Solenopsis invicta virus 1 decreases the foraging activity and influences the diet of its host

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In the article “Viral infections in fire ants lead to reduced foraging activity and dietary changes” recenty published in Scientific Reports, Hung-Wei Hsu, Ming-Chung Chiu, DeWayne Shoemaker, and Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang reveal that Solenopsis invicta colonies infected with the Solenopsis invicta virus 1 (SINV-1) had a reduced foraging performance, a reduced lipid intake, and a shifted food preference towards carbohydrate-rich food. In this Photoblog contribution, Scotty Yang shares pictures and a video related to this article.


A Photoblog contribution created by Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang


Viral infections in fire ants lead to reduced foraging activity and dietary changes. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


A fire ant worker is set to foraging.  Workers of infected colonies forage less efficiently than those of uninfected colonies. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


A major worker is chopping down a meal worm with several minors. After having been virus-challenged, workers generally become much less interested in feeding on protein-rich foods such as arthropod prey. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


Setup of the assays. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


Several dozens of fire ant worker rushing out of the colony when being disturbed by a gardening shovel. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


Two foraging workers are communicating with each other through antennation. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


Two nurse workers are cooperating to move a sexual larva after being disturbed. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)


Scotty Yang holding a Dinomyrmex gigas queen. (© Chin-Cheng Scotty Yang)



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