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Assessment of the Argentine ant invasion management by means of manual removal of winter nests in mixed cork oak and pine forests

The dynamic in Argentine ant colonies varies seasonally, influenced by biotic and abiotic factors. In winter the spatial range of the colony is contracted in large formations (winter nests) containing a large number of queens and workers. Winter nests are the clue to the species’ dispersion power and the invasion of new habitats. For this reason a yearly elimination of queens and workers in winter at the edge (front) of the invasion could be a useful tool for weakening the species’ dispersion and therefore limiting its establishment in new areas. Here, we determined the spatial dynamics of the Argentine ant nests during 1 year, and we assessed the invasion management by means of manual removal of winter nests for two consecutive winters, determining its effects during the following 3 years. We mapped nests found in 18 plots divided into two groups: extirpated (with removal of nests) and non-extirpated (control), along the fronts of three locations. Seasonal variation in the abundance of nests and workers, together with the two-year extirpation effects were evaluated. We found that colonies tended to follow an annual cycle of contraction and dispersion, with a decrease in the number of nests as we approached the invasion front. The extirpation was effective only in the front area, where it promoted smaller, less lasting and aggregated nests, as well as a decrease in the abundance of queens and workers. Nests also experienced a decrease during the two first winters but a recovery in the third, when no extirpation was done. Thus, a yearly perturbation should be performed to keep the expansion of the Argentine ant at a low rate, and to limit its establishment in new areas

This work was financed by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation with the support of a predoctoral grant (BES-2008-005102) associated with research projects MEC/FEDER2007-64080-C02-02/BOS and CGL2010-16451, and a FI grant from the European Social Fund and the DIUE of the Autonomous Government of Catalonia in support of MLE

© Biological Invasions, 2014, vol. 16, núm. 2, p. 315-327

Springer Verlag

Autor: Diaz Buitrago, Mireia
Abril, Sílvia
Enríquez Lenis, Martha Lucía
Gómez López, Crisanto
Data: 2014
Resum: The dynamic in Argentine ant colonies varies seasonally, influenced by biotic and abiotic factors. In winter the spatial range of the colony is contracted in large formations (winter nests) containing a large number of queens and workers. Winter nests are the clue to the species’ dispersion power and the invasion of new habitats. For this reason a yearly elimination of queens and workers in winter at the edge (front) of the invasion could be a useful tool for weakening the species’ dispersion and therefore limiting its establishment in new areas. Here, we determined the spatial dynamics of the Argentine ant nests during 1 year, and we assessed the invasion management by means of manual removal of winter nests for two consecutive winters, determining its effects during the following 3 years. We mapped nests found in 18 plots divided into two groups: extirpated (with removal of nests) and non-extirpated (control), along the fronts of three locations. Seasonal variation in the abundance of nests and workers, together with the two-year extirpation effects were evaluated. We found that colonies tended to follow an annual cycle of contraction and dispersion, with a decrease in the number of nests as we approached the invasion front. The extirpation was effective only in the front area, where it promoted smaller, less lasting and aggregated nests, as well as a decrease in the abundance of queens and workers. Nests also experienced a decrease during the two first winters but a recovery in the third, when no extirpation was done. Thus, a yearly perturbation should be performed to keep the expansion of the Argentine ant at a low rate, and to limit its establishment in new areas
This work was financed by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation with the support of a predoctoral grant (BES-2008-005102) associated with research projects MEC/FEDER2007-64080-C02-02/BOS and CGL2010-16451, and a FI grant from the European Social Fund and the DIUE of the Autonomous Government of Catalonia in support of MLE
Format: application/pdf
ISSN: 1387-3547 (versió paper)
1573-1464 (versió electrònica)
Accés al document: http://hdl.handle.net/10256/11935
Llenguatge: eng
Editor: Springer Verlag
Col·lecció: MEC/PN 2011-2013/CGL2010-16451
Reproducció digital del document publicat a: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10530-013-0520-1
Articles publicats (D-CCAA)
És part de: © Biological Invasions, 2014, vol. 16, núm. 2, p. 315-327
Drets: Tots els drets reservats
Matèria: Invasions biològiques
Biological invasions
Animals invasors
Introduced organisms
Espècies introduïdes
Introduced organisms
Formiga argentina
Argentine ant
Títol: Assessment of the Argentine ant invasion management by means of manual removal of winter nests in mixed cork oak and pine forests
Tipus: info:eu-repo/semantics/article
Repositori: DUGiDocs

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