Eur. J. Entomol. 109 (4): 509-515, 2012 | DOI: 10.14411/eje.2012.064

A novel association between Aphaenogaster subterranea (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and the nymphs of Reptalus panzeri (Hemiptera: Cixiidae)

Gábor LŐRINCZI
Department of Ecology, University of Szeged, KGzép fasor 52, H-6726 Szeged, Hungary; e-mail: lorinczig@gmail.com

The nymphs of the cixiid planthopper, Reptalus panzeri (Löw, 1883), were found cohabiting with the myrmicine ant Aphaenogaster subterranea (Latreille, 1798) in a sub-Mediterranean oak forest in mid-western Hungary. Except for a few cases, nymphs were recorded only in the nests of A. subterranea, or were recorded with foragers of this ant from neighbouring colonies. Adult planthoppers were also found in nests of A. subterranea in the emergence period. Neither field nor laboratory studies revealed direct or unambiguous interactions between this ant and the planthopper nymphs that would indicate a trophobiotic relationship, however the fact that nymphs do not try to escape from the ants, which do not attack the nymphs, indicates some kind of mutualistic relationship between them. The main food plant of R. panzeri nymphs in this habitat is likely to be the roots of manna ash (Fraxinus ornus).

Keywords: Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Aphaenogaster subterranea, Hemiptera, Cixiidae, Reptalus panzeri, ant-hemipteran association, insect-insect relationship, myrmecophily, Fraxinus ornus, ash

