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Sample records for ant genus lasius

  1. A DNA and morphology based phylogenetic framework of the ant genus Lasius with hypotheses for the evolution of social parasitism and fungiculture

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    Stauffer Christian

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Ants of the genus Lasius are ecologically important and an important system for evolutionary research. Progress in evolutionary research has been hindered by the lack of a well-founded phylogeny of the subgenera, with three previous attempts disagreeing. Here we employed two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome c oxidase subunit I, 16S ribosomal RNA, comprising 1,265 bp, together with 64 morphological characters, to recover the phylogeny of Lasius by Bayesian and Maximum Parsimony inference after exploration of potential causes of phylogenetic distortion. We use the resulting framework to infer evolutionary pathways for social parasitism and fungiculture. Results We recovered two well supported major lineages. One includes Acanthomyops, Austrolasius, Chthonolasius, and Lasius pallitarsis, which we confirm to represent a seventh subgenus, the other clade contains Dendrolasius, and Lasius sensu stricto. The subgenus Cautolasius, displaying neither social parasitism nor fungiculture, probably belongs to the second clade, but its phylogenetic position is not resolved at the cutoff values of node support we apply. Possible causes for previous problems with reconstructing the Lasius phylogeny include use of other reconstruction techniques, possibly more prone to instabilities in some instances, and the inclusion of phylogenetically distorting characters. Conclusion By establishing an updated phylogenetic framework, our study provides the basis for a later formal taxonomic revision of subgenera and for studying the evolution of various ecologically and sociobiologically relevant traits of Lasius, although there is need for future studies to include nuclear genes and additional samples from the Nearctic. Both social parasitism and fungiculture evolved twice in Lasius, once in each major lineage, which opens up new opportunities for comparative analyses. The repeated evolution of social parasitism has been established for other groups of

  2. A DNA and morphology based phylogenetic framework of the ant genus Lasius with hypotheses for the evolution of social parasitism and fungiculture.

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    Maruyama, Munetoshi; Steiner, Florian M; Stauffer, Christian; Akino, Toshiharu; Crozier, Ross H; Schlick-Steiner, Birgit C

    2008-08-19

    Ants of the genus Lasius are ecologically important and an important system for evolutionary research. Progress in evolutionary research has been hindered by the lack of a well-founded phylogeny of the subgenera, with three previous attempts disagreeing. Here we employed two mitochondrial genes (cytochrome c oxidase subunit I, 16S ribosomal RNA), comprising 1,265 bp, together with 64 morphological characters, to recover the phylogeny of Lasius by Bayesian and Maximum Parsimony inference after exploration of potential causes of phylogenetic distortion. We use the resulting framework to infer evolutionary pathways for social parasitism and fungiculture. We recovered two well supported major lineages. One includes Acanthomyops, Austrolasius, Chthonolasius, and Lasius pallitarsis, which we confirm to represent a seventh subgenus, the other clade contains Dendrolasius, and Lasius sensu stricto. The subgenus Cautolasius, displaying neither social parasitism nor fungiculture, probably belongs to the second clade, but its phylogenetic position is not resolved at the cutoff values of node support we apply. Possible causes for previous problems with reconstructing the Lasius phylogeny include use of other reconstruction techniques, possibly more prone to instabilities in some instances, and the inclusion of phylogenetically distorting characters. By establishing an updated phylogenetic framework, our study provides the basis for a later formal taxonomic revision of subgenera and for studying the evolution of various ecologically and sociobiologically relevant traits of Lasius, although there is need for future studies to include nuclear genes and additional samples from the Nearctic. Both social parasitism and fungiculture evolved twice in Lasius, once in each major lineage, which opens up new opportunities for comparative analyses. The repeated evolution of social parasitism has been established for other groups of ants, though not for temporary social parasitism as found

  3. 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

  4. Mating, hybridisation and introgression in Lasius ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Van der Have, Tom; Pedersen, Jes Søe; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan

    2011-01-01

    Recent reviews have shown that hybridisation among ant species is likely to be more common than previously appreci-ated, but that documented cases of introgression remain rare. After molecular phylogenetic work had shown that Euro-pean Lasius niger (LINNAEUS, 1758) and L. psammophilus SEIFERT, 1992...... (formerly L. alienus (FOERSTER, 1850)) are unlikely to be very closely related, we decided to analyse an old data set confirming the conclusion by PEARSON (1983) that these two ants can indeed form viable hybrids. We show that signatures of introgression can be detected in a Danish site...... sympatrically. This would imply that multiple accessible field sites are available to study the molecular details of hybridisation and in-trogression between two ant species that have variable degrees of sympatry throughout their distributional ranges...

  5. The effect of two ant species Lasius niger and Lasius flavus on soil properties in two contrasting habitats

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    Holec, M.; Frouz, J. [Academy of Science Czech Republic, Ceske Budejovice (Czech Republic). Inst. of Soil Biology

    2006-11-15

    Ants significantly change the soil environment within the nest. The aim of this study is to contribute to ecology and thus the importance of two ant species Lasius niger and Lasius flavus in a post-mining landscape near the town of Sokolov in northwest Bohemia where both species are common. Chemical (total C, N, and available P) and microbiological parameters (respiration, cellulose decomposition and direct counts of bacteria) were investigated in both ant species in two different habitats: a tertiary clay heap after brown coal mining with a weakly developed organic layer and semi natural meadows with well developed organic horizons. Total C and N in the L. flavus mound was lower than in the surrounding soil in both stands, the same was true for total N in L. niger on the heaps. L. niger nests in both sites were significantly enriched by available P. A litter bag test with cellulose indicated lower decomposition in the ant nest in comparison with the surrounding soil. Respiration seems to be limited by lower soil moisture in the nest. However, microbial respiration, even in suitable moisture conditions, did not differ between the nest and soil (on heaps) or nest respiration was significantly lower (in L. flavus nests in the meadow). In meadow soil both species had a lower bacteria count than the surrounding soil, but the L. niger nest on the heap had higher bacterial numbers. Both species significantly alter soil conditions, although the effect on selected parameters is variable. Moreover, the result with lower nest moisture and lower decomposition rate in ant mounds indicates that soil moisture should be the next important factor limiting soil processes inside ant mounds.

  6. Attack of the invasive garden ant: aggression behaviour of Lasius neglectus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) against native Lasius species in Spain

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cremer, Sylvia; Ugelvig, Line Vej; Lommen, Suzanne T.E.

    2006-01-01

    Invasive species often dramatically change native species communities by directly and indirectly out-competing na-tive species. We studied the direct interference abilities of the invasive garden ant, Lasius neglectus VAN LOON, BOOMSMA & ANDRÁSFALVY, 1990, by performing one-to-one aggression test...

  7. Streptomyces lasiicapitis sp. nov., an actinomycete that produces kanchanamycin, isolated from the head of an ant (Lasius fuliginosus L.).

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    Ye, Lan; Zhao, Shanshan; Li, Yao; Jiang, Shanwen; Zhao, Yue; Li, Jinmeng; Yan, Kai; Wang, Xiangjing; Xiang, Wensheng; Liu, Chongxi

    2017-05-01

    During a screening for novel and biotechnologically useful actinobacteria in insects, a kanchanamycin-producing actinomycete with antifungal activity, designated strain 3H-HV17(2)T, was isolated from the head of an ant (Lasius fuliginosus L.) and characterized using a polyphasic approach. 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity studies showed that strain 3H-HV17(2)T belongs to the genus Streptomyces with the highest sequence similarities to Streptomyces spectabilis NBRC 13424T (98.90 %, with which it phylogenetically clustered, Streptomyces alboflavus NRRL B-2373T (98.65 %) and Streptomyces flavofungini NBRC 13371T (98.36 %). Phylogenetic analysis based on the gyrB gene also supported the close relationship of these strains. The morphological and chemotaxonomic properties of the strain are also consistent with those members of the genus Streptomyces. A combination of DNA-DNA hybridization experiments and phenotypic tests were carried out between strain 3H-HV17(2)T and its phylogenetically closely related strains, which further clarified their relatedness and demonstrated that strain 3H-HV17(2)T could be distinguished from these strains. Therefore, strain 3H-HV17(2)T is concluded to represent a novel species of the genus Streptomyces, for which the name Streptomyces lasiicapitis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is 3H-HV17(2)T (=CGMCC 4.7349T=DSM 103124T).

  8. Impact of Interference Competition on Exploration and Food Exploitation in the Ant Lasius niger

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    Vincent Fourcassié

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Competition acts as a major force in shaping spatially and/or temporally the foraging activity of ant colonies. Interference competition between colonies in particular is widespread in ants where it can prevent the physical access of competitors to a resource, either directly by fighting or indirectly, by segregating the colony foraging areas. Although the consequences of interference competition on ant distribution have been well studied in the literature, the behavioral mechanisms underlying interference competition have been less explored. Little is known on how ants modify their exploration patterns or the choice of a feeding place after experiencing aggressive encounters. In this paper, we show that, at the individual level, the aphid-tending ant Lasius niger reacts to the presence of an alien conspecific through direct aggressive behavior and local recruitment in the vicinity of fights. At the colony level, however, no defensive recruitment is triggered and the “risky” area where aggressive encounters occur is not specifically avoided during further exploration or food exploitation. We discuss how between-species differences in sensitivity to interference competition could be related to the spatial and temporal predictability of food resources at stake.

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

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    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.

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

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    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.

  11. The Effect of Trail Pheromone and Path Confinement on Learning of Complex Routes in the Ant Lasius niger.

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    Czaczkes, Tomer J; Weichselgartner, Tobias; Bernadou, Abel; Heinze, Jürgen

    2016-01-01

    Route learning is key to the survival of many central place foragers, such as bees and many ants. For ants which lay pheromone trails, the presence of a trail may act as an important source of information about whether an error has been made. The presence of trail pheromone has been demonstrated to support route learning, and the effect of pheromones on route choice have been reported to persist even after the pheromones have been removed. This could be explained in two ways: the pheromone may constrain the ants onto the correct route, thus preventing errors and aiding learning. Alternatively, the pheromones may act as a 'reassurance', signalling that the learner is on the right path and that learning the path is worthwhile. Here, we disentangle pheromone presence from route confinement in order to test these hypotheses, using the ant Lasius niger as a model. Unexpectedly, we did not find any evidence that pheromones support route learning. Indeed, there was no evidence that ants confined to the correct route learned at all. Thus, while we cannot support the 'reassurance' hypothesis, we can rule out the 'confinement' hypothesis. Other findings, such as a reduction in pheromone deposition in the presence of trail pheromones, are remarkably consistent with previous experiments. As previously reported, ants which make errors on their outward journey upregulate pheromone deposition on their return. Surprisingly, ants which would go on to make an error down-regulate pheromone deposition on their outward journey, hinting at a capacity for ants to gauge the quality of their own memories.

  12. The Effect of Trail Pheromone and Path Confinement on Learning of Complex Routes in the Ant Lasius niger.

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    Tomer J Czaczkes

    Full Text Available Route learning is key to the survival of many central place foragers, such as bees and many ants. For ants which lay pheromone trails, the presence of a trail may act as an important source of information about whether an error has been made. The presence of trail pheromone has been demonstrated to support route learning, and the effect of pheromones on route choice have been reported to persist even after the pheromones have been removed. This could be explained in two ways: the pheromone may constrain the ants onto the correct route, thus preventing errors and aiding learning. Alternatively, the pheromones may act as a 'reassurance', signalling that the learner is on the right path and that learning the path is worthwhile. Here, we disentangle pheromone presence from route confinement in order to test these hypotheses, using the ant Lasius niger as a model. Unexpectedly, we did not find any evidence that pheromones support route learning. Indeed, there was no evidence that ants confined to the correct route learned at all. Thus, while we cannot support the 'reassurance' hypothesis, we can rule out the 'confinement' hypothesis. Other findings, such as a reduction in pheromone deposition in the presence of trail pheromones, are remarkably consistent with previous experiments. As previously reported, ants which make errors on their outward journey upregulate pheromone deposition on their return. Surprisingly, ants which would go on to make an error down-regulate pheromone deposition on their outward journey, hinting at a capacity for ants to gauge the quality of their own memories.

  13. Impact of ecological doses of the most widespread phthalate on a terrestrial species, the ant Lasius niger.

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    Cuvillier-Hot, Virginie; Salin, Karine; Devers, Séverine; Tasiemski, Aurélie; Schaffner, Pauline; Boulay, Raphaël; Billiard, Sylvain; Lenoir, Alain

    2014-05-01

    Phthalates are synthetic contaminants released into the environment notably by plastic waste. Semi-volatile, they adsorb to atmospheric particles and get distributed in all ecosystems. Effects of this major anthropogenic pollution in economical species in aquatic habitats have attracted large interest. On the contrary, very few studies have focused on wild terrestrial species. Yet, these lipophilic molecules are easily trapped by insect cuticle; ants and other insects have been shown to permanently bear among their cuticular components a non-negligible proportion of phthalates, meaning that they suffer from chronic exposure to these pollutants. Oral route could also be an additional way of contamination, as phthalates tend to stick to any organic particle. We show here via a food choice experiment that Lasius niger workers can detect, and avoid feeding on, food contaminated with DEHP (DiEthyl Hexyl Phthalate), the most widespread phthalate found in nature. This suggests that the main source of contamination for ants is atmosphere and that doses measured on the cuticle correspond to the chronic exposure levels for these animals. Such an ecologically relevant dose of DEHP was used to contaminate ants in lab and to investigate their physiological impact. Over a chronic exposure (1 dose per week for 5 weeks), the egg-laying rate of queens was significantly reduced lending credence to endocrine disruptive properties of such a pollutant, as also described for aquatic invertebrates. On the contrary, short term exposure (24h) to a single dose of DEHP does not induce oxidative stress in ant workers as expected, but leads to activation of the immune system. Because of their very large distribution, their presence in virtually all terrestrial ecosystems and their representation at all trophic levels, ants could be useful indicators of contamination by phthalates, especially via monitoring the level of activation of their immune state. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All

  14. The effect of Lasius niger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) ant nest on selected soil chemical properties

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Frouz, Jan; Holec, Michal; Kalčík, Jiří

    2003-01-01

    Roč. 47, - (2003), s. 205-212 ISSN 0031-4056 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA526/01/1055 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z6066911 Keywords : ants * phosphorus pH * carbon Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.711, year: 2003

  15. The effect of two ant species .i.Lasius niger./i. and .i.Lasius flavus./i. on soil properties in two contrasting habitats

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Holec, Michal; Frouz, Jan

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 42, Suppl. 1 (2006), S213-S217 ISSN 1164-5563. [International Colloquium on Soil Zoology /14./. Mont-Saint-Aignan, 30.08.2004-03.09.2004] R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA526/01/1055; GA AV ČR 1QS600660505 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60660521 Keywords : ants * soil chemistry * soil microbiology Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.875, year: 2006

  16. Tolerating an infection: an indirect benefit of co-founding queen associations in the ant Lasius niger

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    Pull, Christopher D.; Hughes, William O. H.; Brown, Mark J. F.

    2013-12-01

    Pathogens exert a strong selection pressure on organisms to evolve effective immune defences. In addition to individual immunity, social organisms can act cooperatively to produce collective defences. In many ant species, queens have the option to found a colony alone or in groups with other, often unrelated, conspecifics. These associations are transient, usually lasting only as long as each queen benefits from the presence of others. In fact, once the first workers emerge, queens fight to the death for dominance. One potential advantage of co-founding may be that queens benefit from collective disease defences, such as mutual grooming, that act against common soil pathogens. We test this hypothesis by exposing single and co-founding queens to a fungal parasite, in order to assess whether queens in co-founding associations have improved survival. Surprisingly, co-foundresses exposed to the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium did not engage in cooperative disease defences, and consequently, we find no direct benefit of multiple queens on survival. However, an indirect benefit was observed, with parasite-exposed queens producing more brood when they co-founded, than when they were alone. We suggest this is due to a trade-off between reproduction and immunity. Additionally, we report an extraordinary ability of the queens to tolerate an infection for long periods after parasite exposure. Our study suggests that there are no social immunity benefits for co-founding ant queens, but that in parasite-rich environments, the presence of additional queens may nevertheless improve the chances of colony founding success.

  17. Phylogeny of Lasius ants based on mitochondrial DNA and morphology, and the evolution of social parasitism in the Lasiini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janda, Milan; Folková, D.; Zrzavý, Jan

    2004-01-01

    Roč. 33, - (2004), s. 595-614 ISSN 1055-7903 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR(CZ) GD206/03/H034 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z5007907 Keywords : Lasius * Acanthomyops Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 4.213, year: 2004

  18. The influence of different vegetation patches on the spatial distribution of nests and the epigeic activity of ants (Lasius niger) on a spoil dump after brown coal mining (Czech Republic)

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    Holec, M.; Frouz, J.; Pokorny, R. [Academy of Science Czech Republic, Ceske Budejovice (Czech Republic). Inst. of Soil Biology

    2006-07-15

    A study was carried out during 2001 on mine tailings in NW Bohemia aimed at describing the spatial patterns of nests distribution and epigeic activity of ants in relation to the vegetation mosaic. Lasius niger was the most abundant species of ant and its nest mounds were significantly more numerous in patches with sparse vegetation than inside dense Calamagrostis epigejos vegetation; this was particularly true for small and medium-sized nests. Small and medium nests also occurred more frequently near the edges of a given patch than in the center. Large and medium nests were randomly distributed in the area, whereas small nests had an aggregated distribution. Pitfall trapping reveal significantly higher activity of L. niger workers in tall and dense vegetation stands in comparison with low and sparse vegetation. This pattern was particularly pronounced during the peak of foraging activity in summer and was not so significant in spring or autumn. We expect that ants preferentially forage in shaded habitats during the summer months when bare soil may be too hot. The results indicated that nesting and foraging may differ in their microclimatic requirements and the formation of vegetation mosaics may be important to changes in the ant population during succession.

  19. THE MYRMICINE ANT GENUS ALLOMERUS MAYR (HYMENOPTERA: FORMICIDAE

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    FERNÁNDEZ FERNANDO

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available The Neotropical myrmicine ant genus Allomerus Mayr is revised. The genus isapparently monophyletic based on the antennal club confi guration. I recognize 8 species(4 described as new: Allomerus brevipilosus n. sp. (Brazil, A. decemarticulatusMayr (Brazil, French Guiana, A. dentatus n. sp. (Venezuela, A. maietae n. sp.(Brazil, A. octoarticulatus Mayr (=A. tuberculatus Forel n. syn. = A. octoarticulatusvar. demerarae W. M. Wheeler n. syn. = A. novemarticulatus Wheeler & Mann n.syn. [Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, French Guiana, Peru], A. septemarticulatus Mayrstatus rev. (Brazil, A. undecemarticulatus n. sp. (Venezuela and A. vogeli Kempf(Venezuela, Brazil. Better knowledge of the taxonomy of Allomerus is needed tounderstand the apparently sporadic differences in antennal fl agellomere number andspeciation processes that are probably linked to plant cavity colonization.

  20. Effects of the ants Formica sanguinea, Lasius niger, and Tetramorium cf. caespitum on soil properties in an ore-washery sedimentation basin

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jílková, Veronika; Pech, P.; Mihaljevič, M.; Frouz, Jan

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 17, č. 8 (2017), s. 2127-2135 ISSN 1439-0108 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LM2015075 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : ant nest * basic cations * heavy metals * microbial activity * nitrogen * sedimentation basin Subject RIV: DF - Soil Science OBOR OECD: Soil science Impact factor: 2.522, year: 2016

  1. INTRODUCTION The tailor or weaver ants of genus Oecophylla ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    smaragdina which is a sister species and ecological equivalent of ... Stability in population of Oecophylla in BSP and PG over 13 years suggests that weaver ant .... between the two years were significant at 95% confidence ..... over time is dependent on the nature of the perturbation. ... longinoda in relation to territorility and.

  2. Poneromorph Ants Associated with Parasitoid Wasps of the Genus Kapala Cameron (Hymenoptera: Eucharitidae in French Guiana

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    Jean-Paul Lachaud

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Eucharitid wasps are specific, specialized parasitoids of ants. The genus Kapala Cameron is the most common in the Neotropics but few species are described, and information dealing with their biology, behavior and host associations is scarce. Numerous poneromorph ant colonies were inspected over 4 collection surveys in French Guiana. A diverse fauna of parasites and parasitoids was found, including mermithid nematodes, flies, eucharitids, and another gregarious endoparasitoid wasp. Five new host associations for Kapala are reported, all of them involving medium- to large-size poneromorph ant species from 4 genera: Ectatomma brunneum Fr. Smith, Gnamptogenys tortuolosa (Fr. Smith, Odontomachus haematodus (L., O. mayi Mann, and Pachycondyla verenae (Forel. Three other associations involving O. hastatus (Fabr., P. apicalis (Latreille, and P. stigma (Fabr., already reported for other countries but new for French Guiana, are confirmed. The data extend the number of hosts for Kapala to 24 ant species from 7 genera. The high diversity of the ant host genera associated with Kapala, combined with the fact that these ant genera are the most widely distributed among Neotropical poneromorph ants, could account for the dominant status of the genus Kapala among the eucharitine wasps of Central and South America.

  3. Giant ants and their shape: revealing relationships in the genus Titanomyrma with geometric morphometrics

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    Julian Katzke

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Shape is a natural phenomenon inherent to many different lifeforms. A modern technique to analyse shape is geometric morphometrics (GM, which offers a whole range of methods concerning the pure shape of an object. The results from these methods have provided new insights into biological problems and have become especially useful in the fields of entomology and palaeontology. Despite the conspicuous successes in other hymenopteran groups, GM analysis of wings and fossil wings of Formicidae has been neglected. Here we tested if landmarks defining the wing shape of fossil ants that belong to the genus Titanomyrma are reliable and if this technique is able to expose relationships among different groups of the largest Hymenoptera that ever lived. This study comprises 402 wings from 362 ants that were analysed and assigned with the GM methods linear discriminant function analysis, principal component analysis, canonical variate analysis, and regression. The giant ant genus Titanomyrma and the parataxon Formicium have different representatives that are all very similar but these modern methods were able to distinguish giant ant types even to the level of the sex. Thirty-five giant ant specimens from the Eckfeld Maar were significantly differentiable from a collection of Messel specimens that consisted of 187 Titanomyrma gigantea females and 42 T. gigantea males, and from 74 Titanomyrma simillima females and 21 T. simillima males. Out of the 324 Messel ants, 127 are newly assigned to a species and 223 giant ants are newly assigned to sex with GM analysis. All specimens from Messel fit to the two species. Moreover, shape affinities of these groups and the species Formicium brodiei, Formicium mirabile, and Formicium berryi, which are known only from wings, were investigated. T. gigantea stands out with a possible female relative in one of the Eckfeld specimens whereas the other groups show similar shape patterns that are possibly plesiomorphic. Formicidae

  4. Giant ants and their shape: revealing relationships in the genus Titanomyrma with geometric morphometrics.

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    Katzke, Julian; Barden, Phillip; Dehon, Manuel; Michez, Denis; Wappler, Torsten

    2018-01-01

    Shape is a natural phenomenon inherent to many different lifeforms. A modern technique to analyse shape is geometric morphometrics (GM), which offers a whole range of methods concerning the pure shape of an object. The results from these methods have provided new insights into biological problems and have become especially useful in the fields of entomology and palaeontology. Despite the conspicuous successes in other hymenopteran groups, GM analysis of wings and fossil wings of Formicidae has been neglected. Here we tested if landmarks defining the wing shape of fossil ants that belong to the genus Titanomyrma are reliable and if this technique is able to expose relationships among different groups of the largest Hymenoptera that ever lived. This study comprises 402 wings from 362 ants that were analysed and assigned with the GM methods linear discriminant function analysis, principal component analysis, canonical variate analysis, and regression. The giant ant genus Titanomyrma and the parataxon Formicium have different representatives that are all very similar but these modern methods were able to distinguish giant ant types even to the level of the sex. Thirty-five giant ant specimens from the Eckfeld Maar were significantly differentiable from a collection of Messel specimens that consisted of 187 Titanomyrma gigantea females and 42 T. gigantea males, and from 74 Titanomyrma simillima females and 21 T. simillima males. Out of the 324 Messel ants, 127 are newly assigned to a species and 223 giant ants are newly assigned to sex with GM analysis. All specimens from Messel fit to the two species. Moreover, shape affinities of these groups and the species Formicium brodiei , Formicium mirabile , and Formicium berryi , which are known only from wings, were investigated. T. gigantea stands out with a possible female relative in one of the Eckfeld specimens whereas the other groups show similar shape patterns that are possibly plesiomorphic. Formicidae are one of the

  5. Three new species and reassessment of the rare Neotropical ant genus Leptanilloides (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Leptanilloidinae

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    Marek Borowiec

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available We describe three new species of the Neotropical ant genus Leptanilloides: L. gracilis sp. n. based on workers from Mexico and Guatemala, L. erinys sp. n. based on workers and a gyne from Ecuador, and L. femoralis sp. n. based on workers from Venezuela. The description of L. gracilis is a northern extension of the known range of the genus, now numbering eleven described species. We also describe and discuss three unassociated male morphotypes from Central America. We report the occurrence of a metatibial gland in Leptanilloides and a fused promesonotal connection (suture in some species. We provide a modified, detailed diagnosis of the genus and a revised key to the worker caste of the known species.

  6. How ants find each other; temporal and spatial patterns in nuptial flights

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noordijk, J.; Morssinkhof, R.; Boer, P.; Schaffers, A.P.; Heijerman, Th.; Sykora, K.V.

    2008-01-01

    Reproduction is a key factor in understanding population ecology and therefore species occurrence. However, patterns in reproductive behaviour for distinct ant species remain insufficiently known. In this paper strategies in mate finding are studied for six ant species (Lasius niger, Lasius

  7. The Megadiverse Australian Ant Genus Melophorus: Using CO1 Barcoding to Assess Species Richness

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alan N. Andersen

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Melophorus is an exceptionally diverse ant genus from arid Australia that has received little taxonomic attention, such that just a fraction of its remarkable number of species is described. The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization’s Tropical Ecosystems Research Centre (TERC in Darwin holds by far the most extensive collection of Melophorus, and as of September 2016 this comprised >850 sorted morphospecies. However, the reliability of such morphospecies is open to question because species delimitation is extremely challenging due to highly generalized morphology and worker polymorphism. Here we use CO1 barcoding of 401 Melophorus specimens from 188 morphospecies in the TERC collection to determine the reliability of morphologically-based species delimitations as a basis for assessing true diversity within the genus. Our CO1 data confirm the extremely challenging nature of morphologically-based species delimitation within Melophorus, and suggest substantially higher diversity than that indicated by morphospecies. We found many cases where combinations of high (>10% CO1 divergence, polyphyly, sympatric association, and morphological differentiation indicated that single morphospecies represented multiple lineages. Overall, our analysis indicates that the 188 morphospecies barcoded represent at least 225 independent CO1 lineages. We discuss these results in terms of both their limitations and implications for estimating the total number of species in this exceptionally diverse, arid-adapted ant genus.

  8. Genetic evidence for intra- and interspecific slavery in honey ants (genus Myrmecocystus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kronauer, D J C; Gadau, J; Hölldobler, B

    2003-04-22

    The New World honey ant species Myrmecocystus mimicus is well known for its highly stereotyped territorial tournaments, and for the raids on conspecific nests that can lead to intraspecific slavery. Our results from mitochondrial and nuclear markers show that the raided brood emerges in the raiding colony and is subsequently incorporated into the colony's worker force. We also found enslaved conspecifics in a second honey ant species, M. depilis, the sister taxon of M. mimicus, which occurs in sympatry with M. mimicus at the study site. Colonies of this species furthermore contained raided M. mimicus workers. Both species have an effective mating frequency that is not significantly different from 1. This study provides genetic evidence for facultative intra- and interspecific slavery in the genus Myrmecocystus. Slavery in ants has evolved repeatedly and supposedly by different means. We propose that, in honey ants, secondary contact between two closely related species that both exhibit intraspecific slavery gave rise to an early form of facultative interspecific slavery.

  9. Predation and aggressiveness in host plant protection: a generalization using ants from the genus Azteca

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Grangier, Julien; Leroy, Céline; Orivel, Jerôme

    2009-01-01

    In studying the ant genus Azteca, a Neotropical group of arboreal species, we aimed to determine the extent to which the ants use predation and/or aggressiveness to protect their host plants from defoliating insects. We compared a territorially dominant, carton-nester, Azteca chartifex, and three plant-ant species. Azteca alfari and Azteca ovaticeps are associated with the myrmecophyte Cecropia (Cecropiaceae) and their colonies shelter in its hollow branches; whereas Azteca bequaerti is associated with Tococa guianensis (Melastomataceae) and its colonies shelter in leaf pouches situated at the base of the laminas. Whereas A. bequaerti workers react to the vibrations transmitted by the lamina when an alien insect lands on a leaf making it unnecessary for them to patrol their plant, the workers of the three other species rather discover prey by contact. The workers of all four species use a predatory behaviour involving spread-eagling alien insects after recruiting nestmates at short range, and, in some cases, at long range. Because A. alfari and A. ovaticeps discard part of the insects they kill, we deduced that the workers’ predatory behaviour and territorial aggressiveness combine in the biotic defence of their host tree.

  10. Risicoanalyse van de plaagmier Lasius neglectus.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Loon, van A.J.

    2009-01-01

    De plaagmier Lasius neglectus Van Loon, Boomsma & Andrásfalvy, 1990 werd in de vroege jaren 1970 ontdekt en beschreven van Boedapest (Hongarije). De mier is inmiddels op een groot aantal plekken in Europa en Voor-Azië gevonden en gedraagt zich soms invasief. Het oorspronkelijke verspreidingsgebied

  11. Tradeoffs in the evolution of caste and body size in the hyperdiverse ant genus Pheidole.

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    Terrence P McGlynn

    Full Text Available The efficient investment of resources is often the route to ecological success, and the adaptability of resource investment may play a critical role in promoting biodiversity. The ants of the "hyperdiverse" genus Pheidole produce two discrete sterile castes, soldiers and minor workers. Within Pheidole, there is tremendous interspecific variation in proportion of soldiers. The causes and correlates of caste ratio variation among species of Pheidole remain enigmatic. Here we test whether a body size threshold model accounts for interspecific variation in caste ratio in Pheidole, such that species with larger body sizes produce relatively fewer soldiers within their colonies. We evaluated the caste ratio of 26 species of Pheidole and found that the body size of workers accounts for interspecific variation in the production of soldiers as we predicted. Twelve species sampled from one forest in Costa Rica yielded the same relationship as found in previously published data from many localities. We conclude that production of soldiers in the most species-rich group of ants is regulated by a body size threshold mechanism, and that the great variation in body size and caste ratio in Pheidole plays a role in niche divergence in this rapidly evolving taxon.

  12. Multiple Convergent Origins of Workerlessness and Inbreeding in the Socially Parasitic Ant Genus Myrmoxenus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinze, Jürgen; Buschinger, Alfred; Poettinger, Theo; Suefuji, Masaki

    2015-01-01

    The socially parasitic ant genus Myrmoxenus varies strongly in fundamental life history traits, such as queen-worker ratio, the timing of sexual production, and mating behavior. Myrmoxenus queens generally take over nests of Temnothorax ants, kill the resident queen by throttling, and force the workers to take care of the social parasite's brood. Young queens of M. ravouxi and other species produce large numbers of workers, which during "slave-raids" pillage host pupae from neighboring Temnothorax colonies to increase the workforce in their own nests. Other species, such as M. corsicus, have lost caste polyphenism and rear only male and female sexual offspring. Using sequences of the genes CO I/CO II and wingless we reconstruct the phylogeny of Myrmoxenus and document that the worker caste was lost convergently at least three times. Furthermore, mating in the nest and inbreeding obviously also evolved in parallel from ancestors whose sexuals presumably mated during nuptial flights. Myrmoxenus might thus provide a suitable model to investigate caste differentiation and the plasticity of mating behavior in Hymenoptera.

