersal.

  5. Cultural assemblages show nested structure in humans and chimpanzees but not orangutans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamilar, Jason M; Atkinson, Quentin D

    2014-01-07

    The evolution of hominin culture is well-documented in the archeological and fossil record, but such a record is largely absent for nonhuman primates. An alternative approach to studying cultural evolution is to examine patterns of modern cultural variation. In this article we measure nestedness across human and great ape "cultural repertoires" to gain insight into the accumulation and maintenance of putative cultural diversity in these species. Cultural assemblages are nested if cultures with a small repertoire of traits tend to comprise a proper subset of those traits present in more complex cultures. This nesting will occur if some traits are sequentially gained or lost, which may be because of the differential dispersal or extinction of traits. Here we apply statistical tools from ecology to examine the degree of nestedness in four datasets documenting the presence or absence of specific cultural traits across indigenous human populations in North America and New Guinea. We then compare the human data to patterns observed for putative cultural traits in chimpanzee and orangutan populations. In both humans and chimpanzees, cultural diversity is highly nonrandom, showing significant nested structure for all of the datasets examined. We find no evidence for nestedness in the orangutan cultural data. These findings are consistent with a sequential "layering" of cultural diversity in humans and chimpanzees, but not orangutans. Such an interpretation implies that the traits required for sequential cultural evolution first appeared in the last common ancestor of chimpanzees and humans.

  6. CO2 efflux from subterranean nests of ant communities in a seasonal tropical forest, Thailand

    OpenAIRE

    Hasin, Sasitorn; Ohashi, Mizue; Yamada, Akinori; Hashimoto, Yoshiaki; Tasen, Wattanachai; Kume, Tomonori; Yamane, Seiki

    2014-01-01

    Many ant species construct subterranean nests. The presence of their nests may explain soil respiration “hot spots”, an important factor in the high CO2 efflux from tropical forests. However, no studies have directly measured CO2 efflux from ant nests. We established 61 experimental plots containing 13 subterranean ant species to evaluate the CO2 efflux from subterranean ant nests in a tropical seasonal forest, Thailand. We examined differences in nest CO2 efflux among ant species. We determi...

  7. Value of Riparian Vegetation Remnants for Leaf-Litter Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in a Human-Dominated Landscape in Central Veracruz, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-Martínez, Miguel Á; Escobar-Sarria, Federico; López-Barrera, Fabiola; Castaño-Meneses, Gabriela; Valenzuela-González, Jorge E

    2015-12-01

    Riparian remnants are linear strips of vegetation immediately adjacent to rivers that may act as refuges for biodiversity, depending on their habitat quality. In this study, we evaluated the role of riparian remnants in contributing to the diversity of leaf-litter ants by determining the relationship between ant diversity and several riparian habitat characteristics within a human-dominated landscape in Veracruz, Mexico. Sampling was carried out in 2012 during both dry and rainy seasons at 12 transects 100 m in length, where 10 leaf-litter samples were collected along each transect and processed with Berlese-Tullgren funnels and Winkler sacks. A total of 8,684 individuals belonging to 53 species, 22 genera, and seven subfamilies were collected. The observed mean alpha diversity accounted for 34.4% of the total species recorded and beta diversity for 65.6%. Species richness and composition were significantly related to litter-layer depth and soil compaction, which could limit the distribution of ant species depending on their nesting, feeding, and foraging habits. Riparian remnants can contribute toward the conservation of ant assemblages and likely other invertebrate communities that are threatened by anthropogenic pressures. In human-dominated landscapes where remnants of riparian vegetation give refuge to a diverse array of myrmecofauna, the protection of the few remaining and well-preserved riparian sites is essential for the long-term maintenance of biodiversity. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  8. Dispersed flow film boiling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andreani, M.; Yadigaroglu, G.

    1989-12-01

    Dispersed flow film boiling is the heat transfer regime that occurs at high void fractions in a heated channel. The way this transfer mode is modelled in the NRC computer codes (RELAP5 and TRAC) and the validity of the assumption and empirical correlations used is discussed. An extensive review of the theoretical and experimental work related with heat transfer to highly dispersed mixtures reveals the basic deficiencies of these models: the investigation refers mostly to the typical conditions of low rate bottom reflooding, since the simulation of this physical situation by the computer codes has often showed poor results. The alternative models that are available in the literature are reviewed, and their merits and limits are highlighted. The modification that could improve the physics of the models implemented in the codes are identified. (author) 13 figs., 123 refs

  9. Working document dispersion models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dop, H. van

    1988-01-01

    This report is a summary of the most important results from June 1985 of the collaboration of the RIVM (Dutch National Institute for Public Health and Environment Hygiene) and KNMI (Royal Dutch Meteorologic Institute) on the domain of dispersion models. It contains a short description of the actual SO x /NO x -model. Furthermore it contains recommendations for modifications of some numerical-mathematical aspects and an impulse to a more complete description of chemical processes in the atmosphere and the (wet) deposition process. A separate chapter is devoted to the preparation of meteorologic data which are relevant for dispersion as well as atmospheric chemistry and deposition. This report serves as working document for the final formulation of a acidifying- and oxidant-model. (H.W.). 69 refs.; 51 figs.; 13 tabs.; 3 schemes

  10. Spatially Dispersed Employee Recovery

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hvass, Kristian Anders; Torfadóttir, Embla

    2014-01-01

    Employee recovery addresses either employee well-being or management's practices in aiding employees in recovering themselves following a service failure. This paper surveys the cabin crew at a small, European, low-cost carrier and investigates employees' perceptions of management practices to aid...... personnel achieve service recovery. Employee recovery within service research often focuses on front-line employees that work in a fixed location, however a contribution to the field is made by investigating the recovery of spatially dispersed personnel, such as operational personnel in the transport sector......, who have a work place away from a fixed or central location and have minimal management contact. Results suggest that the support employees receive from management, such as recognition, information sharing, training, and strategic awareness are all important for spatially dispersed front...

  11. Heat dispersion in rivers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shaw, T.L.

    1974-01-01

    One of the tasks of the Sonderforschungsbereich 80 is to study the dispersion of heat discharged into rivers and other bodies of water and to develop methods which permit prediction of detrimental effects caused by the heated discharges. In order to help the SFB 80 to specify this task, Dr. Shaw, lecturer of Civil Engineering at the Bristol University, conducted a literature survey on heat-dispersion studies during the two months which he spent as a visiting research fellow with the SFB 80 at the University of Karlsruhe in the summer of 1973. The following report is the outcome of this survey. It gives Dr. Shaw's assessment of the present state of knowledge - based almost exclusively on literature in the English language - and compares this with the knowledge required by river planners. The apparent discrepancy leads to suggestions for future research. Selected references as well as a representative bibliography can be found at the end of the report. (orig.) [de

  12. Fish assemblages in coastal lagoons in land-uplift succession: The relative importance of local and regional environmental gradients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snickars, Martin; Sandström, Alfred; Lappalainen, Antti; Mattila, Johanna; Rosqvist, Kajsa; Urho, Lauri

    2009-01-01

    . We suggest that this difference in the relative importance of the two gradients depending on the level of respective gradient ultimately forms these heterogeneous coastal habitats in a successional landscape. Rutilus rutilus and P. fluviatilis were responsible for large parts of the assemblage patterns. Although sympatric due to similar habitat requirements, differences in dispersal capability, competitive ability and predation vulnerability may add explanation to detected differences in distribution and abundance in these two species in an open system. Our results also stress the structuring role of vegetation in terms of total coverage and species composition, as these two aspects of macrophyte diversity may act as complementary habitat modifiers across gradients of physical harshness.

  13. Stability and spatio-temporal structure in fish assemblages of two floodplain lagoons of the lower Orinoco River

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nirson González

    Full Text Available Fish assemblage structure and variability were analyzed in two floodplain lagoons (Las Arhuacas and Los Cardonales along the lower Orinoco over a hydrological cycle. Every three months during continuous three-day sampling, experimental gill nets (5 to 12.5 cm of mesh opening and 1 mm-mesh seine nets were utilized according to the types of habitats presents. A total of 133 fish species were found in Las Arhuacas and 95 species in Cardonales. Fifty five and 17 species were exclusive to Las Arhuacas and Los Cardonales respectively, and 77 were common to both lagoons. In Las Arhuacas, the most speciesrich orders were Characiformes, Siluriformes, Perciformes and Gymnotiformes and in Los Cardonales, the most species-rich orders were Characiformes, Siluriformes, Clupeiformes and Perciformes. The richness, abundance and biomass were significantly higher (p < 0.001 in Arhuacas than in Cardonales. In general, the fishes assemblage was highly variable during the high water phase and moderately stable during low water phase in both lagoons, with more stability or less variability in Cardonales than Arhuacas. Also, there were significant differences in the fish assemblages between the two lagoons, mainly during low waters (ANOSIM; p < 0.001. The species that contributed most to the mean dissimilarity between the lagoons were Hypostomus argus, Aphanotorulus ammophilus, Potamorhina altamazonica, Prochilodus mariae, Loricaria gr. cataphracta, Oxydoras sifontesi, Hydrolycus armatus, Hyphopthalmus edentatus and Pterodoras rivasi. The last four species were more commonly collected in Los Cardonales. Also, the species of small size (mainly SL < 5 cm such as Rhinosardinia amazonica, Moenkhausia sp. 1 "lepidura", Moenkhausia sp. 2, Aphyocharax alburnus, Characidium sp. 1, Moenkhausia sp. 3, Exodon paradoxus and Roeboides dientonito contributed to the mean dissimilarity among the beach and aquatic vegetation habitats. The patterns of the species assemblage

