Journal of Tropical Ecology



Short Communication

The population dynamics of a non-pollinating fig wasp on Ficus auriculata at Xishuangbanna, China


Yan-Qiong Peng a1a2, Da-Rong Yang a1c1 and Zhu-Biao Duang a1
a1 Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, China
a2 Graduate School of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China

Article author query
peng y   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
yang d   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 
duang z   [PubMed][Google Scholar] 

All fig wasps are confined to figs as larvae, and their specialized diets are restricted to fig embryos, galled fig ovaries or other fig wasp larvae (Boucek 1988). Almost all of the [similar]800 Ficus species (Moraceae) are involved in species-specific obligate mutualism with a pollinating fig wasp (Hymenoptera: Agaonidae), which also strictly depends on its host fig for reproduction (Berg 2003, Ramirez 1970, Wiebes 1979). More than half of all fig species are functionally dioecious, with male and female functions relegated to separate plants, called gall and seed figs (Kjellberg et al. 1987). Gall figs are functionally male because they foster the pollinator larvae that disperse the fig's pollen as adults. Seed figs are functionally female and produce only seeds. The styles are too long for pollinator ovipositors to reach the ovules, and hence they cannot lay eggs. Gall fig styles are short (Ganeshaiah et al. 1995, Weiblen et al. 1995).

(Accepted February 12 2005)


Key Words: Apocryptophagus; co-evolution; dioecy; fig-pollinating wasp; symbiosis.

Correspondence:
c1 Corresponding author. Present address: 88 Xuefu Road, Kunming Division, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming, Yunnan 650223, P. R. China. Email: yangdr@xtbg.ac.cn