Eur. J. Entomol. 110 (1): 177-179, 2013 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2013.026

Cost to the cavity-nest ant Temnothorax crassispinus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of overwintering aboveground

Sławomir MITRUS
Department of Biosystematics, Laboratory of Evolution and Animal Ecology, Opole University, Oleska 22, 45-052 Opole, Poland; e-mail: smitrus@uni.opole.pl

Most species of ants inhabiting the temperate zone overwinter underground, whereas those of the genus Temnothorax remain in nests aboveground. I studied the cost of aboveground overwintering. Workers of Temnothorax crassispinus survived in higher numbers (median = 88%) in artificial nests experimentally buried at a depth of 5 cm than those in nests on the surface (48%) of the soil. The results support the hypothesis that overwintering aboveground could be a consequence of a limited supply of nests and/or the advantage of being able to respond quickly to warm temperatures in spring.

Keywords: Formicidae, Temnothorax crassispinus, percentage survival, overwintering

Received: April 24, 2012; Accepted: August 14, 2012; Revised: August 14, 2012; Published: January 2, 2013Show citation

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MITRUS, S. (2013). Cost to the cavity-nest ant Temnothorax crassispinus (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) of overwintering aboveground. Eur. J. Entomol.110(1), 177-179. doi: 10.14411/eje.2013.026.
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