  13. Multiple Convergent Origins of Workerlessness and Inbreeding in the Socially Parasitic Ant Genus Myrmoxenus.

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    Jürgen Heinze

    Full Text Available The socially parasitic ant genus Myrmoxenus varies strongly in fundamental life history traits, such as queen-worker ratio, the timing of sexual production, and mating behavior. Myrmoxenus queens generally take over nests of Temnothorax ants, kill the resident queen by throttling, and force the workers to take care of the social parasite's brood. Young queens of M. ravouxi and other species produce large numbers of workers, which during "slave-raids" pillage host pupae from neighboring Temnothorax colonies to increase the workforce in their own nests. Other species, such as M. corsicus, have lost caste polyphenism and rear only male and female sexual offspring. Using sequences of the genes CO I/CO II and wingless we reconstruct the phylogeny of Myrmoxenus and document that the worker caste was lost convergently at least three times. Furthermore, mating in the nest and inbreeding obviously also evolved in parallel from ancestors whose sexuals presumably mated during nuptial flights. Myrmoxenus might thus provide a suitable model to investigate caste differentiation and the plasticity of mating behavior in Hymenoptera.

  14. The influence of different vegetation patches on the spatial distribution of nests and the epigeic activity of ants (.i.Lasius niger./i.) on a spoil dump after brown coal mining (Czech Republic)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Holec, Michal; Frouz, Jan; Pokorný, R.

    2006-01-01

    Roč. 42, č. 3 (2006), s. 158-165 ISSN 1164-5563 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA526/01/1055; GA AV ČR(CZ) 1QS600660505 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60660521 Keywords : ants * dumps * tailings Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 0.875, year: 2006

  15. Revision of the fungus-farming ant genus Sericomyrmex Mayr (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae

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    Ana Ješovnik

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The genus Sericomyrmex Mayr (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Attini is a Neotropical group of fungus-farming ants known for its problematic taxonomy, caused by low morphological variability across the species, vague and old species descriptions, and an outdated and incomplete key published in 1916. Recent molecular studies revealed that Sericomyrmex is the product of a rapid recent radiation, with a divergence date of 4.3 million years ago. Here we present a comprehensive taxonomic revision of the genus Sericomyrmex based on morphology and a recently published molecular phylogeny. We discuss and illustrate morphological characters for Sericomyrmex workers, males, queens, and larvae. We report 18 standard morphological measurements and 5 indices for 529 workers, 50 queens, and 39 males, which we employ in morphometric analyses. The revised genus Sericomyrmex comprises eleven species, including three new species, here described as S. maravalhas sp. n., S. radioheadi sp. n., and S. saramama sp. n. We also redescribe S. amabilis Wheeler, S. bondari Borgmeier, S. lutzi Wheeler, S. mayri Forel, S. opacus Mayr, S. parvulus Forel, S. saussurei Emery, and S. scrobifer Forel. The number of recognized species (11 is lower than the previously recognized 19 species and 3 subspecies. The following species and subspecies are synonymized: under S. opacus [=S. aztecus Forel syn. n., S. zacapanus Wheeler syn. n., and S. diego Forel syn. n.]; under S. bondari [=S. beniensis Weber syn. n.]; under S. mayri [=S. luederwaldti Santschi syn. n., S. moreirai Santschi syn. n., S. harekulli Weber syn. n., S. harekulli arawakensis Weber syn. n., S. urichi Forel syn. n.]; under S. saussurei [=S. burchelli Forel syn. n., S. impexus Wheeler syn. n., S. urichi maracas Weber syn. n.]; and under S. parvulus [=S. myersi Weber syn. n.]. We provide a key to Sericomyrmex species for the worker caste and information on the geographic distributions of all species.

  16. Cyatta abscondita: taxonomy, evolution, and natural history of a new fungus-farming ant genus from Brazil.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey Sosa-Calvo

    Full Text Available Cyatta abscondita, a new genus and species of fungus-farming ant from Brazil, is described based on morphological study of more than 20 workers, two dealate gynes, one male, and two larvae. Ecological field data are summarized, including natural history, nest architecture, and foraging behavior. Phylogenetic analyses of DNA sequence data from four nuclear genes indicate that Cyatta abscondita is the distant sister taxon of the genus Kalathomyrmex, and that together they comprise the sister group of the remaining neoattine ants, an informal clade that includes the conspicuous and well-known leaf-cutter ants. Morphologically, Cyatta abscondita shares very few obvious character states with Kalathomyrmex. It does, however, possess a number of striking morphological features unique within the fungus-farming tribe Attini. It also shares morphological character states with taxa that span the ancestral node of the Attini. The morphology, behavior, and other biological characters of Cyatta abscondita are potentially informative about plesiomorphic character states within the fungus-farming ants and about the early evolution of ant agriculture.

  17. 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....

  18. Distribution and Diversity of the Cryptic Ant Genus Oxyepoecus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae in Paraguay with Descriptions of Two New Species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Delsinne

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We discuss the diversity and distribution of the ant genus Oxyepoecus in Paraguay. Oxyepoecus inquilinus is recorded for the first time, and new distribution data are given for O. rastratus and O. vezenyii. Published data for O. bruchi, O. rastratus, O. reticulatus, and O. vezenyii are summarized. Two new species are described (O. bidentatus n. sp. and O. striatus n. sp., and a key to the workers of the seven Paraguayan Oxyepoecus species is provided. At Teniente Enciso National Park, four species cooccur. This locality appears as a promising site for studies documenting the biology of this poorly known ant genus, and because of the IUCN “vulnerable“ Red List classification of O. inquilinus, the importance of the Teniente Enciso National Park for biological conservation is clearly established.

  19. 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

  20. The first record of a fly of the family Milichiidae (Diptera interacting with an ant of the genus Polyrhachis Smith, 1857 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kalsum Yusah

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Flies in the family Milichiidae are often myrmecophilic. We document the first record of a fly from this family interacting with an ant of the genus Polyrhachis. In lowland riparian rainforest in Sabah, Malaysia, we observed a female of the genus Milichia following an ant of the species of P. illaudata, and repeatedly attempting to make close contact. Our observation suggests that the dipteran may have been attempting to feed kleptoparasitically from the Polyrhachis worker, since members of this ant genus often feed on liquid carbohydrate-rich food resources. This is the first time an interaction has been observed between a fly of this family and an ant of this widespread old world tropical genus.

  1. Revision of the Middle American clade of the ant genus Stenamma Westwood (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae

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    Michael Branstetter

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Stenamma is a cryptic “leaf-litter” ant genus that occurs in mesic forest habitats throughout the Holarctic region, Central America, and part of northwestern South America (Colombia and Ecuador. The genus was thought to be restricted primarily to the temperate zone, but recent collecting efforts have uncovered a large radiation of Neotropical forms, which rival the Holarctic species in terms of morphological and behavioral diversity. By inferring a broad-scale molecular phylogeny of Stenamma, Branstetter (2012 showed that all Neotropical species belong to a diverse Middle American clade (MAC, and that this clade is sister to an almost completely geographically separated Holarctic clade (HOC. Here, the Middle American clade of Stenamma is revised to recognize 40 species, of which 33 are described as new. Included in the revision are a key to species based on the worker caste, and for each species where possible, descriptions and images of workers and queens, images of males, information on geographic distribution, descriptions of intraspecific variation, and notes on natural history. Several species groups are defined, but the majority of species remain unassigned due to a lack of diagnostic morphological character states for most molecular clades. The following species are redescribed: S. alas Longino, S. diversum Mann, S. expolitum Smith, S. felixi Mann, S. huachucanum Smith, S. manni Wheeler, and S. schmidti Menozzi. The following are described as new: S. andersoni sp. n., S. atribellum sp. n., S. brujita sp. n., S. callipygium sp. n., S. catracho sp. n., S. connectum sp. n., S. crypticum sp. n., S. cusuco sp. n., S. excisum sp. n., S. expolitico sp. n., S. hojarasca sp. n., S. ignotum sp. n., S. lagunum sp. n., S. llama sp. n., S. leptospinum sp. n., S. lobinodus sp. n., S. longinoi sp. n., S. maximon sp. n., S. megamanni sp. n., S. monstrosum sp. n., S. muralla sp. n., S. nanozoi sp. n., S. nonotch sp. n., S. ochrocnemis sp. n., S

  2. Strict monandry in the ponerine army ant genus Simopelta suggests that colony size and complexity drive mating system evolution in social insects

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, Daniel J C; O'Donnell, Sean; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2011-01-01

    -ratios have convergently shaped these mating systems. Here we show that ponerine army ants of the genus Simopelta, which are distantly related but similar in general biology to other army ants, have strictly monandrous queens. Preliminary data suggest that workers reproduce in queenright colonies, which...... is in sharp contrast to other army ants. We hypothesize that differences in mature colony size and social complexity may explain these striking discrepancies....

  3. Further revisionary studies on the ant genus Megalomyrmex Forel (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Solenopsidini

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    Carlos Roberto F. Brandão

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available I hereby revise, for the second time, the primarily Neotropical solenopsidine ant genus Megalomyrmex, describing M. wettereri n. sp., of the Silvestrii group, based on workers and gynes. Megalomyrmex latreillei Forel is synonymyzed under M. foreli Emery. The gyne of M. poatan is described and that of M. wallacei redescribed; males of M. acauna, M. incisus and M. wallacei are described. New locality records are given for M. ayri, M. cupecuara, M. goeldii, M. iheringi, M. modestus, and M. wallacei (Modestus group; M. acauna, M. balzani, M. cyendyra, M. emeryi, M. foreli, M. glaesarius, M. leoninus, M. staudingeri, and M. timbira (Leoninus group; M. poatan, M. silvestrii, and M. symmetochus (Silvestrii group, and M. drift, M. incisus, M. myops and M. pusillus (Incisus group. New biological data are recorded for M. acauna, M. goeldii, and M. wallacei. Comments are made for M. bidentatus, M. miri and M. mondabora.Reviso, pela segunda vez, o gênero neotropical de formigas Megalomyrmex Forel (Myrmicinae: Solenopsidini, descrevendo M. wettereri n. sp. do grupo Silvestrii com base em operárias e gines (rainhas. Megalomyrmex latreillei Forel é sinonimizada sob M. foreli Emery. A gine de M. poatan é descrita e a de M. wallacei é redescrita; os machos de M. acauna, M. incisus e M. wallacei são descritos. Novos registros de localidade são apresentados para M. ayri, M. cupecuara, M. goeldii, M. iheringi, M. modestus, e M. wallacei (grupo Modestus; M. acauna, M. balzani, M. cyendyra, M. emeryi, M. foreli, M. glaesarius, M. leoninus, M. staudingeri, e M. timbira (grupo Leoninus; M. poatan, M. silvestrii, e M. symmetochus (grupo Silvestrii, e M. drift, M. incisus, M. myops e M. pusillus (grupo Incisus. Novos dados biológicos são apresentados para M. acauna, M. goeldii, e M. wallacei e outros comentários são apresentados para M. bidentatus, M. miri e M. mondabora.

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. Additional records and descriptions of the ant-mimetic plant bug genus Pilophorus from Thailand (Hemiptera: Heteroptera: Miridae: Phylinae: Pilophorini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yasunaga, Tomohide; Yamada, Kazutaka; Artchawakom, Taksin

    2014-05-09

    Eleven species of the ant-mimetic plant bug genus Pilophorus Hahn from Thailand are documented, with photographic images of live individuals. Four new species with conventional, moderate antlike shape, Pilophorus meteorus, P. saovapruki, P. subparallelus and P. suwimonae, are described. Two known Thai species, P. alstoni Schuh and P. typicus (Distant), are further reported and diagnosed. Biological information including host association is provided for P. alstoni, P. meteorus, P. saovapruki and P. typicus. A checklist of all currently known species of Pilophorus in Thailand and a key to known Thai species are included. Pilophorus typicus is reported from Singapore for the first time.

  7. Insights into the evolution, biogeography and natural history of the acorn ants, genus Temnothorax Mayr (hymenoptera: Formicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prebus, Matthew

    2017-12-13

    Temnothorax (Formicidae: Myrmicinae) is a diverse genus of ants found in a broad spectrum of ecosystems across the northern hemisphere. These diminutive ants have long served as models for social insect behavior, leading to discoveries about social learning and inspiring hypotheses about the process of speciation and the evolution of social parasitism. This genus is highly morphologically and behaviorally diverse, and this has caused a great deal of taxonomic confusion in recent years. Past efforts to estimate the phylogeny of this genus have been limited in taxonomic scope, leaving the broader evolutionary patterns in Temnothorax unclear. To establish the monophyly of Temnothorax, resolve the evolutionary relationships, reconstruct the historical biogeography and investigate trends in the evolution of key traits, I generated, assembled, and analyzed two molecular datasets: a traditional multi-locus Sanger sequencing dataset, and an ultra-conserved element (UCE) dataset. Using maximum likelihood, Bayesian, and summary-coalescent based approaches, I analyzed 22 data subsets consisting of 103 ingroup taxa and a maximum of 1.8 million base pairs in 2485 loci. The results of this study suggest an origin of Temnothorax at the Eocene-Oligocene transition, concerted transitions to arboreal nesting habits in several clades during the Oligocene, coinciding with ancient global cooling, and several convergent origins of social parasitism in the Miocene and Pliocene. As with other Holarctic taxa, Temnothorax has a history of migration across Beringia during the Miocene. Temnothorax is corroborated as a natural group, and the notion that many of the historical subgeneric and species group concepts are artificial is reinforced. The strict form of Emery's Rule, in which a socially parasitic species is sister to its host species, is not well supported in Temnothorax.

  8. 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...

  9. The influence of Lasius neoniger (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) on population growth and biomass of Aphis glycines (Hemiptera: Aphididae) in soybeans.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwartzberg, Ezra G; Johnson, D W; Brown, G C

    2010-12-01

    In the United States, the soybean aphid, Aphis glycines Matsumura (Hemiptera: Aphididae), are often tended by the aphid-tending ant, Lasius neoniger Emery (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). In this study, we examined the effects of tending by ants on the density and biomass of soybean aphids on soybeans in Kentucky. We performed cage studies that limited access by ants and/or natural enemies. We used a split-plot design with natural enemy access as the main plot and ant attendance as the sub plot. We found that natural enemy access negatively affected aphid population density in the presence of tending ants, seen as a three- to four-fold increase in aphid density when natural enemies were excluded. In addition, we found that ant tending positively affected aphid biomass, both when natural enemies were given access to aphids or when natural enemies were excluded, seen by a two-fold increase in aphid biomass when ants tended aphids, both in the presence or absence of natural enemies. Biomass accumulation is seen as an important measurement for assessing aphid performance, and we argue that aphid-tending by ants can have an influence on natural field populations of soybean aphids. Agronomic practices that affect ant abundance in soybeans may influence the performance and hence pest outbreaks for this economically important pest. © 2010 Entomological Society of America

  10. 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

  11. A new genus and species of Macrochelidae (Acari:Mesostigmata) associated with the Texas leaf cutting ant, Atta texana (Buckley) in Louisiana, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerald W. Krantz; John Moser

    2012-01-01

    Adults and nymphs of a new genus and species of the family Macrochelidae are described from detritus cavities of the leaf-cutting ant, Atta texana. This new species is notable in having peritremes with no posterior loop, a series of small subterminal teeth on the fixed cheliceral digit rather than the single large tooth typical of other macrochelids...

  12. The role of fusion in ant chromosome evolution: insights from cytogenetic analysis using a molecular phylogenetic approach in the genus mycetophylax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Danon Clemes; das Graças Pompolo, Silvia; Cristiano, Maykon Passos; Tavares, Mara Garcia

    2014-01-01

    Among insect taxa, ants exhibit one of the most variable chromosome numbers ranging from n = 1 to n = 60. This high karyotype diversity is suggested to be correlated to ants diversification. The karyotype evolution of ants is usually understood in terms of Robertsonian rearrangements towards an increase in chromosome numbers. The ant genus Mycetophylax is a small monogynous basal Attini ant (Formicidae: Myrmicinae), endemic to sand dunes along the Brazilian coastlines. A recent taxonomic revision validates three species, Mycetophylax morschi, M. conformis and M. simplex. In this paper, we cytogenetically characterized all species that belongs to the genus and analyzed the karyotypic evolution of Mycetophylax in the context of a molecular phylogeny and ancestral character state reconstruction. M. morschi showed a polymorphic number of chromosomes, with colonies showing 2n = 26 and 2n = 30 chromosomes. M. conformis presented a diploid chromosome number of 30 chromosomes, while M. simplex showed 36 chromosomes. The probabilistic models suggest that the ancestral haploid chromosome number of Mycetophylax was 17 (Likelihood framework) or 18 (Bayesian framework). The analysis also suggested that fusions were responsible for the evolutionary reduction in chromosome numbers of M. conformis and M. morschi karyotypes whereas fission may determines the M. simplex karyotype. These results obtained show the importance of fusions in chromosome changes towards a chromosome number reduction in Formicidae and how a phylogenetic background can be used to reconstruct hypotheses about chromosomes evolution.

  13. A new species of the ant genus Bothriomyrmex Emery, 1869 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae from the Caribbean region

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    Matthew Prebus

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Bothriomyrmex enigmaticus sp. nov. is described from the island of Hispañola based on one nest collection. This is the first collection of the genus Bothriomyrmex (Emery, 1869 from the Caribbean region, and the second species to be described from the Americas. While sharing several characters with B. paradoxus (Dubovikoff & Longino, 2004 from Costa Rica and Honduras, B. enigmaticus sp. nov. diverges in several key characters, including palp formula. However, a morphometric comparison to Palearctic species of the tribe Bothriomyrmecini suggests affinities to B. paradoxus, Chronoxenus wroughtoni (Forel, 1895 of the eastern Palearctic, and to a lesser extent an undescribed species of Arnoldius (Dubovikoff, 2005 from Australia and B. corsicus (Santschi,1923 of the western Palearctic.

  14. Phylogeography in Response to Reproductive Strategies and Ecogeographic Isolation in Ant Species on Madagascar: Genus Mystrium (Formicidae: Amblyoponinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graham, Natalie R; Fisher, Brian L; Girman, Derek J

    2016-01-01

    The bulk of models used to understand the species diversification on Madagascar have been constructed using vertebrate taxa. It is not clear how these models affect less vagile species that may interact at a variety of spatial scales. Several studies on vertebrates have divided Madagascar into east-west bioclimatic regions, suggesting there is a fundamental division between eastern wet-adapted and western dry-adapted taxa. An alternative model of ecogeographic constraints shows a north-south division. We test whether the diversification in a small arthropod with variable degrees of dispersal conform to either model of ecogeographic constraints proposed for vertebrate taxa. We employ a molecular taxonomic dataset using ~2 kilobases nuDNA (Wg, LW Rh, Abd-A, 28s) and 790 basepairs mtDNA (CO1), along with geographic and habitat data, to examine the diversification patterns of the ant genus Mystrium Roger, 1862, (Subfamily Amblyoponinae) from Madagascar. The nuclear and mitochondrial phylogenies were both congruent with morphospecies as indicated in a recent revision of the genus. Species of Mystrium practice different colony reproductive strategies (winged queens vs non-winged queens). Alternate reproductive strategies led to inequalities in female dispersal ability among species, providing an additional layer for examination of the impacts of vagility on divergence, especially when measured using a maternally inherited locus. Mystrium species distribution patterns support these models of ecogeographic constraints. Reproductive strategy effected how Mystrium mtDNA lineages were associated with large-scale habitat distinctions and various topographical features. Furthermore, in some cases we find microgeographic population structure which appears to have been impacted by localized habitat differences (tsingy limestone formations, littoral forest) on a scale much smaller than that found in vertebrates. The current system offers a finer scale look at species

  15. First cytogenetic characterization of a species of the arboreal ant genus Azteca Forel, 1978 (Dolichoderinae, Formicidae

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    Danon Cardoso

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present, for the first time, a detailed karyotype characterization of a species of the genus Azteca (Dolichoderinae, Formicidae. Cerebral ganglia from Azteca trigona Emery, 1893 were excised and submitted to colchicine hypotonic solution and chromosomal preparations were analyzed through conventional staining with Giemsa, C-banding, silver nitrate staining (AgNO3 and sequential base-specific fluorochromes. The analysis shows that A. trigona has a diploid number of 28 chromosomes. The karyotype consists of five metacentric pairs, seven acrocentric pairs and two pseudo-acrocentric pairs, which represents a karyotype formula 2K= 10M + 14A + 4AM and a diploid number of the arms 2AN = 38. The analysis of heterochromatin distribution revealed a positive block on distal region of the short arm of fourth metacentric pair, which was coincident with Ag-NOR band and CMA3 fluorochrome staining, meaning that rDNA sequences are interspaced by GC-rich base pairs sequences. The C-banding also marked short arms of other chromosomes, indicating centric fissions followed by heterochromatin growth. The karyotype analysis of A. trigona allowed the identification of cytogenetic markers that will be helpful in a difficult taxonomic group as Azteca and discussion about evolutionary aspects of the genome organization.

  16. The Tergal Gland Secretion of the Two Rare Myrmecophilous Species Zyras collaris and Z. haworthi (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae and the Effect on Lasius fuliginosus

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    Michael Stoeffler

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available The beetle species Zyras collaris and Z. haworthi belong to the rove beetle tribe Myrmedoniini (Staphylinidae: Aleocharinae, which comprises many myrmecophilous species. Due to their rareness, it is unknown how the two species interact with their host ants. GC-MS analyses revealed that both species release α-pinene, β-pinene, myrcene and limonene from their defensive tergal glands. This composition of tergal gland secretion is unique within the subfamily Aleocharinae. In biotests, Lasius fuliginosus ants showed increased antennation towards filter paper balls treated with mixtures of these substances in natural concentrations. Because these monoterpenes are also present in some aphid species which are attended by ants, we hypothesize that Zyras beetles mimic the presence of aphids and thereby achieve acceptance by their host ants.

  17. Revision of the Middle American clade of the ant genus Stenamma Westwood (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Branstetter, Michael G.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Stenamma is a cryptic “leaf-litter” ant genus that occurs in mesic forest habitats throughout the Holarctic region, Central America, and part of northwestern South America (Colombia and Ecuador). The genus was thought to be restricted primarily to the temperate zone, but recent collecting efforts have uncovered a large radiation of Neotropical forms, which rival the Holarctic species in terms of morphological and behavioral diversity. By inferring a broad-scale molecular phylogeny of Stenamma, Branstetter (2012) showed that all Neotropical species belong to a diverse Middle American clade (MAC), and that this clade is sister to an almost completely geographically separated Holarctic clade (HOC). Here, the Middle American clade of Stenamma is revised to recognize 40 species, of which 33 are described as new. Included in the revision are a key to species based on the worker caste, and for each species where possible, descriptions and images of workers and queens, images of males, information on geographic distribution, descriptions of intraspecific variation, and notes on natural history. Several species groups are defined, but the majority of species remain unassigned due to a lack of diagnostic morphological character states for most molecular clades. The following species are redescribed: Stenamma alas Longino, Stenamma diversum Mann, Stenamma expolitum Smith, Stenamma felixi Mann, Stenamma huachucanum Smith, Stenamma manni Wheeler, and Stenamma schmidti Menozzi. The following are described as new: Stenamma andersoni sp. n., Stenamma atribellum sp. n., Stenamma brujita sp. n., Stenamma callipygium sp. n., Stenamma catracho sp. n., Stenamma connectum sp. n., Stenamma crypticum sp. n., Stenamma cusuco sp. n., Stenamma excisum sp. n., Stenamma expolitico sp. n., Stenamma hojarasca sp. n., Stenamma ignotum sp. n., Stenamma lagunum sp. n., Stenamma llama sp. n., Stenamma leptospinum sp. n., Stenamma lobinodus sp. n., Stenamma longinoi sp. n., Stenamma

  18. Sex Attractant Pheromones of Virgin Queens of Sympatric Slave-Making Ant Species in the Genus Polyergus, and their Possible Roles in Reproductive Isolation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenberg, Les; Johnson, Christine A; Trager, James C; McElfresh, J Steven; Rodstein, Joshua; Millar, Jocelyn G

    2018-06-01

    Species of the ant genus Polyergus are social parasites that steal brood from colonies of their hosts in the closely related genus Formica. Upon emergence as adults in a mixed population, host Formica workers carry out all the normal worker functions within the Polyergus colony, including foraging, feeding, grooming, and rearing brood of the parasitic Polyergus ants. Some unmated Polyergus gynes (queens) run in the raiding columns of their colonies and attract males by releasing a pheromone from their mandibular glands. There are two Polyergus species groups in North America: an eastern P. lucidus group and a western P. breviceps group. One species of each of these groups, P. lucidus Mayr and P. mexicanus Emery, are sympatric in Missouri. In this study, we characterized the sex pheromones of virgin queens of two species of the P. lucidus group (P. lucidus sensu stricto and P. sanwaldi) and one species of the P. breviceps group (P. mexicanus), and compared these with the previously identified sex pheromone of P. topoffi of the P. breviceps group. We then used sex pheromone blends reconstructed from synthesized components of the two groups to test their efficacy at reproductively isolating these species. We found that methyl 6-methylsalicylate is conserved as the major component of the pheromone blends for both Polyergus species groups; however, methyl (R)-3-ethyl-4-methylpentanoate is the species-specific minor component produced by P. lucidus group queens, and (R)-3-ethyl-4-methylpentan-1-ol is the crucial minor component for P. breviceps group queens. The optimal ratio of the major and minor components for P. lucidus group queens was about 100:1 salicylate to ester. In concurrent field trials in Missouri, males of P. lucidus sensu stricto and P. mexicanus (a member of the P. breviceps group) were attracted almost exclusively to their particular blends of sex pheromone components. To our knowledge, this is the first example of a possible sex

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

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    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. Sequestration of Glucosinolates and Iridoid Glucosides in Sawfly Species of the Genus Athalia and Their Role in Defense Against Ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Opitz, Sebastian E. W.; Jensen, Søren Rosendal; Müller, Caroline

    2010-01-01

    In this study, the larval sequestration abilities and defense effectiveness of four sawfly species of the genus Athalia (Hymenoptera: Tenthredinidae) that feed as larvae either on members of the Brassicaceae or Plantaginaceae were investigated. Brassicaceae are characterized by glucosinolates (GLSs...... hemolymph of the GLSsequestering conspicuous A. rosae larvae. The results show that glucoside sequestration is widespread in the genus Athalia, but that the specific glucoside uptake can result in different defense effectiveness against a predator species....

  1. A New Species of Neotropical Carpenter Ant in the Genus Camponotus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae, Apparently without Major Workers

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    William Mackay

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We describe a new species of carpenter ants from Ecuador, which apparently has an obligatory relationship with the ant plants Cecropia membranacea Trécul, C. herthae Diels and C. marginalis Cuatrec. The workers are relatively small and hairy, and based on a number of collections, it does not appear to have major workers. We compare the new species to Camponotus balzani, to which it appears to be similar and which has normal major workers, and also lives in Cecropia spp.

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

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    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.

  3. Population and colony structure and morphometrics in the queen dimorphic little black ant, Monomorium sp. AZ-02, with a review of queen phenotypes in the genus Monomorium.

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    Robert A Johnson

    Full Text Available The North American little black ant, Monomorium sp. AZ-02 (subfamily Myrmicinae, displays a dimorphism that consists of alate (winged and ergatoid (wingless queens. Surveys at our field site in southcentral Arizona, USA, demonstrated that only one queen phenotype (alate or ergatoid occurred in each colony during the season in which reproductive sexuals were produced. A morphometric analysis demonstrated that ergatoid queens retained all specialized anatomical features of alate queens (except for wings, and that they were significantly smaller and had a lower mass than alate queens. Using eight morphological characters, a discriminant analysis correctly categorized all queens (40 of 40 of both phenotypes. A molecular phylogeny using 420 base pairs of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase I demonstrated that alate and ergatoid queens are two alternative phenotypes within the species; both phenotypes were intermixed on our phylogeny, and both phenotypes often displayed the same haplotype. A survey of the genus Monomorium (358 species found that wingless queens (ergatoid queens, brachypterous queens occur in 42 of 137 species (30.6% in which the queen has been described. These wingless queen species are geographically and taxonomically widespread as they occur on several continents and in eight species groups, suggesting that winglessness probably arose independently on many occasions in the genus.

  4. Interactions between extrafloral nectaries, aphids and ants: are there competition effects between plant and homopteran sugar sources?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Engel, V.; Fischer, M.D.; Wäckers, F.L.; Volkl, W.

    2001-01-01

    Broad bean (Vicia faba), an annual plant bearing extrafloral nectaries (EFN) at the base of the upper leaves, is regularly infested by two aphid species, Aphis fabae and Acyrthosiphon pisum. EFN and A. fabae are commonly attended by the ant, Lasius niger, while Ac. pisum usually remains uninfested.

  5. First record of the myrmicine ant genus Meranoplus Smith, 1853 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae from the Arabian Peninsula with description of a new species and notes on the zoogeography of southwestern Kingdom of [corrected] Saudi Arabia.

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    Mostafa R Sharaf

    Full Text Available The ant genus Meranoplus is reported for the first time from the Arabian Peninsula (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by the new species M. pulcher sp. n., based on the worker caste. Specimens were collected from Al Sarawat and Asir Mountains of southwestern Kingdom of Saudi Arabia using pitfall traps. Meranoplus pulcher sp. n. is included in the Afrotropical M. magretii-group, with greatest similarity to M. magrettii André from Sudan. A key to the Afrotropical species of the M. magretii-group is presented. A brief review of the ant taxa with Afrotropical affinities in southwestern region of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is given.

  6. Revisionary notes on the fungus-growing ant genus Mycetarotes Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae Notas sobre as formigas cultivadoras de fungos do gênero Mycetarotes Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae

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    Antonio José Mayhé-Nunes

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Mycetarotes is a small genus of the exclusively Neotropical fungus-growing ants, that includes M. parallelus (Emery, M. senticosus Kempf, M. acutus Mayhé-Nunes and M. carinatus Mayhé-Nunes. We hereby revise historical and recent information regarding Mycetarotes species for the first time, providing an identification key to workers, diagnoses, synoptic illustrated redescriptions of the species, including those of sexuals when known, updates of distributional records, and nest pictures of M. carinatus and M. parallelus. We comment the taxonomy and phylogenetic relationships among Mycetarotes and related genera, and on their geographical distribution. The available biological information on the genus is summarized.O gênero Mycetarotes inclui quatro espécies de formigas cultivadoras de fungos, exclusivamente encontradas na região Neotropical: M. parallelus (Emery, M. senticosus Kempf, M. acutus Mayhé-Nunes and M. carinatus Mayhé-Nunes. Apresentamos pela primeira vez um resumo sobre as informações disponíveis para as espécies do gênero, fornecendo uma chave para a identificação das operárias, diagnoses e redescrições sinópticas ilustradas das espécies, incluindo as dos alados, quando conhecidos, atualização dos registros de distribuição e fotografias dos ninhos de M. carinatus e M. parallelus. Comentamos a taxonomia e as relações de parentesco entre Mycetarotes e gêneros cognatos, e sobre sua distribuição geográfica. As informações biológicas disponíveis sobre o gênero também foram resumidas.

  7. Phylogenetic analysis and systematic position of two new species of the ant genus Crematogaster (Hymenoptera, Formicidae from Southeast Asia

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    Shingo Hosoishi

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Two distinct new species of the ant genus Crematogaster, C. khmerensis sp. nov. and C. pfeifferi sp. nov., are described from Cambodia and Malaysia, respectively. The two species are unique among Asian Crematogaster in that they have vertically directed propodeal spines, but their systematic positions have not been determined based on morphological characters alone. Molecular phylogenetic analysis of 89 Crematogaster taxon matrices previously published plus C. khmerensis sp. nov., using nuclear genes, reveals that C. khmerensis sp. nov. is nested within the Australo-Asian Crematogaster clade. Morphological assignment of the developed pronotal shoulders implies a close relationship between C. khmerensis sp. nov. and the C. tetracantha-group. Based on molecular and morphological evidence, we erect a new species group, C. khmerensis-group, to contain C. khmerensis sp. nov. and C. pfeifferi sp. nov. Divergence time estimates using MCMCTree shows that the root node of the C. khmerensis sp. nov. terminal is estimated to be of middle Miocene age at 15 million years old. The position of the C. khmerensis-group well supports the Oriental- to Australian-region dispersal history that has been proposed for the Australo-Asian Crematogaster clade.

  8. 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

  9. Are queen ants inhibited by their own pheromone?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holman, L.; Leroy, C.; Jørgensen, Charlotte

    2013-01-01

    . Communication in social insects is predominantly chemical, and the mechanisms regulating processes such as reproductive division of labor are becoming increasingly well understood. Recently, a queen cuticular hydrocarbon (3-MeC31) that inhibits worker reproduction and aggression was isolated in the ant Lasius...... niger. Here, we find that this pheromone also has a weak negative effect on queen productivity and oogenesis. Because 3-MeC31 is present on both queens and their brood, we suggest that it is used by ants of both castes to adjust their fecundity to the amount of developing brood and the presence of other...

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. Food-plant niche selection rather than the presence of ant nests explains oviposition patterns in the myrmecophilous butterfly genus Maculinea.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, J A; Elmes, G W

    2001-03-07

    It has been suggested that the socially parasitic butterfly Maculinea alcon detects ant odours before ovipositing on initial larval food plants near colonies of its obligate ant host Myrmica ruginodis. It has also been suggested that overcrowding on food plants near M. ruginodis is avoided by an ability to detect high egg loads, resulting in a switch to selecting plants near less suitable ant species. If confirmed, this hypothesis (H1) would have serious implications for the application of current population models aimed at the conservation of endangered Maculinea species, which are based on the null hypothesis (H0) that females randomly select food plants whose flower buds are at a precise phenological stage, making oviposition independent of ants. If H1 were wrong, practical management based upon its assumptions could lead to the extinction of protected populations. We present data for the five European species of Maculinea which show that (i) each oviposits on a phenologically restricted flower-bud stage, which accounts for the apparent host-ant-mediated niche separation in sympatric populations of Maculinea nausithous and Maculinea teleius, (ii) there is no temporal shift in oviposition by Maculinea arion in relation to host ant distribution or egg density, and (iii) oviposition patterns in 13 populations of M. alcon's closest relative, Macaulinea rebeli, conform to H0 not H1 predictions. It is concluded that conservation measures should continue to be based on H0.

  13. Primer registro de Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Siphonaptera: Ceratophyllidae en nidos de golondrina chilena, Tachycineta meyeni (Passeriformes: Hirundinidae, en Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosana ARAMBURÚ

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available La golondrina chilena, Tachycineta meyeni (Cabanis, nidifica en el centro de Chile y suroeste de Argentina. En invierno migra a Bolivia, Paraguay y al sureste de Brasil. Estas golondrinas ocuparon una serie de cajas-nido en Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego. Luego de la temporada de cría, tratamos los nidos con acetato de etilo y los revisamos en búsqueda de artrópodos hematófagos. Encontramos pulgas adultas, que fueron fijadas, aclaradas, deshidratadas, diafanizadas y montadas en un derivado de clavo de olor para su observación al microsocopio óptico. Identificamos machos y hembras de Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Rothschild. En Argentina, esta pulga es conocida solamente en Sierra de la Ventana (Buenos Aires, donde se la halló parasitando la golondrina barranquera, Notiochelidon cyanoleuca patagonica (Vieillot. La información disponible debería complementarse con prospecciones en localidades intermedias. Otras aves relacionadas con ambas golondrinas por la ocupación de nidos, como el rayadito (Aphrastura spinicauda (Gmelin, ratona común (Troglodytes aedon Vieillot, caminera común (Geositta cunicularia (Vieillot, hornero (Furnarius rufus (Gmelin, podrían contribuir a la dispersión de la pulga entre las dos localidades registradas.

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

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    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.

  15. Social context predicts recognition systems in ant queens

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dreier, Stéphanie Agnès Jeanine; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2009-01-01

    Recognition of group-members is a key feature of sociality. Ants use chemical communication to discriminate nestmates from intruders, enhancing kin cooperation and preventing parasitism. The recognition code is embedded in their cuticular chemical profile, which typically varies between colonies....... We predicted that ants might be capable of accurate recognition in unusual situations when few individuals interact repeatedly, as new colonies started by two to three queens. Individual recognition would be favoured by selection when queens establish dominance hierarchies, because repeated fights...... for dominance are costly; but it would not evolve in absence of hierarchies. We previously showed that Pachycondyla co-founding queens, which form dominance hierarchies, have accurate individual recognition based on chemical cues. Here, we used the ant Lasius niger to test the null hypothesis that individual...

  16. Primer registro de Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Siphonaptera: Ceratophyllidae en nidos de golondrina chilena, Tachycineta meyeni (Passeriformes: Hirundinidae, en Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego, Argentina First record of Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Siphonaptera: Ceratophyllidae in Chilean swallow nests Tachycineta meyeni (Passeriformes: Hirundinidae in Ushuaia (Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosana Aramburú

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available La golondrina chilena, Tachycineta meyeni (Cabanis, nidifica en el centro de Chile y suroeste de Argentina. En invierno migra a Bolivia, Paraguay y al sureste de Brasil. Estas golondrinas ocuparon una serie de cajas-nido en Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego. Luego de la temporada de cría, tratamos los nidos con acetato de etilo y los revisamos en búsqueda de artrópodos hematófagos. Encontramos pulgas adultas, que fueron fijadas, aclaradas, deshidratadas, diafanizadas y montadas en un derivado de clavo de olor para su observación al microsocopio óptico. Identificamos machos y hembras de Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Rothschild. En Argentina, esta pulga es conocida solamente en Sierra de la Ventana (Buenos Aires, donde se la halló parasitando la golondrina barranquera, Notiochelidon cyanoleuca patagonica (Vieillot. La información disponible debería complementarse con prospecciones en localidades intermedias. Otras aves relacionadas con ambas golondrinas por la ocupación de nidos, como el rayadito (Aphrastura spinicauda (Gmelin, ratona común (Troglodytes aedon Vieillot, caminera común (Geositta cunicularia (Vieillot, hornero (Furnarius rufus (Gmelin, podrían contribuir a la dispersión de la pulga entre las dos localidades registradas.Chilean swallows Tachycineta meyeni (Cabanis nest in the central area in Chile and Southwest in Argentina. In winter, they migrate to Bolivia, Paraguay and Southeast of Brazil. A nest box population of Chilean swallows was established in Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego. After the breeding season, we collected all nests, treated them with ethyl acetate, and inspected all the nest material for hematophagous arthropods. We found adult fleas, which were fixed, cleared, diaphanized, dehydrated, and mounted in a clove derivative for observation under a microscope. We identified males and females of Dasypsyllus (Avesopsylla lasius lasius (Rothschild. In Argentina, this flea is only known for Sierra de la Ventana

  17. Taxonomy of the ant genus Proceratium Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae in the Afrotropical region with a revision of the P. arnoldi clade and description of four new species

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    Francisco Hita Garcia

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The taxonomy of the genus Proceratium Roger is updated for the Afrotropical region. We give an overview of the genus in the region, provide an illustrated identification key to the three clades (P. arnoldi, P. stictum and P. toschii clades and revise the P. arnoldi clade. Four new species from the P. arnoldi clade are described as new: P. sokoke sp. n. from Kenya, P. carri sp. n. from Mozambique, and P. nilo sp. n. and P. sali sp. n. from Tanzania. In order to integrate the new species into the existing taxonomic system we present an illustrated identification key to distinguish the seven Afrotropical species of the P. arnoldi clade. In addition, we provide accounts for all members of the P. arnoldi clade including detailed descriptions, diagnoses, taxonomic discussions, distribution data and high quality montage images.

  18. A new ant species of Oxyepoecus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae, with the description of Oxyepoecus browni gyne and new records for the genus

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    Mônica A. Ulysséa

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available We describe a new species of Oxyepoecus Santschi, 1926, Oxyepoecus regularis sp. nov., based on workers and a gyne collected in "Caatinga Arbórea" (Arboreal Shrubland in Milagres and "Mata Seca" (Dry Forest in Boa Vista do Tupim, both in the state of Bahia, Brazil. The gyne of Oxyepoecus browni Albuquerque & Brandão, 2004, collected in the same leaf litter ant survey, is also described. In addition, we present new records for Oxyepoecus species in Northeastern Brazil.

  19. The Müller-Lyer illusion in ant foraging.

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    Tomoko Sakiyama

    Full Text Available The Müller-Lyer illusion is a classical geometric illusion in which the apparent (perceived length of a line depends on whether the line terminates in an arrow tail or arrowhead. This effect may be caused by economic compensation for the gap between the physical stimulus and visual fields. Here, we show that the Müller-Lyer illusion can also be produced by the foraging patterns of garden ants (Lasius niger and that the pattern obtained can be explained by a simple, asynchronously updated foraging ant model. Our results suggest that the geometric illusion may be a byproduct of the foraging process, in which local interactions underlying efficient exploitation can also give rise to global exploration, and that visual information processing in human could implement similar modulation between local efficient processing and widespread computation.

  20. 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...

  1. Next-generation morphological character discovery and evaluation: an X-ray micro-CT enhanced revision of the ant genus Zasphinctus Wheeler (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Dorylinae) in the Afrotropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, Francisco Hita; Fischer, Georg; Liu, Cong; Audisio, Tracy L; Economo, Evan P

    2017-01-01

    New technologies for imaging and analysis of morphological characters offer opportunities to enhance revisionary taxonomy and better integrate it with the rest of biology. In this study, we revise the Afrotropical fauna of the ant genus Zasphinctus Wheeler, and use high-resolution X-ray microtomography (micro-CT) to analyse a number of morphological characters of taxonomic and biological interest. We recognise and describe three new species: Z. obamai sp. n. , Z. sarowiwai sp. n. , and Z. wilsoni sp. n. The species delimitations are based on the morphological examination of all physical specimens in combination with 3D scans and volume reconstructions. Based on this approach, we present a new taxonomic discrimination system for the regional fauna that consists of a combination of easily observable morphological characters visible at magnifications of around 80-100 ×, less observable characters that require higher magnifications, as well as characters made visible through virtual dissections that would otherwise require destructive treatment. Zasphinctus are rarely collected ants and the material available to us is comparatively scarce. Consequently, we explore the use of micro-CT as a non-invasive tool for the virtual examination, manipulation, and dissection of such rare material. Furthermore, we delineate the treated species by providing a diagnostic character matrix illustrated by numerous images and supplement that with additional evidence in the form of stacked montage images, 3D PDFs and 3D rotation videos of scans of major body parts and full body (in total we provide 16 stacked montage photographs, 116 images of 3D reconstructions, 15 3D rotation videos, and 13 3D PDFs). In addition to the comparative morphology analyses used for species delimitations, we also apply micro-CT data to examine certain traits, such as mouthparts, cuticle thickness, and thoracic and abdominal muscles in order to assess their taxonomic usefulness or gain insights into the

  2. Taxonomy of the ant genus Nesomyrmex Wheeler (Formicidae, Myrmicinae in the Afrotropical region, with a review of current species groups and description of a new species of the N. angulatus group from Mozambique

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    Francisco Hita Garcia

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This study reviews the taxonomy of the ant genus Nesomyrmex Wheeler, 1910 in the Afrotropical region. Previous revisionary studies are discussed and four species groups are proposed on the basis of external morphology. The N. angulatus group contains seven species that are widely distributed throughout the whole Afrotropical region, with one species also occurring in the Palaearctic and Malagasy regions. The N. cataulacoides group is monotypic, with one morphologically bizarre species found in Equatorial rain forests. The N. humerosus group is also monotypic and occurs in East Africa. The last and by far most species-rich group is the N. simoni group that contains 17 species, all of which are endemic to South Africa. The four groups are defined for the first time for the region, and an illustrated identification key is provided. Furthermore, the N. angulatus group is more thoroughly reviewed. One new species from Mozambique is described, N. inhaca sp. nov., and species accounts for the other six are provided. Also, an illustrated identification key to the species of the N. angulatus group is presented.

  3. Bacteria may contribute to distant species recognition in ant-aphid mutualistic relationships.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Christophe Y; Detrain, Claire; Thonart, Philippe; Haubruge, Eric; Francis, Frédéric; Verheggen, François J; Lognay, Georges C

    2017-04-01

    Mutualistic interactions between ant and aphid species have been the subject of considerable historical and contemporary investigations, the primary benefits being cleaning and protection for the aphids and carbohydrate-rich honeydew for the ants. Questions remained, however, as to the volatile semiochemical factor influencing this relationship. A recent study highlighted the role of bacterial honeydew volatile compounds in ant attraction. Here, ant's ability to distantly discriminate 2 aphid species was investigated based on bacterial honeydew semiochemicals emissions using a two-way olfactometer. Both the mutualistic aphid Aphis fabae L. and the nonmyrmecophilous aphid Acyrthosiphon pisum Harris were found to be attractive for the ant Lasius niger L. The level of attraction was similar in both assays (control vs. one of the aphid species). However, when given a choice between these 2 aphid species, ants showed a significant preference for Aphis fabae. Honeydew volatiles, mostly from bacterial origins, are known to be a key element in ant attraction. Using the same olfactometry protocol, the relative attractiveness of volatiles emitted by honeydews collected from each aphid species and by bacteria isolated from each honeydew was investigated. Again, ants significantly preferred volatiles released by Aphis fabae honeydew and bacteria. This information suggests that microbial honeydew volatiles enable ants to distantly discriminate aphid species. These results strengthen the interest of studying the occurrence and potential impact of microorganisms in insect symbioses. © 2015 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  4. Stigmergic construction and topochemical information shape ant nest architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khuong, Anaïs; Gautrais, Jacques; Perna, Andrea; Sbaï, Chaker; Combe, Maud; Kuntz, Pascale; Jost, Christian; Theraulaz, Guy

    2016-02-02

    The nests of social insects are not only impressive because of their sheer complexity but also because they are built from individuals whose work is not centrally coordinated. A key question is how groups of insects coordinate their building actions. Here, we use a combination of experimental and modeling approaches to investigate nest construction in the ant Lasius niger. We quantify the construction dynamics and the 3D structures built by ants. Then, we characterize individual behaviors and the interactions of ants with the structures they build. We show that two main interactions are involved in the coordination of building actions: (i) a stigmergic-based interaction that controls the amplification of depositions at some locations and is attributable to a pheromone added by ants to the building material; and (ii) a template-based interaction in which ants use their body size as a cue to control the height at which they start to build a roof from existing pillars. We then develop a 3D stochastic model based on these individual behaviors to analyze the effect of pheromone presence and strength on construction dynamics. We show that the model can quantitatively reproduce key features of construction dynamics, including a large-scale pattern of regularly spaced pillars, the formation and merging of caps over the pillars, and the remodeling of built structures. Finally, our model suggests that the lifetime of the pheromone is a highly influential parameter that controls the growth and form of nest architecture.

  5. Destructive disinfection of infected brood prevents systemic disease spread in ant colonies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pull, Christopher D; Ugelvig, Line V; Wiesenhofer, Florian; Grasse, Anna V; Tragust, Simon; Schmitt, Thomas; Brown, Mark Jf; Cremer, Sylvia

    2018-01-09

    In social groups, infections have the potential to spread rapidly and cause disease outbreaks. Here, we show that in a social insect, the ant Lasius neglectus , the negative consequences of fungal infections ( Metarhizium brunneum ) can be mitigated by employing an efficient multicomponent behaviour, termed destructive disinfection, which prevents further spread of the disease through the colony. Ants specifically target infected pupae during the pathogen's non-contagious incubation period, utilising chemical 'sickness cues' emitted by pupae. They then remove the pupal cocoon, perforate its cuticle and administer antimicrobial poison, which enters the body and prevents pathogen replication from the inside out. Like the immune system of a metazoan body that specifically targets and eliminates infected cells, ants destroy infected brood to stop the pathogen completing its lifecycle, thus protecting the rest of the colony. Hence, in an analogous fashion, the same principles of disease defence apply at different levels of biological organisation.

  6. 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...

  7. Worker lifespan is an adaptive trait during colony establishment in the long-lived ant Lasius niger

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kramer, Boris H.; Schaible, Ralf; Scheuerlein, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    Eusociality has been recognized as a strong driver of lifespan evolution. While queens show extraordinary lifespans of 20 years and more, worker lifespan is short and variable. A recent comparative study found that in eusocial species with larger average colony sizes the disparities in the lifespans

  8. Estudos citogenéticos em formigas neotropicais do gênero Gnamptogenys Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Ectatomminae Cytogenetic studies in Neotropical ants of the genus Gnamptogenys Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Ectatomminae

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    Davileide S. Borges

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Foram caracterizados os cariótipos de três espécies neotropicais do gênero Gnamptogenys Roger: Gnamptogenys striatula Mayr, Gnamptogenys sp. e Gnamptogenys annulata Mayr, coletadas em Viçosa (Minas Gerais e Ilhéus (Bahia. O número cromossômico de G. striatula nas duas localidades foi 2n=34, com fórmula cariotípica 2K=24M+10A. Em Gnamptogenys sp., o número cromossômico foi de 2n=46 (fêmea e n=23 (machos, com a fórmula cariotípica 2K=18M+28A. O número cromossômico de G. annulata foi 2n=68 com a fórmula cariotípica 2K= 6M+62A. Esse tipo de estudo complementa outros estudos iniciados por nosso grupo sobre a citogenética das formigas poneromorfas (sensu Bolton e poderá contribuir no melhor entendimento da evolução das formigas deste grupo considerado primitivo.Studies on the karyotypes of three Neotropical species of the genus Gnamptogenys (Ectatomminae, Ectatommini have been carried out: Gnamptogenys striatula Mayr, Gnamptogenys sp. and Gnamptogenys annulata Mayr, collected at Viçosa (Minas Gerais, Brazil and Ilheus (Bahia, Brazil. The chromosome number of G. striatula was established from individuals taken in colonies from both localities was 2n=34, with the karyotype formula 2K=24M+10A. In Gnamptogenys sp., the chromosomal number was 2n=46 (females and n=23 (males, and its karyotype formula was 2K=18M+28A. The chromosomal number of G. annulata was 2n=68 with the karyotype 2K= 6M + 62A. This study complements THOse carried out by our research group on cytogenetics of the poneromorph ants (sensu Bolton and would contribute to the better understanding of the ant evolution in this group considered primitive.

  9. Eight new species of Batrisodes Reitter from China (Coleoptera, Staphylinidae, Pselaphinae

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    Ri-Xin Jiang

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Eight new species of the genus Batrisodes Reitter are described from continental China, seven of which were found in association with ants: B. abdominalis sp. n. and B. tianmuensis sp. n. with an Ectomomyrmex ant from Zhejiang; B. grossus sp. n. with an Odontomachus ant from Guangxi; B. simianshanus sp. n. with an Aphaenogaster ant from Chongqing; B. qiului sp. n. with a Pheidole ant, B. xuhaoi sp. n. with a Lasius ant, and B. zhouchaoi sp. n. with Lasius and Nylanderia ants from Sichuan. Batrisodes zethus sp. n. was collected from a leaf litter sample.

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

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    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.

  11. 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.

  12. The evolution of invasiveness in garden ants.

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    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.

  13. 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

  14. Measurement of metabolism of worker ants by using the elimination of caesium-134

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nielsen, M.G.; Jensen, T.F.

    1977-01-01

    In order to find a method for measuring field metabolism of worker ants the elimination of 134 Cs by two ant species has been investigated. Equations relating temperature to radiocaesium elimination and metabolism have been found. From these equations the relationship between elimination and metabolism is calculated. Consequently, the elimination of the isotope can be used for measuring metabolism. A pilot field experiment with Lasius alienus (Foerst.) reveals that the traditional methods of estimating field metabolism give values which are considerably lower than the value based on caesium elimination rate. This difference is supposed to be mainly due to greater motor activity of the animals in the field. Consequently, the value of the caesium elimination method is closer to the 'true' value of field metabolism. (orig.) [de

  15. Nest etiquette--where ants go when nature calls.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomer J Czaczkes

    Full Text Available Sanitary behaviour is an important, but seldom studied, aspect of social living. Social insects have developed several strategies for dealing with waste and faecal matter, including dumping waste outside the nest and forming specialised waste-storage chambers. In some cases waste material and faeces are put to use, either as a construction material or as a long-lasting signal, suggesting that faeces and waste may not always be dangerous. Here we examine a previously undescribed behaviour in ants - the formation of well-defined faecal patches. Lasius niger ants were housed in plaster nests and provided with coloured sucrose solution. After two months, 1-4 well defined dark patches, the colour of the sucrose solution, formed within each of the plaster nests. These patches never contained other waste material such as uneaten food items, or nestmate corpses. Such waste was collected in waste piles outside the nest. The coloured patches were thus distinct from previously described 'kitchen middens' in ants, and are best described as 'toilets'. Why faeces is not removed with other waste materials is unclear. The presence of the toilets inside the nest suggests that they may not be an important source of pathogens, and may have a beneficial role.

  16. 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....

  17. A new species of the fungus-farming ant genus Mycetagroicus Brandão & Mayhé-Nunes (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Attini Uma nova espécie de formiga cultivadora de fungo, do gênero Mycetagroicus Brandão & Mayhé-Nunes (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Attini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carlos Roberto Ferreira Brandão

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available The fungus-farming ant genus Mycetagroicus Brandão & Mayhé-Nunes was proposed based on three species from the Brazilian "Cerrado": M. cerradensis, M. triangularis and M. urbanus. Here we describe a new species of Attini ant of the genus Mycetagroicus, M. inflatus n. sp., based on two workers collected in eastern Pará State, Brazil. A new key for species identification, comments on differences among species and new geographical distribution data are furnished.O gênero de formigas cultivadoras de fungos, Mycetagroicus Brandão & Mayhé-Nunes, foi proposto com base em três espécies do Cerrado: M. cerradensis, M. triangularis e M. urbanus. Neste trabalho descrevemos uma nova espécie de Attini do gênero Mycetagroicus, M. inflatus n. sp., baseada em duas operárias coletadas no leste do Pará, Brasil. Apresentamos uma nova chave para a identificação das espécies, comentários sobre as diferenças entre as espécies e novos dados sobre a distribuição geográfica.

  18. 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.

  19. Aphid alarm pheromone as a cue for ants to locate aphid partners.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    François J Verheggen

    Full Text Available The mutualistic relationships that occur between myrmecophilous aphids and ants are based on the rich food supply that honeydew represents for ants and on the protection they provide against aphid natural enemies. While aphid predators and parasitoids actively forage for oviposition sites by using aphid semiochemicals, scouts of aphid-tending ant species would also benefit from locating honeydew resources by orienting toward aphid pheromone sources. The present study aims to provide additional information on the use of Aphis fabae alarm pheromone, i.e. (E-β-farnesene (EβF, by ant scouts. The perception and behavioral impact of EβF on Lasius niger were investigated using electroantennography and two bio-assays measuring their attraction and orientation towards aphid semiochemicals. Pronounced electrical depolarizations were observed from L. niger scout antennae to stimulations of A. fabae alarm pheromone, while other sesquiterpenes elicited weak or no responses. L. niger scouts were significantly attracted toward EβF in a four-arm olfactometer, as well as in an two-choice bioassay. These laboratory results suggest for the first time that low amounts of aphid alarm pheromone can be used by L. niger scouts as a cue indicating the presence of aphid colonies and could therefore mediate the aphid-ant partnership in the field.

  20. A preliminary checklist of the ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae of Andorra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abel Bernadou

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Within the last decade, checklists of the ant fauna of several European countries have been published or updated. Nevertheless, no ant checklists have hitherto been published for the principality of Andorra, a small landlocked country located in the eastern part of the Pyrenees. This work presents a critical list of the ant species of Andorra based on a review of the literature and on the biological material we collected during several field campaigns conducted in Andorra since the year 2005. Seventy-five species belonging to 21 genera of Formicidae were recorded. Nine species were recorded for the first time in Andorra: Aphaenogaster gibbosa (Latreille, 1798, Camponotus lateralis (Olivier, 1792, Camponotus piceus (Leach, 1825, Formica exsecta Nylander, 1846, Lasius piliferus Seifert, 1992, Tapinoma madeirense Forel, 1895, Temnothorax lichtensteini (Bondroit, 1918, Temnothorax niger (Forel, 1894, Temnothorax nigriceps (Mayr, 1855. The most speciose genera were Formica Linnaeus, 1758 and Temnothorax Forel, 1890 with 14 and 12 species, respectively. The ant fauna of Andorra is mostly dominated by Central European species (some are typical cold climate specialists; however species belonging to the Mediterranean ant fauna were also found. This can be explained by the particular geographic situation of Andorra which is characterized by a high mountain Mediterranean climate.

  1. Anti-pathogen protection versus survival costs mediated by an ectosymbiont in an ant host.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konrad, Matthias; Grasse, Anna V; Tragust, Simon; Cremer, Sylvia

    2015-01-22

    The fitness effects of symbionts on their hosts can be context-dependent, with usually benign symbionts causing detrimental effects when their hosts are stressed, or typically parasitic symbionts providing protection towards their hosts (e.g. against pathogen infection). Here, we studied the novel association between the invasive garden ant Lasius neglectus and its fungal ectosymbiont Laboulbenia formicarum for potential costs and benefits. We tested ants with different Laboulbenia levels for their survival and immunity under resource limitation and exposure to the obligate killing entomopathogen Metarhizium brunneum. While survival of L. neglectus workers under starvation was significantly decreased with increasing Laboulbenia levels, host survival under Metarhizium exposure increased with higher levels of the ectosymbiont, suggesting a symbiont-mediated anti-pathogen protection, which seems to be driven mechanistically by both improved sanitary behaviours and an upregulated immune system. Ants with high Laboulbenia levels showed significantly longer self-grooming and elevated expression of immune genes relevant for wound repair and antifungal responses (β-1,3-glucan binding protein, Prophenoloxidase), compared with ants carrying low Laboulbenia levels. This suggests that the ectosymbiont Laboulbenia formicarum weakens its ant host by either direct resource exploitation or the costs of an upregulated behavioural and immunological response, which, however, provides a prophylactic protection upon later exposure to pathogens. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  2. Anti-pathogen protection versus survival costs mediated by an ectosymbiont in an ant host

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konrad, Matthias; Grasse, Anna V.; Tragust, Simon; Cremer, Sylvia

    2015-01-01

    The fitness effects of symbionts on their hosts can be context-dependent, with usually benign symbionts causing detrimental effects when their hosts are stressed, or typically parasitic symbionts providing protection towards their hosts (e.g. against pathogen infection). Here, we studied the novel association between the invasive garden ant Lasius neglectus and its fungal ectosymbiont Laboulbenia formicarum for potential costs and benefits. We tested ants with different Laboulbenia levels for their survival and immunity under resource limitation and exposure to the obligate killing entomopathogen Metarhizium brunneum. While survival of L. neglectus workers under starvation was significantly decreased with increasing Laboulbenia levels, host survival under Metarhizium exposure increased with higher levels of the ectosymbiont, suggesting a symbiont-mediated anti-pathogen protection, which seems to be driven mechanistically by both improved sanitary behaviours and an upregulated immune system. Ants with high Laboulbenia levels showed significantly longer self-grooming and elevated expression of immune genes relevant for wound repair and antifungal responses (β-1,3-glucan binding protein, Prophenoloxidase), compared with ants carrying low Laboulbenia levels. This suggests that the ectosymbiont Laboulbenia formicarum weakens its ant host by either direct resource exploitation or the costs of an upregulated behavioural and immunological response, which, however, provides a prophylactic protection upon later exposure to pathogens. PMID:25473011

  3. 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...

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Towards a better understanding of the evolution of specialized parasites of fungus-growing ant crops

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yek, Sze Huei; Boomsma, Jacobus Jan; Poulsen, Michael

    2012-01-01

    Fungus-growing ants have interacted and partly coevolved with specialised microfungal parasites of the genus Escovopsis since the origin of ant fungiculture about 50 million years ago. Here, we review the recent progress in understanding the patterns of specificity of this ant-parasite associatio...

  7. 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 ...

  8. Selfish strategies and honest signalling: reproductive conflicts in ant queen associations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holman, Luke; Dreier, Stephanie; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2010-01-01

    Social insects offer unique opportunities to test predictions regarding the evolution of cooperation, life histories and communication. Colony founding by groups of unrelated queens, some of which are later killed, may select for selfish reproductive strategies, honest signalling and punishment....... Here, we use a brood transfer experiment to test whether cofounding queens of the ant Lasius niger 'selfishly' adjust their productivity when sharing the nest with future competitors. We simultaneously analysed queen cuticular hydrocarbon (CHC) profiles to investigate whether queens honestly signal...... correlated with reproductive maturation, and to a lesser extent with productivity; the same hydrocarbons were more abundant on queens that were not killed, suggesting that workers select productive queens using these chemical cues. Our results highlight the role of honest signalling in the evolution...

  9. No effect of Zn-pollution on the energy content in the black garden ant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grześ, Irena M; Okrutniak, Mateusz

    2016-05-01

    Social insects may display a response to environmental pollution at the colony level. The key trait of an ant colony is to share energy between castes in order to maintain the existing adult population and to feed the brood. In the present study we calorimetrically measured the energy content per body mass (J/mg) of adults and pupae of workers, males and females of the black garden ant Lasius niger. The ants were sampled from 37 wild colonies originating from 19 sites located along the metal pollution gradient established in a post-mining area in Poland. The cost of metal detoxification seen as a possible reduction in energy content with increasing pollution was found neither for pupae nor adults. However, a considerable part of variance in energy content is explained by belonging to the same colony. These findings stress the importance of colony-specific factors and/or the interaction of these factors with specific site in shaping the response of ants to metal-pollution stress. Colony-related factors may constrain possible selfish decisions of workers over energy allocation in workers and sexual castes.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Genus vesiculoviruses

    Science.gov (United States)

    The vesiculovirus genus of the family Rhabdoviridae contains a numbers of viruses that have been taxonomically classified using a combination of serological relatedness, host range, genome organization, pathobiology and phylogenetic analysis of sequence data. There are 11 viruses assigned to the gen...

  13. Crescimento do fungo simbionte de formigas cortadeiras do gênero Acromyrmex em meios de cultura com diferentes extratos Growth of symbiont fungi of cutter ants of the genus Acromyrmex in means of culture with different extracts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regina da Silva Borba

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available As formigas cortadeiras mostram preferência por algumas espécies vegetais, as quais são constantemente desfolhadas, enquanto outras não são atacadas, embora sejam abundantes e localizadas próximas ao ninho. As formigas dos gêneros Atta e Acromyrmex cortam plantas e transportam pedaços para os formigueiros. O material vegetal é usado para o cultivo do fungo Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, do qual se alimentam. Vários trabalhos utilizando extratos de plantas têm sido realizados para avaliar o efeito sobre o desenvolvimento do fungo simbionte. O objetivo deste trabalho foi avaliar a influência de meios de cultura acrescidos de diferentes extratos sobre o crescimento do fungo L. gongylophorus. Fungos das espécies Acromyrmex ambiguus, Acromyrmex crassispinus, Acromyrmex heyeri e Acromyrmex lundi foram inoculados nos meios Ágar Nutritivo e BDA, ambos acrescidos de melaço e de extratos de azevém (Lolium multiflorum Lam., tifa (Typha angustifolia L. e formiga (Atta sexdens piriventris. O meio Pagnocca foi utilizado como padrão. As placas foram mantidas em câmaras climatizadas à temperatura de 25 + 1°C e escotofase de 24 hs, por um período de 49 dias. O crescimento fúngico foi avaliado com base no diâmetro da colônia, sendo este avaliado em intervalos semanais, totalizando sete avaliações. Também foi avaliado o peso seco do fungo aos 53 dias. Os resultados mostraram que o fungo cultivado por diferentes espécies de formigas tem crescimento diferenciado em meios de cultura com diferentes extratos.The cutter ants show preference for some vegetable species, which are constantly defoliated, while others are not attacked, although they are abundant and located close to the nest. The ants of the goods Atta and Acromyrmex cut plants and they transport pieces to the anthills. The vegetable material is used for the cultivation of the mushroom Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, mushroom from of which theyfeed. Several works using extracts of

  14. Co-founding ant queens prevent disease by performing prophylactic undertaking behaviour.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pull, Christopher D; Cremer, Sylvia

    2017-10-13

    Social insects form densely crowded societies in environments with high pathogen loads, but have evolved collective defences that mitigate the impact of disease. However, colony-founding queens lack this protection and suffer high rates of mortality. The impact of pathogens may be exacerbated in species where queens found colonies together, as healthy individuals may contract pathogens from infectious co-founders. Therefore, we tested whether ant queens avoid founding colonies with pathogen-exposed conspecifics and how they might limit disease transmission from infectious individuals. Using Lasius niger queens and a naturally infecting fungal pathogen Metarhizium brunneum, we observed that queens were equally likely to found colonies with another pathogen-exposed or sham-treated queen. However, when one queen died, the surviving individual performed biting, burial and removal of the corpse. These undertaking behaviours were performed prophylactically, i.e. targeted equally towards non-infected and infected corpses, as well as carried out before infected corpses became infectious. Biting and burial reduced the risk of the queens contracting and dying from disease from an infectious corpse of a dead co-foundress. We show that co-founding ant queens express undertaking behaviours that, in mature colonies, are performed exclusively by workers. Such infection avoidance behaviours act before the queens can contract the disease and will therefore improve the overall chance of colony founding success in ant queens.

  15. The Stable Concordance Genus

    OpenAIRE

    Kearney, M. Kate

    2013-01-01

    The concordance genus of a knot is the least genus of any knot in its concordance class. Although difficult to compute, it is a useful invariant that highlights the distinction between the three-genus and four-genus. In this paper we define and discuss the stable concordance genus of a knot, which describes the behavior of the concordance genus under connected sum.

  16. 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.

  17. Negative feedback enables fast and flexible collective decision-making in ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christoph Grüter

    Full Text Available Positive feedback plays a major role in the emergence of many collective animal behaviours. In many ants pheromone trails recruit and direct nestmate foragers to food sources. The strong positive feedback caused by trail pheromones allows fast collective responses but can compromise flexibility. Previous laboratory experiments have shown that when the environment changes, colonies are often unable to reallocate their foragers to a more rewarding food source. Here we show both experimentally, using colonies of Lasius niger, and with an agent-based simulation model, that negative feedback caused by crowding at feeding sites allows ant colonies to maintain foraging flexibility even with strong recruitment to food sources. In a constant environment, negative feedback prevents the frequently found bias towards one feeder (symmetry breaking and leads to equal distribution of foragers. In a changing environment, negative feedback allows a colony to quickly reallocate the majority of its foragers to a superior food patch that becomes available when foraging at an inferior patch is already well underway. The model confirms these experimental findings and shows that the ability of colonies to switch to a superior food source does not require the decay of trail pheromones. Our results help to resolve inconsistencies between collective foraging patterns seen in laboratory studies and observations in the wild, and show that the simultaneous action of negative and positive feedback is important for efficient foraging in mass-recruiting insect colonies.

  18. The gastropod-symbiotic sea anemone genus Isosicyonis Carlgren, 1927 (Actiniaria: Actiniidae: a new species from the Weddell Sea (Antarctica that clarifies the taxonomic position of the genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Estefanía Rodríguez

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available A second species of the sea anemone genus Isosicyonis is described and illustrated from 16 specimens collected in the Weddell Sea (Antarctica on the Polarstern cruises ANT XVII/3, ANT XXI/2 and ANT XXIII/8. Isosicyonis striata n. sp. is easily distinguishable externally from the other species of the genus Isosicyonis alba by its pattern: white longitudinal stripes on the column, oral disc, and tentacles. It is also distinguished by internal features including the retractor muscles, parietobasilar muscles, marginal sphincter muscles, number of mesenteries, and cnidae. The genus Isosycionis is currently only known from the Southern Ocean. Both species of Isosicyonis live in association with a gastropod, with a single sea anemone occupying almost the whole shell of its gastropod host. The description of this new species, and our re-examination of Isosicyonis alba, resolves the controversial higher taxonomic position of the genus, confirming its placement within the Endomyaria.

  19. The mandible opening response: quantifying aggression elicited by chemical cues in ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Guerrieri, Fernando J; d'Ettorre, Patrizia

    2008-01-01

    Social insects have evolved efficient recognition systems guaranteeing social cohesion and protection from enemies. To defend their territories and threaten non-nestmate intruders, ants open their mandibles as a first aggressive display. Albeit chemical cues play a major role in discrimination...... genus have more similar profiles. The antennae of harnessed ants were touched with a glass rod coated with the cuticular extract of (a) nestmates, (b) non-nestmates of the same species, (c) another species of the same genus and (d) a species of a different genus. The mandible opening response (MOR......) was recorded as the aggressive response. In all assayed species, MOR significantly differed among stimuli, being weakest towards nestmate odour and strongest towards odours originating from ants of a different genus. We thus introduce here a new procedure suitable for studying the chemical basis of aggression...

  20. Specialized Fungal Parasites and Opportunistic Fungi in Gardens of Attine Ants

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fernando C. Pagnocca

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Ants in the tribe Attini (Hymenoptera: Formicidae comprise about 230 described species that share the same characteristic: all coevolved in an ancient mutualism with basidiomycetous fungi cultivated for food. In this paper we focused on fungi other than the mutualistic cultivar and their roles in the attine ant symbiosis. Specialized fungal parasites in the genus Escovopsis negatively impact the fungus gardens. Many fungal parasites may have small impacts on the ants' fungal colony when the colony is balanced, but then may opportunistically shift to having large impacts if the ants' colony becomes unbalanced.

  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. Karyotype instability in the ponerine ant genus Diacamma

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2010-08-06

    Aug 6, 2010 ... fore, one of the ways of accounting for the observed inter- individual chromosomal ... ment of India, for financial support through grants to RG. We thank. Milind Kolatkar for ... for the minimum interaction theory. I. Chromosome ...

  3. Social transfer of pathogenic fungus promotes active immunisation in ant colonies.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Konrad

    Full Text Available Due to the omnipresent risk of epidemics, insect societies have evolved sophisticated disease defences at the individual and colony level. An intriguing yet little understood phenomenon is that social contact to pathogen-exposed individuals reduces susceptibility of previously naive nestmates to this pathogen. We tested whether such social immunisation in Lasius ants against the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae is based on active upregulation of the immune system of nestmates following contact to an infectious individual or passive protection via transfer of immune effectors among group members--that is, active versus passive immunisation. We found no evidence for involvement of passive immunisation via transfer of antimicrobials among colony members. Instead, intensive allogrooming behaviour between naive and pathogen-exposed ants before fungal conidia firmly attached to their cuticle suggested passage of the pathogen from the exposed individuals to their nestmates. By tracing fluorescence-labelled conidia we indeed detected frequent pathogen transfer to the nestmates, where they caused low-level infections as revealed by growth of small numbers of fungal colony forming units from their dissected body content. These infections rarely led to death, but instead promoted an enhanced ability to inhibit fungal growth and an active upregulation of immune genes involved in antifungal defences (defensin and prophenoloxidase, PPO. Contrarily, there was no upregulation of the gene cathepsin L, which is associated with antibacterial and antiviral defences, and we found no increased antibacterial activity of nestmates of fungus-exposed ants. This indicates that social immunisation after fungal exposure is specific, similar to recent findings for individual-level immune priming in invertebrates. Epidemiological modeling further suggests that active social immunisation is adaptive, as it leads to faster elimination of the disease and lower

  4. 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...

  5. Phylogenomics and Divergence Dating of Fungus-Farming Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae of the Genera Sericomyrmex and Apterostigma.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Ješovnik

    Full Text Available Fungus-farming ("attine" ants are model systems for studies of symbiosis, coevolution, and advanced eusociality. A New World clade of nearly 300 species in 15 genera, all attine ants cultivate fungal symbionts for food. In order to better understand the evolution of ant agriculture, we sequenced, assembled, and analyzed transcriptomes of four different attine ant species in two genera: three species in the higher-attine genus Sericomyrmex and a single lower-attine ant species, Apterostigma megacephala, representing the first genomic data for either genus. These data were combined with published genomes of nine other ant species and the honey bee Apis mellifera for phylogenomic and divergence-dating analyses. The resulting phylogeny confirms relationships inferred in previous studies of fungus-farming ants. Divergence-dating analyses recovered slightly older dates than most prior analyses, estimating that attine ants originated 53.6-66.7 million of years ago, and recovered a very long branch subtending a very recent, rapid radiation of the genus Sericomyrmex. This result is further confirmed by a separate analysis of the three Sericomyrmex species, which reveals that 92.71% of orthologs have 99% - 100% pairwise-identical nucleotide sequences. We searched the transcriptomes for genes of interest, most importantly argininosuccinate synthase and argininosuccinate lyase, which are functional in other ants but which are known to have been lost in seven previously studied attine ant species. Loss of the ability to produce the amino acid arginine has been hypothesized to contribute to the obligate dependence of attine ants upon their cultivated fungi, but the point in fungus-farming ant evolution at which these losses occurred has remained unknown. We did not find these genes in any of the sequenced transcriptomes. Although expected for Sericomyrmex species, the absence of arginine anabolic genes in the lower-attine ant Apterostigma megacephala strongly

  6. 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.

  7. New fossil ants in French Cretaceous amber (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perrichot, Vincent; Nel, André; Néraudeau, Didier; Lacau, Sébastien; Guyot, Thierry

    2008-02-01

    Recent studies on the ant phylogeny are mainly based on the molecular analyses of extant subfamilies and do not include the extinct, only Cretaceous subfamily Sphecomyrminae. However, the latter is of major importance for ant relationships, as it is considered the most basal subfamily. Therefore, each new discovery of a Mesozoic ant is of high interest for improving our understanding of their early history and basal relationships. In this paper, a new sphecomyrmine ant, allied to the Burmese amber genus Haidomyrmex, is described from mid-Cretaceous amber of France as Haidomyrmodes mammuthus gen. and sp. n. The diagnosis of the tribe Haidomyrmecini is emended based on the new type material, which includes a gyne (alate female) and two incomplete workers. The genus Sphecomyrmodes, hitherto known by a single species from Burmese amber, is also reported and a new species described as S. occidentalis sp. n. after two workers remarkably preserved in a single piece of Early Cenomanian French amber. The new fossils provide additional information on early ant diversity and relationships and demonstrate that the monophyly of the Sphecomyrminae, as currently defined, is still weakly supported.

  8. Has substrate-dependent co-evolution of enzyme function occured in the attine ant-fungus symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    The conspicuous leaf-cutter ants in the genus Atta build huge nests displacing several cubic meters of soil, whereas lower attine genera such as Cyphomyrmex have small nests with a fungus garden the size of a table-tennis ball. Only the leaf-cutter ants are specialized on using fresh leaves as su...

  9. Sex-specific kleptoparasitic foraging in ant-eating spiders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Martisová, Martina; Bilde, T.; Pekar, Stano

    2009-01-01

    . To investigate this hypothesis, we studied the effect of sex and life history stage on the frequency of kleptoparasitism in ant-eating spiders of the genus Zodarion in the field. These spiders use a special capture technique involving a quick attack on an ant that is left unguarded by spiders for several minutes......, providing ample opportunities for kleptoparasitism. We found that adult females consistently hunted actively, while adult males ceased active prey capture and instead engaged in kleptoparasitism. Juvenile spiders were active hunters irrespective of sex. Consistent with an ontogenetic shift in foraging...

  10. 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.

  11. The genus Bipolaris

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Manamgoda, D.S.; Rossman, A.Y.; Castlebury, L.A.; Crous, P.W.; Madrid, H.; Chukeatirote, E.; Hyde, K.D.

    2014-01-01

    The genus Bipolaris includes important plant pathogens with worldwide distribution. Species recognition in the genus has been uncertain due to the lack of molecular data from ex-type cultures as well as overlapping morphological characteristics. In this study, we revise the genus Bipolaris based on

  12. Association between Pseudonocardia symbionts and Atta leaf-cutting ants suggested by improved isolation methods

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marsh, Sarah E.; Poulsen, Michael; Gorosito, Norma B.

    2013-01-01

    Fungus-growing ants associate with multiple symbiotic microbes, including Actinobacteria for production of antibiotics. The best studied of these bacteria are within the genus Pseudonocardia, which in most fungus-growing ants are conspicuously visible on the external cuticle of workers. However......, given that fungus-growing ants in the genus Atta do not carry visible Actinobacteria on their cuticle, it is unclear if this genus engages in the symbiosis with Pseudonocardia. Here we explore whether improving culturing techniques can allow for successful isolation of Pseudonocardia from Atta...

  13. Multi-locus phylogenies of the genus Barteria (Passifloraceae) protray complex patterns in the evolution of myrmecophytism.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Peccoud, J.; Piatscheck, F.; Yockteng, R.; Garcia, M.; Sauve, M.; Djieto-Lordon, C.; Harris, D.J.; Wieringa, J.J.; Breteler, F.J.; Born, C.; McKey, D.; Blatrix, R.

    2013-01-01

    The four species of the central African genus Barteria show variation in habitat and in degree of association with ants. Whereas B. solida, restricted to submontane forests, attracts opportunistic ants to extrafloral nectar, the three other species, found in lowland rainforests (B. fistulosa, B.

  14. Comparative Immature Morphology of Brazilian Fire Ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Solenopsis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Gonçalves Paterson Fox

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Although common in Brazil, the biology of the fire ant Solenopsis saevissima (Smith is still poorly studied. Larval descriptions are useful to genus-level ant systematics and sometimes to species-level taxonomy. This study presents a detailed description of juveniles of S. saevissima from Brazil, which were compared with Brazilian specimens of Solenopsis invicta Buren, Solenopsis geminata (Fabricius, and Solenopsis altipunctata Pitts. Different larval instars were separated by diagnostic morphological traits which were confirmed by observing moults. Reproductive larvae could be easily sorted by their distinctive body dimensions and shape. Contrary to previous reports on this species, the larvae of S. saevissima proved to be generally identical to those of S. invicta, while a few specimens resembled those of other close species, such as Solenopsis megergates Trager. Mature larvae thus presented considerable intraspecific variation in some characters recently proposed to aid fire ant species separation (morphology of head hairs.

  15. 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 ...

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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, ...

  19. "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...

  20. 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

  1. The role of symbiont genetic distance and potential adaptability in host preference towards Pseudonocardia symbionts in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Maynard, Janielle; Roland, Damien L.

    2011-01-01

    Fungus-growing ants display symbiont preference in behavioral assays, both towards the fungus they cultivate for food and Actinobacteria they maintain on their cuticle for antibiotic production against parasites. These Actinobacteria, genus Pseudonocardia Henssen (Pseudonocardiacea: Actinomycetales...

  2. LEAF-CUTTING ANTS Acromyrmex niger SMITH, 1858 (HYMENOPTERA; FORMICIDAE) USED AS BIOINDICATORS OF AGROTOXICS RESIDUES

    OpenAIRE

    Liriana Belizário Cantagalli; Denise Alves Lopes; Ana Lúcia Paes Barateiro Stuchi; Maria Claudia Colla Ruvolo Takasusuki

    2014-01-01

    Despite the condition of leaf-cutting ant pests in agroecosystems, it is undeniable the benefits they can bring in certain situations or environments. The leaf-cutting ants of the genus Acromyrmex attack mainly leaves of vegetables and fruit trees exposing not only to the agrochemicals used for their control as well as to those used for the control of other pests. Due to the bioindicator potential of environmental quality of the ants and their frequent exposure to agrochemicals such as organo...

  3. 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

  4. Foraging of Psilocybe basidiocarps by the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex lobicornis in Santa Fé, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masiulionis, Virginia E; Weber, Roland Ws; Pagnocca, Fernando C

    2013-12-01

    It is generally accepted that material collected by leaf-cutting ants of the genus Acromyrmex consists solely of plant matter, which is used in the nest as substrate for a symbiotic fungus providing nutrition to the ants. There is only one previous report of any leaf-cutting ant foraging directly on fungal basidiocarps. Basidiocarps of Psilocybe coprophila growing on cow dung were actively collected by workers of Acromyrmex lobicornis in Santa Fé province, Argentina. During this behaviour the ants displayed typical signals of recognition and continuously recruited other foragers to the task. Basidiocarps of different stages of maturity were being transported into the nest by particular groups of workers, while other workers collected plant material. The collection of mature basidiocarps with viable spores by leaf-cutting ants in nature adds substance to theories relating to the origin of fungiculture in these highly specialized social insects.

  5. Nine novel microsatellite markers for the army ant Simopelta pergandei (subfamily Ponerinae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kronauer, D.J.C.; Boomsma, J.J.; Pierce, N.E.

    2011-01-01

    Simopelta (subfamily Ponerinae) army ants are specialized predators of other ants in New World tropical forests. Although they show a striking convergence in overall life-history with the well known army ants of the subfamilies Aenictinae, Dorylinae, and Ecitoninae, the genus has been little...... studied. We developed and characterized nine novel microsatellite loci for S. pergandei with 2-8 observed alleles (mean: 5.2) and expected heterozygosities between 0.16 and 0.87 (mean: 0.68). Three of these loci reliably cross-amplified in a second species, S. pentadentata, with 4-8 alleles (mean: 8.......0) and expected heterozygosities between 0.32 and 0.85 (mean: 0.65). These genetic markers will be useful in studying the sociobiology and molecular ecology of Simopelta army ants and in elucidating convergent evolutionary trajectories that have culminated in the army ant lifestyle...

  6. Co-evolution of enzyme function in the attine ant-fungus symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    Introduction: Fungus-growing ants cultivate specialized fungi in the tribe Leucocoprineae (Lepiotaceae: Basidiomycota) inside their nests. The conspicuous leaf-cutting ants in the genus Atta build huge nests displacing several cubic meters of soil, whereas lower attine genera such as Cyphomyrmex ...... garden. This system can be viewed as ant induced crop optimization similar to human agricultural practices....... have small nests with a fungus garden the size of a table-tennis ball. Only the leaf-cutting ants are specialized on using fresh leaves as substrate for their fungus gardens, whereas the more basal attine genera use substrates such as dry plant material (leaf litter and small twigs) and also 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. Methods: (1.) We made a literature survey...

  7. Bacterial Infections across the Ants: Frequency and Prevalence of Wolbachia, Spiroplasma, and Asaia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Kautz

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Bacterial endosymbionts are common across insects, but we often lack a deeper knowledge of their prevalence across most organisms. Next-generation sequencing approaches can characterize bacterial diversity associated with a host and at the same time facilitate the fast and simultaneous screening of infectious bacteria. In this study, we used 16S rRNA tag encoded amplicon pyrosequencing to survey bacterial communities of 310 samples representing 221 individuals, 176 colonies and 95 species of ants. We found three distinct endosymbiont groups—Wolbachia (Alphaproteobacteria: Rickettsiales, Spiroplasma (Firmicutes: Entomoplasmatales, and relatives of Asaia (Alphaproteobacteria: Rhodospirillales—at different infection frequencies (at the ant species level: 22.1%, 28.4%, and 14.7%, resp. and relative abundances within bacterial communities (1.0%–99.9%. Spiroplasma was particularly enriched in the ant genus Polyrhachis, while Asaia relatives were most prevalent in arboreal ants of the genus Pseudomyrmex. While Wolbachia and Spiroplasma have been surveyed in ants before, Asaia, an acetic acid bacterium capable of fixing atmospheric nitrogen, has received much less attention. Due to sporadic prevalence across all ant taxa investigated, we hypothesize facultative associations for all three bacterial genera. Infection patterns are discussed in relation to potential adaptation of specific bacteria in certain ant groups.

  8. Population dynamics of annuals in perennial grassland controlled by ants and environmental stochasticity

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dostál, Petr

    2007-01-01

    Roč. 18, - (2007), s. 91-102 ISSN 1100-9233 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : Lasius flavus * disturbance * megamatrix Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 2.251, year: 2007

  9. The genus Bipolaris.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manamgoda, D S; Rossman, A Y; Castlebury, L A; Crous, P W; Madrid, H; Chukeatirote, E; Hyde, K D

    2014-09-01

    The genus Bipolaris includes important plant pathogens with worldwide distribution. Species recognition in the genus has been uncertain due to the lack of molecular data from ex-type cultures as well as overlapping morphological characteristics. In this study, we revise the genus Bipolaris based on DNA sequence data derived from living cultures of fresh isolates, available ex-type cultures from worldwide collections and observation of type and additional specimens. Combined analyses of ITS, GPDH and TEF gene sequences were used to reconstruct the molecular phylogeny of the genus Bipolaris for species with living cultures. The GPDH gene is determined to be the best single marker for species of Bipolaris. Generic boundaries between Bipolaris and Curvularia are revised and presented in an updated combined ITS and GPDH phylogenetic tree. We accept 47 species in the genus Bipolaris and clarify the taxonomy, host associations, geographic distributions and species' synonymies. Modern descriptions and illustrations are provided for 38 species in the genus with notes provided for the other taxa when recent descriptions are available. Bipolaris cynodontis, B. oryzae, B. victoriae, B. yamadae and B. zeicola are epi- or neotypified and a lectotype is designated for B. stenospila. Excluded and doubtful species are listed with notes on taxonomy and phylogeny. Seven new combinations are introduced in the genus Curvularia to accomodate the species of Bipolaris transferred based on the phylogenetic analysis. A taxonomic key is provided for the morphological identification of species within the genus.

  10. 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.

  11. 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....

  12. 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...

  13. 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...

  14. The genus Baijiania (Cucurbitaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilde, de W.J.J.O.; Duyfjes, B.E.E.

    2003-01-01

    The genus Baijiania, originally thought to be indigenous in China and Borneo, appears to be restricted to Borneo. The only species is Baijiania borneensis, with two varieties, the type variety and var. paludicola Duyfjes, var. nov.

  15. A mutualism without honeydew: what benefits for Melissotarsus emeryi ants and armored scale insects (Diaspididae?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Peeters

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available Mutualisms between ants and sap-sucking insects generally involve clear benefits for both partners: the ants provide protection in exchange for honeydew. However, a single ant genus associates with armoured scale insects (Diaspididae that do not excrete honeydew. We studied three colonies of Melissotarsus emeryi ants from two localities in Mozambique. Vast numbers of the diaspidid Morganella conspicua occupied galleries dug by the ants under the bark of living trees. Unlike free-living M. conspicua and other diaspidids, M. conspicua living with ants are known to lack shields, likely because they gain protection against enemies and desiccation. Nevertheless, we documented the occurrence of rare individuals with shields inside ant galleries, indicating that their glands continue to secrete wax and proteins as building material. This is likely to constitute a significant portion of the ants’ diet, in addition to diaspidid exuviae and excretions from the Malpighian tubules. Indeed, Melissotarsus workers cannot walk outside the galleries due to modified middle legs, forcing them to obtain all nourishment within the tree. Melissotarsus founding queens, however, must locate a suitable host tree while flying, and acquire diaspidid crawlers. This mutualism involves ants that are highly specialised to chew through living wood, and diaspidids that can also live freely outside the bark. It is extremely widespread in Africa and Madagascar, recorded from 20 tree families, and harmful effects on plant hosts require rapid study.

  16. Salticid predation as one potential driving force of ant mimicry in jumping spiders

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Jin-Nan; Cheng, Ren-Chung; Li, Daiqin; Tso, I-Min

    2011-01-01

    Many spiders possess myrmecomorphy, and species of the jumping spider genus Myrmarachne exhibit nearly perfect ant mimicry. Most salticids are diurnal predators with unusually high visual acuity that prey on various arthropods, including conspecifics. In this study, we tested whether predation pressure from large jumping spiders is one possible driving force of perfect ant mimicry in jumping spiders. The results showed that small non-ant-mimicking jumping spiders were readily treated as prey by large ones (no matter whether heterospecific or conspecific) and suffered high attack and mortality rates. The size difference between small and large jumping spiders significantly affected the outcomes of predatory interactions between them: the smaller the juvenile jumping spiders, the higher the predation risk from large ones. The attack and mortality rates of ant-mimicking jumping spiders were significantly lower than those of non-ant-mimicking jumping spiders, indicating that a resemblance to ants could provide protection against salticid predation. However, results of multivariate behavioural analyses showed that the responses of large jumping spiders to ants and ant-mimicking salticids differed significantly. Results of this study indicate that predation pressure from large jumping spiders might be one selection force driving the evolution of nearly perfect myrmecomorphy in spiders and other arthropods. PMID:20961898

  17. 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

  18. 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....

  19. 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.

  20. Infection of army ant pupae by two new parasitoid mites (Mesostigmata: Uropodina

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Brückner

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available A great variety of parasites and parasitoids exploit ant societies. Among them are the Mesostigmata mites, a particularly common and diverse group of ant-associated arthropods. While parasitism is ubiquitous in Mesostigmata, parasitoidism has only been described in the genus Macrodinychus. Yet information about the basic biology of most Macrodinychus species is lacking. Out of 24 formally described species, information about basic life-history traits is only available for three species. Here we formally describe two new Macrodinychus species, i.e. Macrodinychus hilpertae and Macrodinychus derbyensis. In both species, immature stages developed as ecto-parasitoids on ant pupae of the South-East Asian army ant Leptogenys distinguenda. By piercing the developing ant with their chelicera, the mites apparently suck ant hemolymph, ultimately killing host individuals. We compare infection rates among all studied Macrodinychus species and discuss possible host countermeasures against parasitoidism. The cryptic lifestyle of living inside ant nests has certainly hampered the scientific discovery of Macrodinychus mites and we expect that many more macrodinychid species await scientific discovery and description.

  1. Infection of army ant pupae by two new parasitoid mites (Mesostigmata: Uropodina).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brückner, Adrian; Klompen, Hans; Bruce, Andrew Iain; Hashim, Rosli; von Beeren, Christoph

    2017-01-01

    A great variety of parasites and parasitoids exploit ant societies. Among them are the Mesostigmata mites, a particularly common and diverse group of ant-associated arthropods. While parasitism is ubiquitous in Mesostigmata, parasitoidism has only been described in the genus Macrodinychus . Yet information about the basic biology of most Macrodinychus species is lacking. Out of 24 formally described species, information about basic life-history traits is only available for three species. Here we formally describe two new Macrodinychus species, i.e. Macrodinychus hilpertae and Macrodinychus derbyensis . In both species, immature stages developed as ecto-parasitoids on ant pupae of the South-East Asian army ant Leptogenys distinguenda . By piercing the developing ant with their chelicera, the mites apparently suck ant hemolymph, ultimately killing host individuals. We compare infection rates among all studied Macrodinychus species and discuss possible host countermeasures against parasitoidism. The cryptic lifestyle of living inside ant nests has certainly hampered the scientific discovery of Macrodinychus mites and we expect that many more macrodinychid species await scientific discovery and description.

  2. The ascomycete genus Sordaria

    OpenAIRE

    Guarro, J.; Arx, von, J.A.

    1987-01-01

    Sordaria is restricted to coprophilous, soil-, or seed-borne Pyrenomycetes with aseptate, elongate ascospores with a gelatinous, amorphous sheath. The genus is redescribed and a key to fourteen accepted species is given. A checklist of all taxa described as Sordaria is added.

  3. Genus I. Leptospira

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leptospira comprise a diverse group of bacteria. Some species cause serious infections in animals and humans. These bacteria are aerobes that consume long-chain fatty acids and alcohols as carbon and energy sources. This genus is distinguished from Leptonema or Turneriella by lack of similarity u...

  4. The amphipod genus Acidostoma

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dahl, E.

    1964-01-01

    The genus Acidostoma was established by Lilljeborg (1865, p. 24) to receive Anonyx obesus Sp. Bate (1862, p. 74). Afterwards two further species have been added, viz. A. laticorne G. O. Sars (1879, p. 440) and A. nodiferum Stephensen (1923, p. 40). In the present paper it will be shown that A.

  5. Effect of three mound-building ant species on the formation of soil seed bank in mountain grassland

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dostál, Petr

    2005-01-01

    Roč. 200, - (2005), s. 148-158 ISSN 0367-2530 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : myrmecochory * Lasius * soil seed bank Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.086, year: 2005

  6. 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].

  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. A new species of Smicromorpha (Hymenoptera, Chalcididae from Vietnam, with notes on the host association of the genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris Darling

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Smicromorpha masneri Darling, sp. n. is described from Bach Ma National Park, Thua Thien-Hue Province, Vietnam. This is the first confirmed record for the genus on mainland southeast Asia. It is generally accepted that species of Smicromorpha are parasitoids of green tree or weaver ants, Oecophylla smaragdina (Fabricius but this is first rearing record of these parasitoids from the nests of weaver ants.

  9. 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

  10. Ants farm subterranean aphids mostly in single clone groups - an example of prudent husbandry for carbohydrates and proteins?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivens Aniek BF

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Mutualistic interactions are wide-spread but the mechanisms underlying their evolutionary stability and ecological dynamics remain poorly understood. Cultivation mutualisms in which hosts consume symbionts occur in phylogenetically diverse groups, but often have symbiont monocultures for each host. This is consistent with the prediction that symbionts should avoid coexistence with other strains so that host services continue to benefit relatives, but it is less clear whether hosts should always favor monocultures and what mechanisms they might have to manipulate symbiont diversity. Few 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 a single aphid species, a significantly higher percentage than expected from a random distribution. Over 60% of these single-species mounds had a single aphid clone, and clones tended to persist across subsequent years. Whenever multiple species/clones co-occurred in the same mound, they were spatially separated with more than 95% of the aphid chambers containing individuals of a single clone. Conclusions L. flavus “husbandry” is characterized by low aphid “livestock” diversity per colony, especially at the nest-chamber level, but it lacks the exclusive monocultures known from other cultivation mutualisms. The ants appear to eat most of the early instar aphids, so that adult aphids are unlikely to face limited phloem resources and

  11. 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.

  12. Spiky higher genus strings

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ambjoern, J.; Bellini, A.; Johnston, D.

    1990-10-01

    It is clear from both the non-perturbative and perturbative approaches to two-dimensional quantum gravity that a new strong coupling regime is setting in at d=1, independent of the genus of the worldsheet being considered. It has been suggested that a Kosterlitz-Thouless (KT) phase transition in the Liouville theory is the cause of this behaviour. However, it has recently been pointed out that the XY model, which displays a KT transition on the plane and the sphere, is always in the strong coupling, disordered phase on a surface of constant negative curvature. A higher genus worldsheet can be represented as a fundamental region on just such a surface, which might seem to suggest that the KT picture predicts a strong coupling region for arbitrary d, contradicting the known results. We resolve the apparent paradox. (orig.)

  13. What is the genus?

    CERN Document Server

    Popescu-Pampu, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    Exploring several of the evolutionary branches of the mathematical notion of genus, this book traces the idea from its prehistory in problems of integration, through algebraic curves and their associated Riemann surfaces, into algebraic surfaces, and finally into higher dimensions. Its importance in analysis, algebraic geometry, number theory and topology is emphasized through many theorems. Almost every chapter is organized around excerpts from a research paper in which a new perspective was brought on the genus or on one of the objects to which this notion applies. The author was motivated by the belief that a subject may best be understood and communicated by studying its broad lines of development, feeling the way one arrives at the definitions of its fundamental notions, and appreciating the amount of effort spent in order to explore its phenomena.

  14. 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.

  15. 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...

  16. Genus Ranges of Chord Diagrams.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burns, Jonathan; Jonoska, Nataša; Saito, Masahico

    2015-04-01

    A chord diagram consists of a circle, called the backbone, with line segments, called chords, whose endpoints are attached to distinct points on the circle. The genus of a chord diagram is the genus of the orientable surface obtained by thickening the backbone to an annulus and attaching bands to the inner boundary circle at the ends of each chord. Variations of this construction are considered here, where bands are possibly attached to the outer boundary circle of the annulus. The genus range of a chord diagram is the genus values over all such variations of surfaces thus obtained from a given chord diagram. Genus ranges of chord diagrams for a fixed number of chords are studied. Integer intervals that can be, and those that cannot be, realized as genus ranges are investigated. Computer calculations are presented, and play a key role in discovering and proving the properties of genus ranges.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Unraveling Trichoderma species in the attine ant environment: description of three new taxa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montoya, Quimi Vidaurre; Meirelles, Lucas Andrade; Chaverri, Priscila; Rodrigues, Andre

    2016-05-01

    Fungus-growing "attine" ants forage diverse substrates to grow fungi for food. In addition to the mutualistic fungal partner, the colonies of these insects harbor a rich microbiome composed of bacteria, filamentous fungi and yeasts. Previous work reported some Trichoderma species in the fungus gardens of leafcutter ants. However, no studies systematically addressed the putative association of Trichoderma with attine ants, especially in non-leafcutter ants. Here, a total of 62 strains of Trichoderma were analyzed using three molecular markers (ITS, tef1 and rpb2). In addition, 30 out of 62 strains were also morphologically examined. The strains studied correspond to the largest sampling carried out so far for Trichoderma in the attine ant environment. Our results revealed the richness of Trichoderma in this environment, since we found 20 Trichoderma species, including three new taxa described in the present work (Trichoderma attinorum, Trichoderma texanum and Trichoderma longifialidicum spp. nov.) as well as a new phylogenetic taxon (LESF 545). Moreover, we show that all 62 strains grouped within different clades across the Trichoderma phylogeny, which are identical or closely related to strains derived from several other environments. This evidence supports the transient nature of the genus Trichoderma in the attine ant colonies. The discovery of three new species suggests that the dynamic foraging behavior of these insects might be responsible for accumulation of transient fungi into their colonies, which might hold additional fungal taxa still unknown to science.

  20. Walking on inclines: how do desert ants monitor slope and step length

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seidl Tobias

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background During long-distance foraging in almost featureless habitats desert ants of the genus Cataglyphis employ path-integrating mechanisms (vector navigation. This navigational strategy requires an egocentric monitoring of the foraging path by incrementally integrating direction, distance, and inclination of the path. Monitoring the latter two parameters involves idiothetic cues and hence is tightly coupled to the ant's locomotor behavior. Results In a kinematic study of desert ant locomotion performed on differently inclined surfaces we aimed at pinpointing the relevant mechanisms of estimating step length and inclination. In a behavioral experiment with ants foraging on slippery surfaces we broke the otherwise tightly coupled relationship between stepping frequency and step length and examined the animals' ability to monitor distances covered even under those adverse conditions. We show that the ants' locomotor system is not influenced by inclined paths. After removing the effect of speed, slope had only marginal influence on kinematic parameters. Conclusion From the obtained data we infer that the previously proposed monitoring of angles of the thorax-coxa joint is not involved in inclinometry. Due to the tiny variations in cycle period, we also argue that an efference copy of the central pattern generator coding the step length in its output frequency will most likely not suffice for estimating step length and complementing the pedometer. Finally we propose that sensing forces acting on the ant's legs could provide the desired neuronal correlate employed in monitoring inclination and step length.

  1. Diversity and ecology of ground dwelling ants at Khao Nan National Park, southern Thailand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suparoek Watanasit

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Khao Nan National Park (KNNP is located in the southern part of Thailand. Its flora and fauna are diverse, however there is little information about the diversity of ants. The aim of this study was to determine species diversity and ecology of ants at KNNP. Three study sites (Baucheak Trail, Pra Forest and Sunantha Trail were chosen and at each three permanent plots of 30x30 m were selected at least 500 m apart. The ant sampling was extracted from leaf litter by the Winkler bag method. Physical factors of precipitation, humidity, air temperature, and soil temperature were recorded during the collection of ants every two months between January 2006 and January 2007. A total number of 172 species and 43 genera belonging to 9 subfamilies were identified. The top five dominant genera of ants were Pheidole (27 species following by Tetramorium (14 species, Camponotus (13 species, Pachycondyla (12 species, and Crematogaster (9 species. The influence of the study sites on the species number of ants in this study indicated that the study sites had an affect on the species number. Regarding the environmental factors, the results showed that the individual numbers of Pheidole was significantly negatively correlated to precipitation, whereas Pachycondyla was significantly negatively correlated to humidity, while both genera were significantly positively correlated to air temperature and soil temperature. Moreover, Camponotus was the only genus significantly positively correlated to the air temperature.

  2. 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.

  3. Chemical and behavioral integration of army ant-associated rove beetles - a comparison between specialists and generalists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Beeren, Christoph; Brückner, Adrian; Maruyama, Munetoshi; Burke, Griffin; Wieschollek, Jana; Kronauer, Daniel J C

    2018-01-01

    Host-symbiont interactions are embedded in ecological communities and range from unspecific to highly specific relationships. Army ants and their arthropod guests represent a fascinating example of species-rich host-symbiont associations where host specificity ranges across the entire generalist - specialist continuum. In the present study, we compared the behavioral and chemical integration mechanisms of two extremes of the generalist - specialist continuum: generalist ant-predators in the genus Tetradonia (Staphylinidae: Aleocharinae: Athetini), and specialist ant-mimics in the genera Ecitomorpha and Ecitophya (Staphylinidae: Aleocharinae: Ecitocharini). Similar to a previous study of Tetradonia beetles, we combined DNA barcoding with morphological studies to define species boundaries in ant-mimicking beetles. This approach found four ant-mimicking species at our study site at La Selva Biological Station in Costa Rica. Community sampling of Eciton army ant parasites revealed that ant-mimicking beetles were perfect host specialists, each beetle species being associated with a single Eciton species. These specialists were seamlessly integrated into the host colony, while generalists avoided physical contact to host ants in behavioral assays. Analysis of the ants' nestmate recognition cues, i.e. cuticular hydrocarbons (CHCs), showed close similarity in CHC composition and CHC concentration between specialists and Eciton burchellii foreli host ants. On the contrary, the chemical profiles of generalists matched host profiles less well, indicating that high accuracy in chemical host resemblance is only accomplished by socially integrated species. Considering the interplay between behavior, morphology, and cuticular chemistry, specialists but not generalists have cracked the ants' social code with respect to various sensory modalities. Our results support the long-standing idea that the evolution of host-specialization in parasites is a trade-off between the range of

  4. The genus Vitex: A review

    OpenAIRE

    Rani, Anita; Sharma, Anupam

    2013-01-01

    The review includes 161 references on the genus Vitex, and comprises ethnopharmacology, morphology and microscopy, phytoconstituents, pharmacological reports, clinical studies, and toxicology of the prominent species of Vitex. Essential oils, flavonoids, iridoid glycosides, diterpenoides and ligans constitute major classes of phytoconstituents of the genus. A few species of this genus have medicinal value, among these, leaves and fruits of V. agnus-castus Linn. (Verbenaceae) has been traditio...

  5. 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...

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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....

  8. Nest architecture, fungus gardens, queen, males and larvae of the fungus-growing ant Mycetagroicus inflatus Brandão & Mayhé-Nunes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jesovnik, A; Sosa-Calvo, J; Lopes, C T; Vasconcelos, H L; Schultz, T R

    2013-01-01

    All known fungus-growing ants (tribe Attini) are obligately symbiotic with their cultivated fungi. The fungal cultivars of "lower" attine ants are facultative symbionts, capable of living apart from ants, whereas the fungal cultivars of "higher" attine ants, including leaf-cutting genera Atta and Acromyrmex , are highly specialized, obligate symbionts. Since higher attine ants and fungi are derived from lower attine ants and fungi, understanding the evolutionary transition from lower to higher attine agriculture requires understanding the historical sequence of change in both ants and fungi. The biology of the poorly known ant genus Mycetagroicus is of special interest in this regard because it occupies a phylogenetic position intermediate between lower and higher ant agriculture. Here, based on the excavations of four nests in Pará, Brazil, we report the first biological data for the recently described species Mycetagroicus inflatus , including the first descriptions of Mycetagroicus males and larvae. Like M. cerradensis , the only other species in the genus for which nesting biology is known, the garden chambers of M. inflatus are unusually deep and the garden is most likely relocated vertically in rainy and dry seasons. Due to the proximity of nests to the Araguaia River, it is likely that even the uppermost chambers and nest entrances of M. inflatus are submerged during the rainy season. Most remarkably, all three examined colonies of M. inflatus cultivate the same fungal species as their congener, M. cerradensis , over 1,000 km away, raising the possibility of long-term symbiont fidelity spanning speciation events within the genus.

  9. Thermoregulation strategies in ants in comparison to other social insects, with a focus on red wood ants (Formica rufa group [v2; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/35p

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Štěpánka Kadochová

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Temperature influences every aspect of ant biology, especially metabolic rate, growth and development. Maintenance of high inner nest temperature increases the rate of sexual brood development and thereby increases the colony fitness. Insect societies can achieve better thermoregulation than solitary insects due to the former’s ability to build large and elaborated nests and display complex behaviour. In ants and termites the upper part of the nest, the mound, often works as a solar collector and can also have an efficient ventilation system. Two thermoregulatory strategies could be applied. Firstly the ants use an increased thermal gradient available in the mound for brood relocation. Nurse workers move the brood according to the thermal gradients to ensure the ideal conditions for development. A precise perception of temperature and evolution of temperature preferences are needed to make the correct choices. A second thermoregulatory strategy used by mound nesting ants is keeping a high temperature inside large nests. The unique thermal and insulation properties of the nest material help to maintain stable conditions, which is the case of the Wood ant genus Formica. Ants can regulate thermal loss by moving nest aggregation and alternating nest ventilation. Metabolic heat produced by ant workers or associated micro organisms is an important additional source of heat which helps to maintain thermal homeostasis in the nest.

  10. 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....

  11. 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....

  12. A revision of the genus Kaszabister Mazur (Histeridae, Histerinae, Exosternini

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Degallier

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available We revise the four species of Kaszabister Mazur, 1972, one of which, Kaszabister barrigai sp. n., is described as new. The other species in the genus are K. rubellus (Erichson, 1834, K. ferrugineus (Kirsch, 1873 and K. carinatus (Lewis, 1888. The species are principally known from the subtropics of South America, with one in Central America. Lectotypes are designated for K. rubellus and K. ferrugineus, and a key is provided for all the species. Ants of the genus Solenopsis Westwood, mainly S. invicta Buren and S. saevissima (Smith, are documented as hosts of three of the four species.

  13. Biodiversity of the genus Cladophialophora

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Badali, H.; Gueidan, C.; Najafzadeh, M.J.; Bonifaz, A.; Gerrits van den Ende, A.H.G.; de Hoog, G.S.

    2008-01-01

    Cladophialophora is a genus of black yeast-like fungi comprising a number of clinically highly significant species in addition to environmental taxa. The genus has previously been characterized by branched chains of ellipsoidal to fusiform conidia. However, this character was shown to have evolved

  14. 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.

  15. Venom toxicity and composition in three Pseudomyrmex ant species having different nesting modes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Touchard, Axel; Labrière, Nicolas; Roux, Olivier; Petitclerc, Frédéric; Orivel, Jérôme; Escoubas, Pierre; Koh, Jennifer M S; Nicholson, Graham M; Dejean, Alain

    2014-09-01

    We aimed to determine whether the nesting habits of ants have influenced their venom toxicity and composition. We focused on the genus Pseudomyrmex (Pseudomyrmecinae) comprising terrestrial and arboreal species, and, among the latter, plant-ants that are obligate inhabitants of myrmecophytes (i.e., plants sheltering ants in hollow structures). Contrary to our hypothesis, the venom of the ground-dwelling species, Pseudomyrmex termitarius, was as efficacious in paralyzing prey as the venoms of the arboreal and the plant-ant species, Pseudomyrmex penetrator and Pseudomyrmex gracilis. The lethal potency of P. termitarius venom was equipotent with that of P. gracilis whereas the venom of P. penetrator was less potent. The MALDI-TOF MS analysis of each HPLC fraction of the venoms showed that P. termitarius venom is composed of 87 linear peptides, while both P. gracilis and P. penetrator venoms (23 and 26 peptides, respectively) possess peptides with disulfide bonds. Furthermore, P. penetrator venom contains three hetero- and homodimeric peptides consisting of two short peptidic chains linked together by two interchain disulfide bonds. The large number of peptides in P. termitarius venom is likely related to the large diversity of potential prey plus the antibacterial peptides required for nesting in the ground. Whereas predation involves only the prey and predator, P. penetrator venom has evolved in an environment where trees, defoliating insects, browsing mammals and ants live in equilibrium, likely explaining the diversity of the peptide structures. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Myrmica Ants and Their Butterfly Parasites with Special Focus on the Acoustic Communication

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Barbero

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available About 10,000 arthropod species live as ants' social parasites and have evolved a number of mechanisms allowing them to penetrate and survive inside the ant nests. Myrmica colonies, in particular, are exploited by numerous social parasites, and the presence of their overwintering brood, as well as of their polygyny, contributes to make them more vulnerable to infestation. Butterflies of the genus Maculinea are among the most investigated Myrmica inquilines. These lycaenids are known for their very complex biological cycles. Maculinea species are obligated parasites that depend on a particular food plant and on a specific Myrmica species for their survival. Maculinea larvae are adopted by Myrmica ants, which are induced to take them into their nests by chemical mimicry. Then the parasite spends the following 11–23 months inside the ants' nest. Mimicking the acoustic emission of the queen ants, Maculinea parasites not only manage to become integrated, but attain highest rank within the colony. Here we review the biology of Maculinea/Myrmica system with a special focus on some recent breakthrough concerning their acoustical patterns.

  17. Discovery of defense- and neuropeptides in social ants by genome-mining.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian W Gruber

    Full Text Available Natural peptides of great number and diversity occur in all organisms, but analyzing their peptidome is often difficult. With natural product drug discovery in mind, we devised a genome-mining approach to identify defense- and neuropeptides in the genomes of social ants from Atta cephalotes (leaf-cutter ant, Camponotus floridanus (carpenter ant and Harpegnathos saltator (basal genus. Numerous peptide-encoding genes of defense peptides, in particular defensins, and neuropeptides or regulatory peptide hormones, such as allatostatins and tachykinins, were identified and analyzed. Most interestingly we annotated genes that encode oxytocin/vasopressin-related peptides (inotocins and their putative receptors. This is the first piece of evidence for the existence of this nonapeptide hormone system in ants (Formicidae and supports recent findings in Tribolium castaneum (red flour beetle and Nasonia vitripennis (parasitoid wasp, and therefore its confinement to some basal holometabolous insects. By contrast, the absence of the inotocin hormone system in Apis mellifera (honeybee, another closely-related member of the eusocial Hymenoptera clade, establishes the basis for future studies on the molecular evolution and physiological function of oxytocin/vasopressin-related peptides (vasotocin nonapeptide family and their receptors in social insects. Particularly the identification of ant inotocin and defensin peptide sequences will provide a basis for future pharmacological characterization in the quest for potent and selective lead compounds of therapeutic value.

  18. 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.

  19. Rediscovery of the enigmatic fungus-farming ant "Mycetosoritis" asper Mayr (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Implications for taxonomy, phylogeny, and the evolution of agriculture in ants.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey Sosa-Calvo

    Full Text Available We report the rediscovery of the exceedingly rarely collected and enigmatic fungus-farming ant species Mycetosoritis asper. Since the description of the type specimen in 1887, only four additional specimens are known to have been added to the world's insect collections. Its biology is entirely unknown and its phylogenetic position within the fungus-farming ants has remained puzzling due to its aberrant morphology. In 2014 we excavated and collected twenty-one colonies of M. asper in the Floresta Nacional de Chapecó in Santa Catarina, Brazil. We describe here for the first time the male and larva of the species and complement the previous descriptions of both the queen and the worker. We describe, also for the first time, M. asper biology, nest architecture, and colony demographics, and identify its fungal cultivar. Molecular phylogenetic analyses indicate that both M. asper and M. clorindae are members of the genus Cyphomyrmex, which we show to be paraphyletic as currently defined. More precisely, M. asper is a member of the Cyphomyrmex strigatus group, which we also show to be paraphyletic with respect to the genus Mycetophylax. Based on these results, and in the interest of taxonomic stability, we transfer the species M. asper, M. clorindae, and all members of the C. strigatus group to the genus Mycetophylax, the oldest available name for this clade. Based on ITS sequence data, Mycetophylax asper practices lower agriculture, cultivating a fungal species that belongs to lower-attine fungal Clade 2, subclade F.

  20. New species and records of Awas Löbl (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae: Pselaphinae) from China, with notes on the biology of the genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Zi-Wei

    2017-10-24

    A new species of the arnylliine ant-loving beetle genus Awas Löbl, A. helii Yin, sp. n., collected with Ectomomyrmex ants in Sichuan, SW China, is described and illustrated. The new taxon externally resembles A. kayan Yin & Li from Hunan, central China, but can be readily separated by the different forms of the pronotum and elytra, and details of the aedeagal structures. New collecting data for Awas loebli Yin & Li in eastern China, as well as some notes on the biology of the genus are provided.

  1. Cytogenetic data on the threatened leafcutter ant Atta robusta Borgmeier, 1939 (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Attini).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barros, Luísa Antônia Campos; Aguiar, Hilton Jeferson Alves Cardoso de; Teixeira, Gisele Amaro; Mariano, Cléa Dos Santos Ferreira; Teixeira, Marcos da Cunha; Delabie, Jacques Hubert Charles; Pompolo, Silvia das Graças

    2015-10-01

    The karyotype of the threatened ant species Atta robusta is described so as to establish the evolutionary relationships of this taxon with other leafcutter ants. Standard Giemsa staining, C-banding, NOR banding, fluorochromes CMA3/DAPI, Hsc-FA technique and Fluorescence in situ Hybridization (FISH) using 18S rDNA probe were conducted on a population from Aracruz, state of Espírito Santo, Brazil, allowing for comparisons with data available on Atta and other fungus-growing ant species. The diploid chromosome number observed for A. robusta was 2n=22, and the karyotypic formula was 18m+2sm+2st. Heterochromatic blocks were observed in the centromeric region of most chromosomes, where one pair of metacentric chromosomes is characterized by a GC-rich heterochromatic band in the interstitial region of its long arm. The detection of 18S rDNA using FISH confirmed the presence of single NOR for A. robusta. This is the first report of rDNA 18S detection using FISH for leafcutter ants. The cytogenetic results of this study confirm the information available for Atta and allow us to confirm the conserved chromosome number, morphology and banding pattern within the genus for the taxa studied to date, which included species from three out of the four groups of Atta indicated by molecular data. The accumulation of cytogenetic data on fungus-growing ants enhances the understanding of the genomic evolutionary patterns of Atta, since it belongs to a group of recent origin between the most well studied ants. Cytogenetic data does not indicate restrictions in relocation or reintroduction in areas where populations were extinct due to the conserved karyotype. This study allows for cytogenetic comparison of A. robusta with other ants of Atta, emphasizing the importance of chromosomal information for species conservation. Copyright © 2015 Académie des sciences. Published by Elsevier SAS. All rights reserved.

  2. A mixed community of actinomycetes produce multiple antibiotics for the fungus farming ant Acromyrmex octospinosus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barke Jörg

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Attine ants live in an intensely studied tripartite mutualism with the fungus Leucoagaricus gongylophorus, which provides food to the ants, and with antibiotic-producing actinomycete bacteria. One hypothesis suggests that bacteria from the genus Pseudonocardia are the sole, co-evolved mutualists of attine ants and are transmitted vertically by the queens. A recent study identified a Pseudonocardia-produced antifungal, named dentigerumycin, associated with the lower attine Apterostigma dentigerum consistent with the idea that co-evolved Pseudonocardia make novel antibiotics. An alternative possibility is that attine ants sample actinomycete bacteria from the soil, selecting and maintaining those species that make useful antibiotics. Consistent with this idea, a Streptomyces species associated with the higher attine Acromyrmex octospinosus was recently shown to produce the well-known antifungal candicidin. Candicidin production is widespread in environmental isolates of Streptomyces, so this could either be an environmental contaminant or evidence of recruitment of useful actinomycetes from the environment. It should be noted that the two possibilities for actinomycete acquisition are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Results In order to test these possibilities we isolated bacteria from a geographically distinct population of A. octospinosus and identified a candicidin-producing Streptomyces species, which suggests that they are common mutualists of attine ants, most probably recruited from the environment. We also identified a Pseudonocardia species in the same ant colony that produces an unusual polyene antifungal, providing evidence for co-evolution of Pseudonocardia with A. octospinosus. Conclusions Our results show that a combination of co-evolution and environmental sampling results in the diversity of actinomycete symbionts and antibiotics associated with attine ants.

  3. Species-specific ant brain manipulation by a specialized fungal parasite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Bekker, Charissa; Quevillon, Lauren E; Smith, Philip B; Fleming, Kimberly R; Ghosh, Debashis; Patterson, Andrew D; Hughes, David P

    2014-08-29

    A compelling demonstration of adaptation by natural selection is the ability of parasites to manipulate host behavior. One dramatic example involves fungal species from the genus Ophiocordyceps that control their ant hosts by inducing a biting behavior. Intensive sampling across the globe of ants that died after being manipulated by Ophiocordyceps suggests that this phenomenon is highly species-specific. We advance our understanding of this system by reconstructing host manipulation by Ophiocordyceps parasites under controlled laboratory conditions and combining this with field observations of infection rates and a metabolomics survey. We report on a newly discovered species of Ophiocordyceps unilateralis sensu lato from North America that we use to address the species-specificity of Ophiocordyceps-induced manipulation of ant behavior. We show that the fungus can kill all ant species tested, but only manipulates the behavior of those it infects in nature. To investigate if this could be explained at the molecular level, we used ex vivo culturing assays to measure the metabolites that are secreted by the fungus to mediate fungus-ant tissue interactions. We show the fungus reacts heterogeneously to brains of different ant species by secreting a different array of metabolites. By determining which ion peaks are significantly enriched when the fungus is grown alongside brains of its naturally occurring host, we discovered candidate compounds that could be involved in behavioral manipulation by O. unilateralis s.l.. Two of these candidates are known to be involved in neurological diseases and cancer. The integrative work presented here shows that ant brain manipulation by O. unilateralis s.l. is species-specific seemingly because the fungus produces a specific array of compounds as a reaction to the presence of the host brain it has evolved to manipulate. These studies have resulted in the discovery of candidate compounds involved in establishing behavioral manipulation

  4. 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...

  5. 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

  6. Models of genus one curves

    OpenAIRE

    Sadek, Mohammad

    2010-01-01

    In this thesis we give insight into the minimisation problem of genus one curves defined by equations other than Weierstrass equations. We are interested in genus one curves given as double covers of P1, plane cubics, or complete intersections of two quadrics in P3. By minimising such a curve we mean making the invariants associated to its defining equations as small as possible using a suitable change of coordinates. We study the non-uniqueness of minimisations of the genus one curves des...

  7. Chemodiversity in the genus Aspergillus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frisvad, Jens Christian; Larsen, Thomas Ostenfeld

    2015-01-01

    to be characterized. The genus Aspergillus is cladistically holophyletic but phenotypically polythetic and very diverse and is associated to quite different sexual states. Following the one fungus one name system, the genus Aspergillus is restricted to a holophyletic clade that include the morphologically different...... biosynthetic family isoextrolites. However, it appears that secondary metabolites from one Aspergillus section have analogous metabolites in other sections (here also called heteroisoextrolites). In this review, we give a genus-wide overview of secondary metabolite production in Aspergillus species. Extrolites...

  8. Cardiocondyla pirata sp. n. – a new Philippine ant with enigmatic pigmentation pattern (Hymenoptera, Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernhard Seifert

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available A new species of the ant genus Cardiocondyla Emery, 1869 – Cardiocondyla pirata sp. n. – is described from the Philippines. The species belongs to an Indo-Malayan group of six species that is characterized by workersa strongly bilobate postpetiolar sternite and a thickset mesosoma with strongly convex dorsal profile as well as wingless, ergatoid males with sickle-shaped mandibles. The female castes show a pigmentation pattern not known from any ant worldwide. Ifany adaptive value, a possible function of this structure is supposed to be visual dissolution of body shape in order to irritate predators.

  9. 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...

  10. The genus Cladosporium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bensch, K.; Braun, U.; Groenewald, J.Z.; Crous, P.W.

    2012-01-01

    A monographic revision of the hyphomycete genus Cladosporium s. lat. (Cladosporiaceae, Capnodiales) is presented. It includes a detailed historic overview of Cladosporium and allied genera, with notes on their phylogeny, systematics and ecology. True species of Cladosporium s. str. (anamorphs of Davidiella), are characterised by having coronate conidiogenous loci and conidial hila, i.e., with a convex central dome surrounded by a raised periclinal rim. Recognised species are treated and illustrated with line drawings and photomicrographs (light as well as scanning electron microscopy). Species known from culture are described in vivo as well as in vitro on standardised media and under controlled conditions. Details on host range/substrates and the geographic distribution are given based on published accounts, and a re-examination of numerous herbarium specimens. Various keys are provided to support the identification of Cladosporium species in vivo and in vitro. Morphological datasets are supplemented by DNA barcodes (nuclear ribosomal RNA gene operon, including the internal transcribed spacer regions ITS1 and ITS2, the 5.8S nrDNA, as well as partial actin and translation elongation factor 1-α gene sequences) diagnostic for individual species. In total 993 names assigned to Cladosporium s. lat., including Heterosporium (854 in Cladosporium and 139 in Heterosporium), are treated, of which 169 are recognized in Cladosporium s. str. The other taxa are doubtful, insufficiently known or have been excluded from Cladosporium in its current circumscription and re-allocated to other genera by the authors of this monograph or previous authors. Taxonomic novelties: Cladosporium allicinum (Fr.: Fr.) Bensch, U. Braun & Crous, comb. nov., C. astroideum var. catalinense U. Braun, var. nov., Fusicladium tectonicola (Yong H. He & Z.Y. Zhang) U. Braun & Bensch, comb. nov., Septoidium uleanum (Henn.) U. Braun, comb. nov., Zasmidium adeniae (Hansf.) U. Braun, comb. nov., Zasmidium

  11. The genus Vitex: A review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rani, Anita; Sharma, Anupam

    2013-07-01

    The review includes 161 references on the genus Vitex, and comprises ethnopharmacology, morphology and microscopy, phytoconstituents, pharmacological reports, clinical studies, and toxicology of the prominent species of Vitex. Essential oils, flavonoids, iridoid glycosides, diterpenoides and ligans constitute major classes of phytoconstituents of the genus. A few species of this genus have medicinal value, among these, leaves and fruits of V. agnus-castus Linn. (Verbenaceae) has been traditionally used in treatment of women complaints. V. agnus-castus has also been included in herbal remedies, which are in clinical use to regulate the menstrual cycle, reduce premenstrual symptom tension and anxiety, treat some menopausal symptoms as well as to treat hormonally induced acne. Despite a long tradition of use of some species, the genus has not been explored properly. In the concluding part, the future scope of Vitex species has been emphasized with a view to establish their multifarious biological activities and mode of action.

  12. Entedoninae wasps (Hymenoptera, Chalcidoidea, Eulophidae) associated with ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) in tropical America, with new species and notes on their biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, Christer; Lachaud, Jean-Paul; Pérez-Lachaud, Gabriela

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Three new species of Eulophidae associated, or presumed to be associated with ants are described: two species of Horismenus Walker and one species of Microdonophagus Schauff. Information on the biology is also included. The two Horismenus species are from Chiapas, Mexico. Horismenus myrmecophagus sp. n. is known only from females and is a gregarious endoparasitoid in larvae of the weaver ant Camponotus sp. ca. textor. The parasitoids pupate inside the host larva, and an average of 6.7 individuals develops per host. This is the second time a species of genus Horismenus is found parasitizing the brood of a formicine ant of genus Camponotus. Horismenus microdonophagus sp. n. is described from both males and females, and is a gregarious endoparasitoid attacking the larvae of Microdon sp. (Diptera: Syrphidae), a predator on ant brood found in nests of Camponotus sp. ca. textor. The new species of Microdonophagus, Microdonophagus tertius, is from Costa Rica, and known only from the female. Nothing is known about its biology but since another species in same genus, Microdonophagus woodleyi Schauff, is associated with ants through its host, Microdon larva (with same biology as Horismenus microdonophagus), it is possible that also Microdonophagus tertius has this association. A new distributional record for Microdonophagus woodleyi is also reported, extending its distribution from Panama and Colombia to Brazil. PMID:22140342

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. Gland origin and electroantennogram activity of volatile compounds in Ghost Ants, Tapinoma melanocephalum (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and behavioral response to (Z)-9-Nonadecene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Volatile compounds in Tapinoma melanocephalum workers were analyzed using gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). In addition to 6-methyl-5-hepten-2-one and iridodials that are common in ants of the genus of Tapinoma, (Z)-9-nonadecence was identified the first time in mandibular glands. Elec...

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. 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...

  1. 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...

  2. Revision of the genus Phaeanthus (Annonaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mols, J.B.; Keßler, P.J.A.

    2000-01-01

    A revision of the genus Phaeanthus Hook.f. & Thomson (Annonaceae) is presented. The genus comprises 8 species. A key to the fruiting and/or flowering specimens of the genus is included. The genus consists of shrubs to small-sized trees from Malesia and Vietnam. It is characterised by sepals and

  3. Multi-locus phylogenies of the genus Barteria (Passifloraceae) portray complex patterns in the evolution of myrmecophytism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peccoud, Jean; Piatscheck, Finn; Yockteng, Roxana; Garcia, Marjorie; Sauve, Mathieu; Djiéto-Lordon, Champlain; Harris, David J; Wieringa, Jan J; Breteler, Frans J; Born, Céline; McKey, Doyle; Blatrix, Rumsaïs

    2013-03-01

    The four species of the central African genus Barteria show variation in habitat and in degree of association with ants. Whereas B. solida, restricted to submontane forests, attracts opportunistic ants to extrafloral nectar, the three other species, found in lowland rainforests (B. fistulosa, B. dewevrei) and in littoral scrub (B. nigritana), possess stem domatia of varying shapes and degrees of specialisation, hosting either non-specific arboreal ants (B. nigritana, some B. dewevrei) or two large species of ants of the genus Tetraponera Smith, 1852 that are specific to some species of Barteria (B. fistulosa, some B. dewevrei). We aimed to investigate whether this variation represents an evolutionary trend toward increasing specialisation of mutualism or the reduction or loss of myrmecophytic traits. For this, we determined phylogenetic relationships within the genus using DNA sequences (primarily nuclear ITS) and microsatellite genotypes (11 loci) on a large sample of individuals, mostly from Cameroon and Gabon. The two types of markers support an initial dichotomy that groups B. dewevrei with B. nigritana and B. fistulosa with B. solida respectively. Within these pairs, species do not appear reciprocally monophyletic. At microsatellite loci, B. nigritana forms a clade embedded within B. dewevrei; and within both B. solida and B. fistulosa, geographical populations show levels of differentiation similar to that observed between populations of B. solida and B. fistulosa. Geographic distance alone does not account for genetic differentiation between species, which indicates reproductive isolation. Divergence in each of the two pairs implies evolutionary transitions in habitat and in myrmecophytism. Specialised mutualism with specific ant species of the genus Tetraponera has been lost in species found in more marginal habitats. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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 ...

