Dispersal is crucial for gene flow and often determines the long-term stability of meta-populations, particularly in rare species with specialized life cycles. Such species are often foci of conservation efforts because they suffer disproportionally from degradation and fragmentation of their habitat. However, detailed knowledge of effective gene flow through dispersal is often missing, so that conservation strategies have to be based on mark–recapture observations that are suspected to be poor predictors of long-distance dispersal. These...
Clonal organisms with occasional sex are important for our general understanding of the costs and benefits that maintain sexual reproduction. Cyclically parthenogenetic aphids are highly variable in their frequency of sexual reproduction and studies have mostly focused on free-living aphids above ground, whereas dispersal constraints and dependence on ant-tending may differentially affect the costs and benefits of sex in subterranean aphids. Here, we studied reproductive mode and dispersal in a community of root aphids that...
Ecosystems across the globe are threatened by climate change and human activities. New rapid survey approaches for monitoring biodiversity would greatly advance assessment and understanding of these threats. Taking advantage of next-generation DNA sequencing, we tested an approach we call metabarcoding: high-throughput and simultaneous taxa identification based on a very short (usually less than 100 base pairs) but informative DNA fragment. Short DNA fragments allow the use of degraded DNA from environmental samples. All analyses...
The family Eresidae C. L. Koch, 1850 is reviewed at the genus level. The family comprises nine genera including one new genus. They are: Adonea Simon, 1873, Dorceus C. L. Koch, 1846, Dresserus Simon, 1876, Eresus Walckenaer, 1805, Gandanameno Lehtinen, 1967, Loureedia gen. n., Paradonea Lawrence, 1968, Seothyra Purcell, 1903, and Stegodyphus Simon, 1873. A key to all genera and major lineages is provided along with corresponding diagnoses, as well as descriptions of selected species....
Data from: Dynamic Wolbachia prevalence in Acromyrmex leaf-cutting ants: potential for a nutritional symbiosisSandra B. Andersen, Mette Boye, David R. Nash & Jacobus J. Boomsma
Wolbachia are renowned as reproductive parasites, but their phenotypic effects in eusocial insects are not well understood. We used a combination of qrt-PCR, fluorescence in situ hybridisation, and laser scanning confocal microscopy to evaluate the dynamics of Wolbachia infections in the leaf-cutting ant Acromyrmex octospinosus across developmental stages of sterile workers. We confirm that workers are infected with one or two widespread wsp genotypes of Wolbachia, show that colony prevalences are always 100%, and characterize...
Data from: Costs and constraints conspire to produce honest signalling: insights from an ant queen pheromoneLuke Holman
Signal costs and evolutionary constraints have both been proposed as ultimate explanations for the ubiquity of honest signalling, but the interface between these two factors is unclear. Here, I propose a pluralistic interpretation, and use game theory to demonstrate that evolutionary constraints determine whether signals evolve to be costly or cheap. Specifically, when the costs or benefits of signalling are strongly influenced by the sender’s quality, low-cost signals evolve. The model reaffirms that cheap and...
University of Copenhagen6
Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies Commission1
University of Groningen1
University of Southampton1
University of Oslo1
French National Centre for Scientific Research1
University of Akron1
California Academy of Sciences1
Crop Research Institute1
Technical University of Denmark1