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Asian Myrmecology, Volume 3, pages 39-44, published April 2010

Gamergate reproduction without queens in the ponerine ant Pachycondyla (=Bothroponera) tesseronoda (Emery, 1877) in southern India (Hymenoptera: Formicidae)

FUMINORI ITO

Faculty of Agriculture, Kagawa University, Miki 761-0795 Japan

DOI: 10.20362/am.003006

© F. Ito

Abstract: The colony composition of the ponerine ant Pachycondyla (=Bothroponera) tesseronoda was studied in Mudigere, southern India. The colonies (n = 9) each consisted of 102 (+ SD 28) workers on average, without morphologically distinctive queens. Instead, one to eight gamergates (inseminated and egg-laying workers) per colony reproduced. Virgin workers developed oocytes, but most of these seem to have degenerated before maturation. Experimental removal of gamergates resulted in oviposition by virgin workers, suggesting that the presence of gamergates affects oocyte maturation in virgin workers, although the mechanisms remain unknown.

Keywords: ant, Bothroponera, gamergate, Pachycondyla, reproduction

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