Heinze, Jürgen and Schrempf, Alexandra (2012) Terminal Investment: Individual Reproduction of Ant Queens Increases with Age. PLoS One, e35201.
|License: Creative Commons Attribution|
PDF - Published Version
The pattern of age-specific fecundity is a key component of the life history of organisms and shapes their ecology and evolution. In numerous animals, including humans, reproductive performance decreases with age. Here, we demonstrate that some social insect queens exhibit the opposite pattern. Egg laying rates of Cardiocondyla obscurior ant queens increased with age until death, even when the number of workers caring for them was kept constant. Cardiocondyla, and probably also other ants, therefore resemble the few select organisms with similar age-specific reproductive investment, such as corals, sturgeons, or box turtles (e.g., ), but they differ in being more short-lived and lacking individual, though not social, indeterminate growth. Furthermore, in contrast to most other organisms, in which average life span declines with increasing reproductive effort, queens with high egg laying rates survived as long as less fecund queens.
|Date:||11 April 2012|
|Institutions:||Biology, Preclinical Medicine > Institut für Zoologie > Evolution, Verhalten und Genetik (Prof. Dr. Jürgen Heinze)|
|Projects:||Open Access Publizieren (DFG)|
|Subjects:||500 Science > 590 Zoological sciences|
|Refereed:||Yes, this version has been refereed|
|Created at the University of Regensburg:||Yes|
|Deposited On:||12 Apr 2012 11:08|
|Last Modified:||21 Mar 2013 10:42|