Skip to main content
Dryad

Conditional indirect genetic effects of caregivers on brood in the clonal raider ant

Cite this dataset

Piekarski, Patrick; Valdés-Rodríguez, Stephany; Kronauer, Daniel (2023). Conditional indirect genetic effects of caregivers on brood in the clonal raider ant [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.wh70rxwsh

Abstract

Caregivers shape the rearing environment of their young. Consequently, offspring traits are influenced by the genes of their caregivers via indirect genetic effects (IGEs). However, the extent to which IGEs are modulated by environmental factors, other than the genotype of social partners (i.e., intergenomic epistasis), remains an open question. Here we investigate how broods are influenced by the genotype of their caregivers in the clonal raider ant, Ooceraea biroi, a species in which the genotype, age, and number of both caregivers and brood can be experimentally controlled. First, we used four clonal lines to establish colonies that differed only in the genotype of caregivers and measured effects on foraging activity, as well as IGEs on brood phenotypes. In a second experiment, we tested whether these IGEs are conditional on the age and number of caregivers. We found that caregiver genotype affected the feeding and foraging activity of colonies, and influenced the rate of development, survival, body size, and caste fate of brood. Caregiver genotype interacted with other factors to influence the rate of development and survival of brood, demonstrating that IGEs can be conditional. Thus, we provide an empirical example of phenotypes being influenced by IGE-by-environment interactions beyond intergenomic epistasis, highlighting that IGEs of caregivers/parents are alterable by factors other than their brood’s/offspring’s genotype.

Methods

Please see the accompanying published article: Piekarski PK, Valdés-Rodríguez S, and Kronauer DJC. 2022. Conditional indirect genetic effects of caregivers on brood in the clonal raider ant. Behavioral Ecology.

Usage notes

R 4.1.2 (or higher), Excel

Notepad++ or PyCharm 2019.3.1 (or higher)

Funding

National Institute of General Medical Sciences, Award: R35GM127007

Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Award: Faculty Scholar Award