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Fig trees (Ficus spp.) and their pollinating wasps in Universitas Syiah Kuala Campus, Banda Aceh, Indonesia
Jauharlina Jauharlina

Last modified: 2021-09-05

Abstract


Fig trees (Ficus spp.) and their pollinating wasps (Hymenoptera; Agaonindae)  are a unique system to study mutualism. Female fig wasps deposit eggs and develop their progeny in galled female flowers inside the figs, while fig wasps pollinate females flower inside the same figs.  A study investigating fig tree species composition and pollinating wasps was conducted at Universitas Syiah Kuala campus, Banda Aceh.  We recorded all fig tree species found in the area from Dec 2020 until June 2021.  Ten semi-ripe fig fruits on each fig tree were sampled and brought to the laboratory to examine the wasps inside.   We recorded 112 individuals fig trees that belonged to 11 species; most of them were monoecious species.    The most abundant species was Ficus altissima , followed by F. Benjamina , and F. macrocarpa, while the least was F.racemosa and  F. carica.  A number of  20.7± 6.5 (Mean ± SE) female pollinator Eupristina koningsbergeri was counted in a single fig of F. benjamina compared to 350.4±45.4 (Mean ± SE) Ceratosolen fusciceps female wasps in fig of F.racemosa. This study has provided an example of obligate mutualism between different species in the local area, which has been observed since a long time ago


Keywords


mutualism, pollination, agaonidae, fig wasps