Luis Calcaterra

Luis Calcaterra
Fundación para el Estudio de Especies Invasivas - CONICET

Doctor in Biological Sciences
My current interest in research are biological invasions, focusing on social insects, such as ants, bees and wasps.

About

97
Publications
17,446
Reads
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1,153
Citations
Citations since 2016
40 Research Items
680 Citations
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120
2016201720182019202020212022020406080100120
Introduction
This project focuses on ant invasions, their multidisciplinary study, impact on wildlife and human populations, and the use of natural enemies to reduce their abundance.
Additional affiliations
October 2012 - present
Fundación para el Estudio de Especies Invasivas - CONICET
Position
  • Researcher
Description
  • Myrmecologist
October 2012 - present
Fundación para el Estudio de Especies Invasivas - CONICET
Position
  • Researcher
Description
  • Myrmecologist

Publications

Publications (97)
Preprint
Full-text available
Linear infrastructures such as roads are among the most frequent generators of anthropogenic disturbances. Due to the expensive area that is affected along them, these great infrastructures represent a major conservation concern worldwide. Ants are an important component of natural ecosystems and are considered to be very sensitive to disturbance....
Article
Full-text available
Antagonistic interactions can affect population growth and dispersal of an invasive species. Wolbachia are intracellular endosymbiont bacteria that infect arthropod and nematode hosts and are able to manipulate reproduction, which in some cases leads to cocladogenesis. Moreover, the presence of the strictly maternally transferred Wolbachia in a pop...
Article
1. Leaf-cutting ants are major pests of Neotropics forest plantations. The lower delta of the Paraná River contains the main Argentine Salicaceae production, strongly attacked by Acromyrmex lundii and Acromyrmex ambiguus. Nevertheless, there is no damage quantification in willow plantations attributed to leaf-cutting ant species. 2. In an area wit...
Article
Full-text available
Ants, an ecologically successful and numerically dominant group of animals, play key ecological roles as soil engineers, predators, nutrient recyclers, and regulators of plant growth and reproduction in most terrestrial ecosystems. Further, ants are widely used as bioindicators of the ecological impact of land use. We gathered information of ant sp...
Article
Full-text available
1. Understanding the spatial distribution of species sheds light on the biogeographical history, offers clues to the drivers of biodiversity and helps guide conservation strategies. In southern South America, Andean, Chaco and Atlantic forests drastically decreased their coverage in the last decades mainly by changes in land use. 2. Ants represent...
Article
Leafcutting ants are considered the most important herbivores in terrestrial environments throughout the Neotropics. Amoimyrmex is the sister clade of the remaining leafcutter ants from the genera Atta and Acromyrmex . Amoimyrmex striatus was the only species cytogenetically studied within the genus and shares the same chromosomal number with Atta...
Article
1 The most commonly used method to control insect pests, such as leaf-cutting ants (LCA) in forest plantations, is the application of chemical insecticides, but their use was forbidden in plantations certified by the Forest Stewardship Council because of their negative effect on the environment. 2 A 5-year derogation of their prohibition was obtain...
Article
Full-text available
South American fire ant decapitating flies in the genus Pseudacteon (Diptera: Phoridae) are potential biocontrol agents of the invasive fire ants Solenopsis invicta and S. richteri in the United States and other regions of the world due to their high host specificity and the direct and indirect damage to their host ants. Despite their importance an...
Article
Current approaches to assess and predict the impact of climate warming on ectotherms are largely based on their physiological sensitivity to temperature. However, these physiological studies provide little insight into the mechanisms by which particular species respond to increasing temperatures through behavior, phenotypic plasticity, or genetic a...
Article
Full-text available
Species distribution models based on the correlation of bioclimatic variables and presence spatial data-points are useful for recognizing species habitat suitability. However, they have limitations in predicting the introduced ranges of invasive species that could be overcome by using species eco-physiological traits. By combining bioclimatic varia...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Resumen: Las hormigas cortadoras de hojas (HCH), consideradas ingenieras del ecosistema, son plaga en producciones forestales (monocultivos). Su manejo es casi exclusivamente mediante la aplicación de cebos tóxicos prohibidos en muchos países. El objetivo de este trabajo fue identificar, evaluar y seleccionar herramientas para ser utilizadas en un...
Article
Full-text available
Leaf-cutting ants (LCA) are considered one of the main herbivores and one of the most destructive pest insects of the Neotropics. Northeastern Argentina harbors the greatest species richness of these ants and in turn comprises the highest surface with forest plantations. Our aim was to establish which species of leaf-cutting ants are most commonly...
Article
Full-text available
Background Social insects are among the most serious invasive pests in the world, particularly successful at monopolizing environmental resources to outcompete native species and achieve ecological dominance. The invasive success of some social insects is enhanced by their unicolonial structure, under which the presence of numerous queens and the l...
Article
The giant anteater, Myrmecophaga tridactyla, globally categorized as a vulnerable species, has disappeared in several regions of its original distribution in Argentina. A program to reintroduce the species has been conducted in the Iberá Nature Reserve in Corrientes province since 2006. The diet of released giant anteaters was studied to determine...
