Class Year

2020

Date

4-21-2020

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (BA)

Department or Program

Biology

First Advisor

Sean B. Menke

Second Advisor

David Boden

Third Advisor

Lynn Westley

Abstract

Sodium is vital for maintaining osmotic balance, muscle activity, and nervous system function in many organisms. The availability of sodium can drastically impact populations within ecosystems. Salt content from human foods and salt from winter road treatments could increase Na+ availability. I hypothesize that Na+ availability is more limited when moving away from Chicago. I baited ants along two 50km transects extending West and North from downtown Chicago. Transects contained 10 evenly spaced forested sites. Baits were equally split between H20, 20% sugar, and 1% salt concentration. Thirteen ant species were collected, but only three species recruited to salt baits. There is no relationship between ant recruitment to salt and distance from Chicago. It is possible that proximity to roads is the more important variable in determining salt availability. Thus, the urban gradient may not matter due to the spatial scale in which ants live.

Language

English


Included in

Entomology Commons

Share

COinS