Ecological Research

, Volume 15, Issue 2, pp 187–192

Effects of seed aggregation on the removal rates of elaiosome-bearing Chelidonium majus and Viola odourata seeds carried by Formica polyctena ants

Original Articles

In a field dominated by Formica polyctena Foerst. ants, we examined the effect of seed aggregation on the seed-removal rates of two plant species: a large-seeded obligate myrmecochore Viola odorata L. and a small-seeded diplochore Chelidonium majus L., which was autochorous as well as myrmecochorous. The effect was statistically non-significant in V. odorata but significant in C. majus, with more closely aggregated seeds having higher removal rates. The large seeds of the obligate myrmecochore were more quickly discovered and repeatedly removed by ant workers than were the small seeds of the diplochore.

Key words

ants Formica polyctena myrmecochory seed aggregation seed dispersal 

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Copyright information

© Blackwell Science Asia Pty. Ltd. 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BotanyKiev UniversityKievUkraine
  2. 2.Schmalhausen Institute of ZoologyKievUkraine
  3. 3.Max Planck Institut für EntwicklungsbiologieTübingenGermany

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