  8. 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

  9. THE GENUS CULLENIA Wight * (Bombacaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. G. H. KOSTERMANS

    1956-12-01

    Full Text Available The monotypic genus Cullenia was established by Wight (IconesPI. Ind. or. 5 (1 : pi. 1761—62 & text, 1851, who differentiated it fromDurio Adans. mainly by the lack of a corolla and the position and shapeof the anthers. The only species, originally described as Durio ceylanicusby Gardner, was cited by Wight as Cullenia excelsa Wight. K. Schumanncorrected the specific epithet rather casually and atributed it (wronglyto Wight. Bentham (in Benth. & Hook., Gen. pi. 1: 212. 1867; Baillon(Hist. pi. 4: 159. 1872, Masters (in Hook, f., Fl. Br. Ind. 1: 350. 1874and Beccari (Malesia 3: 219. 1889 accepted the genus.Bakhuizen van den Brink (in Bull. Jard. bot. Buitenzorg III, 6: 228.1924 incorporated the genus in Durio.In my opinion Cullenia represents a "good" genus by its lack ofcorolla. Alston, although accepting Bakhuizen's reduction, informed mepersonally, that he, too, is inclined to consider Cullenia different fromDurio.The pollen were described as being naked and pedicellate by Gardner;this wrong statement was corrected by Wight; the anthers are pedicellateand one-celled.In this paper a new Cullenia species is described, which strengthensthe position of the genus; both species are restricted to the rain forestregion of Ceylon and the Southern Indian Peninsula.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. Can ant-eating Zodarion spiders (Araneae: Zodariidae) develop on a diet optimal for euryphagous arthropod predators?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pekar, Stano; Toft, Søren

    2009-01-01

    . Such adaptations may then entail trade-offs in handling and utilization of alternative prey. To investigate behavioural as well as nutritional adaptations and the occurrence of the corresponding trade-offs in two ant-eating spiders of the genus Zodarion [Zodarion atlanticum Pekár & Cardoso and Zodarion germanicum...... (C. L. Koch)], spiders are reared on two diets: ants (i.e. their preferred prey) and fruit flies (i.e. an alternative prey that is nutritionally optimal for euryphagous spiders). Food consumption is observed and several fitness-related life-history parameters are measured. Although spiders readily...... accept ants, more than one-third of 35 spiders refuse to consume fruit flies and starve. Furthermore, severe hunger does not induce these individuals to accept fruit flies. Starving spiders die before moulting to the second stadium. Spiders that eat fruit flies increase only little and slowly in weight...

  15. 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.

  16. Phylogeny of the Genus Drosophila

    Science.gov (United States)

    O’Grady, Patrick M.; DeSalle, Rob

    2018-01-01

    Understanding phylogenetic relationships among taxa is key to designing and implementing comparative analyses. The genus Drosophila, which contains over 1600 species, is one of the most important model systems in the biological sciences. For over a century, one species in this group, Drosophila melanogaster, has been key to studies of animal development and genetics, genome organization and evolution, and human disease. As whole-genome sequencing becomes more cost-effective, there is increasing interest in other members of this morphologically, ecologically, and behaviorally diverse genus. Phylogenetic relationships within Drosophila are complicated, and the goal of this paper is to provide a review of the recent taxonomic changes and phylogenetic relationships in this genus to aid in further comparative studies. PMID:29716983

  17. Paratrechina longicornis ants in a tropical dry forest harbor specific Actinobacteria diversity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes, Ruth D Hernández; Cafaro, Matías J

    2015-01-01

    The diversity of Actinobacteria associated with Paratrechina longicornis, an ant species that prefers a high protein diet, in a subtropical dry forest (Guánica, Puerto Rico) was determined by culture methods and by 16S rDNA clone libraries. The results of both methodologies were integrated to obtain a broader view of the diversity. Streptomyces, Actinomadura, Nocardia, Ornithinimicrobium, Tsukamurella, Brevibacterium, Saccharopolyspora, Nocardioides, Microbacterium, Leifsonia, Pseudonocardia, Corynebacterium, Geodermatophilus, Amycolatopsis, and Nonomuraea were found associated with the ants. The genera Streptomyces and Actinomadura were the most abundant. Also, the diversity of Actinobacteria associated with the soil surrounding the nest was determined using 16S rDNA clone libraries. In total, 27 genera of Actinobacteria were associated with the nest soils. A dominant genus was not observed in any of the soil samples. We compared statistically the Actinobacteria communities among P. longicornis nests and each nest with its surrounding soil using the clone libraries data. We established that the communities associated with the ants were consistent and significantly different from those found in the soil in which the ants live. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. New light on the systematics of fungi associated with attine ant gardens and the description of Escovopsis kreiselii sp. nov.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucas A Meirelles

    Full Text Available Since the formal description of fungi in the genus Escovopsis in 1990, only a few studies have focused on the systematics of this group. For more than two decades, only two Escovopsis species were described; however, in 2013, three additional Escovopsis species were formally described along with the genus Escovopsioides, both found exclusively in attine ant gardens. During a survey for Escovopsis species in gardens of the lower attine ant Mycetophylax morschi in Brazil, we found four strains belonging to the pink-colored Escovopsis clade. Careful examination of these strains revealed significant morphological differences when compared to previously described species of Escovopsis and Escovopsioides. Based on the type of conidiogenesis (sympodial, as well as morphology of conidiogenous cells (percurrent, non-vesiculated conidiophores, and DNA sequences, we describe the four new strains as a new species, Escovopsis kreiselii sp. nov. Phylogenetic analyses using three nuclear markers (Large subunit RNA; translation elongation factor 1-alpha; and internal transcribed spacer from the new strains as well as available sequences in public databases confirmed that all known fungi infecting attine ant gardens comprise a monophyletic group within the Hypocreaceae family, with very diverse morphological characteristics. Specifically, Escovopsis kreiselii is likely associated with gardens of lower-attine ants and its pathogenicity remains uncertain.

  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. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Phylogeny and population genetic structure of ant genus Acropyga (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Papua New Guinea

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Janda, Milan; Matos Maravi, Pavel F.; Borovanská, Michaela; Zima, Jan; Youngerman, E.; Pierce, N. E.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 30, č. 1 (2016), s. 28-40 ISSN 1445-5226 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP505/12/2467 Grant - others:Marie Curie Fellowship(CZ) PIOFGA2009-25448; Operational Program Research and Development for Innovations(CZ) CZ.1.05/3.2.00/08.0144 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : Acropyga * Hymenoptera * Papua New Guinea Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.172, year: 2016

  7. Taxonomic review of ant genus Nylanderia Emery, 1906 (Hymenoptera: Formicidae in India

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aijaz Ahmad Wachkoo

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, Indian Nylanderia fauna is revised for the first time. Seven species are recognized, of which Nylanderia himalayana sp. nov. is described as new. Hitherto undescribed female and male castes of N. birmana are described for the first time. Photomontage images and comparative diagnosis by workers are provided. Information on the distribution of Indian Nylanderia is given. A revised key to the workers of Nylanderia for the Indian region is provided.

  8. 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.

  9. Bordasia Krapov., new Malvaceae genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Krapovickas

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Bordasia bicornis Krapov. new genus and species is described from northwestern ParaguayanChaco. It is related to Sida from which it differs by the mericarp with two apical horns, by theleaves dimorphic and coriaceous and by the fannel-shaped calyx

  10. The genus Actiniceps Berk. & Br

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boedijn, K.B.

    1959-01-01

    The genus Actiniceps Berk. & Br. is shown to be a Basidiomycete. Wiesnerina Höhn. and Dimorphocystis Corner are regarded synonymous. The type species A. thwaitesii Berk. & Br. is redescribed with D. capitatus Corner as synonym. The following new combinations are proposed: A. horrida (Höhn.) Boedijn,

  11. Rank Two Affine Manifolds in Genus 3

    OpenAIRE

    Aulicino, David; Nguyen, Duc-Manh

    2016-01-01

    We complete the classification of rank two affine manifolds in the moduli space of translation surfaces in genus three. Combined with a recent result of Mirzakhani and Wright, this completes the classification of higher rank affine manifolds in genus three.

  12. 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 ...

  13. 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...

  14. 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

  15. 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....

  16. David and Goliath: potent venom of an ant-eating spider (Araneae) enables capture of a giant prey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pekár, Stano; Šedo, Onřej; Líznarová, Eva; Korenko, Stanislav; Zdráhal, Zdeněk

    2014-07-01

    It is rare to find a true predator that repeatedly and routinely kills prey larger than itself. A solitary specialised ant-eating spider of the genus Zodarion can capture a relatively giant prey. We studied the trophic niche of this spider species and investigated its adaptations (behavioural and venomic) that are used to capture ants. We found that the spider captures mainly polymorphic Messor arenarius ants. Adult female spiders captured large morphs while tiny juveniles captured smaller morphs, yet in both cases ants were giant in comparison with spider size. All specimens used an effective prey capture strategy that protected them from ant retaliation. Juvenile and adult spiders were able to paralyse their prey using a single bite. The venom glands of adults were more than 50 times larger than those of juvenile spiders, but the paralysis latency of juveniles was 1.5 times longer. This suggests that this spider species possesses very potent venom already at the juvenile stage. Comparison of the venom composition between juvenile and adult spiders did not reveal significant differences. We discovered here that specialised capture combined with very effective venom enables the capture of giant prey.

  17. A review of the genus Erycibe Roxb

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoogland, R.D.

    1953-01-01

    In this paper I intend to give a review of the genus Erycibe Roxb. in. which all the names published in the genus will be accounted for. The representatives from Malaysia have been dealt with more extensively in the revision of the genus in Flora Malesiana, Ser. I, Vol. 4, 4th instalment, 1953, pp.

  18. Symbiotic diversity in the cosmopolitan genus Acacia

    Science.gov (United States)

    James K. Leary; Paul W. Singleton; Paul G. Scowcroft; Dulal Borthakur

    2006-01-01

    Acacia is the second largest genus within the Leguminosae, with 1352 species identified. This genus is now known to be polyphyletic and the international scientific community will presumably split Acacia into five new genera. This review examines the diversity of biological nitrogen fixation symbiosis within Acacia as a single genus. Due to its global importance, an...

  19. 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. ...

  20. 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

  1. 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...

  2. Nutritional upgrading for omnivorous carpenter ants by the endosymbiont Blochmannia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mueller Martin J

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Carpenter ants (genus Camponotus are considered to be omnivores. Nonetheless, the genome sequence of Blochmannia floridanus, the obligate intracellular endosymbiont of Camponotus floridanus, suggests a function in nutritional upgrading of host resources by the bacterium. Thus, the strongly reduced genome of the endosymbiont retains genes for all subunits of a functional urease, as well as those for biosynthetic pathways for all but one (arginine of the amino acids essential to the host. Results Nutritional upgrading by Blochmannia was tested in 90-day feeding experiments with brood-raising in worker-groups on chemically defined diets with and without essential amino acids and treated or not with antibiotics. Control groups were fed with cockroaches, honey water and Bhatkar agar. Worker-groups were provided with brood collected from the queenright mother-colonies (45 eggs and 45 first instar larvae each. Brood production did not differ significantly between groups of symbiotic workers on diets with and without essential amino acids. However, aposymbiotic worker groups raised significantly less brood on a diet lacking essential amino acids. Reduced brood production by aposymbiotic workers was compensated when those groups were provided with essential amino acids in their diet. Decrease of endosymbionts due to treatment with antibiotic was monitored by qRT-PCR and FISH after the 90-day experimental period. Urease function was confirmed by feeding experiments using 15N-labelled urea. GC-MS analysis of 15N-enrichment of free amino acids in workers revealed significant labelling of the non-essential amino acids alanine, glycine, aspartic acid, and glutamic acid, as well as of the essential amino acids methionine and phenylalanine. Conclusion Our results show that endosymbiotic Blochmannia nutritionally upgrade the diet of C. floridanus hosts to provide essential amino acids, and that it may also play a role in nitrogen recycling

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Scavenging in the genus Natrix

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cesar Ayres

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Scavenging is reported as an unusual behaviour of snakes. However, it is likely more common than is supposed. Here I report the use of dead newts as prey source by water snakes of the genus Natrix at a dam in north-western Spain. Juveniles and adults viperine snakes (Natrix maura, and also an adult grass snake (Natrix natrix were found feeding on newt carcasses.

  6. CYANOBACTERIA OF THE GENUS PROCHLOROTHRIX

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexander Vasilievich Pinevich

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Green cyanobacteria are distinguished from blue-green ones by the possession of a chlorophyll-containing light harvesting antenna. Three genera of green cyanobacteria, namely Acaryochloris, Prochlorococcus and Prochloron, are unicellular and of marine habitat; Prochlorococcus marinus attracts most attention due to its outstanding role in prime productivity. The fourth genus, Prochlorothrix, is represented by filamentous freshwater strains. Unlike the rest of green cyanobacteria, Prochlorothrix is paradoxically rare: it has been isolated from two European locations only. Taking into account fluctuating blooms, morphological resemblance with Planktothrix and Pseudanabaena, and unsuccessful enrichment of Prochlorothrix, the preferred strategy of search for this cyanobacterium is based on PCR with natural DNA and specific primers. This approach already demonstrates a broader distribution of Prochlorothrix: marker genes have been found in at least two additional locations. Despite the growing evidence for naturally occurring Prochlorothrix, there are only a few cultivated strains, and only one of them (PCC 9006 is claimed to be axenic. In multixenic cultures, Prochlorothrix is accompanied by heterotrophic bacteria, indicating a consortium-type association. The genus Prochlorothrix includes two species: P. hollandica and P. scandica based on distinctions in genomic DNA, cell size, temperature optimum, and fatty acid composition of membrane lipids. In this short review, the properties of cyanobacteria of the genus Prochlorothrix are described, and the evolutionary scenario of green cyanobacteria, especially taking into account their role in the origin of simple chloroplast is given.

  7. Biodiversity of the genus Cladophialophora

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badali, H.; Gueidan, C.; Najafzadeh, M.J.; Bonifaz, A.; van den Ende, A.H.G. Gerrits; de Hoog, G.S.

    2008-01-01

    Cladophialophora is a genus of black yeast-like fungi comprising a number of clinically highly significant species in addition to environmental taxa. The genus has previously been characterized by branched chains of ellipsoidal to fusiform conidia. However, this character was shown to have evolved several times independently in the order Chaetothyriales. On the basis of a multigene phylogeny (nucLSU, nucSSU, RPB1), most of the species of Cladophialophora (including its generic type C. carrionii) belong to a monophyletic group comprising two main clades (carrionii- and bantiana-clades). The genus includes species causing chromoblastomycosis and other skin infections, as well as disseminated and cerebral infections, often in immunocompetent individuals. In the present study, multilocus phylogenetic analyses were combined to a morphological study to characterize phenetically similar Cladophialophora strains. Sequences of the ITS region, partial Translation Elongation Factor 1-α and β-Tubulin genes were analysed for a set of 48 strains. Four novel species were discovered, originating from soft drinks, alkylbenzene-polluted soil, and infected patients. Membership of the both carrionii and bantiana clades might be indicative of potential virulence to humans. PMID:19287540

  8. On genus expansion of superpolynomials

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mironov, Andrei, E-mail: mironov@itep.ru [Lebedev Physics Institute, Moscow 119991 (Russian Federation); ITEP, Moscow 117218 (Russian Federation); National Research Nuclear University MEPhI, Moscow 115409 (Russian Federation); Morozov, Alexei, E-mail: morozov@itep.ru [ITEP, Moscow 117218 (Russian Federation); National Research Nuclear University MEPhI, Moscow 115409 (Russian Federation); Sleptsov, Alexei, E-mail: sleptsov@itep.ru [ITEP, Moscow 117218 (Russian Federation); Laboratory of Quantum Topology, Chelyabinsk State University, Chelyabinsk 454001 (Russian Federation); KdVI, University of Amsterdam (Netherlands); Smirnov, Andrey, E-mail: asmirnov@math.columbia.edu [ITEP, Moscow 117218 (Russian Federation); Columbia University, Department of Mathematics, New York (United States)

    2014-12-15

    Recently it was shown that the (Ooguri–Vafa) generating function of HOMFLY polynomials is the Hurwitz partition function, i.e. that the dependence of the HOMFLY polynomials on representation R is naturally captured by symmetric group characters (cut-and-join eigenvalues). The genus expansion and expansion through Vassiliev invariants explicitly demonstrate this phenomenon. In the present paper we claim that the superpolynomials are not functions of such a type: symmetric group characters do not provide an adequate linear basis for their expansions. Deformation to superpolynomials is, however, straightforward in the multiplicative basis: the Casimir operators are β-deformed to Hamiltonians of the Calogero–Moser–Sutherland system. Applying this trick to the genus and Vassiliev expansions, we observe that the deformation is fully straightforward only for the thin knots. Beyond the family of thin knots additional algebraically independent terms appear in the Vassiliev and genus expansions. This can suggest that the superpolynomials do in fact contain more information about knots than the colored HOMFLY and Kauffman polynomials. However, even for the thin knots the beta-deformation is non-innocent: already in the simplest examples it seems inconsistent with the positivity of colored superpolynomials in non-(anti)symmetric representations, which also happens in I. Cherednik's (DAHA-based) approach to the torus knots.

  9. An updated review on the Oenothera genus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, Sumitra; Kaur, Rupinder; Sharma, Surendra Kr

    2012-07-01

    Oenothera genus (Onagraceae) has been used as a folk remedy since ancient times for the treatment of asthma, gastrointestinal disorders, neuralgia, skin diseases, and hepatic and kidney diseases. Different chemical constituents like lipids, flavonoids, tannins, steroids and triterpenes have been isolated from this genus. The various notable pharmacological activities reported from the genus are antioxidant, cytotoxic, antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antihyperlipidaemic, thrombolytic and antidiarrhoeal. The present paper is to summarize the worldwide reported biological activities and phytoconstituents associated with this genus for about 50 years and highlight the medicinally important species belonging to this genus so that these species can be further explored and used as therapeutic agents for various diseases.

  10. On the concordance genus of topologically slice knots

    OpenAIRE

    Hom, Jennifer

    2012-01-01

    The concordance genus of a knot K is the minimum Seifert genus of all knots smoothly concordant to K. Concordance genus is bounded below by the 4-ball genus and above by the Seifert genus. We give a lower bound for the concordance genus of K coming from the knot Floer complex of K. As an application, we prove that there are topologically slice knots with 4-ball genus equal to one and arbitrarily large concordance genus.

  11. Yet More “Weeds” in the Garden: Fungal Novelties from Nests of Leaf-Cutting Ants

    Science.gov (United States)

    Augustin, Juliana O.; Groenewald, Johannes Z.; Nascimento, Robson J.; Mizubuti, Eduardo S. G.; Barreto, Robert W.; Elliot, Simon L.; Evans, Harry C.

    2013-01-01

    Background Symbiotic relationships modulate the evolution of living organisms in all levels of biological organization. A notable example of symbiosis is that of attine ants (Attini; Formicidae: Hymenoptera) and their fungal cultivars (Lepiotaceae and Pterulaceae; Agaricales: Basidiomycota). In recent years, this mutualism has emerged as a model system for studying coevolution, speciation, and multitrophic interactions. Ubiquitous in this ant-fungal symbiosis is the “weedy” fungus Escovopsis (Hypocreales: Ascomycota), known only as a mycoparasite of attine fungal gardens. Despite interest in its biology, ecology and molecular phylogeny—noting, especially, the high genetic diversity encountered—which has led to a steady flow of publications over the past decade, only two species of Escovopsis have formally been described. Methods and Results We sampled from fungal gardens and garden waste (middens) of nests of the leaf-cutting ant genus Acromyrmex in a remnant of subtropical Atlantic rainforest in Minas Gerais, Brazil. In culture, distinct morphotypes of Escovopsis sensu lato were recognized. Using both morphological and molecular analyses, three new species of Escovopsis were identified. These are described and illustrated herein—E. lentecrescens, E. microspora, and E. moelleri—together with a re-description of the genus and the type species, E. weberi. The new genus Escovopsioides is erected for a fourth morphotype. We identify, for the first time, a mechanism for horizontal transmission via middens. Conclusions The present study makes a start at assigning names and formal descriptions to these specific fungal parasites of attine nests. Based on the results of this exploratory and geographically-restricted survey, we expect there to be many more species of the genus Escovopsis and its relatives associated with nests of both the lower and higher Attini throughout their neotropical range, as suggested in previous studies. PMID:24376525

  12. A taxonomic revision of the genus Sinotrisus Yin & Li (Coleoptera, Staphylinidae, Pselaphinae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Zi-Wei; Nomura, Shûhei; Li, Li-Zhen

    2012-01-01

    The genus Sinotrisus Yin & Li, comprising four species, is redefined and revised. Members of Sinotrisus are often found with ants of the subfamily Formicinae, or in humid forest habitats. The type speciesand three new species are (re-)described and illustrated: Sinotrisus kishimotoi Yin & Nomura, sp. n. (China: Sichuan), Sinotrisus nomurai Yin, Li & Zhao (type species) (China: Zhejing), Sinotrisus sinensis Yin & Nomura, sp. n. (China: Sichuan) and Sinotrisus vietnamensis Yin & Nomura, sp. n. (Vietnam: Lai Chau). A key is included as an aid to distinguishing these species.

  13. 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...

  14. 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.

  15. Complex foraging ecology of the red harvester ant and its effect on the soil seed bank

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luna, Pedro; García-Chávez, Juan Héctor; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2018-01-01

    Granivory is an important interaction in the arid and semi-arid zones of the world, since seeds form an abundant and nutritious resource in these areas. While species of the genus Pogonomyrmex have been studied in detail as seed predators, their impact on seed abundance in the soil has not yet been explored in sufficient depth. We studied the impact of the harvesting activities of the ant Pogonomyrmex barbatus on seed abundance in the soil of the Zapotitlán valley, Mexico. We found that P. barbatus activity significantly impacts the abundance of seeds in the soil, which is lower in the sites where P. barbatus forages than it is in sites with no recorded foraging. We also found that P. barbatus distributes intact seeds of three tree species, two of which are nurse plants, and could consequently be promoting the establishment of these species. Using tools derived from graph theory, we observed that the ant-seed interactions exhibit a nested pattern; where more depredated seed species seem to be the more spatially abundant in the environment. This study illustrates the complex foraging ecology of the harvester ant P. barbatus and elucidates its effect on the soil seed bank in a semi-arid environment.

  16. Chemotaxonomy of the genus Stemphylium

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Olsen, Kresten Jon Kromphardt; Andersen, Birgitte

    2016-01-01

    The filamentous fungal genus Stemphylium (Anamophic Pleospora) is often found on various crops, and especially the common animal feed plant Medicago sativa (alfalfa) is often infected by this plant pathogen. With this in mind it is important to consider what consequences such a contamination can...... have, e.g. production of mycotoxins. (Firsvad et al. (2009)) A clade of Stemphylium spp. i.e. S. herbarum, S. alfalfae, S. sedicola, S. tomatonis and S. vesicariumare troublesome to distinguish as they share both morphological and molecular characteristics. This study has focused on using chemotaxonomy...

  17. 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...

  18. 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....

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. NSR superstring measures in genus 5

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dunin-Barkowski, Petr; Sleptsov, Alexey; Stern, Abel

    2013-01-01

    Currently there are two proposed ansätze for NSR superstring measures: the Grushevsky ansatz and the OPSMY ansatz, which for genera g⩽4 are known to coincide. However, neither the Grushevsky nor the OPSMY ansatz leads to a vanishing two-point function in genus four, which can be constructed from the genus five expressions for the respective ansätze. This is inconsistent with the known properties of superstring amplitudes. In the present paper we show that the Grushevsky and OPSMY ansätze do not coincide in genus five. Then, by combining these ansätze, we propose a new ansatz for genus five, which now leads to a vanishing two-point function in genus four. We also show that one cannot construct an ansatz from the currently known forms in genus 6 that satisfies all known requirements for superstring measures

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. The genus Retiboletus in China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeng, Nian-Kai; Liang, Zhi-Qun; Wu, Gang; Li, Yan-Chun; Yang, Zhu L; Liang, Zhi-Qun

    2016-01-01

    Species of the genus Retiboletus (Boletaceae, Boletales) in China are investigated based on morphology and phylogenetic analyses of DNA sequences from nuc rDNA internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and partial 28S regions and sequences from the translation elongation factor 1-a gene (tef1a). Six lineages are recovered among the collections studied. Five of these are documented and presented in the present paper, including three new species and two new combinations. The remaining species is not described due to the paucity of material. The specimens from China identified as "R. ornatipes" or "R. retipes" are in fact R. sinensis or R. kauffmanii, those labeled "R. griseus" are either R. fuscus or R. pseudogriseus A key to all known taxa of the genus is provided. Phylogenetic relationships of taxa within Retiboletus are partially resolved. A preliminary biogeographical analysis shows that allied species of Retiboletus between eastern Asia and North/Central America are common but there are no Retiboletus species common to both continents. Species of Retiboletus in Japan and southern China are conspecific or closely related. © 2016 by The Mycological Society of America.

  5. 2+1 gravity for genus >1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, J.E.; Regge, T.

    1991-01-01

    We analysed the algebra of observables for the simple case of a genus 1 initial data surface Σ 2 for 2+1 De Sitter gravity. Here we extend the analysis to higher genus. We construct for genus 2 the group of automorphisms H of the homotopy group π 1 induced by the mapping class group. The group H induces a group D of canonical transformations on the algebra of observables which is related to the braid group for 6 threads. (orig.)

  6. The genus Lolium : taxonomy and genetic resources

    OpenAIRE

    Loos, B.P.

    1994-01-01

    Several aspects of variation within the genus Lolium, and more in detail within Lolium perenne (perennial ryegrass) have been highlighted. As the results are extensively discussed in each chapter, the general discussion is focused on two aspects of the research.

    Speciation
    It is clear that the genus Lolium is a very variable genus. The variation within the species reduces the clarity o...

  7. Aspidonepsis (Asclepiadaceae, a new southern African genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Nicholas

    1992-10-01

    Full Text Available Aspidonepsis, an endemic southern African genus, is described and compared to the closely allied genus Aspidoglossum. This newly described genus is composed of two subgenera, Aspidonepsis and Unguilobium. consisting of three and two species respectively.  Asclepias diploglossa, A. flava, A. cognata and A. reneensis are transferred to Aspidonepsis. and A. shebae is newly described. All species are discussed, illustrated and a key is given to aid in their identification.

  8. Transcriptome characterisation of the ant Formica exsecta with new insights into the evolution of desaturase genes in social hymenoptera.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hélène Badouin

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Despite the recent sequencing of seven ant genomes, no genomic data are available for the genus Formica, an important group for the study of eusocial traits. We sequenced the transcriptome of the ant Formica exsecta with the 454 FLX Titanium technology from a pooled sample of workers from 70 Finnish colonies. RESULTS: About 1,000,000 reads were obtained from a normalised cDNA library. We compared the assemblers MIRA3.0 and Newbler2.6 and showed that the latter performed better on this dataset due to a new option which is dedicated to improve contig formation in low depth portions of the assemblies. The 29,579 contigs represent 27 Mb. 50% showed similarity with known proteins and 25% could be assigned a category of gene ontology. We found more than 13,000 high-quality single nucleotide polymorphisms. The Δ9 desaturase gene family is an important multigene family involved in chemical communication in insects. We found six Δ9 desaturases in this Formica exsecta transcriptome dataset that were used to reconstruct a maximum-likelihood phylogeny of insect desaturases and to test for signatures of positive selection in this multigene family in ant lineages. We found differences with previous phylogenies of this gene family in ants, and found two clades potentially under positive selection. CONCLUSION: This first transcriptome reference sequence of Formica exsecta provided sequence and polymorphism data that will allow researchers working on Formica ants to develop studies to tackle the genetic basis of eusocial phenotypes. In addition, this study provided some general guidelines for de novo transcriptome assembly that should be useful for future transcriptome sequencing projects. Finally, we found potential signatures of positive selection in some clades of the Δ9 desaturase gene family in ants, which suggest the potential role of sequence divergence and adaptive evolution in shaping the large diversity of chemical cues in social insects.

  9. 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...

  10. 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.

  11. 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...

  12. 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.

  13. The dynamics of ant mosaics in tropical rainforests characterized using the Self-Organizing Map algorithm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dejean, Alain; Azémar, Frédéric; Céréghino, Régis; Leponce, Maurice; Corbara, Bruno; Orivel, Jérôme; Compin, Arthur

    2016-08-01

    Ants, the most abundant taxa among canopy-dwelling animals in tropical rainforests, are mostly represented by territorially dominant arboreal ants (TDAs) whose territories are distributed in a mosaic pattern (arboreal ant mosaics). Large TDA colonies regulate insect herbivores, with implications for forestry and agronomy. What generates these mosaics in vegetal formations, which are dynamic, still needs to be better understood. So, from empirical research based on 3 Cameroonian tree species (Lophira alata, Ochnaceae; Anthocleista vogelii, Gentianaceae; and Barteria fistulosa, Passifloraceae), we used the Self-Organizing Map (SOM, neural network) to illustrate the succession of TDAs as their host trees grow and age. The SOM separated the trees by species and by size for L. alata, which can reach 60 m in height and live several centuries. An ontogenic succession of TDAs from sapling to mature trees is shown, and some ecological traits are highlighted for certain TDAs. Also, because the SOM permits the analysis of data with many zeroes with no effect of outliers on the overall scatterplot distributions, we obtained ecological information on rare species. Finally, the SOM permitted us to show that functional groups cannot be selected at the genus level as congeneric species can have very different ecological niches, something particularly true for Crematogaster spp., which include a species specifically associated with B. fistulosa, nondominant species and TDAs. Therefore, the SOM permitted the complex relationships between TDAs and their growing host trees to be analyzed, while also providing new information on the ecological traits of the ant species involved. © 2015 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  14. 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....

  15. 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....

  16. 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.

  17. 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...

  18. 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

  19. 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...

  20. 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 ...

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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 ...

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. THE GENUS TEIJSMANNIODENDRON KOORDERS (VERBENACEAE

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. G. H. KOSTERMANS

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available 1. The present notes on Teijsmanniodendron are based on a study of the spec- imens from Herbarium Bogoriense and the Herbarium of the Singapore Botanic Garden. 2. The taxonomic value of the principal characters and their variation are discussed. Each of the species recognized is annotated. 3. A delimitation and subdivision of the genus in two sections,  Plurifoliolatae Kosterm.  and 'Unifoliolatae Kosterm  is proposed. 4. A key to the 12 species and 1 variety distinguished, is included. 5. One new species is provisionally described (but not named, and one new variety, Teijsmanniodendron pteropodum var. auriculatum Kosterm, is published. 6. The following new combinations are made: Teijsmanniodendron coriaceum B. Clarke Kosterm,, T. hollrungii (Warb. Kosterm. T. holophyllum (Bak. Kos- term, T.novoguineense (Kan. & Hatus. Kosterm., T. sarawakanum (H. H. W. Pears. Kosterm., T. smilacifolium (H. H. W. Pears. Kosterm., and T. subspieatum (Hallier f. Kosterm. 7. The genus Xerocarpa H. 3. Lam (non Spach is rejected; its only species, X. avicenniaefoliola H. J. Lam, is referred to Teijsmanniodendron ahernianum (Merr. Bakh. In addition, the following reductions are made: Teijsmanniodendron mono- phyllum Kurata = T. hollrungii (Warb. Kosterm.; Vitex bankae H. J. Lam = T. ahernianum (Merr. Bakh., V. bogoriensis H. J. Lam = T. ahernianum (Merr. Bakh.; V. koordersii H. J. Lam t= T. pteropodum (Miq. Bakh.; V. tetragona Hallier f. = T. sarawakanum (H. H. W. Pears. Kosterm.; V. venosa H. J. Lam = T. coriaceum (C. B. Clarke Kosterm. Possible identity of T. longifolium (Merr. Merr. and T. bogoriense is suggested: the identity of T. simplicifolium Merr. and T. smilacifolium (H. H-, W. Pears. Kosterm. is indicated as probable. 8. Vitex subspicata Hallier f. and V. holophylla Bak. included by Lam in vitex hollrungii Warb. are reinstated as distinct species of Teijsmanniodendron.

