Conophytum by Dortort F.

By Dortort F.

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1999). This exploitative competition is likely to be most fierce in the case of accessible nectaries. When aggressive competitors monopolize nectar sources and attack subsequent flower visitors, this direct competition impedes access to even the most exposed nectary. Kikuchi (1963) established dominance rankings between flower visitors, showing that bumblebees chase away syrphids, which in turn outcompete butterflies. The fact that the exploitation of floral nectar by ants is subordinate to their use of extrafloral nectar (Beattie 1985) implies that the impact of ants on flower visitors is often relatively minor.

The shift from sucrose to hexose sugars may also reduce the attractiveness of extrafloral nectar to Lepidoptera (Rogers 1985; Romeis and Wa¨ckers 2000). In addition to carbohydrates, extrafloral nectar may contain variable amounts of amino acids, as well as low concentrations of lipids and vitamins (Baker et al. 1978; Smith et al. 1990). The amino acid composition usually differs between extrafloral and floral nectar of the same plant (Baker et al. 1978). , cysteine) are more frequently found in extrafloral nectar, while glutamic acid appears to be more prevalent in floral nectar (Baker et al.

While extrafloral nectar plants are most abundant in the tropics (Zimmerman 1932), they also occur in the temperate zones (Koptur 1992). Extrafloral nectaries are not restricted to one part of the plant, but can be found on various vegetative parts, as well as on flowers and fruiting structures (Bentley 1977a; Koptur 1992). The often copious nectar volume secreted by extrafloral nectaries may exceed floral nectar production markedly. 6 mg of sugar per day, representing 1‰ of the leaf’s daily assimilate production (Wa¨ckers et al.

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