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Showing 1-11 of about 11 results.
Association patterns of swollen-thorn acacias with three ant species and other organisms in a dry forest of PanamaAmador-Vargas, SabrinaOrribarra, Vivian SaraPortugal-Loayza, AnaFernandez-Marin, HermogenesDOI: info:10.1111/btp.12899v. 53No. 2560–566
Amador-Vargas, Sabrina, Orribarra, Vivian Sara, Portugal-Loayza, Ana, and Fernandez-Marin, Hermogenes. 2021. "Association patterns of swollen-thorn acacias with three ant species and other organisms in a dry forest of Panama." Biotropica 53 (2):560– 566. https://doi.org/10.1111/btp.12899
ID: 158420
Type: article
Authors: Amador-Vargas, Sabrina; Orribarra, Vivian Sara; Portugal-Loayza, Ana; Fernandez-Marin, Hermogenes
Abstract: Ants in obligate defense mutualisms with plants protect them against potentially damaging organisms. In the swollen-thorn acacias, organisms linked to the plant inform about the interaction between the tree and the resident ant colony. Some organisms coexist with the aggressive mutualistic ants: specialized herbivores and organisms using the enemy-free space. Conversely, trees inhabited by non-defending ants usually hold a greater load of generalist herbivores and are avoided by organisms looking for the ant protection. We aimed to elucidate the association type between swollen-thorn acacias (Vachellia collinsii) and the almost unstudied Pseudomyrmex simulans ants from Panama. We compared the presence of non-ant organisms on trees inhabited by P. simulans, a well-known mutualist (P. spinicola) and a facultative parasite (non-defending ants; Crematogaster crinosa). We recorded non-ant organisms (e.g., stem galls, acacia true bugs, spiders) that nest, lay eggs, or live on the trees. Except for stem galls, all other non-ant organisms were mostly or exclusively found on trees with the mutualists, which is also the most common resident ant. P. simulans is less able to deter galling midges (Cecidomyiidae) than C. crinosa and even less than P. spinicola, because trees with P. simulans were more likely to have galls and in greater densities than on C. crinosa-trees, and even more than on P. spinicola-inhabited trees. The mechanism by which the Cecidomyiids occur in greater proportion on trees with P. simulans and C. crinosa is still unknown, but the pattern indicates an herbivory specialization or a potentially obligate weaker defender of the swollen-thorn acacias. Abstract in Spanish is available with online material
Dataset- Association patterns of swollen-thorn acacias with three ant species and other organisms in a dry forest of PanamaAmador-Vargas, SabrinaOrribarra, Vivian SaraPortugal-Loayza, AnaFernández-Marín, HermogenesDOI: info:10.25573/DATA.13114025.V1The Smithsonian Institution
Amador-Vargas, Sabrina, Orribarra, Vivian Sara, Portugal-Loayza, Ana, and Fernández-Marín, Hermogenes. 2020. [Dataset] "Dataset- Association patterns of swollen-thorn acacias with three ant species and other organisms in a dry forest of Panama." Distributed by The Smithsonian Institution. https://doi.org/10.25573/DATA.13114025.V1
ID: 158448
Type: dataset
Authors: Amador-Vargas, Sabrina; Orribarra, Vivian Sara; Portugal-Loayza, Ana; Fernández-Marín, Hermogenes
Keywords: Dataset; STRI
Abstract: The dataset contains a survey of swollen-thorn acacias (Vachellia collinsii), the resident ant species, location in the Coclé area, and binary variables for the presence of galls, true bugs, bird or wasp nests, and roach oothecas. We also include information of the diameter at the base of the tree, and DBH for trees that were tall enough. It also contains the number of galls, and number of galls/diameter at the base.
Plant killing by Neotropical acacia ants: ecology, decision-making, and head morphologyAmador‐Vargas, SabrinaDOI: info:10.1111/btp.126951–8
Amador‐Vargas, Sabrina. 2019. "Plant killing by Neotropical acacia ants: ecology, decision-making, and head morphology." Biotropica 1– 8. https://doi.org/10.1111/btp.12695
ID: 152250
Type: article
Authors: Amador‐Vargas, Sabrina
Abstract: Mutualistic species often associate with several partners that vary in the benefits provided. In some protective ant–plant mutualisms, ants vary in the extent at which they kill neighboring vegetation. Particularly, in acacia ants (Pseudomyrmex), the area around the host tree that ants keep free from vegetation (“clearings”) vary depending on the species. This study assessed whether interspecific variation in clearing size corresponds to workers biting on plant tissue of different thickness. As expected, workers from species making the largest clearings bit more often on thicker plant tissues than workers from species making smaller clearings. Because head shape affects mandible force, I also assessed whether pruning on thick tissue in mutualistic ant species or being a predator in non-mutualistic species correlated with broader heads, which yield stronger mandible force. The species with the broader heads were non-mutualistic predators or mutualistic pruners of thick tissues, which suggest that pruning neighboring vegetation in non-predatory species demands force even when the ants do not kill prey with their mandibles. The findings reveal that clearing size variation in mutualistic ant partners of plants can also be observed at the level of individual decision-making processes among workers, and suggest that head morphology could be a trait under selection in protective ant–plant mutualisms. Abstract in Spanish is available with online material.
