Interindividual Variability and Idiosyncrasy in Social Behaviours in the Ant Camponotus vagus Scop

Annie Bonavita‐Cougourdan, Laurence Morel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Large intraspecific variability was found in interactive ant behaviours. However, a time study of callow and mature Camponotus vagus workers showed some stability in relationships within pairs of workers or in given individuals. Individual idiosyncrasies were observed as tendencies to simultaneously display a single level of activity for several behaviours. Thus some mature workers reverse the food flow during trophallactic exchanges, spend more time exchanging food and are more aggressive toward intruders. The time spent by callows in their main activity, brood‐tending, allows discrimination on two activity levels. Moreover, callows deprived of any relationship with older nestmates show different levels of activity in the duration and intensity of aggressive and non‐aggressive behaviours. The causality of these behavioural idiosyncrasies could possibly be explained in part by the social experience of each individual. 1988 Blackwell Verlag GmbH

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-66
Number of pages9
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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