Different trophic positions among social vespid species revealed by stable isotopes
Torniainen, J., & Komonen, A. (2021). Different trophic positions among social vespid species revealed by stable isotopes. Royal Society Open Science, 8(5), Article 210472. https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.210472
Published inRoyal Society Open Science
DisciplineMuseoEkologia ja evoluutiobiologiaAkvaattiset tieteetMuseumEcology and Evolutionary BiologyAquatic Sciences
© 2021 The Authors.
The social vespid wasps are common insect predators and several species behave in unison in the same biotopes. It is commonly accepted that social wasps are mainly opportunistic generalist predators without differences in prey selection and hence they compete for the same food resources. Trophic positions of six vespid wasp species and their potential prey from four sites in Finland and one in the UK were evaluated using carbon and nitrogen stable isotopes (δ13C and δ15N). The difference in isotope values indicated different trophic positions among species. In general, Dolichovespula spp. showed higher δ15N values than Vespula spp., which suggests that Dolichovespula forage on higher trophic levels. Dolichovespula media (Retzius, 1783) showed the highest δ15N values, whereas Vespula vulgaris showed the lowest. Dolichovespula media partly expresses apex predator-like δ15N values, whereas Vespula species tend to forage on primary consumers. The largest species Vespa crabro (Linnaeus, 1758) showed also similar δ15N values as Vespula spp. However, δ13C and δ15N values of V. vulgaris workers varied slightly during the season. This study offers novel insights about the trophic segregation in the social wasp community, suggesting specialization in diet resource utilization, especially between Dolichovespula and Vespula. ...
PublisherThe Royal Society Publishing
ISSN Search the Publication Forum2054-5703
Publication in research information system