|Chemical camouflage: a key process in shaping an ant-treehopper and fig-fig wasp mutualistic network|
|Wang, Bo; Lu, Min; Cook, James M.; Yang, Da-Rong; Dunn, Derek W.; Wang, Rui-Wu
|Source Publication||SCIENTIFIC REPORTS
|Abstract||Different types of mutualisms may interact, co-evolve and form complex networks of interdependences, but how species interact in networks of a mutualistic community and maintain its stability remains unclear. In a mutualistic network between treehoppers-weaver ants and fig-pollinating wasps, we found that the cuticular hydrocarbons of the treehoppers are more similar to the surface chemical profiles of fig inflorescence branches (FIB) than the cuticular hydrocarbons of the fig wasps. Behavioral assays showed that the cuticular hydrocarbons from both treehoppers and FIBs reduce the propensity of weaver ants to attack treehoppers even in the absence of honeydew rewards, suggesting that chemical camouflage helps enforce the mutualism between weaver ants and treehoppers. High levels of weaver ant and treehopper abundances help maintain the dominance of pollinating fig wasps in the fig wasp community and also increase fig seed production, as a result of discriminative predation and disturbance by weaver ants of ovipositing non-pollinating fig wasps (NPFWs). Ants therefore help preserve this fig-pollinating wasp mutualism from over exploitation by NPFWs. Our results imply that in this mutualistic network chemical camouflage plays a decisive role in regulating the behavior of a key species and indirectly shaping the architecture of complex arthropod-plant interactions.|
|Subject Area||Science & Technology - Other Topics
Wang, Bo,Lu, Min,Cook, James M.,et al. Chemical camouflage: a key process in shaping an ant-treehopper and fig-fig wasp mutualistic network[J]. SCIENTIFIC REPORTS,2018,8(x):-.
Wang, Bo,Lu, Min,Cook, James M.,Yang, Da-Rong,Dunn, Derek W.,&Wang, Rui-Wu.(2018).Chemical camouflage: a key process in shaping an ant-treehopper and fig-fig wasp mutualistic network.SCIENTIFIC REPORTS,8(x),-.
Wang, Bo,et al."Chemical camouflage: a key process in shaping an ant-treehopper and fig-fig wasp mutualistic network".SCIENTIFIC REPORTS 8.x(2018):-.
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