Article
Full-text available
The giant anteater, Myrmecophaga tridactyla, globally categorized as a vulnerable species, has disappeared in several regions of its original distribution in Argentina. A program to reintroduce the species has been conducted in the Iberá Nature Reserve in Corrientes province since 2006. The diet of released giant anteaters was studied to determine...
Article
Full-text available
The little fire ant Wasmannia auropunctata, native to the Neotropics, has become a serious pest worldwide over the past 100 years. It was originally distributed from Mexico to northern Argentina and new evidence suggests a recent southern range expansion during the last 60 years reaching central Argentina. This supercolonial ant species has a polym...
Data
Sampled localities. List of localities where W. auropunctata was found, geographic coordinates of each locality, brief description of the habitat, number of nests and clusters sampled per location (places where only workers were found but not nests are indicated by "workers"), number of reproductive females and males genotyped, degree of disturbanc...
Data
Main sampling routes. Map showing the main routes along which manual search was carried out. (TIF)
Data
Occurrence of Wasmannia auropunctata in undisturbed habitats. The number of leaf-litter (sieving) and bait samples in three native forest regions of northern Argentina (Chaco/ Espinal, Yungas and Paranaense Forests) and the percentage of samples with presence of W. auropunctata are indicated. Geographic coordinates of each sampling site are informe...
Data
Multilocus genotypes of queens (Q), gynes (G) and males (M) at 12 microsatelite loci. Sample Id. represents locality, nest and individual. Samples in bold (below the thick line) should not be analysed together with the above samples because both data sets were obtained using different ABI 3130 DNA sequencers, thus homology among alleles could not b...
Poster
Full-text available
Los desiertos de la Patagonia, la Puna y el Monte representan ~60% de la superficie de Argentina, siendo el Monte el más diverso en especies, extendiéndose desde Salta hasta Chubut. Las hormigas son uno de los taxones de invertebrados ecológicamente más importantes en ambientes desérticos. Sin embargo muy poco se conoce sobre ellas en el desierto d...
Poster
Full-text available
La actividad de las hormigas varía en función de factores bióticos y abióticos a lo largo del día y del año. En los desiertos, la temperatura toma particular relevancia ya que son sistemas con amplias variaciones térmicas diarias y estacionales. Las hormigas suelen tener claras preferencias para forrajear en función de la temperatura del suelo. Las...
Article
Full-text available
Deforestation and over-grazing mediated by the humans have caused a serious process of desertification in the Argentine Monte Desert, which threats biodiversity of this ecosystem. Forests provide important resources and refuge for animal species, such as ants. The objective of this work was to survey the ant fauna of dryland forests of Ischigualast...
Article
Full-text available
Metagenomics and next generation sequencing were employed to discover new virus natural enemies of the fire ant, Solenopsis invicta Buren in its native range (i.e., Formosa, Argentina) with the ultimate goal of testing and releasing new viral pathogens into U.S. S. invicta populations to provide natural, sustainable control of this ant. RNA was pur...
Data
Contiguous sequences comprised of fewer than 50 singletons with significant viral identity by BLASTX analysis of the GenBank database from RNA libraries created from Solenopsis invicta worker ants. Contigs were first sorted in descending order based on the number of the sequences comprising it, followed by the libraries represented. (DOCX)
Data
Oligonucleotide primers and their purpose from experiments in this study. (DOCX)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The southern black ant, Acromyrmex lobicornis, is a species of leaf-cutting ant with a wide distribution in southern South America. Mostly distributed in Argentina, it's range extends from southern Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay to the province of Chubut in Patagonia, and it is apparently in the process of a southwestern expansion into Chile. It's ad...
Presentation
Full-text available
Las hormigas cortadoras de hojas (HCH) son una de las principales plagas forestales debido a los daños ocasionados por defoliación en los primeros dos años de la plantación. El Bajo Delta del Río Paraná posee grandes extensiones de plantaciones de sauces que son mayormente atacadas por la HCH Acromyrmex lundii. Pese a la importancia de las HCH como...
Poster
Full-text available
Las hormigas cortadoras de hojas (HCH) son una de las principales plagas forestales de Argentina debido a los daños causados por defoliación en los primeros años de la plantación. El Bajo Delta del Río Paraná posee extensas plantaciones de salicáceas (sauces y álamos) que aparentemente sólo son atacadas por dos especies de HCH: Acromyrmex lundii y...
Article
Full-text available
We studied radiation tolerance in queens of the red imported fire ant Solenopsis invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) to identify a dose that prevents reproduction. Virgin or fertile queens were collected from Santa Fe and Formosa provinces in Argentina and reared in the laboratory in microcolonies. Virgin queens were irradiated at 0 (control),...
Article
Full-text available
An important goal of invasion ecology is to understand the colonization, establishment, and spread of exotic species. To accomplish this, it is essential to examine the ecology of introduced species in native populations. We examined organization patterns, spatial structure, and competitive abilities of ground-dwelling ants in different habitats of...
Article
Full-text available
The evolutionary history of invasive species within their native range may involve key processes that allow them to colonize new habitats. Therefore, phylogeographic studies of invasive species within their native ranges are useful to understand invasion biology in an evolutionary context. Here we integrated classical and Bayesian phylogeographic m...
