Article: article from journal or magazin.
Evolutionary implications of polygyny in the Argentine ant, Iridomyrmex humilis (Mayr) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae): an experimental study
A comparison of several physiological parameters of queens of Iridomyrmex humilis in experimental monogynous and polygynous colonies showed that queens in monogynous colonies became heavier, had more developed ovaries and laid about twice as many eggs. Workers in monogynous colonies were more attracted to queens, which therefore probably received more food. This may partially explain the higher weight and fecundity of queens in monogynous colonies of Iridomyrmex humilis and possibly other ant species. In polygynous colonies, queens differed greatly in their fecundity. These differences did not appear to be the result of a dominance hierarchy. These results are discussed from an evolutionary point of view. Two hypotheses of mutualism and colony level selection are proposed as an alternative to kin selection which is unlikely to be the exclusive selective influence in the evolution of polygyny either in I. humilis or in most other ant species.
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