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Behaviour and Social Evolution of Wasps: The Communal Aggregation Hypothesis - Oxford Series in Ecology and Evolution (Paperback)
  • Behaviour and Social Evolution of Wasps: The Communal Aggregation Hypothesis - Oxford Series in Ecology and Evolution (Paperback)

Behaviour and Social Evolution of Wasps: The Communal Aggregation Hypothesis - Oxford Series in Ecology and Evolution (Paperback)

Paperback 168 Pages / Published: 04/02/1993
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In this book, Yosiaki Ito presents data on tropical wasps which suggests that kin-selection has been over-emphasized as an evolutionary explanation of sociality. He concentrates on the Vespidae (paper wasps and hornets), a group much discussed by evolutionary biologists because it exhibits all stages of social evolution - subsociality, primitive eusociality and advanced eusociality. The author reports field observations by himself and others in Central America, Asia and Australia, showing that multiple egg-layers in a nest are not uncommon. Because coexistence of many "queens" leads to lower relatedness among colony members than in single-queen colonies, he suggests that kin-selection may not be the most powerful force determining observed social patterns. Instead, subsocial wasps may first have aggregated for defence purposes in habitats with a high risk of predation, with mutualistic associations among many queens. Through parental manipulation and then kin-selection, differentiation into within-generation castes may have followed. This study should be of interest to students of ecology, evolution and behaviour.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198540465
Number of pages: 168
Weight: 296 g
Dimensions: 233 x 155 x 11 mm

'Ito is a wasp enthusiast and this book will be chiefly enjoyed by entomologists. He does not present major new ideas, but the book's strength is the careful experimental account of many years' study of paper wasps, mostly of the species whose biology was previously unknown, and much of it previously published in Japanese journals ... this is a worthwhile book that will materially contribute to a more pluralistic study of the evolution of advanced insect societies.' Times Higher
Yosiaki Ito has been among the most active field researchers on social Vespidae for more than 20 years and has contributed significantly to this evolutionary debate. He is therefore particularly well positioned to write this book ... a very valuable and enjoyable book ... the book is impressive in producing a comprehensive explanation of the evolution of varied vespid social systems * Michael Hansell, University of Glasgow, Animal Behaviour 1994, 47 *
this is a valuable book and one that I would recommend to anyone interested in eusocial insects * Paul Eggleton, Journal of Natural History, 1995, 29 *
This book beautifully illustrates the ability to combine wide-ranging data with thoughtful questions. It offers a basis for further research in this respect, but is also of general interest to all students of ecology, evolution and behaviour. * Entomologia Generalis, Vol. 22 No. 1 *

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