Diane Christine Wiernasz

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Mating in social insects has generally been studied in relation to reproductive allocation and relatedness. Despite the tremendous morphological diversity in social insects, little is known about how individual morphology affects mating success. We examined the correlation of male size and shape with mating success in the western harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex(More)
Using four highly polymorphic microsatellite markers (12-28 alleles), we gentoyped workers from 63 colonies of Pogonomyrmex occidentalis. Colonies have a single, multiply mated queen, and an average number of 6.3 patrilines per colony. Colony growth was measured over an 8-year period in the study population. Intracolonial relatedness and colony growth are(More)
Arising from M. A. Nowak, C. E. Tarnita & E. O. Wilson 466, 1057-1062 (2010); Nowak et al. reply. Nowak et al. argue that inclusive fitness theory has been of little value in explaining the natural world, and that it has led to negligible progress in explaining the evolution of eusociality. However, we believe that their arguments are based upon a(More)
We examined the effect of queen size on the probability of new colony establishment in the ant Pogonomyrmex occidentalis. Large queens are significantly more likely to survive than small queens through the initial stages of colony founding. These differences in individual fitness correlates have corresponding effects on colony fitness. In species in which(More)
Mating success in the western harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex occidentalis, increases with male size. We tested the hypothesis that increased mating success increases male fitness and the fitness of colonies that make large males by comparing the sperm content of males prior to and at the conclusion of the mating swarm. The number of sperm a male initially(More)
Multiple mating by females characterizes most insect species, but is relatively uncommon in social insects. Females may mate with multiple mates because they experience the direct benefits of increased survival or fecundity, to acquire high quality mates, or to lower the risk of reduced fecundity by mating with incompatible males. We used the extensive(More)
The harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex occidentalis, is characterized by high levels of intracolonial genetic diversity resulting from multiple mating by the queen. Within reproductively mature colonies, the relative frequency of different male genotypes (patrilines) is not stable. The difference between samples increases with time, nearing an asymptote after a(More)
We have examined the phylogenetic distribution of a spectrum ofDrosophila repetitive-dispersed DNAs ranging from structurally complex transposable elements to scrambled middle repetitive sequences. Our data suggest that unlike typical “genes” these DNAs are unstable components of the drosophilid genome. The unusual behavior of these repetitive-dispersed(More)
In this paper we have two goals. First, we examine the effects of sample size on the statistical power to detect a given amount of inbreeding in social insect populations. The statistical power to detect a given level of inbreeding is largely a function of the number of colonies sampled. We explore two sampling schemes, one in which a single individual per(More)
We report data from a four-year field study on the relationship between colony size and reproduction in the western harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex occidentalis. In all years, the likelihood of reproduction significantly increased with increasing size in both field censuses during naturally-occurring mating flights and experimentally-watered colonies whose(More)