Article
Full-text available
The ant genus Wasmannia is endemic to the Neotropics, with 10 species occurring within the presumptive native range for the genus from Mexico to Argentina. Only the little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata is widely distributed being present from central-eastern Argentina to Bermuda, and has become infamous due to its recent worldwide expansion and...
Article
Full-text available
We describe the ant fauna of Iguazú National Park (INP), a region of high biodiversity and endemism in northeastern Argentina that includes the southernmost protected area of the Atlantic Forest (AF). Ants were sampled over seven periods from 1998 to 2011 using a variety of techniques. We also surveyed museum collections and the scientific literatu...
Article
Full-text available
We describe the ant fauna of Iguazu National Park (INP), a region of high biodiversity and endemism in northeastern Argentina that includes the southernmost protected area of the Atlantic Forest (AF). Ants were sampled over seven periods from 1998 to 2011 using a variety of techniques. We also surveyed museum collections and the scientific literatu...
Poster
Full-text available
La Reserva Natural Iberá (RNI) ocupa 1.300.000 hectáreas en el noreste de la provincia argentina de Corrientes y protege uno de los más grandes humedales y reservorios de especies de América del Sur. Abarca diferentes ambientes naturales incluyendo sabanas, bosques, pastizales inundables temporariamente y lagunas de agua dulce. Esta diversidad de a...
Poster
Full-text available
Las hormigas del género Acromyrmex (Formicidae: Attini), conocidas como hormigas cortadoras de hojas (HCH), son los mayores herbívoros de la región Neotropical y una de las plagas forestales más importantes debido a los daños económicos causados por defoliación. Estas hormigas cortan hojas de una gran variedad de especies de plantas, y con ese mate...
Article
Full-text available
The South American bigheaded ant Pheidole obscurithorax was first found in North America in Mobile, Alabama in 1949. Since then, this species has also been recorded in Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, and Texas. We compiled and mapped published and unpublished specimen records of P. obscurithorax from >170 sites in South America and the US to evaluat...
Article
Full-text available
Irradiation is a post-harvest quarantine treatment option to control ants and other hitchhiker pests on fresh horticultural products traded between countries. As little is known about irradiation effects on ants, radiotolerance of the Argentine ant, Linepithema humile (Mayr) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Dolichoderinae), was studied to determine a dose...
Article
Full-text available
Fire is an important component of many natural ecosystems affecting plant communities and arthropods by mortality during combustion and/or indirectly through the modification of the habitat. The Iberá Natural Reserve (INR) is one of the most diverse ecosystems in northern Argentina; it is dominated by grasslands commonly affected by disturbances, s...
Article
Full-text available
The little decapitating fly Pseudacteon cultellatus Borgmeier (Diptera: Phoridae) from Argentina was released as a self-sustaining biological control agent against the red imported fire ant, Solenopsis invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Florida to parasitize small fire ant workers associated with multiple-queen colonies. This fly appears to...
Article
Full-text available
Evolution may improve the invasiveness of populations, but it often remains unclear whether key adapta- tion events occur after introduction into the recipient habitat (i.e. post-introduction adaptation scenario), or before introduction within the native range (i.e. prior-adaptation scenario) or at a primary site of invasion (i.e. bridgehead scenar...
Article
Full-text available
Irradiation is a postharvest quarantine treatment option to control ants and other hitchhiker pests on fresh horticultural products exported from Hawaii. The radiotolerance of the invasive little fire ant, Wasmannia auropunctata (Roger) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae: Myrmicinae), was studied to determine a dose sufficient for its control. Queens from ea...
Article
Full-text available
We review the fire ant research conducted by the ARS-South American Biological Control Laboratory (SABCL) since 1987 to find a complex of natural enemies in southern South America and evaluate their specificity and suitability for field release as self-sustaining biological control agents. We also include those studies conducted by the ARS-Center f...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The genus Wasmannia (Formicidae: Myrmicinae: Blepharidattini) is endemic to the Neotropics, with 10 species presumably occurring through its native range from Argentina to Mexico, according to the last taxonomical review (Longino & Fernandez, 2007). The little fire ant Wasmannia auropunctata is the most widely distributed, being present from centra...
Article
Full-text available
The fire ant Solenopsis invicta is a significant pest that was inadvertently introduced into the southern United States almost a century ago and more recently into California and other regions of the world. An assessment of genetic variation at a diverse set of molecular markers in 2144 fire ant colonies from 75 geographic sites worldwide revealed...
Article
Parasitoid wasps of the genus Orasema Cameron have been considered as potential candidates for biological control of imported fire ants in the United States. Surveys were conducted for their occurrence in fire ant colonies across southern South America. In Argentina, 443 ant colonies were excavated at 57 sites and 11 positive sites were revisited t...
Article
Full-text available
The maintenance of species diversity in modified and natural habitats is a central focus of conservation biology. The Iberá Nature Reserve (INR) protects highly diverse ecosystems in northeastern Argentina, including one of the largest freshwater wetlands in South America. Livestock grazing is one of the major disturbances to these ecosystems; howe...