Sarah Jaumann

Sarah Jaumann
George Washington University | GW · Department of Biological Sciences

Doctor of Philosophy

About

11
Publications
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114
Citations
Introduction
I study the effects of nutrition and the conspecific social environment on pollinator health, brain morphology, and cognition.

Publications

Publications (11)
Article
Full-text available
Many insects show plasticity in the area of the brain called the mushroom bodies (MB) with foraging and social experience. MBs are paired neuropils associated with learning and memory. MB volume is typically greater in mature foragers relative to young and/or inexperienced individuals. Long-term studies show that extended experience may further inc...
Article
Full-text available
Social behavior has been predicted to select for increased neural investment (the social brain hypothesis) and also to select for decreased neural investment (the distributed cognition hypothesis). Here, we use two related bees, the social Augochlorella aurata (Smith) (Hymenoptera: Halictidae) and the related Augochlora pura (Say), which has lost s...
Article
Nutrition has been hypothesized as an important constraint on brain evolution. However, it is unclear whether the availability of specific nutrients or the difficulty of locating high quality diets limits brain evolution, especially over long periods of time. We show that dietary nutrient content predicted brain size across 42 species of butterflie...
Article
Full-text available
Social interactions may shape brain development. In primitively eusocial insects, the mushroom body (MB), an area of the brain associated with sensory integration and learning, is larger in queens than in workers. This may reflect a strategy of neural investment in queens or it may be a plastic response to social interactions in the nest. Here, we...
Article
Full-text available
The mushroom body (MB) is an area of the insect brain involved in learning, memory, and sensory integration. Here we used the sweat bee Megalopta genalis (Halictidae) to test for differences between queens and workers in the volume of the MB calyces. We used confocal microscopy to measure the volume of the whole brain, MB calyces, optic lobes and a...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the benefits of careful decision-making, not all animals are choosy. One explanation is that choosiness can cost time and energy and thus depend on nutrition. However, it is not clear how allocation to choosiness versus other components of life-history shifts in the face of nutritional stress. We tested 2 hypotheses about the effects of nut...
Article
Synopsis: High conspecific densities are associated with increased levels of intraspecific competition and a variety of negative effects on performance. However, changes in life history strategy could compensate for some of these effects. For instance, females in crowded conditions often have fewer total offspring, but they may invest more in each...
Article
Being choosy can allow animals to find and identify the best resources or safest locations to rear offspring. Despite these benefits, individuals vary in the degree to which they are choosy. One explanation is that choosiness represents a costly form of offspring investment and is part of a suite of life history trade-offs. We examined trade-offs b...
Chapter
We apply concepts from the innovation literature to observations of insect resource use and diversification. In doing so, we argue that the process that leads to innovation is key to understanding the evolutionary consequences of innovation. We review examples from insect learning, resource search, and phylogenetic patterns of host use to formulate...
Conference Paper
Background/Question/Methods Resource availability is known to impact organismal development and thus community dynamics. However what is less clear, is how resources impact trait evolution. Ideas from both life history theory and anthropology suggest that nutrient availability may constrain the evolution of traits requiring those nutrients. At th...
Article
The energetic cost of cognitive functions can lead to either impairments in learning and memory, or to trade-offs with other functions, when the amount of available energy is limited. However, it has been suggested that, under such conditions, social groups such as honeybees might be able to ward off cognitive impairments in individual bees by adju...

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