Worker policing in the german wasp Vespula germanica

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Serval ID
serval:BIB_5485C7D1B789
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Worker policing in the german wasp Vespula germanica
Journal
Behavioral Ecology
Author(s)
Bonckaert W., Vuerinckx K., Billen J., Hammond R. L., Keller L., Wenseleers T.
ISSN
1045-2249
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2008
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
19
Number
2
Pages
272-278
Language
english
Notes
BIB_14AE7C06D97B
Abstract
In some ants, bees, and wasps, workers kill or "police" male eggs laid by other workers in order to maintain the reproductive primacy of the queen. Kin selection theory predicts that multiple mating by the queen is one factor that can selectively favor worker policing. This is because when the queen is mated to multiple males, workers are more closely related to the queen's sons than to the sons of other workers. Earlier work has suggested that reproductive patterns in the German wasp Vespula germanica may contradict this theory, because in some colonies a large fraction of the adult males were inferred to be the workers' sons, despite the effective queen mating frequency being greater than 2 (2.4). In the present study, we reexamine the V. germanica case and show that it does support the theory. First, genetic analysis confirms that the effective queen mating frequency is high, 2.9, resulting in workers being more related to the queen's sons than to other workers' sons. Second, behavioral assays show that worker-laid eggs are effectively killed by other workers, despite worker-laid eggs having the same intrinsic viability as queen-laid ones. Finally, we estimate that approximately 58.4% of the male eggs but only 0.44% of the adult males are worker derived in queenright colonies, consistent with worker reproduction being effectively policed.
Keywords
reproductive conflict, Vespinae wasps, Vespula germanica, worker policing, worker reproduction
Web of science
Open Access
Yes
Create date
14/06/2011 12:45
Last modification date
25/09/2019 7:09
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