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Workers of the polymorphic fire ant Solenopsis invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) show modest changes of shape with increases in body size. These shape changes (allometries) have been described only for workers taken from mature colonies of the monogyne social form. For the study reported here, workers were collected from small and large monogyne and large polygyne colonies for tests of the effects of colony size and social form on allometry. The differential growth of body parts in relation to total body growth was determined by measurement of all major body parts and regression of the logs of these measurements, or their ratios, on the log of the body size. The slopes of these regressions defined the allometric relationships, and the slopes for these three types of colonies were compared for determination of the influence of colony size and social form on allometric rules. Most allometric constants did not differ with colony size or social form, but head shape, relative antennal size, and alinotum shape did. For a given worker size, heads of workers from small monogyne colonies or from polygyne colonies were narrower above the eyes. Antennae of workers from large monogyne colonies were relatively shorter than those from small monogyne or polygyne colonies (which did not differ). Alinotum heights of small workers from small monogyne colonies were greater than those from large monogyne or polygyne colonies (which were isometric and did not differ). These observed differences in allometric constants suggest that the relative growth rules are not completely determined by worker body size but are affected by colony size and social form. These differences are discussed in light of the growth of imaginai discs under conditions of fixed resources.
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