Queen-queen competition by precocious male production in multiqueen ant colonies

Yamauchi, Katsusuke and Ishida, Yasuko and Hashim, Rosli and Heinze, Jürgen (2006) Queen-queen competition by precocious male production in multiqueen ant colonies. Current Biology, 16 (24). pp. 2424-2427. ISSN 0960-9822, DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2006.10.007.

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Official URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S...


Arriving earlier in the breeding area than his rivals may be beneficial for a male when females mate only once or during a short time span. The timing of a male's entrance is usually determined by the male himself, e.g., through returning early from his winter quarters or through accelerated larval development [1-3]. Here, we document a surprisingly simple way of "first come, first served" in a species with local mate competition. In multiqueen colonies of a Cardiocondyla ant, mother queens make sure that their own sons are the first to monopolize mating with a large harem of female sexuals by producing extremely long-lived males early in colony life. Whereas queens in newly founded single-queen colonies started to produce male and female sexuals only several weeks after the eclosion of their first worker off spring, queens in multiqueen colonies precociously reared sons long before the first female sexuals and even before the emergence of their first workers. These early males killed all later emerging males in the nest and mated with all female sexuals subsequently produced. Our data document that the patterns of growth and productivity of insect colonies are surprisingly flexible and can be turned upside down under appropriate selection pressures.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Institute of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science Building, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, MALAYSIA
Uncontrolled Keywords: Animals, Ants/*physiology, Competitive Behavior, Female, Hierarchy, Social, Male, Sex Ratio, *Sexual Behavior, Animal
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Institute of Biological Sciences
Depositing User: Miss Malisa Diana
Date Deposited: 28 Aug 2013 04:12
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2020 01:47
URI: http://eprints.um.edu.my/id/eprint/8300

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