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ISSN : 2456-8643

Title:
IMPACT OF ANTS ON THE GROWTH AND PRODUCTIVITY OF LAMTO SAVANNA PERENNIAL GRASSES (COTE DIVOIRE)

Authors:
Kaly Ouattara , KoloYeo , Mouhamadou Kone , Lombart M. M. Kouakou,Wouter Dekoninck3 and Souleymane Konate

Abstract:
Lamto savanna soil known to have low agronomic value paradoxically has one of the highest grasses biomass productions in the world. During recent surveys, ant nest were encountered under some grass tufts and it as suggested that ants are able to influence the availability of resources for these grasses and also other organisms. An interaction is suspected between these savanna grass tufts and their associated ants. Three grasses species Andropogon schirensis, Hyparrhenia diplandra and Loudetia simplex were chosen to inventory ant communities associated with grass tufts and to assess the influence of ant communities on growth and productivity of perennial grasses. Three study sites were chosen and each was subdivided in two experimental plots of 2500 m. By systematic digging out method we were collected 38 ant species under grass tufts. They belong to 19 genera and 7 sub-families. Lamto herbaceous stratum was dominated by Camponotus acvapinensis. Diameter measures of grass tufts base at ground level, have allowed establishing the link between the size of ant nest and grass tufts size. Pearson coefficient r ranged no correlation between the size of ants nest and grass tufts size. The association rate with ants of one of the grasses Hyparrhenia diplandra was greater than for two other grasses studied Andropogon schirensis and Loudetia simplex (54.208 % versus 49.433 %, and 38.496 % respectively). Parameters such as grasses height, diameter (at ground level, and 10 cm above), dry biomass and seeds production were assessed. The results showed that Hyparrhenia diplandra with ant nest recorded the best results of growth and productivity. Association with ants nest is beneficial for the growth and productivity of Lamto perennial grasses.

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