Pygidial gland chemistry and potential alarm-recruitment function in column foraging, but not solitary, Nearctic Messor harvesting ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae).

@article{Wilson2013PygidialGC,
  title={Pygidial gland chemistry and potential alarm-recruitment function in column foraging, but not solitary, Nearctic Messor harvesting ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae).},
  author={Edward O. Wilson and Nicola J. R. Plowes and R. C. A. Johnson and Upul Nishshanka and Chongming Liu and Athula B. Attygalle},
  journal={Journal of insect physiology},
  year={2013},
  volume={59 9},
  pages={
          863-9
        }
}
We investigated the role of the pygidial gland on foraging behavior in two ecologically dominant column foraging Nearctic harvesting ants (Messor pergandei and Messor andrei). Using chemical analyses and behavioral tests, we show that n-tridecane is the major biologically active compound of pygidial gland secretions in both species, and that this chemical functions as a powerful alarm-recruitment pheromone. Another major compound of pygidial gland contents is benzaldehyde; this substance does… CONTINUE READING

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