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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Nest Demographics and Foraging Behavior of Apterostigma Collare Emery (Hymenoptera, Formicidae)provide Evidence of Colony Independence

Authors
item Pitts Singer, Theresa
item Espelie, Karl - UNIV. OF GEORGIA-ATHENS

Submitted to: Insectes Sociaux
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: June 6, 2007
Publication Date: July 2, 2007
Citation: Pitts Singer, T., Espelie, K.E. 2007. Nest demographics and foraging behavior of apterostigma collare emery (hymenoptera, formicidae)provide evidence of colony independence. Insectes Sociaux. 54: 310-318

Interpretive Summary: Observations were made of foraging and trail-marking behaviors of Apterostigma collare, which is a primitive fungus-growing ant. Foraging activity observed in the field revealed that workers leave the nest area and follow trails upwards into the canopy, but they did not interact with foragers from other nests. In the laboratory, foragers marked a trail to a food source by dragging the tip of the abdomen. Laboratory bioassays showed that A. collare workers recognize their own foraging trails, but did not always avoid trails of other conspecific colonies.

Technical Abstract: Observations were made of foraging and trail-marking behaviors of Apterostigma collare Emery, which is a primitive fungus-growing ant. Foraging activity observed in the field revealed that workers leave the nest area and follow trails upwards into the canopy, but they did not interact with foragers from other nests. In the laboratory, foragers marked a trail to a food source by dragging the gaster. Laboratory bioassays showed that A. collare workers recognize their own foraging trails, but did not always avoid trails of other conspecific colonies.

Last Modified: 11/27/2014
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