  7. Evolution of the Genus Homo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tattersall, Ian; Schwartz, Jeffrey H.

    2009-05-01

    Definition of the genus Homo is almost as fraught as the definition of Homo sapiens. We look at the evidence for “early Homo,” finding little morphological basis for extending our genus to any of the 2.5-1.6-myr-old fossil forms assigned to “early Homo” or Homo habilis/rudolfensis. We also point to heterogeneity among “early African Homo erectus,” and the lack of apomorphies linking these fossils to the Asian Homo erectus group, a cohesive regional clade that shows some internal variation, including brain size increase over time. The first truly cosmopolitan Homo species is Homo heidelbergensis, known from Africa, Europe, and China following 600 kyr ago. One species sympatric with it included the >500-kyr-old Sima de los Huesos fossils from Spain, clearly distinct from Homo heidelbergensis and the oldest hominids assignable to the clade additionally containing Homo neanderthalensis. This clade also shows evidence of brain size expansion with time; but although Homo neanderthalensis had a large brain, it left no unequivocal evidence of the symbolic consciousness that makes our species unique. Homo sapiens clearly originated in Africa, where it existed as a physical entity before it began (also in that continent) to show the first stirrings of symbolism. Most likely, the biological underpinnings of symbolic consciousness were exaptively acquired in the radical developmental reorganization that gave rise to the highly characteristic osteological structure of Homo sapiens, but lay fallow for tens of thousands of years before being “discovered” by a cultural stimulus, plausibly the invention of language.

  8. A taxonomic revision of the genus Podocarpus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Laubenfels, de D.J.

    1985-01-01

    In connection with the forthcoming revision of the Coniferae for the Flora Malesiana, the author thought it necessary to revise the genus Podocarpus. Although this genus has a substantial representation in Malesia (30 species), the revision is too involved to be appropriate with the Flora Malesiana

  9. Phylogeny of the Peckia-genus group

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Buenaventura Ruiz, Ingrid Eliana; Pape, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Peckia is the most species-rich necrophagous genus among the Neotropical sarcophagids, encompassing 67 species distributed in 5 subgenera. Recent phylogenetic studies have challenged the monophyly of this genus with regard to species of the genera Peckiamyia, Titanogrypa, and Villegasia, and the ...

  10. The elliptic genus and Hidden symmetry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jaffe, A.

    2001-01-01

    We study the elliptic genus (a partition function) in certain interacting, twist quantum field theories. Without twists, these theories have N=2 supersymmetry. The twists provide a regularization, and also partially break the supersymmetry. In spite of the regularization, one can establish a homotopy of the elliptic genus in a coupling parameter. Our construction relies on a priori estimates and other methods from constructive quantum field theory; this mathematical underpinning allows us to justify evaluating the elliptic genus at one endpoint of the homotopy. We obtain a version of Witten's proposed formula for the elliptic genus in terms of classical theta functions. As a consequence, the elliptic genus has a hidden SL(2,Z) symmetry characteristic of conformal theory, even though the underlying theory is not conformal. (orig.)

  11. Taxonomy of the African army ant Dorylus gribodoi Emery, 1892 (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) - new insights from DNA sequence data and morphology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schöning, Caspar; Gotwald, William H.; Kronauer, Daniel Jan Christoph

    2008-01-01

    Numerous species in the Old World army ant genus Dorylus have been described based on a single sex or caste. Our analysis of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase II gene sequences of specimens from the same population reveals that D. gribodoi Emery males are conspecific with D. gerstaeckeri Emery...... a nest in Ivory Coast, is provided. Dorylus gerstaeckeri st. quadratus Santschi is shown to be distinct from D. gribodoi and synonymised under Dorylus kohli Wasmann. Similar studies examining the relationship between species described based on males and others described based on workers are needed...

  12. Edge detection in digital images using Ant Colony Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  14. 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).

  15. 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.

  16. Thermoregulation strategies in ants in comparison to other social insects, with a focus on Formica rufa [v1; ref status: indexed, http://f1000r.es/2fv

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Štěpánka Kadochová

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Temperature influences every aspect of ant biology, especially metabolic rate, growth and development. Maintenance of high inner nest temperature increases the rate of sexual brood development and thereby increases the colony fitness. Insect societies can achieve better thermoregulation than solitary insects due to the former’s ability to build large and elaborated nests and display complex behaviour. In ants and termites the upper part of the nest, the mound, often works as a solar collector and can also have an efficient ventilation system. Two thermoregulatory strategies could be applied. Firstly the ants use an increased thermal gradient available in the mound for brood relocation. Nurse workers move the brood according to the thermal gradients to ensure the ideal conditions for development. A precise perception of temperature and evolution of temperature preferences are needed to make the correct choices. A second thermoregulatory strategy used by mound nesting ants is keeping a high temperature inside large nests. The unique thermal and insulation properties of the nest material help to maintain stable conditions, which is the case of the Wood ant genus Formica. Ants can regulate thermal loss by moving nest aggregation and alternating nest ventilation. Metabolic heat produced by ant workers or associated micro organisms is an important additional source of heat which helps to maintain thermal homeostasis in the nest.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  18. 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...

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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....

  2. Streptomyces camponoticapitis sp. nov., an actinomycete isolated from the head of an ant (Camponotus japonicus Mayr).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Yao; Ye, Lan; Wang, Xiangjing; Zhao, Junwei; Ma, Zhaoxu; Yan, Kai; Xiang, Wensheng; Liu, Chongxi

    2016-10-01

    A novel single-spore-producing actinomycete, designated strain 2H-TWYE14T, was isolated from the head of an ant (Camponotus japonicus Mayr) and characterized using a polyphasic approach. 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis showed that strain 2H-TWYE14T belongs to the genus Streptomyces, with highest sequence similarity to Streptomyces niveus NRRL 2466T (98.84 %). Analysis based on the gyrB gene also indicated that strain 2H-TWYE14T should be assigned to the genus Streptomyces. The chemotaxonomic properties of strain 2H-TWYE14T were consistent with those of members of the genus Streptomyces. The cell wall contained ll-diaminopimelic acid. The predominant menaquinones were MK-9(H6), MK-9(H8) and MK-9(H4). The phospholipid profile consisted of diphosphatidylglycerol, phosphatidylethanolamine, phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylinositol mannoside. The major fatty acids were iso-C16 : 0 and iso-C15 : 0. DNA-DNA hybridization experiments and phenotypic tests were carried out between strain 2H-TWYE14T and its phylogenetically closely related strain S. niveus JCM 4251T, which further clarified their relatedness and demonstrated that 2H-TWYE14T could be distinguished from S. niveus. Therefore, it is concluded that strain 2H-TWYE14T can be classified as representing a novel species of the genus Streptomyces, for which the name Streptomyces camponoticapitis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is 2H-TWYE14T (=DSM 100523T=CGMCC 4.7275T).

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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...

  6. 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

  7. Beta genus papillomaviruses and skin cancer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howley, Peter M; Pfister, Herbert J

    2015-05-01

    A role for the beta genus HPVs in keratinocyte carcinoma (KC) remains to be established. In this article we examine the potential role of the beta HPVs in cancer revealed by the epidemiology associating these viruses with KC and supported by oncogenic properties of the beta HPV proteins. Unlike the cancer associated alpha genus HPVs, in which transcriptionally active viral genomes are invariably found associated with the cancers, that is not the case for the beta genus HPVs and keratinocyte carcinomas. Thus a role for the beta HPVs in KC would necessarily be in the carcinogenesis initiation and not in the maintenance of the tumor. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Genus Pouteria: chemistry and biological activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cíntia A. M. Silva

    Full Text Available The genus Pouteria belongs to the family Sapotaceae and can be widely found around the World. These plants have been used as building material, as food, because the eatable fruits, as well as remedies in folk medicine. Some biological activities have been reported to species of this genus such as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antifungal. However, the real potential of this genus as source of new drugs or phytomedicines remains unknown. Therefore, a review of the so far known chemical composition and biological activities of this genus is presented to stimulate new studies about the species already reported moreover that species have no reference about chemistry or biological activities could be found until now.

  15. Genomic Diversity in the Genus of Aspergillus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Jane Lind Nybo

    , sections and genus of Aspergillus. The work uncovers a large genomic diversity across all studied groups of species. The genomic diversity was especially evident on the section level, where the proteins shared by all species only represents ⇠55% of the proteome. This number decreases even further, to 38......, sections Nigri, Usti and Cavericolus, clade Tubingensis, and species A. niger. It lastly uses these results to predict genetic traits that take part in fungal speciation. Within a few years the Aspergillus whole-genus sequencing project will have published all currently-accepted Aspergillus genomes......Aspergillus is a highly important genus of saprotrophic filamentous fungi. It is a very diverse genus that is inextricably intertwined with human a↵airs on a daily basis, holding species relevant to plant and human pathology, enzyme and bulk chemistry production, food and beverage biotechnology...

  16. Infinite genus surfaces and irrational polygonal billiards

    OpenAIRE

    Valdez, Ferrán

    2009-01-01

    We prove that the natural invariant surface associated with the billiard game on an irrational polygonal table is homeomorphic to the Loch Ness monster, that is, the only orientable infinite genus topological real surface with exactly one end.

  17. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Gliocephalotrichum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombard, L.; Serrato-Diaz, L.M.; Cheewangkoon, R.; French-Monar, R.D.; Decock, C.; Crous, P.W.

    2014-01-01

    Species in the genus Gliocephalotrichum (= Leuconectria) (Hypocreales, Nectriaceae) are soilborne fungi, associated with post-harvest fruit spoilage of several important tropical fruit crops. Contemporary taxonomic studies of these fungi have relied on morphology and DNA sequence comparisons of the

  18. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Gliocephalotrichum

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombard, L.; Serrato-Diaz, L. M.; Cheewangkoon, R.; French-Monar, R. D.; Decock, C.; Crous, P. W.

    Species in the genus Gliocephalotrichum (= Leuconectria) (Hypocreales, Nectriaceae) are soilborne fungi, associated with post-harvest fruit spoilage of several important tropical fruit crops. Contemporary taxonomic studies of these fungi have relied on morphology and DNA sequence comparisons of the

  19. Generalized regular genus for manifolds with boundary

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Cristofori

    2003-05-01

    Full Text Available We introduce a generalization of the regular genus, a combinatorial invariant of PL manifolds ([10], which is proved to be strictly related, in dimension three, to generalized Heegaard splittings defined in [12].

  20. Kops genus - en værkstedsrapport

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gudiksen, Asgerd

    2008-01-01

     Inden for Ømålsområdet optræder ordet kop både i genus femininum, masku­linum og neutrum. På Sjælland, hvor trekønssystemet er under af­vikling, kan ordet desuden være genus commune. Der kan konstateres en vis dialektgeografisk fordeling af de tre (fire) genera, men især på Sjælland er...

  1. A taxonomic revision of the genus Podocarpus

    OpenAIRE

    Laubenfels, de, D.J.

    1985-01-01

    In connection with the forthcoming revision of the Coniferae for the Flora Malesiana, the author thought it necessary to revise the genus Podocarpus. Although this genus has a substantial representation in Malesia (30 species), the revision is too involved to be appropriate with the Flora Malesiana per se. One new subgenus and 17 new sections are described, and 94 species are enumerated, of which 11 species and 1 variety are described as new, and 3 varieties have been raised to specific rank....

  2. 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.

  3. Pandora formicae, a specialist ant pathogenic fungus: New insights into biology and taxonomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Małagocka, Joanna; Jensen, Annette Bruun; Eilenberg, Jørgen

    2017-02-01

    Among fungi from the order Entomophthorales (Entomophthoromycota), there are many specialized, obligatory insect-killing pathogens. Pandora formicae (Humber & Bałazy) Humber is a rare example of an entomophthoralean fungus adapted to exclusively infect social insects: wood ants from the genus Formica. There is limited information available on P. formicae; many important aspects of this host-pathogen system remain hitherto unknown, and the taxonomical status of the fungus is unclear. Our study fills out some main gaps in the life history of P. formicae, such as seasonal prevalence and overwintering strategy. Field studies of infection prevalence show a disease peak in late summer and early autumn. Typical thick-walled entomophthoralean resting spores of P. formicae are documented and described for the first time. The proportion of cadavers with resting spores increased from late summer throughout autumn, suggesting that these spores are the main overwintering fungal structures. In addition, the phylogenetic status of Pandora formicae is outlined. Finally, we review the available taxonomical literature and conclude that the name P. formicae should be used rather than the name P. myrmecophaga for ant-infecting fungi displaying described morphological features. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. An overlooked mandibular-rubbing behavior used during recruitment by the African weaver ant, Oecophylla longinoda.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olivier Roux

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available In Oecophylla, an ant genus comprising two territorially dominant arboreal species, workers are known to (1 use anal spots to mark their territories, (2 drag their gaster along the substrate to deposit short-range recruitment trails, and (3 drag the extruded rectal gland along the substrate to deposit the trails used in long-range recruitment. Here we study an overlooked but important marking behavior in which O. longinoda workers first rub the underside of their mandibles onto the substrate, and then--in a surprising posture--tilt their head and also rub the upper side of their mandibles. We demonstrate that this behavior is used to recruit nestmates. Its frequency varies with the rate at which a new territory, a sugary food source, a prey item, or an alien ant are discovered. Microscopy analyses showed that both the upper side and the underside of the mandibles possess pores linked to secretory glands. So, by rubbing their mandibles onto the substrate, the workers probably spread a secretion from these glands that is involved in nestmate recruitment.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. A heritable component in sex ratio and caste determination in a Cardiocondyla ant

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heinze Jürgen

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Studies on sex ratios in social insects provide among the most compelling evidence for the importance of kin selection in social evolution. The elegant synthesis of Fisher's sex ratio principle and Hamilton's inclusive fitness theory predicts that colony-level sex ratios vary with the colonies' social and genetic structures. Numerous empirical studies in ants, bees, and wasps have corroborated these predictions. However, the evolutionary optimization of sex ratios requires genetic variation, but one fundamental determinant of sex ratios - the propensity of female larvae to develop into young queens or workers ("queen bias" - is thought to be largely controlled by the environment. Evidence for a genetic influence on sex ratio and queen bias is as yet restricted to a few taxa, in particular hybrids. Because of the very short lifetime of their queens, ants of the genus Cardiocondyla are ideal model systems for the study of complete lifetime reproductive success, queen bias, and sex ratios. We found that lifetime sex ratios of the ant Cardiocondyla kagutsuchi have a heritable component. In experimental single-queen colonies, 22 queens from a genetic lineage with a highly female-biased sex ratio produced significantly more female-biased offspring sex ratios than 16 queens from a lineage with a more male-biased sex ratio (median 91.5% vs. 58.5% female sexuals. Sex ratio variation resulted from different likelihood of female larvae developing into sexuals (median 50% vs. 22.6% female sexuals even when uniformly nursed by workers from another colony. Consistent differences in lifetime sex ratios and queen bias among queens of C. kagutsuchi suggest that heritable, genetic or maternal effects strongly affect caste determination. Such variation might provide the basis for adaptive evolution of queen and worker strategies, though it momentarily constrains the power of workers and queens to optimize caste ratios.

  8. A heritable component in sex ratio and caste determination in a Cardiocondyla ant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frohschammer, Sabine; Heinze, Jürgen

    2009-10-28

    Studies on sex ratios in social insects provide among the most compelling evidence for the importance of kin selection in social evolution. The elegant synthesis of Fisher's sex ratio principle and Hamilton's inclusive fitness theory predicts that colony-level sex ratios vary with the colonies' social and genetic structures. Numerous empirical studies in ants, bees, and wasps have corroborated these predictions. However, the evolutionary optimization of sex ratios requires genetic variation, but one fundamental determinant of sex ratios - the propensity of female larvae to develop into young queens or workers ("queen bias") - is thought to be largely controlled by the environment. Evidence for a genetic influence on sex ratio and queen bias is as yet restricted to a few taxa, in particular hybrids.Because of the very short lifetime of their queens, ants of the genus Cardiocondyla are ideal model systems for the study of complete lifetime reproductive success, queen bias, and sex ratios. We found that lifetime sex ratios of the ant Cardiocondyla kagutsuchi have a heritable component. In experimental single-queen colonies, 22 queens from a genetic lineage with a highly female-biased sex ratio produced significantly more female-biased offspring sex ratios than 16 queens from a lineage with a more male-biased sex ratio (median 91.5% vs. 58.5% female sexuals). Sex ratio variation resulted from different likelihood of female larvae developing into sexuals (median 50% vs. 22.6% female sexuals) even when uniformly nursed by workers from another colony.Consistent differences in lifetime sex ratios and queen bias among queens of C. kagutsuchi suggest that heritable, genetic or maternal effects strongly affect caste determination. Such variation might provide the basis for adaptive evolution of queen and worker strategies, though it momentarily constrains the power of workers and queens to optimize caste ratios.

  9. Leaf-cutting ants Acromyrmex niger Smith, 1858 (Hymenoptera; Formicidae) used as bioindicators of agrotoxics residues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Liriana Belizi; Rio Cantagalli; Denise Alves Lopes; Ana Liscia Paz Barateiro Stuchi; Maria Claudia Colla Ruvolo Takasusuki

    2014-01-01

    Despite the condition of leaf-cutting ant pests in agroecosystems, it is undeniable the benefits they can bring in certain situations or environments. The leaf-cutting ants of the genus Acromyrmex attack mainly leaves of vegetables and fruit trees exposing not only to the agrochemicals used for their control as well as to those used for the control of other pests. Due to the bioindicator potential of environmental quality of the ants and their frequent exposure to agrochemicals such as organophosphates, neonicotinoids and growth regulators insecticide used for pest control, it is necessary to study the sublethal effects that these pesticides may cause. The electrophoresis technique was used to study the activity of esterase isozymes involved in the metabolism of xenobiotics of A. niger, combined with changes in the expression of isozymes after contamination by pesticides. A. niger showed eight regions of esterase activity, which were called EST-1, EST-2, EST-3, EST-4, EST-5, EST-6, EST-7 and EST-8 according to the electrophoretic mobility. As the specificity to α and β - naphthyl acetate substrates, the EST-7 and EST-8 may be classified as α esterase and the others as ± b esterases. EST-5 is considered an enzyme of the type cholinesterase ii and the others are of the type carboxylesterase. The electrophoretic analysis showed partial inhibition to all esterases subjected to the contact with Malathion organophosforate at the concentrations 1 x 10-3 % and 5 x 10-3 %, which may be considered as a biomarker for the presence of residues of this insecticide in the environment. The regression analysis for sublethal effects of the tested pesticides demonstrated correlation between dose and mortality only for Thiametoxam neonicotinoid pesticide.

  10. The ant genomes have been invaded by several types of mariner transposable elements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorite, Pedro; Maside, Xulio; Sanllorente, Olivia; Torres, María I.; Periquet, Georges; Palomeque, Teresa

    2012-12-01

    To date, only three types of full-length mariner elements have been described in ants, each one in a different genus of the Myrmicinae subfamily: Sinvmar was isolated from various Solenopsis species, Myrmar from Myrmica ruginodis, and Mboumar from Messor bouvieri. In this study, we report the coexistence of three mariner elements ( Tnigmar- Si, Tnigmar- Mr, and Tnigmar- Mb) in the genome of a single species, Tapinoma nigerrimum (subfamily Dolichoderinae). Molecular evolutionary analyses of the nucleotide sequence data revealed a general agreement between the evolutionary history of most the elements and the ant species that harbour them, and suggest that they are at the vertical inactivation stage of the so-called Mariner Life Cycle. In contrast, significantly reduced levels of synonymous divergence between Mboumar and Tnigmar- Mb and between Myrmar and Botmar (a mariner element isolated from Bombus terrestris), relative to those observed between their hosts, suggest that these elements arrived to the species that host them by horizontal transfer, long after the species' split. The horizontal transfer events for the two pairs of elements could be roughly dated within the last 2 million years and about 14 million years, respectively. As would be expected under this scenario, the coding sequences of the youngest elements, Tnigmar- Mb and Mboumar, are intact and, thus, potentially functional. Each mariner element has a different chromosomal distribution pattern according to their stage within the Mariner Life Cycle. Finally, a new defective transposable element ( Azteca) has also been found inserted into the Tnigmar- Mr sequences showing that the ant genomes have been invaded by at least four different types of mariner elements.

  11. Phylogenetic relationships in the genus Leonardoxa (Leguminosae: Caesalpinioideae) inferred from chloroplast trnL intron and trnL-trnF intergenic spacer sequences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brouat, Carine; Gielly, Ludovic; McKey, Doyle

    2001-01-01

    The African genus LEONARDOXA: (Leguminosae: Caesalpinioideae) comprises two Congolean species and a group of four mostly allopatric subspecies principally located in Cameroon and clustered together in the L. africana complex. LEONARDOXA: provides a good opportunity to investigate the evolutionary history of ant-plant mutualisms, as it exhibits various grades of ant-plant interactions from diffuse to obligate and symbiotic associations. We present in this paper the first molecular phylogenetic study of this genus. We sequenced both the chloroplast DNA trnL intron (677 aligned base pairs [bp]) and trnL-trnF intergene spacer (598 aligned bp). Inferred phylogenetic relationships suggested first that the genus is paraphyletic. The L. africana complex is clearly separated from the two Congolean species, and the integrity of the genus is thus in question. In the L. africana complex, our data showed a lack of congruence between clades suggested by morphological and chloroplast characters. This, and the low level of molecular divergence found between subspecies, suggests gene flow and introgressive events in the L. africana complex.

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. 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...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    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.

  1. [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.

  2. 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...

  3. 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)

  4. 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.

  5. 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)

  6. 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

  7. Genomic diversity within the haloalkaliphilic genus Thioalkalivibrio.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahn, Anne-Catherine; Meier-Kolthoff, Jan P; Overmars, Lex; Richter, Michael; Woyke, Tanja; Sorokin, Dimitry Y; Muyzer, Gerard

    2017-01-01

    Thioalkalivibrio is a genus of obligate chemolithoautotrophic haloalkaliphilic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria. Their habitat are soda lakes which are dual extreme environments with a pH range from 9.5 to 11 and salt concentrations up to saturation. More than 100 strains of this genus have been isolated from various soda lakes all over the world, but only ten species have been effectively described yet. Therefore, the assignment of the remaining strains to either existing or novel species is important and will further elucidate their genomic diversity as well as give a better general understanding of this genus. Recently, the genomes of 76 Thioalkalivibrio strains were sequenced. On these, we applied different methods including (i) 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis, (ii) Multilocus Sequence Analysis (MLSA) based on eight housekeeping genes, (iii) Average Nucleotide Identity based on BLAST (ANIb) and MUMmer (ANIm), (iv) Tetranucleotide frequency correlation coefficients (TETRA), (v) digital DNA:DNA hybridization (dDDH) as well as (vi) nucleotide- and amino acid-based Genome BLAST Distance Phylogeny (GBDP) analyses. We detected a high genomic diversity by revealing 15 new "genomic" species and 16 new "genomic" subspecies in addition to the ten already described species. Phylogenetic and phylogenomic analyses showed that the genus is not monophyletic, because four strains were clearly separated from the other Thioalkalivibrio by type strains from other genera. Therefore, it is recommended to classify the latter group as a novel genus. The biogeographic distribution of Thioalkalivibrio suggested that the different "genomic" species can be classified as candidate disjunct or candidate endemic species. This study is a detailed genome-based classification and identification of members within the genus Thioalkalivibrio. However, future phenotypical and chemotaxonomical studies will be needed for a full species description of this genus.

  8. Leptogenopapus mirabilis, new genus and species of Lomechusini (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae, Aleocharinae) from Papua New Guinea associated with ants of the genus Leptogenys Roger

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hlaváč, P.; Janda, Milan

    -, č. 2062 (2009), s. 57-64 ISSN 1175-5326 R&D Projects: GA MŠk LC06073; GA AV ČR KJB612230701 Grant - others:U.S. National Science Foundation(US) DEB-02-11591 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : Staphylinidae * Aleocharinae * Lomechusini Subject RIV: EG - Zoology Impact factor: 0.891, year: 2009

  9. The genus Isodon (Schrad. ex Benth. Spach in Africa and a new genus Rabdosiella Codd (Lamiaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. E. Codd

    1984-12-01

    Full Text Available The typification of the genus Isodon (Schrad. ex Benth. Spach and its occurrence in Africa are discussed; an allied genus Rabdosiella Codd is described and the combinations R. calycina (Benth. Codd and R. ternifolia (D.Don Codd (the latter an Indian species are effected.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Identification and nomenclature of the genus Penicillium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visagie, C M; Houbraken, J; Frisvad, J C; Hong, S-B; Klaassen, C H W; Perrone, G; Seifert, K A; Varga, J; Yaguchi, T; Samson, R A

    2014-06-01

    Penicillium is a diverse genus occurring worldwide and its species play important roles as decomposers of organic materials and cause destructive rots in the food industry where they produce a wide range of mycotoxins. Other species are considered enzyme factories or are common indoor air allergens. Although DNA sequences are essential for robust identification of Penicillium species, there is currently no comprehensive, verified reference database for the genus. To coincide with the move to one fungus one name in the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi and plants, the generic concept of Penicillium was re-defined to accommodate species from other genera, such as Chromocleista, Eladia, Eupenicillium, Torulomyces and Thysanophora, which together comprise a large monophyletic clade. As a result of this, and the many new species described in recent years, it was necessary to update the list of accepted species in Penicillium. The genus currently contains 354 accepted species, including new combinations for Aspergillus crystallinus, A. malodoratus and A. paradoxus, which belong to Penicillium section Paradoxa. To add to the taxonomic value of the list, we also provide information on each accepted species MycoBank number, living ex-type strains and provide GenBank accession numbers to ITS, β-tubulin, calmodulin and RPB2 sequences, thereby supplying a verified set of sequences for each species of the genus. In addition to the nomenclatural list, we recommend a standard working method for species descriptions and identifications to be adopted by laboratories working on this genus.

  13. 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

  14. 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)

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Identification and nomenclature of the genus Penicillium

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Visagie, C.M.; Houbraken, J.; Frisvad, Jens Christian

    2014-01-01

    Penicillium is a diverse genus occurring worldwide and its species play important roles as decomposers of organic materials and cause destructive rots in the food industry where they produce a wide range of mycotoxins. Other species are considered enzyme factories or are common indoor air allergens....... Although DNA sequences are essential for robust identification of Penicillium species, there is currently no comprehensive, verified reference database for the genus. To coincide with the move to one fungus one name in the International Code of Nomenclature for algae, fungi and plants, the generic concept...... of accepted species in Penicillium. The genus currently contains 354 accepted species, including new combinations for Aspergillus crystallinus, A. malodoratus and A. paradoxus, which belong to Penicillium section Paradoxa. To add to the taxonomic value of the list, we also provide information on each accepted...

  19. The genus curve of the Abell clusters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhoads, James E.; Gott, J. Richard, III; Postman, Marc

    1994-01-01

    We study the topology of large-scale structure through a genus curve measurement of the recent Abell catalog redshift survey of Postman, Huchra, and Geller (1992). The structure is found to be spongelike near median density and to exhibit isolated superclusters and voids at high and low densities, respectively. The genus curve shows a slight shift toward 'meatball' topology, but remains consistent with the hypothesis of Gaussian random phase initial conditions. The amplitude of the genus curve corresponds to a power-law spectrum with index n = 0.21-0.47+0.43 on scales of 48/h Mpc or to a cold dark matter power spectrum with omega h = 0.36-0.17+0.46.

  20. The genus curve of the Abell clusters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhoads, James E.; Gott, J. Richard, III; Postman, Marc

    1994-01-01

    We study the topology of large-scale structure through a genus curve measurement of the recent Abell catalog redshift survey of Postman, Huchra, and Geller (1992). The structure is found to be spongelike near median density and to exhibit isolated superclusters and voids at high and low densities, respectively. The genus curve shows a slight shift toward 'meatball' topology, but remains consistent with the hypothesis of Gaussian random phase initial conditions. The amplitude of the genus curve corresponds to a power-law spectrum with index n = 0.21(sub -0.47 sup +0.43) on scales of 48/h Mpc or to a cold dark matter power spectrum with omega h = 0.36(sub -0.17 sup +0.46).

  1. Therapeutic value of the genus Alpinia, Zingiberaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristiane P. Victório

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Plants containing bioactive substances have increasingly become the object of research studies, particularly those plants with therapeutic value. Many species of the genus Alpinia provide a variety of medicinal properties, such as, Alpinia zerumbet (Pers. Burtt et Smith and A. purpurata (Vieill K. Schum, which have a significant presence in Brazil. These species have been commercialized in the food and cosmetic industries. However, their greatest importance arises from the medicinal properties of their essential oils containing flavonoids, terpenoids and kavalactones which have been used in folk medicine to treat, for example, arterial hypertension and inflammatory processes. In addition, such species are also used in multidisciplinary studies, including phytochemistry, ethnobotany and biology, indicating the key pharmacological role of this genus in everyday life. Therefore, this work aims to present a bibliographic review of the genus Alpinia and its significance in therapeutic applications.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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 ...

  5. 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 ...

  6. 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 ...

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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)

  11. 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...

  12. 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.

  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. Notes on the genus Punctelia in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Steen; Søchting, Ulrik

    2007-01-01

    establishing the genus Punctelia, did not re-combine P. ulophylla, nor include it in the accompanying key. She probably considered it as a synonym of P. subrudecta. In a study on European Punctelia species with lecanoric acid, van Herk & Aptroot (2000) accepted the taxon and made the combination Punctelia...... name at species level, proposed the combination Punctelia jeckeri, and lectotypified the name. As a preparatory work to a forthcoming revision of the Danish lichen checklist (Søchting & Alstrup 2007) it was decided to examine the Danish material of the genus Punctelia....

  17. 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...

  18. 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....

  19. 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

  20. 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.

  1. Low variation in ribosomal DNA and internal transcribed spacers of the symbiotic fungi of leaf-cutting ants (Attini: Formicidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silva-Pinhati A.C.O.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Leaf-cutting ants of the genera Atta and Acromyrmex (tribe Attini are symbiotic with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Leucoagaricus (tribe Leucocoprineae, which they cultivate on vegetable matter inside their nests. We determined the variation of the 28S, 18S, and 5.8S ribosomal DNA (rDNA gene loci and the rapidly evolving internal transcribed spacers 1 and 2 (ITS1 and ITS2 of 15 sympatric and allopatric fungi associated with colonies of 11 species of leafcutter ants living up to 2,600 km apart in Brazil. We found that the fungal rDNA and ITS sequences from different species of ants were identical (or nearly identical to each other, whereas 10 GenBank Leucoagaricus species showed higher ITS variation. Our findings suggest that Atta and Acromyrmex leafcutters living in geographic sites that are very distant from each other cultivate a single fungal species made up of closely related lineages of Leucoagaricus gongylophorus. We discuss the strikingly high similarity in the ITS1 and ITS2 regions of the Atta and Acromyrmex symbiotic L. gongylophorus studied by us, in contrast to the lower similarity displayed by their non-symbiotic counterparts. We suggest that the similarity of our L. gongylophorus isolates is an indication of the recent association of the fungus with these ants, and propose that both the intense lateral transmission of fungal material within leafcutter nests and the selection of more adapted fungal strains are involved in the homogenization of the symbiotic fungal stock.

