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Data from: Alate production in an aphid in relation to ant tending and alarm pheromone

Citation

Tegelaar, Karolina; Leimar, Olof (2015), Data from: Alate production in an aphid in relation to ant tending and alarm pheromone, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.vd57n

Abstract

1. Winged dispersal is vital for aphids as predation pressure and host plant conditions fluctuate. 2. Ant-tended aphids also need to disperse, but this may represent a cost for the ants, resulting in an evolutionary conflict of interest over aphid dispersal. 3. The combined effects of aphid alarm pheromone, indicating predation risk, and ant attendance on the production of winged aphids were examined in an experiment with Aphis fabae (Homoptera: Aphididae) (Scopoli 1763) aphids and Lasius niger (Formicidae: Formicinae) (Linné, 1758) ants. 4. This study is the first to investigate the joint effects of alarm pheromone and ant attendance, and also the first to detect an influence of alarm pheromone on the production of winged morphs in A. fabae. 5. After a period of 2 weeks, it was found that aphid colonies exposed to intermittent doses of alarm pheromone produced more winged individuals, whereas ant tending had the opposite effect. The effects were additive on a log scale, and ant attendance had a greater proportional influence than exposure to alarm pheromone. A tentative conclusion is that ants have gained the upper hand in an evolutionary conflict about aphid dispersal.

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