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Poorva Patel

Leaf toughness affects leaf harvesting by the leaf cutter

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1) Ph. Arthropoda, Cl. Insecta, Or. Hymenoptera, SubOr. Corophioidea, Fam. Formicidae, subfam. Myrmicinea. Gen. Atta Comment by John Lugthart: Italicize genus names

2) Nichols-Orians, C. M., & Schultz, J. C. (1989). Leaf toughness affects leaf harvesting by the leafcutter ant, Atta cephalotes (L.)(Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Biotropica, 80-83. Comment by John Lugthart: Omit parentheses Comment by John Lugthart: italicize

3) The authors have researched because the leaf cutter ants are extremely useful in eating the young and old leaves. The purpose of the study is to know whether the old and young leaves make a difference to the choice of ants to eat them. There were other parameters to study as well. Comment by John Lugthart: You are correct that the leaf harvesting by these ants is ecologically important. However, this is not the specific reason for this study. The authors want to know WHY the ants seem to prefer young leaves over old ones. Comment by John Lugthart: Not “whether”, but why they prefer young leaves. You should state that the authors hypothesize that the preference may be due to leaf toughness, with the older leaves being tougher and therefore harder to cut. Comment by John Lugthart: I think you can omit this sentence

4) Leafcutter ants belong to the genus Atta, and they are found in Neotropics. They are herbivorous and are known for their ability to eat old and young leaves. It is known that they are known for harvesting the plant taxa, but it depends on the ants which type and plants they have to harvest. They also prefer the young leaves to eat, but they can eat the old leaves too. This selection is associated with the toughness, load weight, defensive chemistry, nutrient concentration, moisture content, or more than one factor. Comment by John Lugthart: I think you can omit these two sentences Comment by John Lugthart: Reword – “Although the ants can eat old leaves, they seem to prefer young ones.” Comment by John Lugthart: There is uncertainty about why they prefer younger leaves, so instead of “is”, use “may be” Comment by John Lugthart: leaf toughness

5) The study took place in 1986, and there were three colonies. One of them was from an unidentified tree, and the other two were from the same tree. The intraspecific variation was removed. The regression model was used, and it was noted that the authors took almost 3-5 readings per leaf. There were almost 43 leaves that were taken from the old and young leaves. One-way analysis of variance was used in the experiment, and the results were taken and then analyzed. It has been seen that these young and old leaves were taken, but the regression model was effective in making the analysis and take out the results. Comment by John Lugthart: For our purposes, you can omit this Comment by John Lugthart: You need to focus on the main aspects of the methods and results, not some of these specific details. So, things to include: Young and old leaves were placed next to the trails of two of the colonies and ant head capsule widths were measured of ants cutting the two types of leaves. The found that the ants cutting the older leaves had bigger head capsule widths. Leaf toughness was measured. Old leaves were four times tougher than young ones. Pairs of young and old leaf disks were placed next to the trails and the ants did not have any preference for either type. Comment by John Lugthart: three ant colonies Comment by John Lugthart: harvesting leaves from Comment by John Lugthart: unidentified Rubiaceous tree from which all the leaves used in the study were taken Comment by John Lugthart: omit this Comment by John Lugthart: omit these sentences. Also, they only used 8 leaves – 4 young and 4 old. But you don’t have to include that. Comment by John Lugthart: Omit this sentence Comment by John Lugthart: Omit this sentence as well.

6) The results revealed that the young leaves did not have larger means than the old leaves. There were no ants less than 1.8 mm HCW, and it was found that these aunts were found to cut the old leaves. It has been found that different types of leaves were analyzed. The lines of slope regression were observed, and it was shown that the toughness was the most significant feature that decided whether to cut the young or old leaves. So, the difference between the old and young leaves was not the parameter of selection. The results were effective in the research. Comment by John Lugthart: I think this section needs to be completely rewritten. In just two sentences, state the conclusions of this study – look at the last two sentences of the paper’s Abstract and put this information into your own words.

7) Words 403

Grade = 7/10

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