Received: February 2, 2012; Accepted: April 27, 2012; Published: October 5, 2012

Download citation

References

  1. AGBOGBA C. 1985: Observations sur la recolte de substances liquids et de sucs animaux chez deux especes d'Aphaenogaster: A. senilis et A. subterranea (Hym. Formicidae). Insectes Soc. 32: 427-434 Go to original source...
  2. ANDERSEN A.N. 1995: A classification of Australian ant communities based on functional groups which parallel plant life forms in relation to stress and disturbance. J. Biogeogr. 22: 15-29 Go to original source...
  3. ANDERSEN A.N. 1997: Functional groups and patterns of organisation in North American ant communities: A comparison with Australia. J. Biogeogr. 24: 433-460 Go to original source...
  4. BERTIN S., PICCIAU L., ACS Z., ALMA A. & BOSCO D. 2010: Molecular differentiation of four Reptalus species (Hemiptera: Cixiidae). Bull. Entomol. Res. 100: 551-558 Go to original source...
  5. BORHIDI A. 2003: Magyarorszag nGvenytarsulasai. (Plant Associations of Hungary.) Akademiai Kiado, Budapest, 610 pp. [in Hungarian]
  6. BOURGOIN T. 1997: Habitat and ant-attendance in Hemiptera: a phylogenetic test with emphasis on trophobiosis in Fulgoromorpha. In Grandcolas P. (ed.): The Origin of Biodiversity in Insects: Phylogenetic Tests of Evolutionary Scenarios. Memoires du Museum National d'Historie Naturelle 173, Paris, pp. 109-124
  7. BUCKLEY R.C. 1987: Interactions involving plants, Homoptera, and ants. Annu. Rev. Ecol. Syst. 8: 111-135 Go to original source...
  8. CASTRACANI C., GRASSO D.A., FANFANI A. & MORI A. 2010: The ant fauna of Castelporziano Presidential Reserve (Rome, Italy) as a model for the analysis of ant community structure in relation to environmental variation in Mediterranean ecosystems. J. Insect Conserv. 14: 585-594 Go to original source...
  9. CHINA W.E. & FENNAH R.G. 1952: A remarkable new genus and species of Fulgoroidea (Homoptera) representing a new family. Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. 12: 189-199 Go to original source...
  10. CSOSZ S., MARKO B., KISS K., TARTALLY A. & GALLE L. 2002: The ant fauna of the FertE-Hansag National Park (Hymenoptera: Formicoidea). In: The Fauna of the FertE-Hansag National Park. Hungarian Natural History Museum, Budapest, pp. 617-629
  11. CZECHOWSKI W., RADCHENKO A. & CZECHOWSKA W. 2002: The Ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) of Poland. MIZ PAS, Warszawa, 200 pp
  12. DEBRECZY ZS. 1973: The coenological investigations of Peterhegy (mountain) and its environs in the Balaton Upland. Veszprem Megyei Muzeumok KGzlemenyei 12: 191-220 [in Hungarian with English abstr.]
  13. DEJEAN A. & BOURGOIN T. 1998: Relationships between ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Euphyonarthex phyllostoma (Hemiptera: Tettigometridae). Sociobiology 32: 91-100
  14. DEJEAN A., NGNEGUEU P.R. & BOURGOIN T. 1996: Trophobiosis between ants and Peregrinus maidis (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha, Delphacidae). Sociobiology 28: 111-120
  15. DEJEAN A., BOURGOIN T. & ORIVEL J. 2000: Ant defence of Euphyonarthex phyllostoma (Homoptera: Tettigometridae) during trophobiotic associations. Biotropica 32: 112-119 Go to original source...
  16. DEKONINCK W., DE KONINCK H., BAUGNEE J.-Y. & MAELFAIT J.-P. 2007: Ant biodiversity conservation in Belgian calcareous grasslands: active management is vital. Belg. J. Zool. 137: 137-146
  17. DELABIE J.H.C. 2001: Trophobiosis between Formicidae and Hemiptera (Sternorrhyncha and Auchenorrhyncha): an overview. Neotrop. Entomol. 30: 501-516 Go to original source...
  18. FLETCHER M.J. & MOIR M.L. 2009: Budginmaya eulae gen. et sp. nov., a myrmecophilous planthopper (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha: Flatidae) from Western Australia. Austral. J. Entomol. 48: 36-39 Go to original source...
  19. FULEKY GY., JAKAB S., FEHER O., MADARASZ B. & KERTESZ A. 2007: Hungary and the Carpathian Basin. In Arnalds O., Bartoli F., Buurman P., Oskarsson H., Stoops G. & GarciaRodeja E. (eds): Soils of Volcanic Regions in Europe. Springer, Berlin, pp. 29-42
  20. GARRIDO J.L., REY P.J., CERDA X. & HERRERA C.M. 2002: Geographical variation in diaspore traits of an ant dispersed plant (Helleborus foetidus): are ant community composition and diaspore traits correlated? J. Ecol. 90: 446-455 Go to original source...
  21. GOMEZ C., CASELLAS D., OLIVERAS J. & BAS J.M. 2003: Structure of ground-foraging ant assemblages in relation to land-use change in the northwestern Mediterranean region. Biodivers. Conserv. 12: 2135-2146 Go to original source...
  22. HOCH H. 1990: Cavernicolous Meenoplidae of the genus Phaconeura (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea) from Australia. Bishop Mus. Occas. Pap. 30: 188-203
  23. HOCH H., ASCHE M., BURWELL C., MONTEITH G. & WESSEL A. 2006: Morphological alteration in response to endogeic habitat and ant association in two new planthopper species from New Caledonia (Hemiptera: Auchenorrhyncha: Fulgoromorpha: Delphacidae). J. Nat. Hist. 40: 1867-1886 Go to original source...
  24. HOLZINGER W.E. 2009: A novel trophobiosis between ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and a palm-feeding planthopper (Hemiptera: Cixiidae). Afr. Entomol. 17: 115-118 Go to original source...
