|Acromyrmex octospinosus volcanus|
Wheeler, W.M., 1937
Distribution based on Regional Taxon Lists
Distribution based on AntMaps
Distribution based on AntWeb specimens
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Interactions with other organisms
Many organisms use chemicals to deter enemies. Some spiders can modify the composition of their silk to deter predators from climbing onto their webs. The Malaysian golden orb-weaver Nephila antipodiana (Walckenaer) produces silk containing an alkaloid (2-pyrrolidinone) that functions as a defense against ant invasion. Ants avoid silk containing this chemical. In the present study, we test the generality of ants' silk avoidance behavior in the field. We introduced three ant species to the orb webs of Nephila clavipes (Linnaeus) in the tropical rainforest of La Selva, Costa Rica. We found that predatory army ants (Eciton burchellii) as well as non-predatory leaf-cutting ants (Atta cephalotes and Acromyrmex volcanus) avoided adult N. clavipes silk, suggesting that an additional species within genus Nephila may possess ant-deterring silk. Our field assay also suggests that silk avoidance behavior is found in multiple ant species.
The following information is derived from Barry Bolton's New General Catalogue, a catalogue of the world's ants.
- volcanus. Acromyrmex octospinosus subsp. volcanus Wheeler, W.M. 1937c: 73 (s.) COSTA RICA. Raised to species: Wetterer, 1993: 66.
- Knowlton, E. D. and A. Kamath. 2018. Ants Do Not Traverse the Silk of Adult Female Nephila clavipes (Linnaeus) Webs. Neotropical Entomology. 47:780-785. doi:10.1007/s13744-018-0631-6