HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
New data on ant adaptability within their environment

By examining the worker castes in colonies of the ant, Pheidole morrisi, researchers have found new evidence that ants alter the organization of their colonies in different environments. Researchers Andrew Yang and colleagues from Duke University compared populations of P. morrisi in Florida, North Carolina and New York, and uncovered evidence supporting the idea that some insects adapt to their environment by adjusting body size and the relative proportion of different castes within their population.

Over the past 30 years, theoretical work on social organization has generated a number of predictions about how the colonies of eusocial insects, like ants and bees, could adapt to different environments. Many ants have morphologically distinct "castes," such as workers and soldiers, that specialize in different tasks within the colony. One long-standing prediction is that the optimal proportion of these castes in a colony should vary as conditions in nature vary. To date, the only evidence that ant colonies can exhibit any flexibility in the relative numbers of workers and soldiers has been from studies that measure the response to short-term environmental change that occurs within the normal life cycle of a colony.

In the new work, Yang and colleagues headed to the field to explore the question of whether caste structure can undergo similar changes on much larger spatial and temporal scale. The researchers found that the proportion of castes, as well as the ants' body sizes, differed between populations of P. morrisi in three geographically distinct sites in the eastern United States. The differing population characteristics persisted when the ants were brought into the laboratory environment, suggesting that the differences between the populations reflects evolutionary divergence. Moreover, behavioral experiments so-called "laboratory contests" between P. morrisi and a competitor species, the fire ant Solenopsis invicta demonstrated that members
'"/>

Contact: Heidi Hardman
hhardman@cell.com
617-397-2879
Cell Press
22-Mar-2004


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Coping: Plant adaptability to stress discovered
2. UCSD team determines cellular stress within body is critical
3. New reactor puts hydrogen from renewable fuels within reach
4. Book shows patterns within the bell curve
5. Sleep deprivation within five hours of learning impairs memory consolidation in mice
6. Anthropologist predicts major threat to species within 50 years
7. The Geiger counter within us
8. Seal pups recognize mothers voices within days of birth
9. A switch that makes a blood clot sticky found within the platelet membrane
10. Researchers link melanopsin gene to unexplored light detection system within the eye
11. AAAS urges opposition to intelligent design theory within U.S. science classes

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/5/2018)... ... December 05, 2018 , ... Surgical ... in Nashville, TN, from December 6-9, 2018 at booth #312. AANS/CNS provides Pediatric ... integrates throughout the treatment continuum – from the consultation, to surgical planning, and ...
(Date:12/5/2018)... ... 04, 2018 , ... Urological Associates of Southern Arizona today ... Excellence. The designation recognizes that Dr. Choi has achieved a high level of ... care for men suffering from symptoms associated with Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia or BPH. ...
(Date:11/29/2018)... (PRWEB) , ... November 29, 2018 , ... ... in Semba Biosciences with the intention of acquiring full ownership. The transaction was ... Agreement was executed on November 14, 2018. “We are extremely pleased to team ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/5/2018)... DIEGO (PRWEB) , ... December 05, 2018 , ... Leading ... introduces an all-new, how-to guide with his “The Referral Playbook: How to Increase ... 100% of the book proceeds will go to the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA). ...
(Date:12/5/2018)... CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. and LONDON (PRWEB) , ... ... ... Atlantic Research Group (ARG), an established North American full-service contract research organization ... CRO. Effective immediately, the transaction significantly strengthens ARG’s reach and experience in ...
(Date:11/27/2018)... SPRINGS, Ga. (PRWEB) , ... November 27, 2018 , ... ... can now visit Dr. Dan Myers’ practice for treatment, with or without a referral. ... cosmetic procedures and tools, including porcelain veneers, dental implants, bridges and custom crowns. ...
(Date:11/20/2018)... ... 19, 2018 , ... Patients with missing teeth in Sandy Springs, GA, Alpharetta, ... Dan Myers at THE DENTIST Centers without a referral. Dr. Myers is a skilled ... 20 years. He now offers skilled dental care in two practice locations THE DENTIST ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: