Title

Variation in Thermal Tolerance of North American Ants

Abstract

Changing climates are predicted to alter the distribution of thermal niches. Small ectotherms such as ants may be particularly vulnerable to heat injury and death. We quantified the critical thermal maxima of 92 ant colonies representing 14 common temperate ant species. The mean CTmax for all measured ants was 47.8°C (±0.27; range = 40.2-51.2°C), and within-colony variation was lower than among-colony variation. Critical thermal maxima differed among species and were negatively correlated with body size. Results of this study illustrate the importance of accounting for mass, among and within colony variation, and interspecific differences in diel activity patterns, which are often neglected in studies of ant thermal physiology.

Department(s)

Biological Sciences

Keywords and Phrases

Arkansas; Critical Thermal Maximum; Formicidae; Heat; Insects; Texas

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

0306-4565

Document Type

Article - Journal

Document Version

Citation

File Type

text

Language(s)

English

Rights

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd, All rights reserved.

PubMed ID

25660632

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