Acacia trees with parasitic ants have fewer and less spacious spines than trees with mutualistic antsAmador-Vargas, SabrinaDyer, JaredArnold, NatalieCavanaugh, LeahSánchez-Brenes, ElenaDOI: info:10.1007/s00114-019-1647-4v. 107No. 13
Amador-Vargas, Sabrina, Dyer, Jared, Arnold, Natalie, Cavanaugh, Leah, and Sánchez-Brenes, Elena. 2019. "Acacia trees with parasitic ants have fewer and less spacious spines than trees with mutualistic ants." The Science of Nature 107 (1):3. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00114-019-1647-4
ID: 153605
Type: article
Authors: Amador-Vargas, Sabrina; Dyer, Jared; Arnold, Natalie; Cavanaugh, Leah; Sánchez-Brenes, Elena
Abstract: Obligate ant-defended plants provide food and shelter in exchange for protection against herbivores. Mesoamerican acacia trees have an obligate ant mutualism, but parasitic non-defending ants can also nest on the tree. We assessed whether rewards corresponded to ant defense within a plant species. As we expected, we found that parasite-inhabited trees had fewer swollen spines than ant-defended trees. Spine diameter was smaller in parasite-inhabited plants, but there were no differences in spine length, suggesting that spines serve as mechanical protection against herbivory. Parasite-inhabited plants may have reduced rewards because of plant differences when establishing, a plastic response to limited resources, or differential energy allocation when sensing the lack of defense.
Plasticity in extended phenotypes: how the antlion Myrmeleon crudelis adjusts the pit traps depending on biotic and abiotic conditionsFarji-Brener, AlejandroAmador-Vargas, SabrinaDOI: info:10.1163/22244662-201910551–7
Farji-Brener, Alejandro and Amador-Vargas, Sabrina. 2019. "Plasticity in extended phenotypes: how the antlion Myrmeleon crudelis adjusts the pit traps depending on biotic and abiotic conditions." Israel Journal of Ecology and Evolution 1– 7. https://doi.org/10.1163/22244662-20191055
ID: 153281
Type: article
Authors: Farji-Brener, Alejandro; Amador-Vargas, Sabrina
Social life and sanitary risks: evolutionary and current ecological conditions determine waste management in leaf-cutting antsFarji-Brener, AlejandroElizalde, LucianaFernández-Marín, HermógenesAmador-Vargas, SabrinaDOI: info:10.1098/rspb.2016.0625v. 283No. 1831
Farji-Brener, Alejandro, Elizalde, Luciana, Fernández-Marín, Hermógenes, and Amador-Vargas, Sabrina. 2016. "Social life and sanitary risks: evolutionary and current ecological conditions determine waste management in leaf-cutting ants." Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 283 (1831):https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2016.0625
ID: 139652
Type: article
Authors: Farji-Brener, Alejandro; Elizalde, Luciana; Fernández-Marín, Hermógenes; Amador-Vargas, Sabrina
Abstract: Adequate waste management is vital for the success of social life, because waste accumulation increases sanitary risks in dense societies. We explored why different leaf-cutting ants (LCA) species locate their waste in internal nest chambers or external piles, including ecological context and accounting for phylogenetic relations. We propose that waste location depends on whether the environmental conditions enhance or reduce the risk of infection. We obtained the geographical range, habitat and refuse location of LCA from published literature, and experimentally determined whether pathogens on ant waste survived to the high soil temperatures typical of xeric habitats. The habitat of the LCA determined waste location after phylogenetic correction: species with external waste piles mainly occur in xeric environments, whereas those with internal waste chambers mainly inhabit more humid habitats. The ancestral reconstruction suggests that dumping waste externally is less derived than digging waste nest chambers. Empirical results showed that high soil surface temperatures reduce pathogen prevalence from LCA waste. We proposed that LCA living in environments unfavourable for pathogens (i.e. xeric habitats) avoid digging costs by dumping the refuse above ground. Conversely, in environments suitable for pathogens, LCA species prevent the spread of diseases by storing waste underground, presumably, a behaviour that contributed to the colonization of humid habitats. These results highlight the adaptation of organisms to the hygienic challenges of social living, and illustrate how sanitary behaviours can result from a combination of evolutionary history and current environmental conditions.
