foto Piotr Ślipiński

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 Main Research Interest

  •  social parasitism in ants
  •  myrmecophily
  •  interactions between ants and fungi
  •  ant biodiversity
  •  division of labour in social insects
  •  development of personality in ants

 

 

Current projects

  • Susceptibility of ant colonies for social parasitism and the impact of social parasites on host colony fitness (NCN: UMO-2012/04/S/NZ8/00218). In this project I study the effect of social parasites on ant colony fitness and arm race between Myrmica host ants and their social parasites Maculineabutterflies. I also try to look which ant colony traits can make them more prone for social parasitism.
  • Influence of goldenrod invasion on Myrmica ant colony life history traits.
  • Relationship between Myrmica ants and their parasitic fungus Rickia wasmannii.
  • Studies on inquiline social parasite- Myrmica karavajevi.

 

Publications

Sielezniew M., Patricelli D., Rutkowski R., Witek M., Bonelli S., Buś M.M. 2015. Population genetics of the endangered obligatorily myrmecophilous butterfly Phengaris (= Maculineaarion in two areas of its European range. Insect Conservation and Diversity doi: 10.1111/icad.12129.

 

Witek M,Barbero F., Marko B.(2014) Myrmica ants host highly diverse parasitic communities: from social parasites to microbes. Insectes Sociaux, 61: 307-323.

 

Kajzer-Bonk J., Nowicki P., Bonk M., Skórka P., Witek M., Woyciechowski M. (2013). Local populations of endangered Maculinea (Phengaris) butterflies are flood resistant. Journal of Insect Conservation 17: 1105-1112.

 

Bonelli S., Vrabec V., Witek M., Barbero F., Patricelli D., Nowicki P. (2013) Selection on dispersal in isolated butterfly metapopulations. Population Ecology 55: 469-478.

 

Lenda M., Witek M., Skórka P, Moroń D, Woyciechowski M. (2013) Invasive alien plants affect grassland ant communities, colony size and foraging behavior. Biological Invasions, 15: 2403-2414.

 

Skórka P., Nowicki P., Kudłek J., Pępkowska A., Śliwińska E.B., Witek M., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2013) Movements and flight morphology in the endangered Large Blue butterflies. Central European Journal of Biology, 8: 662-669.

 

Skórka P., Nowicki P., Lenda M., Witek M., Śliwińska E.B., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2013) Different flight behaviour of the endangered scarce large blue butterfly Phengaris teleius (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) within and outside its habitat patches. Landscape Ecology, 28: 533-546.

 

Witek M., Casacci L.P., Barbero F., Patricelli D., Sala M., Bossi S., Maffei M., Woyciechowski M., Baletto E., Bonelli S. (2013) Interspecific relationships in co-occurring populations of social parasites and their host ants. Biological Journal of Linnean Society 109: 699-709.

 

Patricelli D., Sielezniew M., Ponikwicka-Tyszko D., Ratkiewicz M., Bonelli S., Barbero F., Witek M., Bus M., Rutkowski R., Balletto E. (2013) Contrasting genetic structure of rear edge and continuous range populations of a parasitic butterfly infected by Wolbachia. BMC Evolutionary Biology, 13, article number 14. 

 

Witek M., Babik H., Czechowski W., Czechowska W. 2013. Myrmica karavajevi (Arn.) (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) in Poland: a species not as rare as it is thought to be? Fragmenta Faunistica, 56: 17–24.

 

Barbero F., Patricelli D., Witek M., Balletto E., Casacci P.L., Sala M., Bonelli S. (2012) Myrmica ants and their butterfly parasites with special focus on the acoustic communication Psyche special issue -Ants and their parasites, 2012: 11pp.

 

de Assis R.A., Bonelli S., Witek M.,  Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Balletto E., Venturino E., Ferreira W.C. (2012) A model for the evolution of parasite-host interactions based on the Maculinea-Myrmica system: Numerical simulations and multiple host behavior. Nonlinear Analysis-Real World Applications, 13: 1507-1524.

 

Witek M., Canterino S., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2012) Life cycle and growth pattern of the endangered myrmecophilous Microdon myrmicae (Diptera: Syrphidae). European Journal of Entomology, 109 (3): 457-461.

 

Bonelli S., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Cerrato C., Patricelli D., Vovlas A., Witek M., Balletto E. (2011) Butterfly diversity in a changing scenario. In: Changing diversity in changing environment, Eds. By Grill O, (Belgdar, INTECH Open Access Publisher), 99-132.

 

Particelli D., Barbero F., La Morgia V., Casacci L.P., Witek M., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) To lay or not to lay: oviposition of Maculinea arion in relation to Myrmica ant presence and host plant phenology.Animal Behaviour, 82: 791-799.

