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The evolution of breeding systems and social conflicts in ants

Titel Englisch The evolution of breeding systems and social conflicts in ants
Gesuchsteller/in Chapuisat Michel
Nummer 108263
Förderungsinstrument Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
Forschungseinrichtung Département d'Ecologie et d'Evolution Faculté de Biologie et de Médecine Université de Lausanne
Hochschule Universität Lausanne - LA
Hauptdisziplin Zoologie
Beginn/Ende 01.10.2005 - 31.07.2009
Bewilligter Betrag 335'000.00
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Keywords (6)

population genetics; dispersal; kin selection; Social behaviour; Evolution; Cooperation and conflicts

Lay Summary (Englisch)

Lay summary
Animal societies vary greatly, from simple families to complex social groups, yet the causes of this variation remain poorly understood. In particular, the evolution of social insect colonies with multiple queens is a puzzle for evolutionary biologists and a challenge to kin selection theory, as it decreases the relatedness among cooperating individuals. Our project focuses on the causes and consequences of social structure variation in ants, using Formica selysi as a model system. This species is convenient to study the behavioural and genetical correlates of changes in social structure, because single- and multiple-queen colonies occur in the same population. We aim at getting a better understanding of social evolution by studying (A) the link between social structure and dispersal (through experiments on queen acceptance by workers, determinants of queen size, colony founding), and (B) the impact of social structure variation on the resolution of genetic conflicts among group members (in particular the queen-worker conflict over sex allocation). This project will provide insight into how complex insect societies evolved and how multiple genetic, social and behavioural traits interact to produce divergent social phenotypes.
Direktlink auf Lay Summary Letzte Aktualisierung: 21.02.2013

Verantw. Gesuchsteller/in und weitere Gesuchstellende


Verbundene Projekte

Nummer Titel Start Förderungsinstrument
61934 Molecular ecology of kin discrimination in ants 01.04.2001 Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)
125306 Social evolution and collective defences against parasites in ants 01.01.2010 Projektförderung (Abt. I-III)