Biology of the carpenter ants Camponotus vicinus (Mayr) and Camponotus modoc (Wheeler) in western Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/6969z319v

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  • Pest control operators in Oregon were surveyed to examine the occurrence of carpenter ants and other wood destroying organisms in structures. Carpenter ants frequently occurred in the coast and Willamette valley regions of the state and were associated with wetter, mesic habitats. To examine the effects of substrate and moisture on Camponotus vicinus and Camponotus modoc, I exposed inseminated queen ants to various substrates at differing humidities and exposed queens ants to a series of humidities. Camponotus vicinus intiated significantly more colonies in drier conditions than C. modoc. Camponotus vicinus also lived longer at lower humidities than C. modoc. Neither ant species could rear offspring in western redcedar. A survey of the yeasts associated with Camponotus vicinus revealed the yeast Debaryomyces polymorphus was frequently found in the buccal cavity and in colonies of these ants at two different locations. To examine the effects of exposure to this yeast on larval development in C. vicinus, I developed an artificial diet for this ant and tested this diet and variations of it on small satellite colonies of ants and larvae. Some of the artificial diets significantly affected larval development. Exposure of the small colonies and larvae to D. polymorphus showed that the yeast effected growth of some colonies fed deficient diets. Ants fed diets lacking B vitamins and cholesterol had heavier pupae and brood when exposed to live yeast than those not exposed.
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