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Data from: Collective responses to heterospecifics emerge from individual differences in aggression

Citation

Neumann, Kevin M.; Pinter-Wollman, Noa (2019), Data from: Collective responses to heterospecifics emerge from individual differences in aggression, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.4ck362b

Abstract

Variation in individual behavior among group members impacts collective outcomes. The ability of both individuals and groups to outcompete others can determine access to resources. The invasive Argentine ant, Linepithema humile, dominates resources and displaces native species. To determine how access to resources by groups of L. humile is impacted by their behavioral composition we first determined that L. humile workers consistently vary in aggressive behavior. We then asked if variation in aggression within a group influences the group’s ability to access a resource in the presence of cues of a native species, Tapinoma sessile. We found that the behavioral composition of L. humile groups impacted the groups’ collective response to cues of T. sessile. Group behavior was the result of mostly additive, rather than synergistic, combinations of the behaviors of the group members. The behavior of groups that contained 50% highly aggressive and 50% low-aggression individuals was similar to the average of the behaviors of groups of all highly aggressive and groups of all low-aggression individuals. Uncovering the mechanisms that allow social invasive species to dominate the ecological communities they invade can inform the mitigation of invasion.

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