Competition for Dispersal in Ant-Dispersed Plants

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Science  11 Sep 1981:
Vol. 213, Issue 4513, pp. 1259-1261
DOI: 10.1126/science.213.4513.1259


Two closely related and coexisting plants (Chenopodiaceae) of the Australian arid zone are adapted for seed dispersal by ants. These facultatively perennial shrubs persist in saltbush communities largely as a result of highly directional dispersal to ant mounds, where conditions are favorable for establishment and growth. The two species grow predominantly on mounds and compete for dispersal to these favorable microhabitats.