Entomological Review

, Volume 91, Issue 7, pp 820–827 | Cite as

Pulp partitioning and worker specialization in polistine wasps (Hymenoptera, Vespidae, Polistinae)

  • L. Yu. RusinaEmail author
  • L. A. Firman
  • I. Yu. Rusin
  • Ch. K. Starr


The character of pulp partitioning was studied in three Palaearctic polistine wasps (Polistes dominula and P. gallicus in the Black Sea Biosphere Reserve, and Polistes nimpha in the Lugansk Nature Reserve, Ukraine) and in five Neotropical species (P. lanio, P. versicolor, Mischocyttarus injucundus, M. alfkeni, Metapolybia cingulata, and Protopolybia exigua in Trinidad). In independent-founding Polistes and Mischocyttarus species, all cases of pulp partitioning were connected with aggression on the part of the foundresses. An experimental increase of nesting density of P. dominula led to changes in the relative abundance of workers in the polyethic task groups. Some workers practically stopped hunting and switched over to pulp delivery; some of these workers possessed well-developed ovaries and were able to lay eggs. The experimentally removed part of the nest envelope in the swarm-founding wasp Metapolybia cingulata was restored only in colonies that included young workers. The specific features of nest building activity in independent-founding and swarm-founding polistine wasps are discussed.


Entomological Review Nest Material Nest Density Polistine Wasp Proteinaceous Food 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. Yu. Rusina
    • 1
    Email author
  • L. A. Firman
    • 1
  • I. Yu. Rusin
    • 1
  • Ch. K. Starr
    • 1
  1. 1.Kherson State UniversityKhersonUkraine

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