Postpharyngeal gland secretion as a modifier of aggressive behavior in the Myrmicine ant Manica rubida

Abraham Hefetz, Christine Errard, Alice Chambris, Alain Le Negrate

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The role of postpharyngeal gland secretion in nestmate recognition was tested in Manica rubida. Behavioral tests comprised two consecutive encounters between five ants and their color-marked nestmate. The first encounter utilized an untreated ant constituting a control, whereas in the second encounter the marked ant was treated with postpharyngeal gland exudate. Scoring was done using an aggression index obtained by direct observation and an agitation index deduced from a frame-by-frame analysis of videotapes of the various tests. When the glandular secretion originated from an alien ant, the ants became very agitated and were aggressive toward their nestmate. When the exudate originated from a nestmate, the ants generally remained calm, although their rates of self-grooming increased.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)709-717
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Insect Behavior
Volume9
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1996

Keywords

  • Formicidae
  • Manica rubida
  • aggressive behavior
  • agitation index
  • nestmate recognition
  • postpharyngeal gland

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