  14. Using ant-behavior-based simulation model AntWeb to improve website organization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Weigang; Pinheiro Dib, Marcos V.; Teles, Wesley M.; Morais de Andrade, Vlaudemir; Alves de Melo, Alba C. M.; Cariolano, Judas T.

    2002-03-01

    Some web usage mining algorithms showed the potential application to find the difference among the organizations expected by visitors to the website. However, there are still no efficient method and criterion for a web administrator to measure the performance of the modification. In this paper, we developed an AntWeb, a model inspired by ants' behavior to simulate the sequence of visiting the website, in order to measure the efficient of the web structure. We implemented a web usage mining algorithm using backtrack to the intranet website of the Politec Informatic Ltd., Brazil. We defined throughput (the number of visitors to reach their target pages per time unit relates to the total number of visitors) as an index to measure the website's performance. We also used the link in a web page to represent the effect of visitors' pheromone trails. For every modification in the website organization, for example, putting a link from the expected location to the target object, the simulation reported the value of throughput as a quick answer about this modification. The experiment showed the stability of our simulation model, and a positive modification to the intranet website of the Politec.

  15. Taylor dispersion of nanoparticles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balog, Sandor; Urban, Dominic A.; Milosevic, Ana M.; Crippa, Federica; Rothen-Rutishauser, Barbara; Petri-Fink, Alke

    2017-08-01

    The ability to detect and accurately characterize particles is required by many fields of nanotechnology, including materials science, nanotoxicology, and nanomedicine. Among the most relevant physicochemical properties of nanoparticles, size and the related surface-to-volume ratio are fundamental ones. Taylor dispersion combines three independent phenomena to determine particle size: optical extinction, translational diffusion, and sheer-enhanced dispersion of nanoparticles subjected to a steady laminar flow. The interplay of these defines the apparent size. Considering that particles in fact are never truly uniform nor monodisperse, we rigorously address particle polydispersity and calculate the apparent particle size measured by Taylor dispersion analysis. We conducted case studies addressing aqueous suspensions of model particles and large-scale-produced "industrial" particles of both academic and commercial interest of various core materials and sizes, ranging from 15 to 100 nm. A comparison with particle sizes determined by transmission electron microscopy confirms that our approach is model-independent, non-parametric, and of general validity that provides an accurate account of size polydispersity—independently on the shape of the size distribution and without any assumption required a priori.

  16. Drivers of larval fish assemblage shift during the spring-summer transition in the coastal Mediterranean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Álvarez, Itziar; Catalán, Ignacio A.; Jordi, Antoni; Palmer, Miquel; Sabatés, Ana; Basterretxea, Gotzon

    2012-01-01

    The influence of coastal environmental conditions from winter-spring to summer on fish larvae assemblages in a temperate area has suggested a seasonal shift in ecosystem-level variation through which trophic pathways shift from the pelagic to the benthic system. This variation may be related to marked effects in the reproductive strategies in the fishes inhabiting the area and indirectly affect ichthyoplankton assemblages. Larval fish assemblages were sampled fortnightly at three stations located in coastal waters off southern Mallorca (Western Mediterranean) from March to August 2007, covering the main spawning period for the resident coastal fish in this region. The larval fish assemblage showed clear seasonality with higher specific abundance but lower diversity in the spring. Two main assemblages were identified: a spring assemblage, occurring at surface seawater temperatures ichthyoplankton communities occurred in early June, coinciding with the onset of summer hydrographical conditions and the local benthic productivity peak.

  17. Long-Term Bird Assemblage Trends in Areas of High and Low Human Population Density

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barrett, K.; Romagosa, C.M.; Williams, M.I.

    2008-01-01

    Urban areas are expanding globally, and the impact of high human population density (HHPD) on bird species richness remains unresolved. Studies primarily focus on species richness along an urban-to-rural gradient; however, some studies have analyzed larger-scale patterns and found results that contrast with those obtained at smaller scales. To move the discussion beyond static species richness patterns, we analyzed the effect of HHPD on bird assemblage dynamics (year-to-year extinction probability, turnover, changes in species richness) across the United States over a 25-year period. We found that bird assemblages in both high and low human population density areas changed significantly over the period of record. Specifically, bird assemblages increased in species richness on average. Assemblage change in areas of HHPD was not significantly different from assemblage change in areas with LHPD. These results suggest that human population density alone does not alter the persistence of avian assemblage patterns.