  25. HOLZINGER W.E., KAMMERLANDER I. & NICKEL H. 2003: The Auchenorrhyncha of Central Europe - Die Zikaden Mitteleuropas. Vol. 1: Fulgoromoropha, Cicadomorpha excl. Cicadellidae. Brill, Leiden, 673 pp
  26. HOLLDOBLER B. & WILSON E.O. 1990: The Ants. Belknap Press of Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, 732 pp
  27. JOVIC J., CVRKOVIC T., MITROVIC M., KRNJAJIC S., REDINBAUGH M. G., PRATT R.C., GINGERY R.E., HOGENHOUT S.A. & TOSEVSKI I. 2007: Roles of stolbur phytoplasma and Reptalus panzeri (Cixiinae, Auchenorrhyncha) in the epidemiology of Maize redness in Serbia. Eur. J. Plant Pathol. 118: 85-89 Go to original source...
  28. JOVIC J., CVRKOVIC T., MITROVIC M., KRNJAJIC S., PETROVIC A., REDINBAUGH M.G., PRATT R.C., HOGENHOUT S.A. & TOSEVSKI I. 2009: Stolbur phytoplasma transmission to maize by Reptalus panzeri and the disease cycle of Maize Redness in Serbia. Phytopathology 99: 1053-1061 Go to original source...
  29. KING J.R., ANDERSEN A.N. & CUTTER A.D. 1998: Ants as bioindicators of habitat disturbance: validation of the functional group model for Australia's humid tropics. Biodivers. Conserv. 7: 1627-1638 Go to original source...
  30. KUTTER H. 1977: Hymenoptera, Formicidae. In: Insecta Helvetica, Fauna Bd. 6. Schweizerische Entomologische Gesellschaft, Zuerich, 298 pp
  31. LEHOUCK V.S., BONTE D.B., DEKONINCK W. & MAELFAIT J.-P.E. 2004: Trophobiotic relationships between ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Tettigometridae (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha) in the grey dunes of Belgium. Eur. J. Entomol. 101: 547-553 Go to original source...
  32. LORINCZI G. 2008: Composition and diversity of ant communities (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in sub-Mediterranean habitats of Liter. Folia Mus. Hist.-Nat. Bakon. 25: 89-99 [in Hungarian with English abstr.]
  33. LORINCZI G. 2011: Density and spatial pattern of nests in subMediterranean ground-dwelling ant communities (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Commun. Ecol. 12: 51-57 Go to original source...
  34. MARAVALHAS J. & MORAIS H.C. 2009: Association between ants and a leafhopper (Cicadellidae: Idiocerinae) in the central brazilian cerrado. Fla Entomol. 92: 563-568 Go to original source...
  35. MITJAEV I.D. 1967: New and poorly known species of Homoptera, Auchenorrhyncha from East Kazakhstan. Entomol. Obozr. 46: 712-723 [in Russian]
  36. MOYA-RAYGOZA G. & NAULT L.R. 2000: Obligatory mutualism between Dalbulus quinquenotatus (Homoptera: Cicadellidae) and attendant ants. Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 93: 929-940 Go to original source...
  37. MYERS J.G. 1929: Observations on the biology of two remarkable cixiid planthoppers (Homoptera) from Cuba. Psyche 36: 283-292. Go to original source...
  38. NEECE K.C. 1980: A Faunistic Survey of the Organisms Associated with Ant Colonies of West Texas (Especially Solenopsis spp.). M.S. thesis, Texas Tech. University, 99 pp
  39. NICKEL H. 2003: The Leafhoppers and Planthoppers of Germany (Hemiptera, Auchenorrhyncha): Patterns and Strategies in a Highly Diverse Group of Phytophagous Insects. Pensoft, Sofia-Moscow, 460 pp
  40. NICKEL H. & REMANE R. 2002: Artenliste der Zikaden Deutschlands, mit Angabe von Naehrpflanzen, Nahrungsbreite, Lebenszyklus, Areal und Gefaehrdung (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha et Cicadomorpha). Beitr. Zikadenk. 5: 27-64
  41. PALERMO S., ELEKES M., BOTTI S., EMBER I., ALMA A., OROSZ A., BERTACCINI A. & KOLBER M. 2004: Presence of stolbur phytoplasma in Cixiidae in Hungarian vineyards. Vitis 43: 201-203
  42. PFEIFFER M. & LINSENMAIR K.E. 2007: Trophobiosis in a tropical rainforest on Borneo: Giant ants Camponotus gigas (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) herd wax cicada Bythopsyrna circulata (Auchenorrhyncha: Flatidae). Asian Myrmecol. 1: 105-119
  43. RIEDLE-BAUER M., TIEFENBRUNNER W., OTREBA J., HANAK K., SCHILDBERGER B. & REGNER F. 2006: Epidemiological observations on bois noir in Austrian vineyards. Mitt. Klosterneuburg 56: 166-170
  44. SCHMID-HEMPEL P. & CROZIER R.H. 1999: Polyandry versus polygyny versus parasites. Philos. Trans. R. Soc. (B) 354: 507-515 Go to original source...
  45. SEIFERT B. 2007: Die Ameisen Mittel- und Nordeuropas. Lutra & Vertriebsgesellschaft, GGrlitz, 368 pp
  46. STEINER F.M., SCHLICK-STEINER B.C., HOLZINGER W., KOMPOSCH C., PAZOUTOVA S., SANETRA M. & CHRISTIAN E. 2004: A novel relationship between ants and a leafhopper (Hymenoptera: Formicidae; Hemiptera: Cicadellidae). Eur. J. Entomol. 101: 689-692 Go to original source...
  47. THOMPSON C.R. 1984: Association of Paratrechina arenivaga (Hymenoptera: Formicidae), with nymphs of Oecleus borealis (Homoptera: Cixiidae). J.N.Y. Entomol. Soc. 92: 35-41
  48. THOMPSON C.R., NICKERSON J.C. & MEAD F.W. 1979: Nymphal habitat of Oliarus vicarius (Homoptera: Cixiidae), and possible association with Aphaenogaster and Paratrechina (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Psyche 86: 321-326 Go to original source...
  49. WAY M.J. 1963: Mutualism between ants and honeydewproducing Homoptera. Annu. Rev. Entomol. 8: 307-344 Go to original source...
  50. WIKE L.D., MARTIN F.D., PALLER M.H. & NELSON E.A. 2010: Impact of forest seral stage on use of ant communities for rapid assessment of terrestrial ecosystem health. J. Insect Sci. 10(77): 1-16 Go to original source...