Copulatory wounds in the monandrous ant species Formica japonica (Hymenoptera, Formicidae)

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16 Citations (Scopus)


Males of several insect species inflict wounds on female genitalia during copulation, but the significance of such copulatory wounds for males is not clear. I compared the genitalia of virgin and mated Formica japonica females and for the first time report the occurrence of copulatory wounds in this monandrous ant species. All inseminated females examined had two types of melanized patches, indicating wound repair, and the serrated penis valves and sharp-pointed volsellar digitus of male genitalia were the likely instruments of these wounds. Physically damaging mating in monandrous species supports the view that copulatory wounds do not necessarily contribute to postcopulatory fitness gains for males via advantages in sperm competition or cryptic female choice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-53
Number of pages3
JournalInsectes Sociaux
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2008 Feb
Externally publishedYes


  • Ants
  • Copulatory wounds
  • Formica japonica
  • Monandry
  • Pleiotropy hypothesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science


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