Tree-Dwelling Ants: Contrasting Two Brazilian Cerrado Plant Species without Extrafloral NectariesReport as inadecuate

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PsycheVolume 2012 2012, Article ID 172739, 6 pages

Research Article

Departamento de Ecologia, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade de Brasília, 70910-900 Brasília, DF, Brazil

Laboratório de Mirmecologia, Convênio UESC-CEPLAC, Centro de Pesquisa do Cacau, CEPLAC, Cx. P. 07, 45600-000 Itabuna, BA, Brazil

Received 31 May 2011; Revised 28 June 2011; Accepted 30 June 2011

Academic Editor: Fernando Fernández

Copyright © 2012 Jonas Maravalhas et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Ants dominate vegetation stratum, exploiting resources like extrafloral nectaries EFNs and insect honeydew. These interactions are frequent in Brazilian cerrado and are well known, but few studies compare ant fauna and explored resources between plant species. We surveyed two cerrado plants without EFNs, Roupala montana found on preserved environments of our study area and Solanum lycocarpum disturbed ones. Ants were collected and identified, and resources on each plant noted. Ant frequency and richness were higher on R. montana 67%; 35 spp than S. lycocarpum 52%; 26, the occurrence of the common ant species varied between them, and similarity was low. Resources were explored mainly by Camponotus crassus and consisted of scale insects, aphids, and floral nectaries on R. montana and two treehopper species on S. lycocarpum. Ants have a high diversity on cerrado plants, exploring liquid and prey-based resources that vary in time and space and affect their presence on plants.

Author: Jonas Maravalhas, Jacques H. C. Delabie, Rafael G. Macedo, and Helena C. Morais



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