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Lifelong commitment to the wrong partner: hybridization in ants

Title data

Feldhaar, Heike ; Foitzik, Susanne ; Heinze, Jürgen:
Lifelong commitment to the wrong partner: hybridization in ants.
In: Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. Vol. 363 (2008) Issue 1505 . - pp. 2891-2899.
ISSN 0962-8436
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2008.0022

Abstract in another language

The extraordinary lifelong partner commitment in social insects is expected to increase choosiness in both sexes and therefore to be associated with particularly low hybridization frequencies. Yet, more and more studies reveal that in many ant taxa hybrids are surprisingly common, with up to half of all female sexuals receiving sperm from allospecific males in extreme cases. In a few ant species, hybridization has led to the evolution of reproductively isolated new lineages with a bizarre system of genetic caste differentiation: colonies produce hybrid workers and pure- lineage female sexuals. This requires that colonies either contain multiple queens or that queens mate multiple times. In most other cases, hybridization appears to be an evolutionary dead end and fertile hybrid queens are rarely found. In such cases, haplodiploid sex determination appears to decrease the costs of mating with an allospecific male. As long as hybrid workers are viable, a cross- mated queen can partially rescue its fitness by producing males from unfertilized eggs. Mating with an allospecific partner may thus be an option for queens when conspecific mates are not available. The morphological similarity of most ant males, perhaps resulting from the lack of sexual conflict, may similarly contribute to the commonness of hybridization.

Further data

Item Type: Article in a journal
Refereed: Yes
Additional notes: BAYCEER102030
Institutions of the University: 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 > Chair Animal Ecology I
Faculties > Faculty of Biology, Chemistry and Earth Sciences > Department of Biology > Professorship Animal Population Ecology
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
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: 27 Apr 2015 13:49
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2016 07:34
URI: https://eref.uni-bayreuth.de/id/eprint/10786