Journal article

Colony structure and spatial distribution of food resources in the polydomous meat ant Iridomyrmex purpureus

E van Wilgenburg, MA Elgar

Insectes Sociaux | SPRINGER BASEL AG | Published : 2007


Polydomous social insects may reduce the costs of foraging by the strategic distribution of nests throughout their territory or home-range. This efficiency may most likely be achieved if the resources are relatively stable in place and time, and the colonies and nests are distributed in response to the location of the resources. However, no study has investigated how the distribution of food sources influences the spatial patterns of nests within polydomous colonies under natural conditions. Our two year study of 140 colonies of the Australian ant Iridomyrmex purpureus revealed that the decentralization of nests within colonies is associated with the distribution of trees containing honey-de..

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University of Melbourne Researchers