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. Phylogenetic placement of an unusual coral mushroom challenges the classic hypothesis of strict coevolution in the apterostigma pilosum group ant-fungus mutualism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dentinger, Bryn T M; Lodge, D Jean; Munkacsi, Andrew B; Desjardin, Dennis E; McLaughlin, David J

    2009-08-01

    The approximately 50 million-year-old fungus-farming ant mutualism is a classic example of coevolution, involving ants that subsist on asexual, fungal biomass, in turn propagating the fungus clonally through nest-to-nest transmission. Most mutualistic ants cultivate two closely related groups of gilled mushrooms, whereas one small group of ants in the genus Apterostigma cultivates a distantly related lineage comprised of the G2 and G4 groups. The G2 and G4 fungi were previously shown to form a monophyletic group sister to the thread-like coral mushroom family Pterulaceae. Here, we identify an enigmatic coral mushroom that produces both fertile and sterile fruiting structures as the closest free-living relative of the G4 fungi, challenging the monophyly of the Apterostigma-cultivated fungi for the first time. Both nonparametric bootstrap and Bayesian posterior probability support the node leading to the G4 cultivars and a free-living Pterula mushroom. These data suggest three scenarios that contradict the hypothesis of strict coevolution: (1) multiple domestications, (2) escape from domestication, (3) selection of single cultivar lineages from an ancestral mixed-fungus garden. These results illustrate how incomplete phylogenies for coevolved symbionts impede our understanding of the patterns and processes of coevolution.

  5. X-Ray microtomography for ant taxonomy: An exploration and case study with two new Terataner (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae species from Madagascar.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Hita Garcia

    Full Text Available We explore the potential of x-ray micro computed tomography (μCT for the field of ant taxonomy by using it to enhance the descriptions of two remarkable new species of the ant genus Terataner: T. balrog sp. n. and T. nymeria sp. n.. We provide an illustrated worker-based species identification key for all species found on Madagascar, as well as detailed taxonomic descriptions, which include diagnoses, discussions, measurements, natural history data, high-quality montage images and distribution maps for both new species. In addition to conventional morphological examination, we have used virtual reconstructions based on volumetric μCT scanning data for the species descriptions. We also include 3D PDFs, still images of virtual reconstructions, and 3D rotation videos for both holotype workers and one paratype queen. The complete μCT datasets have been made available online (Dryad, https://datadryad.org and represent the first cybertypes in ants (and insects. We discuss the potential of μCT scanning and critically assess the usefulness of cybertypes for ant taxonomy.

  6. 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...

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. 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...

  10. THE GENUS TRIGONOSPORA (THELYPTERIDACEAE IN MALESIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RE Holttum

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The distribution of the genus is discussed, and the Malesian species distinguished and described. Two new combinations are effected, Trigono-spora calcarata (Bl. Holtt. and T. koorderSiiH (Chr. Holtt.; the latter is here recognized for the first time as closely related to T. calcarata,.

  11. Palynology of the Genus Stachytarpheta Vahl. (Verbenaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Olubukola ADEDEJI

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available The exine morphology of pollen grains of Stachytarpheta indica (Linn. Vahl, Stachytarpheta cayennensis (Rich. Vahl and Stachytarpheta angustifolia (Mill. Vahl is reported. This study was carried out with a light microscope. Pollen grains from fresh anthers were collected and aceolysed. Statistical analysis used to analyse the data collected include cluster analysis, correlation analysis, similarity and distance indices. The pollen grains are spheroidal to oblate to sub-oblate in shape. They are aperturate, both colpate and porate. Tricolpate types occur most frequently, acolpate, monocolpate, bicolpate and tetracolpate types less frequently. The multicolpate and multiporate attributes in all the species indicate that the genus is not primitive in evolutionary history and this species probably, evolved around in the same time. According to the size, the pollen grains of the genus falls into groups permagna (pollen diameter 100-200 ?m and giganta (pollen diameter greater than 200 ?m. S. cayennensis and S. anguistifolia belong to group permagna and S. indica only in the group giganta. This separates S. indica from the other two species. The large pollen grain size in the genus clearly supports the fact that the flowers in the genus are more insect-and-bird pollinated than wind pollinated. The similarity and distance indices of the species showed that S. cayennensis and S. angustifolia are the closest. S. indica is closer to S. angustifolia but farther from S. cayennensis.

  12. Genome Evolution in the Genus Sorghum (Poaceae)

    OpenAIRE

    PRICE, H. JAMES; DILLON, SALLY L.; HODNETT, GEORGE; ROONEY, WILLIAM L.; ROSS, LARRY; JOHNSTON, J. SPENCER

    2005-01-01

    • Background and Aims The roles of variation in DNA content in plant evolution and adaptation remain a major biological enigma. Chromosome number and 2C DNA content were determined for 21 of the 25 species of the genus Sorghum and analysed from a phylogenetic perspective.

  13. Some genus 3 curves with many points

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Auer, R; Top, J; Fieker, C; Kohel, DR

    2002-01-01

    We explain a naive approach towards the problem of finding genus 3 curves C over any given finite field F-q of odd characteristic, with a number of rational points close to the Hasse-Weil-Serre upper bound q+1+3[2rootq]. The method turns out to be successful at least in characteristic 3.

  14. Phylogeny of the plant genus Pachypodium (Apocynaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dylan O. Burge

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Background. The genus Pachypodium contains 21 species of succulent, generally spinescent shrubs and trees found in southern Africa and Madagascar. Pachypodium has diversified mostly into arid and semi-arid habitats of Madagascar, and has been cited as an example of a plant group that links the highly diverse arid-adapted floras of Africa and Madagascar. However, a lack of knowledge about phylogenetic relationships within the genus has prevented testing of this and other hypotheses about the group.Methodology/Principal Findings. We use DNA sequence data from the nuclear ribosomal ITS and chloroplast trnL-F region for all 21 Pachypodium species to reconstruct evolutionary relationships within the genus. We compare phylogenetic results to previous taxonomic classifications and geography. Results support three infrageneric taxa from the most recent classification of Pachypodium, and suggest that a group of African species (P. namaquanum, P. succulentum and P. bispinosum may deserve taxonomic recognition as an infrageneric taxon. However, our results do not resolve relationships among major African and Malagasy lineages of the genus.Conclusions/Significance. We present the first molecular phylogenetic analysis of Pachypodium. Our work has revealed five distinct lineages, most of which correspond to groups recognized in past taxonomic classifications. Our work also suggests that there is a complex biogeographic relationship between Pachypodium of Africa and Madagascar.

  15. A revision of the genus Mastixia (Cornaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Matthew, K.M.

    1976-01-01

    A revision of the genus in its entire range of distribution is presented. Out of more than 50 published specific names, 9 species (with 13 subspecies or varieties) are recognized, in addition to 4 new species and one new subspecies. The two subgenera Pentamastixia and Tetramastixia of Wangerin

  16. Chloothamnus, a neglected genus of Bambusaceae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Henrard, J.Th.

    1936-01-01

    Chloothamnus BUSE ap. MIQUEL, Pl. Jungh. 1854, 386 — Oreiostachys GAMBLE ap. KOORDERS, Verh. Kon. Ak. Wet. 16, 1908, 657.. Hab.: Malay Archipelago. 1. C. chilianthus BUSE, l.c., type species of the genus — Schizostachyum chilianthum (BUSE) KURZ, Journ. As. Soc. Beng. 39, ii, 1870, 88 — non Melocanna

  17. The genus Malassezia and human disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Inamadar A

    2003-07-01

    Full Text Available Sabouraud's Pityrosporum is now recognized as Malassezia. With taxonomic revision of the genus, newer species have been included. The role of this member of the normal human skin flora in different cutaneous and systemic disorders is becoming clearer. The immunological responses it induces in the human body are conflicting and their relevance to clinical features is yet to be explored.

  18. The genus Lolium : taxonomy and genetic resources

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Loos, B.P.

    1994-01-01

    Several aspects of variation within the genus Lolium, and more in detail within Lolium perenne (perennial ryegrass) have been highlighted. As the results are extensively discussed in each chapter, the general discussion is focused on two aspects of

  19. A revision of the genus Phacellaria (Santalaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Danser, B.H.

    1939-01-01

    On several occasions the author received specimens for determination under the name of Loranthaceae, which in reality appeared to be Phacellarias, usually parasitic on Loranthaceae. When trying to name these Phacellarias, he preceived how difficult it was to survey the literature of the genus.

  20. Conspectus of the genus Amyema Tieghem (Loranthaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Barlow, Bryan A.

    1992-01-01

    The Australasian/Malesian genus Amyema is reviewed. Particular attention is given to the species of the Malesian region, as a precursor to a treatment of Loranthaceae for Flora Malesiana. Amyema comprises 92 species, and is distributed from the southeast Asian mainland (Malaya, Thailand) throughout

  1. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Cylindrocladiella

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombard, L.; Shivas, R.G.; To-anun, C.; Crous, P.W.

    2012-01-01

    The genus Cylindrocladiella was established to accommodate Cylindrocladium-like fungi that have small, cylindrical conidia and aseptate stipe extensions. Contemporary taxonomic studies of these fungi have relied on morphology and to a lesser extent on DNA sequence comparisons of the internal

  2. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Gliocladiopsis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombard, L.; Crous, P.W.

    2012-01-01

    Using a global set of isolates and a phylogenetic approach employing DNA sequence data from five genes (β-tubulin, histone H3, internal transcribed spacer region, 28S large subunit region and translation elongation factor 1-α), the taxonomic status of the genus Gliocladiopsis (Glionectria)

  3. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Gliocladiopsis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lombard, L.; Crous, P.W.

    2012-01-01

    Using a global set of isolates and a phylogenetic approach employing DNA sequence data from five genes (ß-tubulin, histone H3, internal transcribed spacer region, 28S large subunit region and translation elongation factor 1-a), the taxonomic status of the genus Gliocladiopsis (Glionectria)

  4. Records of the genus Coccygidium Saussure (Hymenoptera ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Coccygidium arabica sp. nov., (Hym., Braconidae, Agathidinae) is described from Saudi Arabia. Morphological diagnostic characters of the new species were figured and compared with those of the related species Coccygidium angostura. The genus Coccygidium Saussure is recorded for the first time from Saudi Arabia.

  5. Chemotaxonomy of the genus Nuxia (Buddlejaceae)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Søren Rosendal

    1999-01-01

    An investigation of two species of Nuxia (Buddlejaceae) showed that this genus is characterised by the presence of the eight-carbon iridoid glucoside unedoside and/or its derivatives. From N. floribunda was isolated unedoside, nuxioside (6-O-a-L-rhamnopyranosyl-unedoside) and 2''-acetyl-3...

  6. A new genus of Blacinae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lester P. Gibson

    1977-01-01

    A new genus, Canalicephalus, of the subfamily Blacinae is described along with 4 new species, C. orientalis from Borneo, C. novus from New Guinea, and C. bakeri and C. mindanao, both from the Philippines. Keys are included to separate these 2 genera and the 4...

  7. Thermoregulation of the subterranean rodent genus Bathyergus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The thermoregulation of the largest subterranean rodent, genus Bathyergus, comprising two species, B. suillus and B. janetta,occurring in mesic and semiarid habitats respectively, was investigated and compared with that of other subterranean rodents. Both species display low resting metabolic rates and low body ...

  8. (Lepidoptera: Zygaenoidea) The genus Psycharium Herrich ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The genus Psycharium is revised for the first time. Until now, only a drawing of the female type species was known. The male and female of the type species, P. pellucens Herrich-Schaffer, and four new species, montanum, kammanassiense, bamardi and natalense,are comprehensively described. A key to the species of ...

  9. Biological advances in Bergenia genus plant

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Jane

    2011-08-08

    Aug 8, 2011 ... Bergenia, a genus belonging to Saxifragaceae family, is one of the most important medicinal plants, has high application values for human. Currently, wild Bergenia is becoming lacking, due to destruction of ecological environment and excessive excavation; furthermore, the study on it is not deep enough,.

  10. Phytochemical and Pharmacological Properties of the Genus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Melodinus is an important genus comprising of approximately 53 species of medicinal plants (Apocynaceae). Some species have been used in Chinese folk medicine for the treatment of meningitis in children, rheumatic heart diseases, and diuresis, as well as a decongestive against migraine and sinusitis. This paper is a ...

  11. The genus Kochia (Chenopodiaceae) in North America

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ge-Lin Chu; Stewart Sanderson

    2008-01-01

    The genus Kochia and Bassia with which it has been combined, of Chenopodiaceae tribe Camphorosmeae, were at one time considered to include plants native to Eurasia, Australia, and North America, and included species of both C3 and C4 photosynthetic types. This aggregate has been reduced in size by removal of a large group of C3 Australian genera and species. Because of...

  12. A study in the genus Vulpia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Henrard, J.Th.

    1937-01-01

    In conclusion, we propose the following nomenclatural alterations. For a good classification, the genus Vulpia is to be accepted as a member of the Festuceae. Various names of Vulpia are fixed according to our present rules of nomenclature, viz. V. bromoides (L.) GRAY, V. membranacea (L.) LINK, V.

  13. The genus Gymnospermium (Berberidaceae) in the Balkans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tan, Kit; Shuka, Lulezim; Siljak-Yakovlev, Sonja

    2011-01-01

    A revision of the genus Gymnospermium (Berberidaceae) in the Balkan Peninsula is carried out. Three species are recognised. Gymnospermium maloi is described as a new species from Mt. Picari in Gjirokastra district, southern Albania. It is compared with the closely related G. scipetarum which has...

  14. Polyphasic taxonomy of the genus Talaromyces

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yilmaz, N.; Visagie, C.M.; Houbraken, J.

    2014-01-01

    The genus Talaromyces was described by Benjamin in 1955 as a sexual state of Penicillium that produces soft walled ascomata covered with interwoven hyphae. Phylogenetic information revealed that Penicillium subgenus Biverticillium and Talaromyces form a monophyletic clade distinct from the other...

  15. Interspecific hybridization in the genus Tulipa L.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Creij, van M.G.M.

    1997-01-01

    The genus Tulipa L. comprises about 55 species. The tulip species are classified in two subgenera, Tulipa and Eriostemones, which are subdivided into five and three sections respectively. Commercial tulips are mainly cultivars

  16. Studies on the Genus Orbitolina (Foraminiferida)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hofker, J.

    1963-01-01

    The genus Orbitolina is described in detail and is shown to be represented by one species only: Orbitolina lenticularis (Blumenbach). This species can be subdivided into form-groups, based on the characteristics of the megalospheric embryonic apparatus. The evolution of the species is orthogenetic.

  17. Sarawakodendron, a new genus of Celastraceae

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hou, Ding

    1967-01-01

    During my trip to Malaysia in 1966, sponsored by the Netherlands Foundation for the Advancement of Tropical Research (WOTRO), for doing field work on Anacardiaceae, a new tree genus was found in Sarawak belonging to the family Celastraceae which I have revised for the Flora Malesiana series I,

  18. The genus Lophopyxis Hook. f. (Lophopyxidaceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sleumer, H.

    1968-01-01

    When revising the Icacinaceae from SE. Asia and Malesia recently, my interest was drawn again to the genus Lophopyxis Hook. f. Designated by its author (1887) tentatively as a member of the Euphorbiaceae, it was rejected from this family by Pax as early as 1890. Engler (1893) transferred Lophopyxis

  19. A conspectus of the genus Bhesa (Celastraceae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hou, Ding

    1958-01-01

    In his Numerical List Wallich inserted four specific epithets in the genus Kurrimia, viz 4334 K. pulcherrima Wall., 4335 K. calophylla Wall., 4336 K. paniculata Wall., and later 7200 K.? macrophylla Wall. The latter one was provided with a question mark; it was a new combination for Itea macrophylla

  20. The Mesozoic megafossil genus Linguifolium Arber 1917

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pattemore Gary A.

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The plant megafossil genus Linguifolium Arber 1917 is chiefly known from the Middle and Upper Triassic of Gondwana. The range of Linguifolium extended beyond Gondwana by the Late Triassic, persisting there through the earliest Jurassic (Hettangian. The parent plants probably grew in a well-watered, canopied environment.

  1. The Genus Diporochaeta (Oligochaeta Megascolecidae) in Queensland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jamieson, B.G.M.

    1976-01-01

    Perionychella is reassigned to Diporochaeta as a junior synonym. 9 new species are added to the 8 previously known Queensland species of Diporochaeta, all of which are redescribed, bringing the generic total for Australia to 77 named species. Distribution of the genus is disjunct, the Queensland

  2. On the genus Galidia and its species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jentink, F.A.

    1879-01-01

    In the year 1839 Is. Geoff. St. Hilaire ¹) described and figured three species of his new genus Galidia, viz: elegans, concolor and olivacea, all natives of Madagascar. It seems that Galidia olivacea has not been captured by the travellers who visited Madagascar after Bernier and Goudot: the only

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

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Matos Maravi, Pavel F.; Clouse, R. M.; Sarnat, E. M.; Economo, E. P.; LaPolla, J. S.; Borovanská, Michaela; Rabeling, C.; Czekanski-Moir, J.; Latumahina, F.; Wilson, E. O.; Janda, Milan

    2018-01-01

    Roč. 123, JUN 01 (2018), s. 16-25 ISSN 1055-7903 R&D Projects: GA ČR GB14-36098G Grant - others:GA JU(CZ) 156/2013/P; GA JU(CZ) 152/2016/P Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : biogeography * diversification rate * ecological shift Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour OBOR OECD: Ecology Impact factor: 4.419, year: 2016 https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1055790316303414

  4. Large-scale patterns of diversification in the widespread legume genus Senna and the evolutionary role of extrafloral nectaries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marazzi, Brigitte; Sanderson, Michael J

    2010-12-01

    Unraveling the diversification history of old, species-rich and widespread clades is difficult because of extinction, undersampling, and taxonomic uncertainty. In the context of these challenges, we investigated the timing and mode of lineage diversification in Senna (Leguminosae) to gain insights into the evolutionary role of extrafloral nectaries (EFNs). EFNs secrete nectar, attracting ants and forming ecologically important ant-plant mutualisms. In Senna, EFNs characterize one large clade (EFN clade), including 80% of its 350 species. Taxonomic accounts make Senna the largest caesalpinioid genus, but quantitative comparisons to other taxa require inferences about rates. Molecular dating analyses suggest that Senna originated in the early Eocene, and its major lineages appeared during early/mid Eocene to early Oligocene. EFNs evolved in the late Eocene, after the main radiation of ants. The EFN clade diversified faster, becoming significantly more species-rich than non-EFN clades. The shift in diversification rates associated with EFN evolution supports the hypothesis that EFNs represent a (relatively old) key innovation in Senna. EFNs may have promoted the colonization of new habitats appearing with the early uplift of the Andes. This would explain the distinctive geographic concentration of the EFN clade in South America. © 2010 The Author(s). Evolution© 2010 The Society for the Study of Evolution.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. The phyletic status of the genus Planaria (Platyhelminthes, Turbellaria, Tricladida)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ball, Ian R.; Gourbault, Nicole

    1978-01-01

    The amphiatlantic distribution of the genus Planaria is incompatible with our current hypothesis of the historical biogeography of freshwater planarians. New anatomical studies suggest the possibility that the genus is not strictly monophyletic; new karyological data are strongly corroborative of

  10. Khmeriosicyos, a new monotypic genus of Cucurbitaceae from Cambodia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wilde, de W.J.J.O.; Duyfjes, B.E.E.; Ham, van der R.W.J.M.

    2004-01-01

    A new monotypic genus from Cambodia is described. The genus is defined by a unique combination of characters and has distinct pollen features. The only species is Khmeriosicyos harmandii W.J. de Wilde & Duyfjes.

  11. A preliminary survey of the genus Buchwaldoboletus (Boletales: Boletaceae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beatriz Ortiz-Santana; Ernst E. Both

    2011-01-01

    Buchwaldoboletus is a small genus of about a dozen species with a world-wide distribution. The boletes of this genus are non-mycorrhizal, saprophytic and lignicolous. A preliminary survey is provided and seven new combinations are proposed.

  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. Modular functors are determined by their genus zero data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Jørgen Ellegaard; Ueno, Kenji

    2012-01-01

    We prove in this paper that the genus zero data of a modular functor determines the modular functor. We do this by establishing that the S-matrix in genus one with one point labeled arbitrarily can be expressed in terms of the genus zero information and we give an explicit formula. We do not assume...

  19. Topological classification and enumeration of RNA structures by genus

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersen, Joergen Ellegard; Penner, Robert C.; Reidys, Christian

    2013-01-01

    To an RNA pseudoknot structure is naturally associated a topological surface, which has its associated genus, and structures can thus be classified by the genus. Based on earlier work of Harer-Zagier, we compute the generating function for the number of those structures of fixed genus and minimum...

  20. A Comprehensive review on the genus Plumbago with focus on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Background: The genus Plumbago distributed in warm tropical regions throughout the world is the largest genus in Plumbaginaceae. Medicinal plants are characteristic to the genus Plumbago and are cultivated and utilized worldwide. Plumbago auriculata Lam. is common in South Africa and is often cultivated for its ...

  1. Notes on the genus Digitaria, with descriptions of new species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Henrard, J.Th.

    1934-01-01

    Some years ago I had the opportunity to study more extensively a very interesting group of grasses, belonging to what is now accepted as a distinct genus, the genus Digitaria, formerly belonging as a subgenus to the genus Panicum. As to living plants of this group I was familiar with two european

  2. A new name for the foraminiferal genus Heterospira

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Umbgrove, J.H.F.

    1937-01-01

    A short time ago I described a new foraminiferal genus from the Tertiary of Borneo 1). I gave this genus the name of Heterospira. Mr. P. H. Oehser of Washington drew my attention to the fact that E. Koken as early as 1896²) had used the name Heterospira for a genus of triassic gastropoda from

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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...

  6. A holomorphic anomaly in the elliptic genus

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murthy, Sameer

    2014-01-01

    We consider a class of gauged linear sigma models (GLSMs) in two dimensions that flow to non-compact (2,2) superconformal field theories in the infra-red, a prototype of which is the SL(2,ℝ)/U(1) (cigar) coset. We compute the elliptic genus of the GLSMs as a path-integral on the torus using supersymmetric localization. We find that the result is a Jacobi-like form that is non-holomorphic in the modular parameter τ of the torus, with mock modular behavior. This agrees with a previously-computed expression in the cigar coset. We show that the lack of holomorphicity of the elliptic genus arises from the contributions of a compact boson carrying momentum and winding excitations. This boson has an axionic shift symmetry and plays the role of a compensator field that is needed to cancel the chiral anomaly in the rest of the theory.

  7. Phylogeny and taxonomy of the genus Gliocephalotrichum.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lombard, L; Serrato-Diaz, L M; Cheewangkoon, R; French-Monar, R D; Decock, C; Crous, P W

    2014-06-01

    Species in the genus Gliocephalotrichum (= Leuconectria) (Hypocreales, Nectriaceae) are soilborne fungi, associated with post-harvest fruit spoilage of several important tropical fruit crops. Contemporary taxonomic studies of these fungi have relied on morphology and DNA sequence comparisons of the internal transcribed spacer region of the nuclear rDNA (ITS) and the β-tubulin gene regions. Employing DNA sequence data from four loci (β-tubulin, histone H3, ITS, and translation elongation factor 1-alpha) and morphological comparisons, the taxonomic status of the genus Gliocephalotrichum was re-evaluated. As a result five species are newly described, namely G. humicola (Taiwan, soil), G. mexicanum (rambutan fruit from Mexico), G. nephelii (rambutan fruit from Guatemala), G. queenslandicum (Australia, endophytic isolations) and G. simmonsii (rambutan fruit from Guatemala). Although species of Gliocephalotrichum are generally not regarded as important plant pathogens, their ability to cause post-harvest fruit rot could have an impact on fruit export and storage.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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...

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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”,.

  18. Bigger helpers in the ant Cataglyphis bombycina: increased worker polymorphism or novel soldier caste?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathieu Molet

    Full Text Available The mechanisms by which development favors or constrains the evolution of new phenotypes are incompletely understood. Polyphenic species may benefit from developmental plasticity not only regarding ecological advantages, but also potential for evolutionary diversification. For instance, the repeated evolution of novel castes in ants may have been facilitated by the existence of alternative queen and worker castes and their respective developmental programs.Cataglyphis bombycina is exceptional in its genus because winged queens and size-polymorphic workers occur together with bigger individuals having saber-shaped mandibles. We measured seven body parts in more than 150 individuals to perform a morphometric analysis and assess the developmental origin of this novel phenotype.Adults with saber-shaped mandibles differ from both workers and queens regarding the size of most body parts. Their relative growth rates are identical to workers for some pairs of body parts, and identical to queens for other pairs of body parts; critical sizes differ in all cases.Big individuals are a third caste, i.e. soldiers, not major workers. Novel traits such as elongated mandibles are combined with a mix of queen and worker growth rates. We also reveal the existence of a dimorphism in the queen caste (microgynes and macrogynes. We discuss how novel phenotypes can evolve more readily in the context of an existing polyphenism. Both morphological traits and growth rules from existing queen and worker castes can be recombined, hence mosaic phenotypes are more likely to be viable. In C. bombycina, such a mosaic phenotype appears to function both for defense (saber-shaped mandibles and fat storage (big abdomen. Recycling of developmental programs may have contributed to the morphological diversity and ecological success of ants.

  19. 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.

  20. Sexual Communication in the Drosophila Genus

    OpenAIRE

    Gwénaëlle Bontonou; Claude Wicker-Thomas

    2014-01-01

    In insects, sexual behavior depends on chemical and non-chemical cues that might play an important role in sexual isolation. In this review, we present current knowledge about sexual behavior in the Drosophila genus. We describe courtship and signals involved in sexual communication, with a special focus on sex pheromones. We examine the role of cuticular hydrocarbons as sex pheromones, their implication in sexual isolation, and their evolution. Finally, we discuss the roles of male cuticular...

  1. The genus Artemisia: a comprehensive review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bora, Kundan Singh; Sharma, Anupam

    2011-01-01

    Medicinal plants are nature's gift to human beings to make disease free healthy life, and play a vital role to preserve our health. They are believed to be much safer and proven elixir in the treatment of various ailments. The genus Artemisia (Astraceae) consists of about 500 species, occurring throughout the world. The present review comprises the ethnopharmacological, phytochemical and therapeutic potential of various species of Artemisia. The aim of this this review is to bring together most of the available scientific research conducted on the genus Artemisia, which is currently scattered across various publications. Through this review the authors hope to attract the attention of natural product researchers throughout the world to focus on the unexplored potential of Artemisia species. This review has been compiled using references from major databases such as Chemical Abstracts, Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Abstracts, ScienceDirect, SciFinder, PubMed, King's American Dispensatory, Henriette's Herbal Homepage, Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. An exhaustive survey of literature revealed that the different species of Artemisia have a vast range of biological activities including antimalarial, cytotoxic, antihepatotoxic, antibacterial, antifungal and antioxidant activity. Some very important drug leads have been discovered from this genus, notably artemisinin, the well known antimalarial drug isolated from the Chinese herb Artemisia annua. Terpenoids, flavonoids, coumarins, caffeoylquinic acids, sterols and acetylenes constitute major classes of phytoconstituents of the genus. Various species of Artemisia seems to hold great potential for in-depth investigation for various biological activities, especially their effects on the central nervous and cardiovascular systems.

  2. Wild translation surfaces and infinite genus

    OpenAIRE

    Randecker, Anja

    2014-01-01

    The Gauss-Bonnet formula for classical translation surfaces relates the cone angle of the singularities (geometry) to the genus of the surface (topology). When considering more general translation surfaces, we observe so-called wild singularities for which the notion of cone angle is not applicable any more. In this article, we study whether there still exist relations between the geometry and the topology for translation surfaces with wild singularities. By considering short saddle connectio...

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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....

  8. 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...

  9. 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.

  10. The pangenome of the genus Clostridium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Udaondo, Zulema; Duque, Estrella; Ramos, Juan-Luis

    2017-07-01

    The pangenome for the genus Clostridium sensu stricto, which was obtained using highly curated and annotated genomes from 16 species is presented; some of these cause disease, while others are used for the production of added-value chemicals. Multilocus sequencing analysis revealed that species of this genus group into at least two clades that include non-pathogenic and pathogenic strains, suggesting that pathogenicity is dispersed across the phylogenetic tree. The core genome of the genus includes 546 protein families, which mainly comprise those involved in protein translation and DNA repair. The GS-GOGAT may represent the central pathway for generating organic nitrogen from inorganic nitrogen sources. Glycerol and glucose metabolism genes are well represented in the core genome together with a set of energy conservation systems. A metabolic network comprising proteins/enzymes, RNAs and metabolites, whose topological structure is a non-random and scale-free network with hierarchically structured modules was built. These modules shed light on the interactions between RNAs, proteins and metabolites, revealing biological features of transcription and translation, cell wall biosynthesis, C1 metabolism and N metabolism. Network analysis identified four nodes that function as hubs and bottlenecks, namely, coenzyme A, HPr kinases, S-adenosylmethionine and the ribonuclease P-protein, suggesting pivotal roles for them in Clostridium. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  11. Biodegradation of chlorpyrifos by bacterial genus Pseudomonas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilani, Razia Alam; Rafique, Mazhar; Rehman, Abdul; Munis, Muhammad Farooq Hussain; Rehman, Shafiq Ur; Chaudhary, Hassan Javed

    2016-02-01

    Chlorpyrifos is an organophosphorus pesticide commonly used in agriculture. It is noxious to a variety of organisms that include living soil biota along with beneficial arthropods, fish, birds, humans, animals, and plants. Exposure to chlorpyrifos may cause detrimental effects as delayed seedling emergence, fruit deformities, and abnormal cell division. Contamination of chlorpyrifos has been found about 24 km from the site of its application. There are many physico-chemical and biological approaches to remove organophosphorus pesticides from the ecosystem, among them most promising is biodegradation. The 3,5,6-trichloro-2-pyridinol (TCP) and diethylthiophosphate (DETP) as primary products are made when chlorpyrifos is degraded by soil microorganisms which further break into nontoxic metabolites as CO(2), H(2)O, and NH(3). Pseudomonas is a diversified genus possessing a series of catabolic pathways and enzymes involved in pesticide degradation. Pseudomonas putida MAS-1 is reported to be more efficient in chlorpyrifos degradation by a rate of 90% in 24 h among Pseudomonas genus. The current review analyzed the comparative potential of bacterial species in Pseudomonas genus for degradation of chlorpyrifos thus, expressing an ecofriendly approach for the treatment of environmental contaminants like pesticides. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  12. Standardized gene nomenclature for the Brassica genus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    King Graham J

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The genus Brassica (Brassicaceae, Brassiceae is closely related to the model plant Arabidopsis, and includes several important crop plants. Against the background of ongoing genome sequencing, and in line with efforts to standardize and simplify description of genetic entities, we propose a standard systematic gene nomenclature system for the Brassica genus. This is based upon concatenating abbreviated categories, where these are listed in descending order of significance from left to right (i.e. genus – species – genome – gene name – locus – allele. Indicative examples are provided, and the considerations and recommendations for use are discussed, including outlining the relationship with functionally well-characterized Arabidopsis orthologues. A Brassica Gene Registry has been established under the auspices of the Multinational Brassica Genome Project that will enable management of gene names within the research community, and includes provisional allocation of standard names to genes previously described in the literature or in sequence repositories. The proposed standardization of Brassica gene nomenclature has been distributed to editors of plant and genetics journals and curators of sequence repositories, so that it can be adopted universally.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. [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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  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.