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Factors Affecting the Acceptance of Alien Conspecifics on Nests of the Primitively Eusocial Wasp, Ropalidia marginata (Hymenoptera:Vespidae)

Arathi, HS and Shakarad, Mallikarjun and Gadagkar, Raghavendra (1997) Factors Affecting the Acceptance of Alien Conspecifics on Nests of the Primitively Eusocial Wasp, Ropalidia marginata (Hymenoptera:Vespidae). In: Journal of insect behavior, 10 (3). pp. 343-353.

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Abstract

In the primitively eusocial wasp, Ropalidia marginata, individual females are known to drift from one newly founded nest to another. In the laboratory, young (<6- to 8-day-old) alien wasps are accepted onto unrelated colonies, while older (> 6- to 8-day-old) wasps are not. Here we have investigated the factors that could influence the acceptance of foreign conspecifics onto unrelated nests. Individually marked wasps of different ages, isolated immediately after eclosion from the natal nest and from each other, were introduced onto unrelated recipient nests. Considered separately, both age and ovarian condition seemed to influence the probability of acceptance as well as the levels of aggression and tolerance received by the introduced wasps. However, partial correlation analysis and multiple regression analysis indicated that only age had a direct influence and that the ovarian condition acts only through age, a variable with which it is highly correlated. The observed acceptance of young aliens and rejection of old aliens are less likely to be due to the perception of older wasps as a reproductive threat rather than some age-related factor, other than ovarian condition, for example, the relative ease with which younger wasps can be molded into desired roles.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Plenum Publishing Corporation.
Keywords: Conspecific acceptance;Primitively eusocial wasps; Ropalidia marginata; Hymenoptera Vespidae.
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2006
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 04:33
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/9119

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