Applicability of DNA barcodes for an effective assessment of the diversity of ant communities in the Ecuadorian Andes

Category: 
Pilot project
Acronym: 
Andant
Coordinator: 
Maurice Leponce (RBINS)
JEMU partner: 
Zoltán T. Nagy, Gontran Sonet
Project summary: 
We propose here to conduct a pilot study to set up and calibrate the use of DNA barcodes to discriminate ant species collected during a large-scale ant inventory at the EDIT ATBI+M(1) site in the Ecuadorian Andes. A usual problem when studying tropical leaf-litter ant assemblages is that the more common genera collected (Solenopsis and Pheidole) are also among the most difficult to identify to species level. A correct determination is particularly critical for biogeographical and ecological studies attempting to define species distributions and the factors that determine them.
Collaborations: 
Justine Jacquemin (ULB), Thibaut Delsinne (RBINS & ULB), Nina Wouters (RBINS & ULB)
Lab work progress: 
Completed
Data analysis: 
Completed
Starting date: 
1st January 2010
Project status: 
Completed

Output:
Peer-reviewed papers
Delsinne, T., Sonet, G., Nagy, Z.T., Wauters, N., Jacquemin, J. & Leponce, M. (in press): High species turnover of the ant genus Solenopsis (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) along an altitudinal gradient in the Ecuadorian Andes, indicated by a combined DNA sequencing and morphological approach. – Invertebrate Systematics.
Printed abstracts
Sonet, G., Nagy, Z.T., Jacquemin, J., Wauters, N., Delsinne, T., Leponce, M. (2011): DNA barcoding of fire and thief ants (genus Solenopsis) of the Ecuadorian Andes as a tool for biodiversity research, 4th Internation Barcode of Life Conferences, Adelaide, Australia, 28 Nov. - 03 Dec. 2011.
Sonet, G., Nagy, Z.T., Jacquemin, J., Wauters, N., Delsinne, T., Leponce, M. (2011): Validation of the DNA barcoding approach to survey ant communities in the Ecuadorian Andes, Programme and Abstracts of BioSystematics Berlin 2011, 7th International Congress of Systematic and Evolutionary Biology (ICSEB VII), 21 – 27 February 2011, Berlin, Germany), p. 343-4.

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith