Female southern pine beetles, Dendroctonus frontalis Zimmermann, may propagate two species of symbiotic fungi in a prothoracic mycangium. Females can carry either Ceratocystiopsis ranaculosus Bridges and Perry or an unnamed basidiomycete or both; some carry no fungi. Thus, females can be categorized into one of four groups based on mycangial content. We examined size and lipid content of emerging brood adult females based on these mycangial fungal classes. Female beetles carrying the basidiomycete, either alone or in combination with C. ranaculosus, were larger, heavier, and contained more lipid than did females carrying only C. ranaculosus. Size and lipid content also varied by season, as did the number of females carrying different fungal combinations. Regression analysis showed that variation in the occurrence of the basidiomycete was significantly related to variation in averages of beetle size and lipid content measurements.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Structural Biology
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Molecular Biology
- Insect Science