Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

Selfish Larvae: Development and the Evolution of Parasitic Behavior in the Hymenoptera

Peter Nonacs and John E. Tobin
Evolution
Vol. 46, No. 6 (Dec., 1992), pp. 1605-1620
DOI: 10.2307/2410019
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2410019
Page Count: 16
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($4.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Selfish Larvae: Development and the Evolution of Parasitic Behavior in the Hymenoptera
Preview not available

Abstract

Queens of hymenopteran social parasites manipulate the workers of other social species into raising their offspring. However, nonconspecific brood care may also allow the parasite larvae to control their own development to a greater extent than possible in nonparasitic species. An evolutionary consequence of this may be the loss of the parasite's worker caste if the larvae can increase their fitness by developing into sexuals rather than workers. We argue that this loss is particularly likely in species in which there is little inclusive fitness benefit in working. Retention of a worker caste correlates with characteristics that increase the fitness of working relative to becoming a sexual, such as worker-production of males, high intracolony relatedness, and seasonal environments where the hosts of potential parasite queens are not always available. Further evidence strongly suggests that when the worker caste is evolutionarily lost in perennial species like ants, it disappears rapidly and through a reduction in caste threshold and queen size, so that parasite larvae become queens with less food than required to produce host workers. This evolutionary process, however, appears to lower overall population fitness, resulting in workerless parasite species having small populations and being geographically restricted. Conversely, in annual species like bees and wasps, workerless social parasitism evolves with no size reduction in queens, which is consistent with an expected lower level of queen/offspring conflict.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
1605
    1605
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1606
    1606
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1607
    1607
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1608
    1608
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1609
    1609
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1610
    1610
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1611
    1611
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1612
    1612
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1613
    1613
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1614
    1614
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1615
    1615
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1616
    1616
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1617
    1617
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1618
    1618
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1619
    1619
  • Thumbnail: Page 
1620
    1620