Costs of delayed dispersal and alloparental care in the fungus-cultivating ambrosia beetle Xyleborus affinis Eichhoff (Scolytinae: Curculionidae) Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 65:1753-1761 11 p.
Body reserves may determine the reproductive output of animals, depending on their resource allocation strategy. In insects, an accumulation of reserves for reproduction is often obtained before dispersal by preemergence (or maturation) feeding. This has been assumed to be an important cause of delayed dispersal from the natalnest in scolytine beetles. In the cooperatively breeding ambrosia beetles, this is of special interest because in this group delayed dispersal could serve two alternative purposes: “selfish” maturation feeding or “altruistic” alloparental care. To distinguish between these two possibilities,we have experimentally studied the effect of delayed dispersal on future reproductive output in the xyleborine ambrosia beetle Xyleborus affinis. Females experimentally induced to disperse and delayed dispersing females did not differ in their body condition at dispersal and in their founding success afterwards, which indicates that females disperse independently of condition, and staying adult females are fully mature and would be able to breed.
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