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Ecological Research

, Volume 11, Issue 1, pp 79–87 | Cite as

Reconstruction ofRopalidia fasciata nests by progeny females after a typhoon and its significance in the social evolution of wasps

  • Yosiaki Itô
Article

Abstract

A strong typhoon, Typhoon 13, which swept through Okinawa on 2 and 3 September 1993, knocked down 57 to 61 of 97Ropalidia fasciata nests. Thirty-five colonies soon reconstructed their nests, and these nests produced 54±46 adults per nest during the remaining two and a half months before winter. The number of females involved in nest reconstruction was 21.3±15.7 per nest. The frequency of foraging activity was significantly higher in nests being reconstructed than in normal nests. As only one out of 205 foundresses marked in spring was found in early September, most cases of nest reconstruction were considered to be made exclusively by females that emerged during the spring and summer of 1993 (progeny females). All of the reconstructed nests but one produced adult females. Many females (31%) collected from the two reconstructed nests were inseminated. As all the reconstructed nests became vacant by early January, indicating completion of the colony cycle, and a large number of nests were established in the spring of 1994, females emerging from reconstructed nests in 1993 probably become foundresses in 1994.Ropalidia fasciata is considered to be, at least partially, bivoltine in Okinawa. The significance of these facts for the evolution of multi-queen social systems in the Polistinae is discussed.

Key words

bivoltinism eusociality nest reconstruction Ropalidia 

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Copyright information

© Ecological Society of Japan 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yosiaki Itô
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Arts and SciencesOkinawa UniversityNabaJapan

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