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Population structure and intraspecific aggression in the invasive ant species Anoplolepis gracilipes in Malaysian Borneo

Title data

Drescher, Jochen ; Blüthgen, Nico ; Feldhaar, Heike:
Population structure and intraspecific aggression in the invasive ant species Anoplolepis gracilipes in Malaysian Borneo.
In: Molecular Ecology. Vol. 16 (2007) Issue 7 . - pp. 1453-1465.
ISSN 0962-1083
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-294X.2007.03260.x

Abstract in another language

Invasive species are one of the main sources of the ongoing global loss of biodiversity. Invasive ants are known as particularly damaging invaders and their introductions are often accompanied by population-level behavioural and genetic changes that may contribute to their success. Anoplolepis gracilipes is an invasive ant that has just recently received increased attention due to its negative impact on native ecosystems. We examined the behaviour and population structure of A. gracilipes in Sabah, Malaysia. A total of 475 individuals from 24 colonies were genotyped with eight microsatellite markers. Intracolonial relatedness was high, ranging from 0.37 to 1 (mean +/- SD: 0.82 +/- 0.04), while intercolonial relatedness was low (0.0 +/- 0.02, range -0.5-0.76). We compared five distinct sampling regions in Sabah and Brunei. A three-level hierarchical F-analysis revealed high genetic differentiation among colonies within the same region, but low genetic differentiation within colonies or across regions. Overall levels of heterozygosity were unusually high (mean H-O = 0.95, mean H-E = 0.71) with two loci being entirely heterozygous, indicating an unusual reproductive system in this species. Bioassays revealed a negative correlation between relatedness and aggression, suggesting kinship as one factor facilitating supercolony formation in this species. Furthermore, we genotyped one individual per nest from Sabah (22 nests), Sarawak (one nest), Brunei (three nests) and the Philippines (two nests) using two mitochondrial DNA markers. We found six haplotypes, two of which included 82.1 of all sequences. Our study shows that the sampled area in Sabah consists of a mosaic of differently interrelated nests in different stages of colony establishment. While some of the sampled colonies may belong to large supercolonies, others are more likely to represent recently introduced or dispersed propagules that are just beginning to expand.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER101597
Institutions of the University: Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Chair Animal Ecology I
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology - Univ.-Prof. Dr. Heike Feldhaar
Research Institutions > Research Centres > Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research- BayCEER
Faculties
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology
Research Institutions
Research Institutions > Research Centres
Result of work at the UBT: No
DDC Subjects: 500 Science > 500 Natural sciences
500 Science > 570 Life sciences, biology
500 Science > 590 Animals (Zoology)
Date Deposited: 24 Apr 2015 12:24
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2015 12:24
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/10774