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Reproductive caste inhibition by argentine ant queens new mechanisms of queen control

, : Reproductive caste inhibition by argentine ant queens new mechanisms of queen control. Insectes Sociaux 35(1): 70-81

The presence of queens in laboratory colonies of Argentine ants completely inhibited new queen production, and decreased male production. Increased male production in queenless colonies did not result from worker oviposition. These findings support previous work of Giraud (1983a, 1983b) and others. Mechanisms of queen control were investigated. A queen-larvae segregation experiment demonstrated that direct contact between queens and larvae was required for larval inhibition, and worker produced trophic egg consumption by larvae was significantly reduced in the presence of queens. This is the first documentation of this form of nutritional deprivation as an inhibitory mechanism. A second mechanism may include the smearing of queen produced eggs on the larvae. This unique queen behavior is described.


DOI: 10.1007/bf02224139

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