Low intraspecific aggressiveness in two obligate plant-ant species
Little is known about the aggressiveness of plant-ants typically living in isolated trees nor about how that aggressiveness varies based on this isolation. Here, we examine intra- and interspecific aggressiveness between workers of two Allomerus species associated with two different myrmecophytes. In both cases, the level of intraspecific aggressiveness is very low whatever the distance separating the tested nests, while interspecific conflicts are always violent. Similar patterns of aggressiveness have been reported in various ant species, but the strictly arboreal life of Allomerus ants associated with the isolation of their adult colonies highlight different ecological conditions that might explain the lack of aggressiveness between conspecifics.
Keywords.Aggressiveness Allomerus myrmecophytes plant-ants recognition ability
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