Specialization and group size: brain and behavioural correlates of colony size in ants lacking morphological castesAmador-Vargas, SabrinaGronenberg, WulfilaWcislo, William T.Mueller, Ulrich G.DOI: info:10.1098/rspb.2014.2502v. 282No. 1801
Amador-Vargas, Sabrina, Gronenberg, Wulfila, Wcislo, William T., and Mueller, Ulrich G. 2015. "Specialization and group size: brain and behavioural correlates of colony size in ants lacking morphological castes." Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 282 (1801):https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2014.2502
ID: 133394
Type: article
Authors: Amador-Vargas, Sabrina; Gronenberg, Wulfila; Wcislo, William T.; Mueller, Ulrich G.
Branching angles reflect a tradeoff between reducing trail maintenance costs or travel distances in leaf-cutting antsFarji-Brener, AlejandroChinchilla, FedericoUmana, Maria NataliaOcasio-Torres, MariaChauta-Mellizo, AlexanderAcosta-Rojas, DianaMarinaro, SofiaTorres Curth, Maria deAmador-Vargas, SabrinaDOI: info:10.1890/14-0220.1v. 96No. 2510–517
Farji-Brener, Alejandro, Chinchilla, Federico, Umana, Maria Natalia, Ocasio-Torres, Maria, Chauta-Mellizo, Alexander, Acosta-Rojas, Diana, Marinaro, Sofia, Torres Curth, Maria de, and Amador-Vargas, Sabrina. 2015. "Branching angles reflect a tradeoff between reducing trail maintenance costs or travel distances in leaf-cutting ants." Ecology 96 (2):510– 517. https://doi.org/10.1890/14-0220.1
ID: 127667
Type: article
Authors: Farji-Brener, Alejandro; Chinchilla, Federico; Umana, Maria Natalia; Ocasio-Torres, Maria; Chauta-Mellizo, Alexander; Acosta-Rojas, Diana; Marinaro, Sofia; Torres Curth, Maria de; Amador-Vargas, Sabrina
Living in a Plant: Brain and behavioral traits of Acacia antsAmador-Vargas, SabrinaThe University of Texas at Austin118
Amador-Vargas, Sabrina. 2014. Living in a Plant: Brain and behavioral traits of Acacia ants. The University of Texas at Austin.
ID: 133829
Type: book
Authors: Amador-Vargas, Sabrina
Behavioral responses of acacia ants correlate with age and location on the host plantAmador-Vargas, S.DOI: info:10.1007/s00040-012-0226-xv. 59No. 3341–350
Amador-Vargas, S. 2012. "Behavioral responses of acacia ants correlate with age and location on the host plant." Insectes Sociaux 59 (3):341– 350. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00040-012-0226-x
ID: 112501
Type: article
Authors: Amador-Vargas, S.
Abstract: In social insects, worker specialization in location-related tasks could occur if they return to the same location over time. Location and task fidelity was tested in the acacia ants Pseudomyrmex spinicola, which nest inside the swollen spines of the tree, and all workers enter the spines at night and during rain. Workers were marked and followed at three locations: on the leaves, tree trunk, and ground near the plant. Behavioral tests were performed, testing the reactions of marked ants toward the food used to feed the larvae (Beltian Bodies, "BB"), and to brood outside the spines. Marked ants and ants of known age were tested for responses to disturbance of the spines. Ants were more likely to occur in the location where they were originally marked. Trunk-marked ants discarded the BB when it had a foliole fragment attached to it, while leaf-marked ants carried it to the spine. Trunk-marked ants left larvae and exited from disturbed spines more frequently than other ants. Leaf-marked ants carried larvae and pupae more often than trunk-marked ants. Spine-marked ants left pupae more often than trunk- or leaf-marked ants. When considering age, older ants reacted aggressively when threatened, whereas younger ants protected the brood. However, younger ants reacted more aggressively when older ants were absent, and older ants were more aggressive in the presence of larvae. In sum, the spatial segregation of the ants coincided with behavioral differences, and different behavioral responses are related to the age of the ant.
Spartan defense in the Thermopylae pass: Strategic defense by aggregations of Pseudomyrmex spinicola (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) on the trunk of Acacia collinsii (Mimosaceae)Amador-Vargas, SabrinaDOI: info:10.1007/s00040-008-1000-yv. 55No. 3241–245