  18. The invasive white ginger lily ( Hedichium coronarium simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo Henrique Lanzi Saulino

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium - J. Köenig, 1783 simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir. Invasive plants are believed to shift the trait composition of aquatic insects dwelling in banks of lentic ecosystems. In this study, we analyzed the relationship between the presence of the invasive white ginger lily (H. coronarium and the functional trait indices of the aquatic insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a tropical reservoir. We sampled aquatic insects on the invaded and non-invaded banks of the reservoir and then analyzed the insect trait indices by estimating the Functional Dispersion (FDis, Functional Evenness (FEve and the Functional Divergence (FDiv, as well as the Community level Weight-Mean traits (CWM. Finally, we compared these indices between invaded and non-invaded banks as well as their relationship with the abiotic variables, such as dissolved oxygen, pH, depth and water temperature. The result confirmed that the invaded banks had lower values of functional indices as well as dissolved oxygen. However, this abiotic variable was found to have no effect on the functional indices. In addition, the white ginger lily bank presented higher contribution of collector-gathering to predator-piercer groups. We suggest that the invasion of white ginger lily promotes low heterogeneity habitat resulting in simplification on functional traits of aquatic insect assemblage.

  19. The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hugo Henrique Lanzi Saulino

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available The invasive white ginger lily (Hedichium coronarium – J. Köenig, 1783 simplifies the trait composition of an insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a Savanna reservoir. Invasive plants are believed to shift the trait composition of aquatic insects dwelling in banks of lentic ecosystems. In this study, we analyzed the relationship between the presence of the invasive white ginger lily (H. coronarium and the functional trait indices of the aquatic insect assemblage in the littoral zone of a tropical reservoir. We sampled aquatic insects on the invaded and non-invaded banks of the reservoir and then analyzed the insect trait indices by estimating the Functional Dispersion (FDis, Functional Evenness (FEve and the Functional Divergence (FDiv, as well as the Community level Weight-Mean traits (CWM. Finally, we compared these indices between invaded and non-invaded banks as well as their relationship with the abiotic variables, such as dissolved oxygen, pH, depth and water temperature. The result confirmed that the invaded banks had lower values of functional indices as well as dissolved oxygen. However, this abiotic variable was found to have no effect on the functional indices. In addition, the white ginger lily bank presented higher contribution of collector-gathering to predator-piercer groups. We suggest that the invasion of white ginger lily promotes low heterogeneity habitat resulting in simplification on functional traits of aquatic insect assemblage. Keywords: Biodiversity, Biological invasions, Functional diversity, Lentic system

  20. Mnemiopsis leidyi Gut Harbors Seasonally Variant and Commensal Microbial Assemblages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mariita, R. M.; Hossain, M. J.; Liles, M. R.; Moss, A.

    2016-02-01

    Studies have shown that with widespread use of antibiotics in human and domestic animal populations, antibiotic resistance becomes increasingly common in the environment. Estuaries provide ideal conditions for acquisition and dissemination of drug resistance genes because they serve as sinks for pollution. This study aimed to identify M. leidyi microbial diversity and richness and their potential to act as vectors for antibiotic resistance determinants (ARDs). M. leidyi, although native to study area are highly invasive. Metagenomic analyses indicate that there are temporal variations of bacterioplankton assemblages in M. leidyi gut. Overall, Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria are the most abundant phyla. Despite the temporal dynamics in the microbial assemblages in M. leidyi gut, they seem to retain Propionibacterium acnes (gut microbiota in some insects) and select proteobacteria across all seasons. The results contradict previous studies that suggest that M. leidyi does not have constant a microbiota, but only seasonally variant microbial assemblages. Here we reveal the presence of M. leidyi gut ARDs in winter and summer, probably because of the ctenophores' positive geotaxis during rough surface conditions. Genes responsible for resistance to fluoroquinolones, multidrug resistance efflux pumps, mercuric reductase, copper homeostasis and blaR1 genes were observed. This is the first study to demonstrate that M. leidyi harbors constant microbiota and provides a baseline for understanding M. leidyi gut microbial and ARDs ecology. It also suggests that M. leidyi bacterial taxonomic and functional dynamics is influenced by season. Funding: Alabama EPSCoR GRSP fellowship, AU-CMB fellowship, NSF EPS-1158862, USDA-Hatch 370225-310100 (AGM, ML).