 

Witek M., Skórka P., Śliwinska B.E., Nowicki P., Moroń D., Settele J., Woyciechowski M. (2011) Development of parasitc Maculinea teleius (Lepidoptera, Lycaenidae) in laboratory nests of fourMyrmica ant host species. Insectes Sociaux, 58: 403-411.

 

Bonelli S., Witek M., Canterino S., Sielezniew M., Stankiewicz-Fiedurek A., Tartally A., Balletto E., Schӧnrogge K. (2011) Distribution, host specificity and the potential for cryptic speciation in hoverflyMicrodon myrmicae (Diptera: Syrphidae), a social parasite of Myrmica ants. Ecological Entomology, 36: 135-143.

 

Witek M., Particelli D., Casacci L.P., Barbero F., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) Notes on the biology and host ant specificity of the myrmecohhilous syrphis fly Microdon major (Diptera: Syrphidae), a social parasite of Formica ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Sociobiology, 57: 261-269.

 

Casacci L.P., Witek M., Barbero F, Patricelli D., Solazzo, G., Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2011) Habitat preferences of Maculinea arion and its Myrmica host ants: implications for habitat management in Italian Alps. Journal of Insect Conservation15 (1-2): 103-110.

 

Witek M., Nowicki P., Śliwinska B.E., Skórka P, Settele J, Schӧnrogge K, Woyciechowski M. (2010) Local host ant specificity of Phengaris (Maculineateleius butterfly, an obligatory social parasite of Myrmicaants. Ecological Entomology, 35: 557-564.

 

 

Patricelli D., Witek M., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Bonelli S., Balletto E. (2010) Evidence

of high larval host ant specificity in the first post adoption phase for the myrmecophilous

butterfly Phengaris (Maculineanausithous (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae). Sociobiology, 55

(3): 861-870.

 

Sielezniew, M., Patricelli D., Dziekańska I., Barbero F., Casacci L.P., Witek M.,

Balletto E., Bonelli S. (2010) The first record of M. lonae (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) as a host of socially parasitic Blue butterfly Phengaris (MaculineaarionSociobiology, 56(2): 465-475.

 

Witek M., Śliwińska E. B., Skórka P., Nowicki P., Wantuch M., Vrabec V., Settele J.,

Woyciechowski M. (2008). Host ant specificity of Large Blue butterflies Phengaris

(Maculinea) (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) inhabiting humid grasslands of East-central

Europe. European Journal of Entomology, 105: 871 – 877.

 

Śliwińska E. B., Witek M., Skórka P., Osikowski A., Woyciechowski M. (2008). The

frequency of multiple paternity in Myrmica scabrinodis from southern Poland.

Entomological Science, 11, 127-129.

 

Moron D., Witek M., Woyciechowski M. (2008). Division of labour among workers

with different life expectancy in ant Myrmica scabrinodis. Animal Behaviour, 75, 345-

350.

 

Nowicki P, Pępkowska A, Kudłek J, Skórka P, Witek M, Settele J, Woyciechowski, M.

(2007). From metapopulation theory to conservation recommendations: lessons from spatial occurrence and abundance patterns of Maculinea butterflies. Biological Conservation, 140 (2), 119-129.

 

Witek M., Śliwinska E., Skórka P., Nowicki P., Settele J., Woyciechowski M (2006)

Polymorphic growth in larvae of Maculinea butterflies, as an example of biennialism in

myrmecophilous insects. Oecologia, 148, 729-733

 

Skórka P., Witek M., Woyciechowski M (2006) A simple and nondestructive method

for estimation of worker population size in Myrmica ant nests. Insectes Sociaux, 53: 97-

100.

 

Śliwinska, E.B., Nowicki, P., Nash, D.R., Witek, M., Settele, J &Woyciechowski, M (2006) Morphology of caterpillars and pupae of European Maculinea species (Lepidoptera: Lycaenidae) with an identification table. Entomologica Fennica, 17: 351-358.

 

Nowicki P., Witek M., Skórka P., Woyciechowski M (2005) Oviposition patterns in

the myrmecophilous butterfly Maculinea alcon in relation to characteristic of foodplants

and presence of ant hosts. Polish Journal of Ecology, 53 (3): 409-417.

 

Nowicki P., Witek M., Skórka P., Woyciechowski M., Settele J (2005) Population

ecology of endangered butterflies Maculinea teleius and M. nausithous, and its

conservation implications. Population Ecology, 47 (3): 193-202. 

 

Dubiec A., Witek M., Cichoń M. (2005) Seasonal decline in leukocyte concentration

and reproductive output in female Great TitsThe Auk, 122 (3): 829-834.

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