The Regulation of Foraging Activity in Red Harvester Ant Colonies

@article{Gordon2002TheRO,
  title={The Regulation of Foraging Activity in Red Harvester Ant Colonies},
  author={Deborah M. Gordon},
  journal={The American Naturalist},
  year={2002},
  volume={159},
  pages={509 - 518}
}
  • D. Gordon
  • Published 1 May 2002
  • Biology, Medicine
  • The American Naturalist
Behavioral plasticity in social insects is intriguing because colonies adjust to environmental change through the aggregated responses of individuals. Without central control, colonies adjust numbers of workers allocated to various tasks. Individual decisions are based on local information from the environment and other workers. This study examines how colonies of the seed‐eating ant Pogonomyrmex barbatus adjust the intensity of foraging in an arid environment where conspecific neighbors… 

Topics from this paper

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Harvester Ant Colony Variation in Foraging Activity and Response to Humidity
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It is found that the effect of returning foragers on the rate of outgoing foragers increases with humidity, and there are consistent differences among colonies in foraging activity that persist from year to year.
The Regulation of Ant Colony Foraging Activity without Spatial Information
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A simple stochastic model shows how the regulation of ant colony foraging can operate without spatial information, describing a process at the level of individual ants that predicts the overall foraging activity of the colony.
The structure of foraging activity in colonies of the harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex occidentalis
TLDR
The duration of foraging during this study was correlated with the duration ofForaging measured 6 years earlier, suggesting that it is an aspect of colony phenotype, and some colonies have a consistent advantage in foraging.
Forager activation and food availability in harvester ants
TLDR
Investigation of how foragers are activated in colonies of the red harvester ant, Pogonomyrmex barbatus, showed that forager departure rates were not affected by the return of unsuccessful foragers, but depended strongly on theReturn of successful foragers.
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