Primary sex ratio adjustment by ant queens in response to local mate competition

L. De Menten, S. Cremer, J. Heinze, S. Aron, Animal Behaviour 69 (2005) 1031–1035.

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Journal Article | Published | English
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Abstract
In the ant Cardiocondyla obscurior, wingless males compete with nestmate males for access to female mating partners, leading to local mate competition (LMC). Queen number varies between colonies, resulting in variation in the strength of LMC. Cremer & Heinze (2002, Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series B, 269, 417–422) showed that colonies responded to increasing queen number by producing a less femalebiased sex ratio, as predicted by LMC theory. However, the proximate mechanisms responsible for this variation in the sex ratio could not be determined because the study was restricted to adult sex ratios.With LMC, the primary sex ratio (proportion of haploid eggs laid by the queen) is expected to be female biased, which lowers the conflict between queens and workers over sex allocation. We compared the primary sex ratios laid by queens in monogynous and in polygynous experimental colonies of C. obscurior. The proportion of haploid eggs laid by queens was significantly lower in single-queen than in multiple-queen colonies. Furthermore, queens rapidly adjusted their primary sex ratios to changes in colony queen number. This is the first report of an adaptive adjustment of the primary sex ratio in response to LMC by ant queens.
Publishing Year
Date Published
2005-05-01
Journal Title
Animal Behaviour
Volume
69
Issue
5
Page
1031 - 1035
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De Menten L, Cremer S, Heinze J, Aron S. Primary sex ratio adjustment by ant queens in response to local mate competition. Animal Behaviour. 2005;69(5):1031-1035. doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2004.09.005
De Menten, L., Cremer, S., Heinze, J., & Aron, S. (2005). Primary sex ratio adjustment by ant queens in response to local mate competition. Animal Behaviour, 69(5), 1031–1035. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2004.09.005
De Menten, Ludivine, Sylvia Cremer, Jürgen Heinze, and Serge Aron. “Primary Sex Ratio Adjustment by Ant Queens in Response to Local Mate Competition.” Animal Behaviour 69, no. 5 (2005): 1031–35. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2004.09.005.
L. De Menten, S. Cremer, J. Heinze, and S. Aron, “Primary sex ratio adjustment by ant queens in response to local mate competition,” Animal Behaviour, vol. 69, no. 5, pp. 1031–1035, 2005.
De Menten L, Cremer S, Heinze J, Aron S. 2005. Primary sex ratio adjustment by ant queens in response to local mate competition. Animal Behaviour. 69(5), 1031–1035.
De Menten, Ludivine, et al. “Primary Sex Ratio Adjustment by Ant Queens in Response to Local Mate Competition.” Animal Behaviour, vol. 69, no. 5, Elsevier, 2005, pp. 1031–35, doi:10.1016/j.anbehav.2004.09.005.

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