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(Reference retrieved automatically from Web of Science through information on FAPESP grant and its corresponding number as mentioned in the publication by the authors.)

Natural history of an ant-plant-butterfly interaction in a Neotropical savanna

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Baechtold, Alexandra [1] ; Del-Claro, Kleber [2] ; Kaminski, Lucas A. [3] ; Freitas, Andre V. L. [3] ; Oliveira, Paulo S. [3]
Total Authors: 5
[1] Univ Sao Paulo, FFCLRP, Programa Posgrad Entomol, BR-14040901 Sao Paulo - Brazil
[2] Univ Fed Uberlandia, Inst Biol, BR-38400902 Uberlandia, MG - Brazil
[3] Univ Estadual Campinas, Dept Biol Anim, BR-13083970 Campinas, SP - Brazil
Total Affiliations: 3
Document type: Journal article
Source: Journal of Natural History; v. 46, n. 15-16, p. 943-954, 2012.
Web of Science Citations: 17

Non-myrmecophilous lepidopteran larvae using plants bearing ant attractants such as extrafloral nectaries are good models for studying morphological and behavioural mechanisms against ant predation. Udranomia spitzi (Hesperiidae) is a butterfly whose larvae feed on leaves of Ouratea spectabilis (Ochnaceae), a plant with extrafloral nectaries. We described the early stages of U. spitzi, and used field observations and experiments to investigate the defensive strategies of caterpillars against predatory ants. Larvae pass through five instars and pupation occurs inside larval leaf shelters. Ant-exclusion experiments revealed that the presence of ants did not affect significantly caterpillar survival. Predation experiments showed that vulnerability to ant predation decreased with increase in larval size. The present study showed that predatory ants are not as relevant as demonstrated for other systems, and also illustrates how observational data and field experiments can contribute to a better understanding of the biology and ecology of a species of interest. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 98/05101-8 - Lepidoptera of the State of São Paulo: diversity, distribution, resources, and use for analysis and environmental monitoring
Grantee:Keith Spalding Brown Junior
Support type: BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Thematic Grants
FAPESP's process: 11/50225-3 - Natural history, phylogeny and conservation of Neotropical Lepidoptera
Grantee:André Victor Lucci Freitas
Support type: BIOTA-FAPESP Program - Regular Research Grants
FAPESP's process: 00/01484-1 - Butterfilies as environmental indicators: monitoring with Nymphalidae (Eurytelinae and Satyrinae)
Grantee:André Victor Lucci Freitas
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctorate