WorldWideScience

Sample records for subterranean termite coptotermes

  1. Nootkatone is a repellent for Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, B C; Henderson, G; Chen, F; Maistrello, L; Laine, R A

    2001-03-01

    We examined the behavior of Formosan subterranean termites toward one of the components of vetiver grass oil, the roots of which manufacture insect repellents. We found nootkatone, a sesquiterpene ketone, isolated from vetiver oil is a strong repellent and toxicant to Formosan subterranean termites. The lowest effective concentration tested was 10 micrograms/g substrate. This is the first report of nootkatone being a repellent to insects.

  2. Task allocation in the tunneling behavior of workers of the formosan subterranean termite, coptotermes formosanus shiraki

    Science.gov (United States)

    Technical Abstract: There is variation in the tunneling behavior of workers of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, where most of the excavation is conducted by a small number of individuals in a group, while the majority of individuals do little or no excavation. This ...

  3. Area-Wide Management of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus, Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in the New Orleans French Quarter

    Science.gov (United States)

    The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (FST) was first introduced to the continental US after WWII. New Orleans’ French Quarter (FQ) in particular has been severely impacted experiencing reoccurring cycles of damages and repairs since FST was introduced to the region 65 ye...

  4. Dynamics of Foraging and Recruitment Behavior in the Asian Subterranean Termite Coptotermes gestroi (Rhinotermitidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alberto Arab

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigated the trail-following behavior of the subterranean termite Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann Rhinotermitidae under laboratory conditions. The results showed that workers were the first to initiate the exploration to the food source. When food was discovered they returned to the nest laying a trail for recruiting nestmates to the food source. In this situation, workers always traveled significantly faster when returning from the arenas. Both workers and soldiers were recruited to the food source; however, the soldier/worker proportion was higher during the first phase of the recruitment. When no food was available, the number of recruited nestmates and the speed on their way back to the nest were significantly lower. The results also showed that scout foragers always laid trail pheromones when entering into unknown territories, and that chemical signals found in the food could induce workers of C. gestroi to increase their travel speed.

  5. Define Colony Number of Subterranean Termites Coptotermes gestroi (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in Selected Infested Structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Abdul Hafiz Abdul Majid; Abu Hassan Ahmad

    2015-01-01

    Termites are one of the social insects living in large colonies that can cause economic loss. The objective of this study was to estimate foraging territory of infested subterranean termites on building structure. A mark-recapture study was conducted on eight Coptotermes gestroi colonies located at selected infested building structures in Penang, Malaysia. From the foraging study, the population of C. gestroi was estimated to be within the range of 106,592±6,968 to 4,185,000±2,127,328. Additionally, the foraging territory was from 13 to 300 m 2 of the infested building structures. Meanwhile the maximum foraging distance was from 4 to 30 m of the infested structures. The results indicated that each of the building structures was infested by a single colony. This study also showed that the triple mark recapture technique used to estimate the population size of the termite colony was capable of providing rough estimates of foraging population of C. gestroi. (author)

  6. Exploring the Caste-Specific Multi-Layer Defense Mechanism of Formosan Subterranean Termites, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abid Hussain

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The survival and foraging of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki in a microbe-rich environment reflect the adaptation of an extraordinary, sophisticated defense mechanism by the nest-mates. We aimed to explore the host pathogen interaction by studying caste-specific volatile chemistry and genes encoding the antioxidant defense of winged imagoes, nymphs, soldiers and workers of Formosan subterranean termites. Qualitative analyses of C. formosanus Shiraki performed by HS-SPME/GC-MS showed considerable variations in the chemical composition of volatile organic compounds (VOCs and their proportions among all the castes. Winged imagoes produced the most important compounds such as naphthalene and n-hexanoic acid. The antifungal activity of these compounds along with nonanal, n-pentadecane, n-tetradecane, n-heptadecane and methyl octanoate against the conidial suspensions of Metarhizium anisopliae and Beauveria bassiana isolates enable us to suggest that the failure of natural fungal infection in the nest is due to the antiseptic environment of the nest, which is mainly controlled by the VOCs of nest-mates. In addition, conidial germination of M. anisopliae and B. bassiana isolates evaluated on the cuticle of each caste showed significant variations among isolates and different castes. Our results showed that the conidia of M. anisopliae 02049 exhibited the highest germination on the cuticle of all the inoculated castes. Moreover, we recorded the lowest germination of the conidia of B. bassiana 200436. Caste-specific germination variations enabled us to report for the first time that the cuticle of winged imagoes was found to be the most resistant cuticle. The analysis of the transcriptome of C. formosanus Shiraki revealed the identification of 17 genes directly involved in antioxidant defense. Expression patterns of the identified antioxidant genes by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR revealed the significantly highest upregulation of CAT, GST, PRXSL, Cu

  7. Effect of chemical cues on the foraging and tunneling behavior of Formosan subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wood rot fungi can cause directional tunneling, aggregation behavior and increased wood consumption by subterranean termites. Because vanillin and guaiacol are byproducts of lignin degradation, these chemicals were tested as potential attractants to Formosan subterranean termites, Coptotermes formo...

  8. Odor aversion and pathogen-removal efficiency in grooming behavior of the termite Coptotermes formosanus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aya Yanagawa

    Full Text Available The results of biocontrol with entomopathogens in termites have been discouraging because of the strong social hygiene behavior for removing pathogens from termite colonies. However, the mechanism of pathogen detection is still unclear. For the successful application of biopesticides to termites in nature, it would be beneficial to identify substances that could disrupt the termite's ability to perceive pathogens. We hypothesized that termites can perceive pathogens and this ability plays an important role in effective hygiene behavior. In this study, pathogen-detection in the subterranean termite Coptotermes formosanus was investigated. We performed quantitative assays on conidia removal by grooming behavior using epifluoresence microscopy and Y-maze tests to examine the perception of fungal odor by termites. Three species each of high- and low-virulence entomopathogenic fungi were used in each test. The results demonstrated that termites removed conidia more effectively from a nestmate's cuticle if its odor elicited stronger aversion. Highly virulent pathogens showed higher attachment rates to termite surfaces and their odors were more strongly avoided than those of low-virulence isolates in the same species. Moreover, termites appeared to groom each other more persistently when they had more conidia on their bodies. In brief, insect perception of pathogen-related odor seems to play a role in the mechanism of their hygiene behavior.

  9. Effect of Naphthalene, Butylated Hydroxytoluene, Dioctyl Phthalate, and Adipic Dioctyl Ester, Chemicals Found in the Nests of the Formosan Subterranean Termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) on a Saprophytic Mucor sp.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fungi are commonly found associated with termites and their nests. Four chemicals that have been isolated from the nests of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, were evaluated to determine their effect on a common nest fungus, a saprophytic Mucor sp. Butylated hydroxyto...

  10. Toxicity, Tunneling and Feeding Behavior of the Termite, Coptotermes vastator, in Sand Treated with Oil of the Physic Nut, Jatropha curcas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acda, Menandro N.

    2009-01-01

    Oil of the physic nut, Jatropha curcas L. (Malpighiales: Euphorbiaceae), was evaluated in the laboratory for its barrier and repellent activity against the Philippine milk termite Coptotermes vastator Light (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). The study showed that J. curcas oil had anti-feeding effect, induced reduction in tunneling activity and increased mortality in C. vastator. Behavior of termites exposed to sand treated with J. curcas oil indicated that it is toxic or repellent to C. vastator. Toxicity and repellent thresholds, were higher than those reported for other naturally occurring compounds tested against the Formosan subterranean termite. PMID:20053119

  11. Toxicity, tunneling and feeding behavior of the termite, Coptotermes vastator, in sand treated with oil of the physic nut, Jatropha curcas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acda, Menandro N

    2009-01-01

    Oil of the physic nut, Jatropha curcas L. (Malpighiales: Euphorbiaceae), was evaluated in the laboratory for its barrier and repellent activity against the Philippine milk termite Coptotermes vastator Light (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). The study showed that J. curcas oil had anti-feeding effect, induced reduction in tunneling activity and increased mortality in C. vastator. Behavior of termites exposed to sand treated with J. curcas oil indicated that it is toxic or repellent to C. vastator. Toxicity and repellent thresholds, were higher than those reported for other naturally occurring compounds tested against the Formosan subterranean termite.

  12. EFFECTIVENESS OF A SUPERFICIAL TREATMENT USING BIFENTHRIN TO PROTECT RADIATA PINE FRAMING FROM DAMAGE BY SUBTERRANEAN AND DRYWOOD TERMITES IN INDONESIA

    OpenAIRE

    Paimin Sukartana; Jim W. Creffield; Agus Ismanto; Neo E. Lelana; Rusti Rushelia

    2010-01-01

    Various experimental testing procedures were undertaken in Indonesia to determine the effectiveness of a patented superficial (envelope) treatment using bifenthrin to protect radiata pine framing material from damage by two species of subterranean termites (Macrotermes gilvus and Coptotermes curvignathus) and one species of drywood termite (Cryptotermes cynocephalus). Lengths of framing material (Pinus radiata sapwood) were commercially treated to the targeted retention of 0.02% m/m of bifent...

  13. Clay preference and particle transport behavior of Formosan subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae): a laboratory study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Cai; Henderson, Gregg

    2014-12-01

    Although preference and utilization of clay have been studied in many higher termites, little attention has been paid to lower termites, especially subterranean termites. The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, can modify its habitat by using clay to fill tree cavities. Here, the biological significance of clay on C. formosanus was investigated. Choice tests showed that significantly more termites aggregated in chambers where clay blocks were provided, regardless of colony group, observation period, or nutritional condition (fed or starved). No-choice tests showed that clay had no observable effect on survivorship, live or dry biomass, water content, and tunneling activity after 33-35 d. However, clay appeared to significantly decrease filter paper consumption (dry weight loss). Active particle (sand, paper, and clay) transport behavior was observed in both choice and no-choice tests. When present, clay was preferentially spread on the substrate, attached to the smooth surfaces of the containers, and used to line sand tunnels. Mechanisms and potential application of clay attraction are discussed. © 2013 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  14. Potential of kaolin-based particle film barriers for Formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) control

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiltz, B.A.; Woodson, W.D.; Puterka, G.J.

    2010-01-01

    Effects of three particle film products on Formosan subterranean termites, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, were evaluated in feeding, tunneling, and contact assays. The particle films, hydrophobic M96-018 and hydrophilic Surround and Surround WP are based on the inert clay mineral kaolin. In 2-week long no-choice feeding tests, significant mortality occurred only with M96-018-coated wood. When a choice was provided, M96-018 and Surround were consumed at higher rates than untreated wood. Surround WP did not differ from controls in either test. In the tunneling assay termites were given the option of crossing a kaolin-sand mixture to reach an alternate food source. After 3-weeks, rates of 1% and 5% M96-018 provided an effective barrier to Formosan termite tunneling, while termites were not stopped by rates as high as 20% Surround and Surround WP. Dust treatments of all three formulations caused significant increases in mortality within 24 h, with mortality rates ranging from 72.0 - 97.3% within 72 h of treatment. The particle films were most effective when moisture levels were low, suggesting that desiccation was the mechanism for mortality. All particle films showed potential for use in above ground applications while hydrophobic M06-018 has the most potential as a soil barrier to subterranean termites.

  15. The origins and radiation of Australian Coptotermes termites: from rainforest to desert dwellers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Timothy R C; Cameron, Stephen L; Evans, Theodore A; Ho, Simon Y W; Lo, Nathan

    2015-01-01

    The termite genus Coptotermes (Rhinotermitidae) is found in Asia, Africa, Central/South America and Australia, with greatest diversity in Asia. Some Coptotermes species are amongst the world's most damaging invasive termites, but the genus is also significant for containing the most sophisticated mound-building termites outside the family Termitidae. These mound-building Coptotermes occur only in Australia. Despite its economic and evolutionary significance, the biogeographic history of the genus has not been well investigated, nor has the evolution of the Australian mound-building species. We present here the first phylogeny of the Australian Coptotermes to include representatives from all described species. We combined our new data with previously generated data to estimate the first phylogeny to include representatives from all continents where the genus is found. We also present the first estimation of divergence dates during the evolution of the genus. We found the Australian Coptotermes to be monophyletic and most closely related to the Asian Coptotermes, with considerable genetic diversity in some Australian taxa possibly representing undescribed species. The Australian mound-building species did not form a monophyletic clade. Our ancestral state reconstruction analysis indicated that the ancestral Australian Coptotermes was likely to have been a tree nester, and that mound-building behaviour has arisen multiple times. The Australian Coptotermes were found to have diversified ∼13million years ago, which plausibly matches with the narrowing of the Arafura Sea allowing Asian taxa to cross into Australia. The first diverging Coptotermes group was found to be African, casting doubt on the previously raised hypothesis that the genus has an Asian origin. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Antimicrobial activity of actinobacteria isolated from the guts of subterranean termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rachel Arango; C. M. Carlson; C. R. Currie; B. R. McDonald; A. J. Book; Frederick Green; K. F. Raffa; N.K. Lebow

    2016-01-01

    Subterranean termites need to minimize potentially pathogenic and competitive fungi in their environment in order to maintain colony health. We examined the ability of Actinobacteria isolated from termite guts in suppressing microorganisms commonly encountered in a subterranean environment. Guts from two subterranean termite species, Reticulitermes flavipes...

  17. Rapid elimination of field colonies of subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) using bistrifluron solid bait pellets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, Theodore A

    2010-04-01

    The efficacy of bistrifluron, a chitin synthesis inhibitor, in cellulose bait pellets was evaluated on the mound-building subterranean termite, Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt). Three concentrations of the bistrifluron were used: 0 (untreated control), 0.5, and 1.0% over an 8 wk period. Both doses of bistrifluron bait eliminated (viz. termites absent from nest or mound) termite colonies: 83% of colonies (10 of 12) were either eliminated or moribund (viz. colony had no reproductive capacity and decreased workforce) after 8 wk, compared with none of the control colonies. The remaining two treated colonies were deemed to be in decline. Early signs that bistrifluron was affecting the colonies included: 3 wk after baiting mound temperatures showed a loss of metabolic heat, 4 wk after baiting foraging activity in feeding stations was reduced or absent, and dissection of two mounds at 4 wk showed they were moribund. Colony elimination was achieved in around half or less the time, and with less bait toxicant, than other bait products tested under similar conditions in the field, because of either the active ingredient, the high surface area of the pellets, or a combination of both. This suggests the sometimes long times reported for control using baits may be reduced significantly. The use of a mound building species demonstrated clearly colony level effects before and after termites stopped foraging in bait stations.

  18. Genetically Engineered Yeast Expressing a Lytic Peptide from Bee Venom (Melittin) Kills Symbiotic Protozoa in the Gut of Formosan Subterranean Termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husseneder, Claudia; Donaldson, Jennifer R; Foil, Lane D

    2016-01-01

    The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, is a costly invasive urban pest in warm and humid regions around the world. Feeding workers of the Formosan subterranean termite genetically engineered yeast strains that express synthetic protozoacidal lytic peptides has been shown to kill the cellulose digesting termite gut protozoa, which results in death of the termite colony. In this study, we tested if Melittin, a natural lytic peptide from bee venom, could be delivered into the termite gut via genetically engineered yeast and if the expressed Melittin killed termites via lysis of symbiotic protozoa in the gut of termite workers and/or destruction of the gut tissue itself. Melittin expressing yeast did kill protozoa in the termite gut within 56 days of exposure. The expressed Melittin weakened the gut but did not add a synergistic effect to the protozoacidal action by gut necrosis. While Melittin could be applied for termite control via killing the cellulose-digesting protozoa in the termite gut, it is unlikely to be useful as a standalone product to control insects that do not rely on symbiotic protozoa for survival.

  19. Structure-activity of valencenoid derivatives and their repellence to the Formosan subterranean termite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Betty C R; Henderson, Gregg; Sauer, Anne M; Yu, Ying; Crowe, William; Laine, Roger A

    2003-12-01

    Eight valencenoid derivatives were evaluated for their repelling activity against Formosan subterranean termites, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki. Among them, 1,10-dihydronootkatone was the strongest repellent, and valencene was the weakest. Results of the structure-repellency relationships indicated (1) reduction of the ketone group to the alcohol on position 2 of nootkatone curtailed the activity; (2) because of the low activity of valencene relative to nootkatone that the ketone group was essential for repellent activity; (3) reduction of the 1,10 double bond (1,10-dihydronootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone) produced compounds more repellent than nootkatone; (4) the isopropenyl group probably does not participate in binding as evidenced by no significant difference in the repellent activity among nootkatone (double bond between position 11 and 12), isonootkatone (double bond between position 7 and 11), and 11,12-dihydronootkatone.

  20. Nutritional ecology of the formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae): feeding response to commercial wood species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Ramos, J A; Rojas, M G

    2001-04-01

    The feeding preferences of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, were tested in three separate experiments on 28 different wood species. Experiment 1 was a multiple-choice test designed to test relative preferences among 24 wood species commercially available in New Orleans, LA. Experiment 2 was a similar study designed to test relative preferences among 21 wood species shown or reported to be unpalatable to the Formosan subterranean termite. Experiment 3 was a no-choice test to examine the feeding deterrence of the 10 least preferred wood species. Preference was determined by consumption rates. Birch (Betula alleghaniensis Britton), red gum (Liquidambar styraciflua L.), Parana pine [Araucaria angustifolia (Bert.) 1, sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marsh.), pecan (Carya illinoensis Wangenh.), and northern red oak (Quercus rubra L.) were the most preferred species by C. formosanus in order of consumption rate. All of these species were significantly more preferred than southern yellow pine (Pinus taeda L.), widely used for monitoring. Sinker cypress [ = old growth bald cypress, Taxodium distichum (L.)], western red cedar (Thuja plicata Donn), Alaskan yellow cedar (Chamaecyparis nootkatensis D. Don), eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana L.), sassafras [Sassafras albidum (Nutt.)], Spanish cedar (Cedrella odorata L.), Honduras mahogany (Swietenia macrophyla King), Indian rosewood (Dalbergia latifolia Roxb.), Honduras rosewood (D. stevensonii Standl.), and morado (Machaerium sp.) induced significant feeding deterrence and mortality to C. formosanus. The last eight species produced 100% mortality after 3 mo.

  1. Resistance of Particleboards Made from Fast-Growing Wood Species to Subterranean Termite Attack.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hermawan, Dede; Hadi, Yusuf S; Fajriani, Esi; Massijaya, Muhamad Y; Hadjib, Nurwati

    2012-05-29

    Laboratory-made particleboards were tested for their resistance to subterranean termite, Coptotermes curvignathus Holmgren (Order Isoptera, Family Termitidae) by Indonesian standard SNI 01.7207-2006, during four weeks and at the end of the test their mass loss percentage and feeding rate were determined. Particleboards consisted of: jabon (Anthocephalus cadamba, Family Rubiacea) with a density of 0.41 g/cm³; sungkai (Peronema canescens, Family Verbenaceae) with a density of 0.46 g/cm³; mangium (Acacia mangium, Family Rhamnaceae) with a density of 0.60 g/cm³ separately and the three species mixture at a rate of 1:1:1. Densities of the boards were targetted at 0.60 g/cm³ and 0.80 g/cm³ by using 12% urea formaldehyde as binder with 2% paraffin as additive based on oven dry wood particle weight. The hand-formed mats and hot-pressing at 130 °C and 2.45 MPa for 10 min were applied. The results showed that particleboards density did not affect mass loss and feeding rate, but the particleboards made from higher density wood resulted in higher resistance to subterranean termite attack. The most resistant particleboards were made of magium, followed by sungkai, mixed species, and jabon.

  2. Resistance of Particleboards Made from Fast-Growing Wood Species to Subterranean Termite Attack

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nurwati Hadjib

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Laboratory-made particleboards were tested for their resistance to subterranean termite, Coptotermes curvignathus Holmgren (Order Isoptera, Family Termitidae by Indonesian standard SNI 01.7207–2006, during four weeks and at the end of the test their mass loss percentage and feeding rate were determined. Particleboards consisted of: jabon (Anthocephalus cadamba, Family Rubiacea with a density of 0.41 g/cm3; sungkai (Peronema canescens, Family Verbenaceae with a density of 0.46 g/cm3; mangium (Acacia mangium, Family Rhamnaceae with a density of 0.60 g/cm3 separately and the three species mixture at a rate of 1:1:1. Densities of the boards were targetted at 0.60 g/cm3 and 0.80 g/cm3 by using 12% urea formaldehyde as binder with 2% paraffin as additive based on oven dry wood particle weight. The hand-formed mats and hot-pressing at 130 °C and 2.45 MPa for 10 min were applied. The results showed that particleboards density did not affect mass loss and feeding rate, but the particleboards made from higher density wood resulted in higher resistance to subterranean termite attack. The most resistant particleboards were made of magium, followed by sungkai, mixed species, and jabon.

  3. Attraction of subterranean termites (Isoptera) to carbon dioxide.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernklau, Elisa Jo; Fromm, Erich A; Judd, Timothy M; Bjostad, Louis B

    2005-04-01

    Subterranean termites, Reticulitermes spp., were attracted to carbon dioxide (CO2) in laboratory and field tests. In behavioral bioassays, Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar), Reticulitermes tibialis Banks, and Reticulitermes virginicus Banks were attracted to CO2 concentrations between 5 and 50 mmol/mol. In further bioassays, R. tibialis and R. virginicus were attracted to the headspace from polyisocyanurate construction foam that contained 10-12 mmol/mol CO2. In soil bioassays in the laboratory, more termites foraged in chambers containing CO2-generating formulations than in unbaited control chambers. In field tests, stations containing CO2-generating baits attracted R. tibialis away from wooden fence posts at rangeland sites in Colorado. For all of the CO2 formulations tested, termites foraged in significantly more bait stations at treatment fenceposts than in bait stations at the control fenceposts. By the end of the 8-wk study, the number of bait stations located by termites at treatment fenceposts ranged from 40 to 90%. At control fenceposts, termites foraged in only a single station and the one positive station was not located by termites until week 5 of the study. At treatment fenceposts, termites foraged equally in active stations (containing a CO2-generating bait) and passive stations (with no CO2-generating bait), indicating that bait stations may benefit passively from a proximal CO2 source in the soil. CO2 used as an attractant in current baiting systems could improve their effectiveness by allowing earlier exposure of termites to an insecticide.

  4. Seasonal Changes in the Caste Distribution of Foraging Populations of Formosan Subterranean Termite in New Orleans, Louisiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornelius, Mary L; Osbrink, Weste L A; Gallatin, Erin M

    2015-01-01

    This study examined the relationship between temperature, precipitation, soil composition, levels of feeding damage, and the caste distribution (workers, soldiers, nymphs) of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, collected in underground monitoring stations over a 12 mo period. Because nymphs are the caste that develops into alates, the seasonal abundance of nymphs was examined over a 5 yr period. Numbers of workers, soldiers, and soldier/worker ratio were significantly affected by month. Recruitment and retention of foraging termites in stations was significantly affected by the level of feeding damage. The number of nymphs collected in monitoring stations was highly variable. In the 12 mo test, there was a significant correlation between numbers of nymphs and level of feeding damage, temperature, precipitation, and soil composition. Over a 5 yr period, significantly more nymphs were collected in 2011 than in 2007 and 2008. Peak nymph collections varied from year to year. Overall, peak nymph collections were more likely to occur in Mar., Sept., and Oct. Increasing our knowledge of the environmental factors that influence recruitment and retention of foraging termites in monitoring stations could influence termite bait placement and improve baiting strategies for termite control. Identifying the key factors that cause aggregations of nymphs in underground stations could increase our ability to predict the intensity and location of alate swarms. © Crown copyright 2015.

  5. Preferences of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki and Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae among Three Commercial Wood Species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nirmala K. Hapukotuwa

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, and the Asian subterranean termite, Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann, are both pests of wood in service in Hawaii and Florida. We conducted a laboratory study using method modified from those described in standard E1-09 of the American Wood Protection Association (AWPA 2009 to assess the termite resistance of three commercially available wood species used in regions of the USA where both termite species occur: Douglas fir, Pseudotsuga menziessii, southern yellow pine, Pinus spp. and redwood, Sequoia sempervirens. A multiple-choice (three-choice assay was used for four weeks (28 days in order to simulate field conditions of food choice and assess termite feeding preferences under 28 °C and 72–80% RH. 400 termites (360 workers: 40 soldiers were released into each test jar. Five replicates and two controls of each wood species were used with each termite species. Termite mortality was recorded at the end of the test; and wood wafers were oven-dried and weighed before and after termite exposure to determine the mass loss due to termite feeding, and rated visually on a 0 (failure to 10 (sound scale. There were significant differences in mean mass loss values among the three wood species and between two termite species. The mean mass loss value for redwood was significantly lower than Douglas fir and southern yellow pine with both termite species. However, C. formosanus showed increased feeding on Douglas fir and southern yellow pine compared to C. gestroi.

  6. Effects of caste on the expression of genes associated with septic injury and xenobiotic exposure in the Formosan subterranean termite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claudia Husseneder

    Full Text Available As social insects, termites live in densely populated colonies with specialized castes under conditions conducive to microbial growth and transmission. Furthermore, termites are exposed to xenobiotics in soil and their lignocellulose diet. Therefore, termites are valuable models for studying gene expression involved in response to septic injury, immunity and detoxification in relation to caste membership. In this study, workers and soldiers of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus, were challenged by bacterial injection or by no-choice feeding with a sublethal concentration (0.5% of phenobarbital. Constitutive and induced expression of six putative immune response genes (two encoding for lectin-like proteins, one for a ficolin-precursor, one for the Down syndrome cell adhesion molecule, one for a chitin binding protein, and one for the gram-negative binding protein 2 and four putative detoxification genes (two encoding for cytochrome P450s, one for glutathione S-transferase, and one for the multi antimicrobial extrusion protein, were measured via quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction and compared within and among 1 colonies, 2 treatment types and 3 castes via ANOVA. Eight genes were inducible by septic injury, feeding with phenobarbital or both. Colony origin had no effect on inducibility or differential gene expression. However, treatment type showed significant effects on the expression of the eight inducible genes. Caste effects on expression levels were significant in five of the eight inducible genes with constitutive and induced expression of most target genes being higher in workers than in soldiers.

  7. Tunneling behavior of the formosan subterranean termite (isoptera: rhinotermitadae) in dry soil

    Science.gov (United States)

    This study examines the effect of dry soil on tunnel construction by the Formosan subterranean termite, Cptotermes formosanus. Termites did not construct tunnels in dry soil in any of the treatments. Termites only constructed tunnels in moist areas in treatments where the soil was partially moistene...

  8. Structural requirements for repellency: norsesquiterpenes and sesquiterpenoid derivatives of nootkatone against the Formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Betty C R; Henderson, Gregg; Sauer, Anne M; Crowe, William; Laine, Roger A

    2010-08-01

    Research has shown that the family of grapefruit flavors called nootkatones have significant repellant and toxic effects to Formosan subterranean termites (Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki). Nineteen synthetic nootkatone derivatives, along with three commercially available nootkatone derivatives, were tested for repellent activity against C. formosanus by a choice assay in a petri dish with a two-step triage procedure. Based on the repellency threshold value, the relationships between structure and activity are discussed. Four derivatives of nootkatone have very high repellency and toxicity to C. formosanus, 9 times the potency of the primary compound nootkatone. Four other compounds have between 2 and 3 times the repellency of nootkatones, and three compounds are equal in their repellency to nootkatone. Copyright (c) 2010 Society of Chemical Industry.

  9. DGGE detection and screening of lignocellulolytic bacteria from the termite gut of Coptotermes formosanus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mathew, G.M.

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Aims: Termites thrive in terrestrial ecosystems and play an important role in the bio-recycling of lignocellulose. The objective of this study is to isolate and detect bacteria from the termite gut of Coptotermes formosanus and to screen their various enzyme activities by qualitative methods. In addition, this study was aimed to isolate lignin and furfural tolerant strains for various industrial bioprocesses.Methodology and Results: In this study, 50 worker termites of Coptotermes formosanus were collected from dead trees, from a forest in Taichung, Taiwan in June 2008 and the composition of the microbial flora from the termite guts was analyzed by DGGE analysis. The results proved that anaerobic and facultatively anaerobic bacteria consisting of Acinetobacter, Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, Escherichia coli, and Caulobacter readily existed in the guts of termites. Although the majority of these gut symbionts have not yet been cultivated or identified, some related bacteria were isolated. Two isolates 1-8 and 2-2 of Genus Bacillus, exhibited endocellulase, protease, lipase, amylase, peroxidase and lignin peroxidase activity. Under aerobic conditions, the growth density of isolate 1-8 cultured in 1000 ppm lignin containing MSM medium was two-folds higher than cultured in MSM medium without lignin. Furthermore, the isolate 1-8 was tolerant to 20 mM furfural supplemented in the MSM medium. HPLC analysis confirmed Bacillus isolate 1-8 could degrade up to 15 mM furfural.Conclusion, significance and impact of study: Hind gut bacteria from C. formosanus were detected by culture independent DGGE method. Also, Bacillus isolates 1-8 and 2-2 obtained by culture dependent methods could withstand higher concentration of furfural and as well as lignin. These isolates may be co-cultured with ethanologenic bacteria and be used as an industrial biocatalyst for biofuel production.

  10. Nutritional ecology of the Formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae): growth and survival of incipient colonies feeding on preferred wood species.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morales-Ramos, Juan A; Rojas, M Guadalupe

    2003-02-01

    The wood of 11 plant species was evaluated as a food source significantly impacting the growth and survival of incipient colonies of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). Colonies of C. formosanus feeding on pecan, Carya illinoensis (Wangenh.), and red gum, Liquidambar styraciflua L., produced significantly more progeny than colonies feeding on other wood species tested. Progeny of colonies feeding on pecan and American ash, Fraxinus americana L., had significantly greater survival than progeny of colonies feeding on other wood species. Colonies feeding on a nutritionally supplemented cellulose based matrix showed similar fitness characteristics as colonies feeding on the best wood treatments. These results indicate that differences observed in colony fitness can be partially explained by nutritional value of the food treatment, raising the possibility that wood from different tree species have different nutritional values to the Formosan subterranean termites. Colonies feeding on loblolly pine, Pinus taeda L., and ponderosa pine, Pinus ponderosa Laws., had significantly lower survival and produced significantly fewer workers and soldiers than colonies feeding on other wood species. Colony survival from 90 to 180 d of age and from 90 to 360 d of age was significantly correlated with the number of workers present at 90 d of colony age, indicating that colony survival depends on the presence of workers. Wood consumption in a multiple-choice study was significantly correlated with colony fitness value. This suggests that feeding preference of C. formosanus is at least partially influenced by the nutritional value of the food source.

  11. Efficacy of vetiver oil and nootkatone as soil barriers against Formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maistrello, L; Henderson, G; Laine, R A

    2001-12-01

    Vetiver oil and its components nootkatone and cedrene were assessed as sand treatments for their efficacy to disrupt food recruitment by Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki. Termites were required to tunnel through sand treated with vetiver oil, nootkatone, cedrene, or untreated sand to reach a food source. Results showed that sand treated with vetiver oil or nootkatone disrupted termite tunneling behavior. As a consequence, after 21 d, wood consumption and termite survival were significantly lower compared with cedrene-treated or untreated sand treatments. Sand treated with vetiver oil or nootkatone at 100 microg/g substrate were effective barriers to termites.

  12. Acoustical tree evaluation of Coptotermes Formosanus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) with imidacloprid and noviflumeron in historic Jackson Square, New Orleans, Louisiana

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nine years of periodic acoustical monitoring of 93 trees active with Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, evaluated imidacloprid tree foam and noviflumuron bait on activity in trees. Long term, imidacloprid suppressed but did not eliminate termite activity in treated trees...

  13. EFFECTIVENESS OF A SUPERFICIAL TREATMENT USING BIFENTHRIN TO PROTECT RADIATA PINE FRAMING FROM DAMAGE BY SUBTERRANEAN AND DRYWOOD TERMITES IN INDONESIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paimin Sukartana

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Various experimental testing procedures were undertaken in Indonesia to determine the effectiveness of a patented superficial (envelope treatment using bifenthrin to protect radiata pine framing material from damage by two species of subterranean termites (Macrotermes gilvus and Coptotermes curvignathus and one species of drywood termite (Cryptotermes cynocephalus. Lengths of framing material (Pinus radiata sapwood were commercially treated to the targeted retention of 0.02% m/m of bifenthrin in the outer 2 mm depth penetration zone of the material. The treated and untreated materials were subsequently cut into test specimens and exposed to M. gilvus in the field and a semi-laboratory trial, to C. curvignathus in the laboratory and a semi-laboratory trial and to C. cynocephalus in a laboratory trial. No supplementary treatment was performed on the exposed cut ends of the treated test specimens. The results from the trials clearly demonstrated that the superficial treatment of bifenthrin seemed effective in protecting test specimens of radiata pine framing material from significant damage by Indonesia’s most notorious termite species that often causes serious economic loss to the timbers. Termites were unable to damage any of the bifenthrin-treated surfaces of test specimens. Any obser ved damage by termites, albeit minor, was in all cases confined to the exposed cut ends of test specimens. In contrast, attack by termites on the untreated control test specimens caused damage of the samples ranging from light to heavy.

  14. Resistance of borax–copper treated wood in aboveground exposure to attack by Formosan subterranean termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stan Lebow; Bessie Woodward; Douglas Crawford; William Abbott

    2005-01-01

    The spread of Formosan subterranean termites (FSTs) in the southern United States has increased public interest in finding a preservative treatment to protect framing lumber from termite attack. This study evaluated the use of a borax-based preservative to protect wood from FST attack. Southern Pine and Douglas-fir specimens were pressure-treated with three...

  15. Karakteristik Populasi Rayap Tanah Coptotermes spp (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae dan Dampak Serangannya

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Niken Subekti

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Termite are known to infest building in the tropics, but in their quest for cellulose they may also cause signifi cant damage to crops and trees. They become pest only when their natural habitat is altered in some way by humans. Subterranean termite Coptotermes spp has been known as the most economically important structural pest in Indonesia. Due tomorphological ambiguity, traditional identifi cation of Coptotermes spp. has always been diffi cult and unreliable. In economic point of view, economic loss due to termite attack always increases every year, and in the year 2000 it is estimated to reach 373 million US$. Moreover, the social as well as ecological impact caused by termite attack should also be considered. In the capital city of Jakarta, the subterranean termite attack on home buildings reaches around 55%; while in Surabaya (East Java 36%; and in Semarang (Central Java 41%. Meanwhile, in some other cities, the subterranean termite attack on home buildings reaches on the average of 20%. The presence of termites in a region can depend on various factors, such as soil and vegetation type. Climatic features andwater avaibility play an important part in termite survival. Daily and seasonal changes in these factors also affect termite distribution.Keywords: characteristics, climatic, Coptotermes spp, attack impact.

  16. Colony social organization and population genetic structure of an introduced population of formosan subterranean termite from New Orleans, Louisiana.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husseneder, Claudia; Messenger, Matthew T; Su, Nan-Yao; Grace, J Kenneth; Vargo, Edward L

    2005-10-01

    The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, is an invasive species in many parts of the world, including the U.S. mainland. The reasons for its invasive success may have to do with the flexible social and spatial organization of colonies. We investigated the population and breeding structure of 14 C. formosanus colonies in Louis Armstrong Park, New Orleans, LA. This population has been the focus of extensive study for many years, providing the opportunity to relate aspects of colony breeding structure to previous findings on colony characteristics such as body weight and number of workers, wood consumption, and intercolony aggression. Eight colonies were headed by a single pair of outbred reproductives (simple families), whereas six colonies were headed by low numbers of multiple kings and/or queens that were likely the neotenic descendants of the original colony (extended families). Within the foraging area of one large extended family colony, we found genetic differentiation among different collection sites, suggesting the presence of separate reproductive centers. No significant difference between simple family colonies and extended family colonies was found in worker body weight, soldier body weight, foraging area, population size, or wood consumption. However, level of inbreeding within colonies was negatively correlated with worker body weight and positively correlated with wood consumption. Also, genetic distance between colonies was positively correlated with aggression levels, suggesting a genetic basis to nestmate discrimination cues in this termite population. No obvious trait associated with colony reproductive structure was found that could account for the invasion success of this species.

  17. Social interactions in the central nest of Coptotermes formosanus juvenile colonies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juvenile colonies of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki were investigated to determine the social interactions among all individuals near the central nest of a colony. The behavioral repertoire of whole colonies of subterranean termites has yet to be identified because of their cryptic nests. Colonies w...

  18. The impact of subterranean termite activity on water infiltration and topsoil properties in Burkina Faso

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mettrop, I.S.; Cammeraat, L.H.; Verbeeten, E.

    2013-01-01

    Few quantitative experimental studies have been carried out on the influence of subterranean termite activity on the water infiltration capacity of crusted soils in the semi-arid Sahelian region. These studies found increased infiltration rates on soils that were affected by foraging galleries of

  19. Catnip essential oil as a barrier to subterranean termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in the laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    C.J. Peterson; J. Ems-Wilson

    2003-01-01

    The essential oil of catnip, Nepeta cataria (Lamiacae) was evaluated for behavioral effects on two populations of subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) and R. virginicus (Banks) (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). The catnip essential oil contained =36: 64 E,Z-nepetalactone and Z,E-nepetalactone,...

  20. Identification, Geographical Distribution and Hosts of Subterranean Termites in the United Arab Emirates Arid Ecosystem

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Kaakeh

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Six termite species, belonging to five genera and three families (Hodotermitidae, Rhinotermitidae and Termitidae were identified in the United Arab Emirates (UAE. Termite species recorded were the harvester termites Anacanthotermes ochraceus (Burmeister and Anacanthotermes ubachi (Navas, the sand termite Psammotermes hypostoma (Desneux and the small waxy termites Microcerotermes diversus (Silvestri, Heterotermes aethiopicus (Sjostedt, and Microtermes najdensis (Harris. Except for a previous record of H. aethiopicus, the other five species were recorded for the first time in the UAE. All species were subterranean in habitat and reach wood sources through earthen gallery systems. Termites were available in areas with varied conditions of climate, vegetation and soil types. Termites showed host preference for dead, living, or decaying plant materials and non-cellulose materials. The dominant termite species recorded was A. ochraceus, followed by P. hypostoma and M. diversus. The distributions of the six termite species varied in each of the seven Emirates. All species were present in the two largest Emirates of Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

  1. Charring does not affect wood infestation by subterranean termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    C.J. Peterson; P.D. Gerard; T.L. Wagner

    2007-01-01

    Fire is an important part of forest ecosystems, as is the insect fauna. Changes in wood brought aboutby fire may alter the ability of termites to use the wood, interrupting the decay cycle of woody debris.The ability of termites to find, infest, and feed upon wood after it had been charred was evaluated in

  2. Efficacy of Bistrifluron Termite Bait on Coptotermes lacteus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in Southern Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Garry A

    2017-08-01

    Bistrifluron, a benzoylphenyl urea compound, was evaluated for efficacy against Coptotermes lacteus (Froggatt), a mound-building species in southern Australia. Bistrifluron bait (tradename Xterm) was delivered as containerized pellets inserted into plastic in-ground feeding stations implanted in the sides of mounds. Termites actively tunneled in the gaps between pellets and removed bait from the canisters. Two separate trials were conducted, one commencing on 22 September 2011 and the second commencing on 30 November 2011. In trial 1, all 13 treated colonies (seven single and six double treatments) were eliminated within 19 wk, while all five untreated colonies remained healthy. In trial 2, all four treated colonies were eliminated within 14 wk. In trial 1, bait consumed or removed in treated mounds averaged 105 g for single treatments and 147 g for dual treatments, and overall ranged from 7 to 309 g (70-3,090 mg bistrifluron). In trial 2, the four treated colonies removed an average of 85 g of bait. At the time mounds were dismantled, all showed signs of inattention: external cracking, delamination, and general external weathering. Mound repair and temperature profile data indicate that colony decline commenced much earlier than 19 wk and 14 wk, respectively, for trials 1 and 2, from as early as 4 wk onward. The ability of colonies to repair mound damage was impaired as early as 4 wk in some colonies, and mean internal mound temperatures in treated mounds began declining from 8 wk onward and clearly diverged from mean temperatures of untreated mounds thereafter. © The Authors 2017. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  3. Expanding the knowledge on lignocellulolytic and redox enzymes of worker and soldier castes from the lower termite Coptotermes gestroi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Paulo Lourenço Franco Cairo

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Termites are considered one of the most efficient decomposers of lignocelluloses on Earth due to their ability to produce, along with its microbial symbionts, a repertoire of carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes. Recently, a set of Pro-oxidant, Antioxidant, and Detoxification enzymes (PAD were also correlated with the metabolism of carbohydrates and lignin in termites. The lower termite Coptotermes gestroi is considered the main urban pest in Brazil, causing damage to wood constructions. Recently, analysis of the enzymatic repertoire of C. gestroi unveiled the presence of different CAZymes. Because the gene profile of CAZy/PAD enzymes endogenously synthesized by C. gestroi and also by their symbiotic protists remains unclear, the aim of this study was to explore the eukaryotic repertoire of these enzymes in worker and soldier castes of C. gestroi. Our findings showed that worker and soldier castes present similar repertoires of CAZy/PAD enzymes, and also confirmed that endo-glucanases (GH9 and beta-glucosidases (GH1 were the most important glycoside hydrolase families related to lignocellulose degradation in both castes. Classical cellulases such as exo-glucanases (GH7 and endo-glucanases (GH5 and GH45, as well as classical xylanases (GH10 and GH11, were found in both castes only taxonomically related to protists, highlighting the importance of symbiosis in C. gestroi. Moreover, our analysis revealed the presence of Auxiliary Activity enzyme families (AAs, which could be related to lignin modifications in termite digestomes. In conclusion, this report expanded the knowledge on genes and proteins related to CAZy/PAD enzymes from worker and soldier castes of lower termites, revealing new potential enzyme candidates for second-generation biofuel processes.

  4. Expanding the Knowledge on Lignocellulolytic and Redox Enzymes of Worker and Soldier Castes from the Lower Termite Coptotermes gestroi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franco Cairo, João P L; Carazzolle, Marcelo F; Leonardo, Flávia C; Mofatto, Luciana S; Brenelli, Lívia B; Gonçalves, Thiago A; Uchima, Cristiane A; Domingues, Romênia R; Alvarez, Thabata M; Tramontina, Robson; Vidal, Ramon O; Costa, Fernando F; Costa-Leonardo, Ana M; Paes Leme, Adriana F; Pereira, Gonçalo A G; Squina, Fabio M

    2016-01-01

    Termites are considered one of the most efficient decomposers of lignocelluloses on Earth due to their ability to produce, along with its microbial symbionts, a repertoire of carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes). Recently, a set of Pro-oxidant, Antioxidant, and Detoxification enzymes (PAD) were also correlated with the metabolism of carbohydrates and lignin in termites. The lower termite Coptotermes gestroi is considered the main urban pest in Brazil, causing damage to wood constructions. Recently, analysis of the enzymatic repertoire of C. gestroi unveiled the presence of different CAZymes. Because the gene profile of CAZy/PAD enzymes endogenously synthesized by C. gestroi and also by their symbiotic protists remains unclear, the aim of this study was to explore the eukaryotic repertoire of these enzymes in worker and soldier castes of C. gestroi . Our findings showed that worker and soldier castes present similar repertoires of CAZy/PAD enzymes, and also confirmed that endo-glucanases (GH9) and beta-glucosidases (GH1) were the most important glycoside hydrolase families related to lignocellulose degradation in both castes. Classical cellulases such as exo-glucanases (GH7) and endo-glucanases (GH5 and GH45), as well as classical xylanases (GH10 and GH11), were found in both castes only taxonomically related to protists, highlighting the importance of symbiosis in C. gestroi . Moreover, our analysis revealed the presence of Auxiliary Activity enzyme families (AAs), which could be related to lignin modifications in termite digestomes. In conclusion, this report expanded the knowledge on genes and proteins related to CAZy/PAD enzymes from worker and soldier castes of lower termites, revealing new potential enzyme candidates for second-generation biofuel processes.

  5. Sustainable Management of Subterranean Termite Populations (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in Armstrong Park, New Orleans, With Durable Baits.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Nan-Yao; Guidry, Eric; Cottone, Carrie

    2016-03-27

    Durable baits, Recruit HD, were installed in 45 Sentricon stations between September 2010 and July 2014 in the 32-acre Armstrong Park, New Orleans. After eliminating all detectable termite colonies in the Park, 6-12 mo elapsed before new activity was detected. Newly invading termite colonies were usually found near the Park border or were smaller colonies that originated from recently paired alates. After colony elimination, Recruit HD baits were left in the stations to intercept newly invading colonies of subterranean termites, leading to their elimination, and multiple cycles of such interception and elimination events were recorded. Because the presence of Recruit HD baits continues to eliminate incoming colonies with little effort in maintaining and resupplying baits in the target areas, the bait system offers an economically sustainable option for managing subterranean termite populations in a large area. The 32-acre Armstrong Park is a manageable size to carry out an area-wide (AW) project. If the number of such AW projects is gradually increased over time in selected metro areas of New Orleans, we predict that we may be able to turn the tide against the ever-increasing populations ofC. formosanusin the entire city. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  6. Combined effect of Azadirachta indica and the entomopathogenic nematode Steinernema glaseri against subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kadarkarai Murugan

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Laboratory study has been conducted on the bioactivities of entomopathogenic nematodes and neem seed kernel extract (NSKE against worker termites of Reticulitermes flavipes. Neem at various concentrations did not affect the survivability of nematodes, whereas neem had considerable impact on the survivability of worker termites and this may be due to the presence of active neem compounds (Azadirachtin, salanin etc.. Mortality was 40% on 4th day at lower concentration of 1.0% NSKE treatment; whereas mortality has been increased to 70% at higher concentration (4.0% on 4th day. There was 100% mortality after the combined treatment with 4.0% NSKE + 600 infective juvenile Steinernema glaseri, even at the first day of the experiment. In the present experiment, neem extract does not affected the survival of the nematodes. Hence, nematode and neem extract can be used for soil-insect control particularly for the subterranean termites.

  7. Oceanic dispersal, vicariance and human introduction shaped the modern distribution of the termites Reticulitermes, Heterotermes and Coptotermes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourguignon, Thomas; Lo, Nathan; Šobotník, Jan; Sillam-Dussès, David; Roisin, Yves; Evans, Theodore A

    2016-03-30

    Reticulitermes, Heterotermes and Coptotermes form a small termite clade with partly overlapping distributions. Although native species occur across all continents, the factors influencing their distribution are poorly known. Here, we reconstructed the historical biogeography of these termites using mitochondrial genomes of species collected on six continents. Our analyses showed that Reticulitermes split from Heterotermes + Coptotermesat 59.5 Ma (49.9-69.5 Ma 95% CI), yet the oldest split within Reticulitermes(Eurasia and North America) is 16.1 Ma (13.4-19.5 Ma) and the oldest split within Heterotermes + Coptotermesis 36.0 Ma (33.9-40.5 Ma). We detected 14 disjunctions between biogeographical realms, all of which occurred within the last 34 Ma, not only after the break-up of Pangaea, but also with the continents in similar to current positions. Land dispersal over land bridges explained four disjunctions, oceanic dispersal by wood rafting explained eight disjunctions, and human introduction was the source of two recent disjunctions. These wood-eating termites, therefore, appear to have acquired their modern worldwide distribution through multiple dispersal processes, with oceanic dispersal and human introduction favoured by the ecological traits of nesting in wood and producing replacement reproductives. © 2016 The Author(s).

  8. Ability of field populations of Coptotermes spp., Reticulitermes flavipes, and Mastotermes darwiniensis (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae; Mastotermitidae) to damage plastic cable sheathings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenz, Michael; Kard, Brad; Creffield, James W; Evans, Theodore A; Brown, Kenneth S; Freytag, Edward D; Zhong, Jun-Hong; Lee, Chow-Yang; Yeoh, Boon-Hoi; Yoshimura, Tsuyoshi; Tsunoda, Kunio; Vongkaluang, Charunee; Sornnuwat, Yupaporn; Roland, Ted A; de Santi, Marie Pommier

    2013-06-01

    A comparative field study was conducted to evaluate the ability of subterranean termites to damage a set of four different plastic materials (cable sheathings) exposed below- and above-ground. Eight pest species from six countries were included, viz., Coptotermes formosanus (Shiraki) in China, Japan, and the United States; Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann) in Thailand and Malaysia; Coptotermes curvignathus (Holmgren) and Coptotermes kalshoveni (Kemner) in Malaysia; Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt) with two forms of the species complex and Mastotermes darwiniensis (Froggatt) in Australia; and Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) in the United States. Termite species were separated into four tiers relative to decreasing ability to damage plastics. The first tier, most damaging, included C. acinaciformis, mound-building form, and M. darwiniensis, both from tropical Australia. The second tier included C. acinaciformis, tree-nesting form, from temperate Australia and C. kalshoveni from Southeast Asia. The third tier included C. curcignathus and C. gestroi from Southeast Asia and C. formosanus from China, Japan, and the United States, whereas the fourth tier included only R. flavipes, which caused no damage. A consequence of these results is that plastics considered resistant to termite damage in some locations will not be so in others because of differences in the termite fauna, for example, resistant plastics from the United States and Japan will require further testing in Southeast Asia and Australia. However, plastics considered resistant in Australia will be resistant in all other locations.

  9. Functional characterization and target discovery of glycoside hydrolases from the digestome of the lower termite Coptotermes gestroi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Franco Cairo João Paulo L

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Lignocellulosic materials have been moved towards the forefront of the biofuel industry as a sustainable resource. However, saccharification and the production of bioproducts derived from plant cell wall biomass are complex and lengthy processes. The understanding of termite gut biology and feeding strategies may improve the current state of biomass conversion technology and bioproduct production. Results The study herein shows comprehensive functional characterization of crude body extracts from Coptotermes gestroi along with global proteomic analysis of the termite's digestome, targeting the identification of glycoside hydrolases and accessory proteins responsible for plant biomass conversion. The crude protein extract from C. gestroi was enzymatically efficient over a broad pH range on a series of natural polysaccharides, formed by glucose-, xylose-, mannan- and/or arabinose-containing polymers, linked by various types of glycosidic bonds, as well as ramification types. Our proteomic approach successfully identified a large number of relevant polypeptides in the C. gestroi digestome. A total of 55 different proteins were identified and classified into 29 CAZy families. Based on the total number of peptides identified, the majority of components found in the C. gestroi digestome were cellulose-degrading enzymes. Xylanolytic enzymes, mannan- hydrolytic enzymes, pectinases and starch-degrading and debranching enzymes were also identified. Our strategy enabled validation of liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry recognized proteins, by enzymatic functional assays and by following the degradation products of specific 8-amino-1,3,6-pyrenetrisulfonic acid labeled oligosaccharides through capillary zone electrophoresis. Conclusions Here we describe the first global study on the enzymatic repertoire involved in plant polysaccharide degradation by the lower termite C. gestroi. The biochemical characterization of whole

  10. Toxic effects of palpoluck Polygonum hydropepper L. and Bhang Cannabis sativa L. plants extracts against termites Heterotermes indicola (Wasmann and Coptotermes heimi (Wasmann (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alam Zeb

    2005-07-01

    Full Text Available A research project was carried out aimed at to study the toxic effects of Palpoluck Polygonum hydropipper L. and Bhang Cannabis sativa L. crude extracts against two species of termites i.e. Heterotermes indicola (Wasmann and Coptotermes heimi (Wasmann at Nuclear institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA Peshawar, Pakistan in April 2002. Results revealed that after ten days of feeding maximum percent mortality in case of Polygonum hydropipper L. leaf and flower extracts was 28.0, 52.0, 28 and 74.7 for H. indicola and Coptotermes heimi respectively, while in control only 10.7 and 12.0% mortality were recorded. Similarly, for the same species of termites the percent mortality in Cannabis sativa L. extracts was 54.7, 64.0, 58.7 and 70.7 for leaf and seed extracts respectively, while in control only 12.0 and 10.7% mortality were observed. In each extract mortality was significantly different from that of control. Toxic effects of both extracts (leaf and flower were more profound against Coptotermes heimi than Heterotermes indicola during these ten days of feeding. Also the seed extracts caused more mortality than the leaves for both species, suggesting the availability of high contents of toxic materials in seed.

  11. Transcriptome analysis of the digestive system of a wood-feeding termite (Coptotermes formosanus) revealed a unique mechanism for effective biomass degradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geng, Alei; Cheng, Yanbing; Wang, Yongli; Zhu, Daochen; Le, Yilin; Wu, Jian; Xie, Rongrong; Yuan, Joshua S; Sun, Jianzhong

    2018-01-01

    Wood-feeding termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, represents a highly efficient system for biomass deconstruction and utilization. However, the detailed mechanisms of lignin modification and carbohydrate degradation in this system are still largely elusive. In order to reveal the inherent mechanisms for efficient biomass degradation, four different organs (salivary glands, foregut, midgut, and hindgut) within a complete digestive system of a lower termite, C. formosanus , were dissected and collected. Comparative transcriptomics was carried out to analyze these organs using high-throughput RNA sequencing. A total of 71,117 unigenes were successfully assembled, and the comparative transcriptome analyses revealed significant differential distributions of GH (glycosyl hydrolase) genes and auxiliary redox enzyme genes in different digestive organs. Among the GH genes in the salivary glands, the most abundant were GH9, GH22, and GH1 genes. The corresponding enzymes may have secreted into the foregut and midgut to initiate the hydrolysis of biomass and to achieve a lignin-carbohydrate co-deconstruction system. As the most diverse GH families, GH7 and GH5 were primarily identified from the symbiotic protists in the hindgut. These enzymes could play a synergistic role with the endogenous enzymes from the host termite for biomass degradation. Moreover, twelve out of fourteen genes coding auxiliary redox enzymes from the host termite origin were induced by the feeding of lignin-rich diets. This indicated that these genes may be involved in lignin component deconstruction with its redox network during biomass pretreatment. These findings demonstrate that the termite digestive system synergized the hydrolysis and redox reactions in a programmatic process, through different parts of its gut system, to achieve a maximized utilization of carbohydrates. The detailed unique mechanisms identified from the termite digestive system may provide new insights for advanced design of

  12. Toxicity and behavioral effects of nootkatone, 1,10-dihydronootkatone, and tetrahydronootkatone to the formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ibrahim, Sanaa A; Henderson, Gregg; Zhu, Betty C R; Fei, Huixin; Laine, Roger A

    2004-02-01

    Toxicity and behavioral effects of nootkatone and two of its derivatives, 1,10-dihydronootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone, to Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki were investigated on workers from two different colonies by using topical application assays, repellency assays, and sand barrier assays. The acute toxicity of the nootkatones on workers from both colonies increased as the saturation of the molecule increased, but the difference was significant for only one colony. The results of the repellency assays showed a similar trend of efficiency; the threshold concentration for significant repellency was four-fold higher in nootkatone treatments (50 ppm) than in the reduced derivatives 1,10-dihydronootkatone or tetrahydronootkatone (12.5 ppm). In sand barrier assays, a concentration of 100 ppm of any of the three chemicals significantly reduced termite survival, tunnel building, and food consumption after a 12-d exposure. Termites preexposed to 100 ppm nootkatone-treated sand and placed in containers without nootkatone for 15 d continued to exhibit abnormal feeding and digging behaviors; survivorship, tunneling, and feeding activities were significantly reduced by 83.5, 63.2, and 95.4%, respectively. Termites pretreated for 12 d at concentrations of 50 and 75 ppm nootkatone and tetrahydronootkatone returned to normal digging activity after they were removed from the treatments, but their feeding activity was significantly reduced.

  13. Symbiotic flagellate protists as cryptic drivers of adaptation and invasiveness of the subterranean termite Reticulitermes grassei Clément.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Sónia; Nobre, Tânia; Borges, Paulo A V; Nunes, Lina

    2018-06-01

    Changes in flagellate protist communities of subterranean termite Reticulitermes grassei across different locations were evaluated following four predictions: (i) Rural endemic (Portugal mainland) termite populations will exhibit high diversity of symbionts; (ii) invasive urban populations (Horta city, Faial island, Azores), on the contrary, will exhibit lower diversity of symbionts, showing high similarity of symbiont assemblages through environmental filtering; (iii) recent historical colonization of isolated regions-as the case of islands-will imply a loss of symbiont diversity; and (iv) island isolation will trigger a change in colony breeding structure toward a less aggressive behavior. Symbiont flagellate protist communities were morphologically identified, and species richness and relative abundances, as well as biodiversity indices, were used to compare symbiotic communities in colonies from urban and rural environments and between island invasive and mainland endemic populations. To evaluate prediction on the impact of isolation (iv), aggression tests were performed among termites comprising island invasive and mainland endemic populations. A core group of flagellates and secondary facultative symbionts was identified. Termites from rural environments showed, in the majority of observed colonies, more diverse and abundant protist communities, probably confirming prediction (i). Corroborating prediction (ii), the two least diverse communities belong to termites captured inside urban areas. The Azorean invasive termite colonies had more diverse protist communities than expected and prediction (iii) which was not verified within this study. Termites from mainland populations showed a high level of aggressiveness between neighboring colonies, in contrast to the invasive colonies from Horta city, which were not aggressive to neighbors according to prediction (iv). The symbiotic flagellate community of R. grassei showed the ability to change in a way that might

  14. Laboratory Study of the Influence of Substrate Type and Temperature on the Exploratory Tunneling by Formosan Subterranean Termite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bal K. Gautam

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Using two-dimensional foraging arenas, laboratory tests were conducted to investigate the effect of soil type, soil moisture level and ambient temperature on the exploratory tunneling by Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki. In choice arenas consisting of two substrate types having two moisture levels each, and conducted at a constant temperature of 22 °C, a significantly greater proportion of termites aggregated in sand than in sandy loam. Similarly, the length of excavated tunnels was also increased in sand. In a given substrate, termite aggregation or tunnel length did not differ between 5% and 15% moisture levels. In no-choice tests, where three different substrates (sand, sandy loam and silt loam were tested at two temperatures (22 °C and 28 °C, excavations were significantly greater in sand than either sandy loam or silt loam at 22 °C. Fewer primary tunnels were constructed in sandy loam than in sand and fewer branched tunnels than either in sand or silt loam. No significant difference in either tunnel length or number of primary or branched tunnels was found between these two temperatures.

  15. Caste-, sex-, and age-dependent expression of immune-related genes in a Japanese subterranean termite, Reticulitermes speratus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuki Mitaka

    Full Text Available Insects protect themselves from microbial infections through innate immune responses, including pathogen recognition, phagocytosis, the activation of proteolytic cascades, and the synthesis of antimicrobial peptides. Termites, eusocial insects inhabiting microbe-rich wood, live in closely-related family groups that are susceptible to shared pathogen infections. To resist pathogenic infection, termite families have evolved diverse immune adaptations at both individual and societal levels, and a strategy of trade-offs between reproduction and immunity has been suggested. Although termite immune-inducible genes have been identified, few studies have investigated the differential expression of these genes between reproductive and neuter castes, and between sexes in each caste. In this study, we compared the expression levels of immune-related genes among castes, sexes, and ages in a Japanese subterranean termite, Reticulitermes speratus. Using RNA-seq, we found 197 immune-related genes, including 40 pattern recognition proteins, 97 signalling proteins, 60 effectors. Among these genes, 174 showed differential expression among castes. Comparing expression levels between males and females in each caste, we found sexually dimorphic expression of immune-related genes not only in reproductive castes, but also in neuter castes. Moreover, we identified age-related differential expression of 162 genes in male and/or female reproductives. In addition, although R. speratus is known to use the antibacterial peptide C-type lysozyme as an egg recognition pheromone, we determined that R. speratus has not only C-type, but also P-type and I-type lysozymes, as well as other termite species. Our transcriptomic analyses revealed immune response plasticity among all castes, and sex-biased expression of immune genes even in neuter castes, suggesting a sexual division of labor in the immune system of R. speratus. This study heightens the understanding of the evolution of

  16. Estimating the population size and colony boundary of subterranean termites by using the density functions of directionally averaged capture probability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Nan-Yao; Lee, Sang-Hee

    2008-04-01

    Marked termites were released in a linear-connected foraging arena, and the spatial heterogeneity of their capture probabilities was averaged for both directions at distance r from release point to obtain a symmetrical distribution, from which the density function of directionally averaged capture probability P(x) was derived. We hypothesized that as marked termites move into the population and given sufficient time, the directionally averaged capture probability may reach an equilibrium P(e) over the distance r and thus satisfy the equal mixing assumption of the mark-recapture protocol. The equilibrium capture probability P(e) was used to estimate the population size N. The hypothesis was tested in a 50-m extended foraging arena to simulate the distance factor of field colonies of subterranean termites. Over the 42-d test period, the density functions of directionally averaged capture probability P(x) exhibited four phases: exponential decline phase, linear decline phase, equilibrium phase, and postequilibrium phase. The equilibrium capture probability P(e), derived as the intercept of the linear regression during the equilibrium phase, correctly projected N estimates that were not significantly different from the known number of workers in the arena. Because the area beneath the probability density function is a constant (50% in this study), preequilibrium regression parameters and P(e) were used to estimate the population boundary distance 1, which is the distance between the release point and the boundary beyond which the population is absent.

  17. Trace elements in termites by PIXE analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yoshimura, T. E-mail: tsuyoshi@termite.kuwri.kyoto-u.ac.jp; Kagemori, N.; Kawai, S.; Sera, K.; Futatsugawa, S

    2002-04-01

    Trace elements in a Japanese subterranean xylophagous termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, were analyzed by the PIXE method. The total amount of the 14 predominant elements out of 27 detected in an intact termite was higher in a soldier termite (23 000 {mu}g/g) than in a worker termite (10 000 {mu}g/g). A block of wood (Pinus densiflora Sieb. et Zucc.) for termite feed had a much lower concentration (3600 {mu}g/g) compared with that in an intact termite. This probably relates the functional bio-condensation and/or bio-recycling of trace elements in C. formosanus. When a termite was separated into three anatomical parts, head, degutted body and gut, the worker gut contained the highest total amount of the 14 predominant measured elements (31 000 {mu}g/g). This might be correlated with the higher activity of food digestion and energy production in the worker gut. Moreover, the mandible of the soldier head, with an exoskeleton that is intensely hardened, showed a preferential distribution of Mn and Fe. These results suggest that the characteristic localization of elements will be closely related to the functional role of the individual anatomical part of C. formosanus.

  18. Termite Resistance of MDF Panels Treated with Various Boron Compounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sedat Ondaral

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available In this study, the effects of various boron compounds on the termite resistance of MDF panels were evaluated. Either borax (BX, boric acid (BA, zinc borate (ZB, or sodium perborate tetrahydrate (SPT were added to urea-formaldehyde (UF resin at target contents of 1%, 1.5%, 2% and 2.5% based on dry fiber weight. The panels were then manufactured using 12% urea-formaldehyde resin and 1% NH4Cl. MDF samples from the panels were tested against the subterranean termites, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki. Laboratory termite resistance tests showed that all samples containing boron compounds had greater resistance against termite attack compared to untreated MDF samples. At the second and third weeks of exposure, nearly 100% termite mortalities were recorded in all boron compound treated samples. The highest termite mortalities were determined in the samples with either BA or BX. Also, it was found that SPT showed notable performance on the termite mortality. As chemical loadings increased, termite mortalities increased, and at the same time the weight losses of the samples decreased.

  19. Laboratory and field evaluation of Metarhizium anisopliae var. anisopliae for controlling subterranean termites

    OpenAIRE

    Hussain, A; Ahmed, S; Shahid, M

    2011-01-01

    The efficacy of the Metarhizium anisopliae strain ARSEF 6911 was determined in the laboratory and field against two sugarcane pests, Microtermes obesi Holmgren and Odontotermes obesus Rambur (Termitidae: Isoptera). The susceptibility of both termite species to different conidial suspensions (1 × 10(10), 1 × 10(8), 1 × 10(6) and 1 × 10(4) conidia/ml) was determined in laboratory. All conidial suspensions were able to induce mortality. Termite mortality caused by the fungal suspensions was dose...

  20. Laboratory and field evaluation of Metarhizium anisopliae var. anisopliae for controlling subterranean termites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hussain, A.; Ahmed, S.; Shahid, M.

    2011-01-01

    The efficacy of the Metarhizium anisopliae strain ARSEF 6911 was determined in the laboratory and field against two sugarcane pests, Microtermes obesi Holmgren and Odontotermes obesus Rambur (Termitidae: Isoptera). The susceptibility of both termite species to different conidial suspensions (1 x 10 10 , 1 x 10 8 , 1 x 10 6 and 1 x 10 4 conidia/ml) was determined in laboratory. All conidial suspensions were able to induce mortality. Termite mortality caused by the fungal suspensions was dose dependent. There were no significant differences in the LT 50 values between species. Field evaluation of M. anisopliae alone or in combination with diesel oil and thyamethoxam was carried out in two growing seasons (autumn 2005 and spring 2006) at two sites located in Punjab, Pakistan. Dipping the sugarcane setts in these suspensions was tried to determine their effects on germination and percentage of bud damage to sugarcane setts. All treatments significantly reduced termite infestation compared to the untreated control. The combined treatment of M. anisopliae and diesel oil significantly reduced insect damage by attaining higher germination > 55% and lower bud damage < 5.50% at both sites in both seasons. The results suggest that the application of M. anisopliae and diesel oil in combination might be a useful treatment option for the management of termites in sugarcane. (author)

  1. Laboratory and field evaluation of Metarhizium anisopliae var. anisopliae for controlling subterranean termites

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hussain, A. [South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou (China). College of Natural Resources and Environment; Ahmed, S. [South China Agricultural University, Guangzhou (China). Dept. of Agricultural Entomology; Shahid, M., E-mail: solvia_aah@yahoo.co [University of Agriculture, Faisalabad (Pakistan). Dept. of Chemistry and Biochemistry

    2011-03-15

    The efficacy of the Metarhizium anisopliae strain ARSEF 6911 was determined in the laboratory and field against two sugarcane pests, Microtermes obesi Holmgren and Odontotermes obesus Rambur (Termitidae: Isoptera). The susceptibility of both termite species to different conidial suspensions (1 x 10{sup 10}, 1 x 10{sup 8}, 1 x 10{sup 6} and 1 x 10{sup 4} conidia/ml) was determined in laboratory. All conidial suspensions were able to induce mortality. Termite mortality caused by the fungal suspensions was dose dependent. There were no significant differences in the LT{sub 50} values between species. Field evaluation of M. anisopliae alone or in combination with diesel oil and thyamethoxam was carried out in two growing seasons (autumn 2005 and spring 2006) at two sites located in Punjab, Pakistan. Dipping the sugarcane setts in these suspensions was tried to determine their effects on germination and percentage of bud damage to sugarcane setts. All treatments significantly reduced termite infestation compared to the untreated control. The combined treatment of M. anisopliae and diesel oil significantly reduced insect damage by attaining higher germination > 55% and lower bud damage < 5.50% at both sites in both seasons. The results suggest that the application of M. anisopliae and diesel oil in combination might be a useful treatment option for the management of termites in sugarcane. (author)

  2. Subterranean Termite Resistance of Polystyrene-Treated Wood from Three Tropical Wood Species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yusuf Sudo Hadi

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to investigate the resistance of three Indonesian wood species to termite attack. Samples from sengon (Falcataria moluccana, mangium (Acacia mangium, and pine (Pinus merkusii were treated with polystyrene at loading levels of 26.0%, 8.6%, and 7.7%, respectively. Treated and untreated samples were exposed to environmental conditions in the field for 3 months. Untreated specimens of sengon, mangium, and pine had resistance ratings of 3.0, 4.6, and 2.4, respectively, based on a 10-point scale from 0 (no resistance to 10 (complete or near-complete resistance. Corresponding resistance values of 7.8, 7.2, and 8.2 were determined for specimens treated with polystyrene. Overall weight loss values of 50.3%, 23.3%, and 66.4% were found for untreated sengon, mangium, and pine samples, respectively; for treated samples, the values were 7.6%, 14.4%, and 5.1%, respectively. Based on the findings in this study, overall resistance to termite attack was higher for treated samples compared to untreated samples.

  3. Testing protozoacidal activity of ligand-lytic peptides against termite gut protozoa in vitro (protozoa culture) and in vivo (microinjection into termite hindgut).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Husseneder, Claudia; Sethi, Amit; Foil, Lane; Delatte, Jennifer

    2010-12-29

    We are developing a novel approach to subterranean termite control that would lead to reduced reliance on the use of chemical pesticides. Subterranean termites are dependent on protozoa in the hindguts of workers to efficiently digest wood. Lytic peptides have been shown to kill a variety of protozoan parasites (Mutwiri et al. 2000) and also protozoa in the gut of the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus (Husseneder and Collier 2009). Lytic peptides are part of the nonspecific immune system of eukaryotes, and destroy the membranes of microorganisms (Leuschner and Hansel 2004). Most lytic peptides are not likely to harm higher eukaryotes, because they do not affect the electrically neutral cholesterol-containing cell membranes of higher eukaryotes (Javadpour et al. 1996). Lytic peptide action can be targeted to specific cell types by the addition of a ligand. For example, Hansel et al. (2007) reported that lytic peptides conjugated with cancer cell membrane receptor ligands could be used to destroy breast cancer cells, while lytic peptides alone or conjugated with non-specific peptides were not effective. Lytic peptides also have been conjugated to human hormones that bind to receptors on tumor cells for targeted destruction of prostate and testicular cancer cells (Leuschner and Hansel 2004). In this article we present techniques used to demonstrate the protozoacidal activity of a lytic peptide (Hecate) coupled to a heptapeptide ligand that binds to the surface membrane of protozoa from the gut of the Formosan subterranean termite. These techniques include extirpation of the gut from termite workers, anaerobic culture of gut protozoa (Pseudotrichonympha grassii, Holomastigotoides hartmanni,Spirotrichonympha leidyi), microscopic confirmation that the ligand marked with a fluorescent dye binds to the termite gut protozoa and other free-living protozoa but not to bacteria or gut tissue. We also demonstrate that the same ligand coupled to a lytic

  4. Effect of soil type and moisture availability on the foraging behavior of the Formosan subterranean termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornelius, Mary L; Osbrink, Weste L A

    2010-06-01

    This study examined the influence of soil type and moisture availability on termite foraging behavior. Physical properties of the soil affected both tunneling behavior and shelter tube construction. Termites tunneled through sand faster than top soil and clay. In containers with top soil and clay, termites built shelter tubes on the sides of the containers. In containers with sand, termites built shelter tubes directly into the air and covered the sides of the container with a layer of sand. The interaction of soil type and moisture availability affected termite movement, feeding, and survival. In assays with moist soils, termites were more likely to aggregate in top soil over potting soil and peat moss. However, termites were more likely to move into containers with dry peat moss and potting soil than containers with dry sand and clay. Termites were also significantly more likely to move into containers with dry potting soil than dry top soil. In the assay with dry soils, termite mortality was high even though termites were able to travel freely between moist sand and dry soil, possibly due to desiccation caused by contact with dry soil. Evaporation from potting soil and peat moss resulted in significant mortality, whereas termites were able to retain enough moisture in top soil, sand, and clay to survive for 25 d. The interaction of soil type and moisture availability influences the distribution of foraging termites in microhabitats.

  5. Application of ground penetrating radar in detecting the hazards and risks of termites and ants in soil levees.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Xiuhao; Henderson, Gregg; Mao, Lixin; Evans, Ahmad

    2009-08-01

    A ground penetrating radar (GPR) technique was used to detect Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus) and red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta) hazards and risks (targets) in a soil levee at the London Avenue Canal in New Orleans, LA. To make this assessment, GPR signal scans were examined for features produced by termite or ant activities and potential sources of food and shelter such as nests, tree roots, and voids (tunnels). The total scanned length of the soil levee was 4,125 m. The average velocity and effective depth of the radar penetration was 0.080 m/ns and 0.61 m, respectively. Four hundred twenty-seven targets were identified. Tree roots (38), voids (31), fire ant nests (209), and metal objects (149) were detected, but no Formosan termite carton nests were identified. The lack of identified termite nests may be related to drowning events at the time to the flood. Based on the target density (TD), the two new floodwall and levee sections that were rebuilt or reinforced after they were destroyed by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 were determined to be at low potential risk from termites and ants. A merging target density (MTD) method indicated a high potential risk near one of the breached sections still remains. Foraging and nesting activity of Formosan subterranean termites and red imported fire ants may be a contributory factor to the levee failure at the London Avenue Canal.

  6. Comparative effects of vetiver oil, nootkatone and disodium octaborate tetrahydrate on Coptotermes formosanus and its symbiotic fauna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maistrello, Lara; Henderson, Gregg; Laine, Roger A

    2003-01-01

    The potential of vetiver oil and nootkatone as wood treatments against Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki was examined by assessing the effects on termite tunneling, feeding activity and survival, and the consequences on the symbiont protozoa responsible for wood digestion. Comparisons were made with non-treated wood (control), wood treated with the borate compound Tim-Bor (a commonly used lumber preservative) and absence of a food source (starved termites), using choice and no-choice tests. All wood slices were prepared at the same time using a 10 g liter(-1) solution of each substance and were tested in four different sessions over one year to investigate longevity of the effects. Termites had to tunnel through sand to exploit the food sources, consisting of two wood slices, placed on opposite sides of the experimental enclosure. No-choice tests showed that in the presence of vetiver oil or nootkatone, tunneling activity was always the lowest; wood consumption, termite survival and flagellate numbers and species distribution were significantly different from the control and similar to the results obtained for starved termites and with Tim-Bor-treated wood. Nootkatone negatively affected termites for 12 months and was longer lasting than vetiver oil. In choice tests, when vetiver oil or nootkatone were present, termites exhibited a significant preference for non-treated wood. Our results confirmed both the toxicity and absence of repellency of Tim-Bor. Vetiver oil and especially nootkatone affected Formosan subterranean termites and their protozoa, acting as arrestants, repellents and feeding deterrents, and represent a promising natural alternative for the control of this invasive pest.

  7. Seasonal response of feeding, differentiation, and growth in the eastern subterranean termite Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) in Wisconsin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rachel Ann Arango; Frederick Green; Glenn R. Esenther

    2007-01-01

    In termites, differentiation plasticity in undifferentiated Reticulitermes progresses with growth stages from larvae to workers, which may then differentiate into soldiers, winged nymphs, or neotenics. Although studies have been done on seasonality of the termite life cycle, data appears to vary from location to location. Reticulitermes populations in Wisconsin appear...

  8. Do termites avoid carcasses? Behavioral responses depend on the nature of the carcasses.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kok-Boon Neoh

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Undertaking behavior is a significant adaptation to social life in enclosed nests. Workers are known to remove dead colony members from the nest. Such behavior prevents the spread of pathogens that may be detrimental to a colony. To date, little is known about the ethological aspects of how termites deal with carcasses. METHODOLOGY AND PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: In this study, we tested the responses to carcasses of four species from different subterranean termite taxa: Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki and Reticulitermes speratus (Kolbe (lower termites and Microcerotermes crassus Snyder and Globitermes sulphureus Haviland (higher termites. We also used different types of carcasses (freshly killed, 1-, 3-, and 7-day-old, and oven-killed carcasses and mutilated nestmates to investigate whether the termites exhibited any behavioral responses that were specific to carcasses in certain conditions. Some behavioral responses were performed specifically on certain types of carcasses or mutilated termites. C. formosanus and R. speratus exhibited the following behaviors: (1 the frequency and time spent in antennating, grooming, and carcass removal of freshly killed, 1-day-old, and oven-killed carcasses were high, but these behaviors decreased as the carcasses aged; (2 the termites repeatedly crawled under the aging carcass piles; and (3 only newly dead termites were consumed as a food source. In contrast, M. crassus and G. sulphureus workers performed relatively few behavioral acts. Our results cast a new light on the previous notion that termites are necrophobic in nature. CONCLUSION: We conclude that the behavioral response towards carcasses depends largely on the nature of the carcasses and termite species, and the response is more complex than was previously thought. Such behavioral responses likely are associated with the threat posed to the colony by the carcasses and the feeding habits and nesting ecology of a given species.

  9. Caste-, sex-, and age-dependent expression of immune-related genes in a Japanese subterranean termite, Reticulitermes speratus

    OpenAIRE

    Mitaka, Yuki; Kobayashi, Kazuya; Matsuura, Kenji

    2017-01-01

    Insects protect themselves from microbial infections through innate immune responses, including pathogen recognition, phagocytosis, the activation of proteolytic cascades, and the synthesis of antimicrobial peptides. Termites, eusocial insects inhabiting microbe-rich wood, live in closely-related family groups that are susceptible to shared pathogen infections. To resist pathogenic infection, termite families have evolved diverse immune adaptations at both individual and societal levels, and ...

  10. Mortality and repellent effects of microbial pathogens on Coptotermes formosanus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wright Maureen S

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Two entomopathogenic fungi, Isaria fumosorosea and Metarhizium anisopliae, and one bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis, were tested for their ability to cause mortality of Formosan subterranean termites (FST, Coptotermes formosanus (Shiraki, after liquid exposure, and for their lack of propensity to repel FST. Results The fungus Isaria fumosorosea at 108 spores/ml caused 72.5% mortality on day 7, significantly higher than the control and 106 spores/ml treatment. On day 14, the 106 and 108 concentrations caused 38.8% and 92.5% mortality, respectively, significantly higher than the control. On day 21, 82.5% and 100% of the termites were killed by the 106 and 108 treatments, respectively. I. fumosorosea did not repel termites at 106 nor 108 spores/g in sand, soil or sawdust. The fungus Metarhizium anisopliae at 108 spores/ml caused 57.5% mortality on day 7, 77.5% mortality on day 14 and 100% mortality on day 21. Conclusions On all three days the rate of mortality was significantly higher than that of the control and 106 spores/ml treatment with I. fumosorosea. Neither I. fumosorosea nor M. anisopliae caused repellency of FST in sand, soil or sawdust. The bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis did not cause significant mortality on days 7, 14 or 21. When termites were exposed to cells of B. thuringiensis in sawdust and when termites were exposed to a mixture of spores and cells in sand, a significantly higher number remained in the control tubes. Repellency was not seen with B. thuringiensis spores alone, nor with the above treatments in the other substrates.

  11. Susceptibility of hornbeam and Scots pine woods to destruction by the subterranean termite Reticulitermes lucifugus ROSSI, 1792 (Blattodea: Isoptera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Krajewski Adam

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The article presents the results of tests of the degree of damage to Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris and hornbeam (Carpinus betulus woods by the termite Reticulitermes lucifugus. Both wood species are classified as “susceptible to destruction by termites” in the EN 350-2:2000 standard. The procedures described in the ASTM D 3345-08 standard (2009 were applied in the experiments. During laboratory coercion tests, wood samples from these two species were damaged to a degree between light attack and moderate attack with penetration. Recent Scots pine sapwood was damaged to a heavy degree. The results can be associated with the much higher density of hornbeam wood as compared to Scots pine sapwood. The mortality rate of the termites in the test containers with both wood species was similar and low, no greater than 10%. In the light of the results, the classification of the susceptibility of native wood species to termite feeding, as stated in the EN 350-2:2000 standard, appears to be oversimplified.

  12. Hybridization of two major termite invaders as a consequence of human activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chouvenc, Thomas; Helmick, Ericka E; Su, Nan-Yao

    2015-01-01

    While hybridization of an invasive species with a native species is a common occurrence, hybridization between two invasive species is rare. Formosan subterranean termites (Coptotermes formosanus) and Asian subterranean termites (C. gestroi) are both ecologically successful and are the two most economically important termite pests in the world. Both species have spread throughout many areas of the world due to human activity; however, their distributions overlap in only three narrow areas because of distinct ecological requirements. In south Florida, where C. formosanus and C. gestroi are both invasive, the dispersal flight seasons of both species overlapped for the first time on record in 2013 and 2014. Pairings of heterospecific individuals were readily observed in the field and C. gestroi males preferentially engaged in mating behavior with C. formosanus females rather than females from their own species. In the laboratory, heterospecific and conspecific pairings had an equal colony establishment rate, but heterospecific incipient colonies had twice the growth rate of conspecific incipient colonies, suggesting a potential case of hybrid vigor. As all pre-zygotic barriers were lifted between the two species in the field, the apparent absence of post-zygotic barriers in the laboratory raises the possibility for introgressive hybridization in south Florida. While laboratory observations remain to be confirmed in the field, and the alate hybrid fertility is currently unknown, our results raise a tangible concern about the hybridization of two major destructive pest species. Such hybridization would likely be associated with a new economic impact.

  13. Hybridization of two major termite invaders as a consequence of human activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Chouvenc

    Full Text Available While hybridization of an invasive species with a native species is a common occurrence, hybridization between two invasive species is rare. Formosan subterranean termites (Coptotermes formosanus and Asian subterranean termites (C. gestroi are both ecologically successful and are the two most economically important termite pests in the world. Both species have spread throughout many areas of the world due to human activity; however, their distributions overlap in only three narrow areas because of distinct ecological requirements. In south Florida, where C. formosanus and C. gestroi are both invasive, the dispersal flight seasons of both species overlapped for the first time on record in 2013 and 2014. Pairings of heterospecific individuals were readily observed in the field and C. gestroi males preferentially engaged in mating behavior with C. formosanus females rather than females from their own species. In the laboratory, heterospecific and conspecific pairings had an equal colony establishment rate, but heterospecific incipient colonies had twice the growth rate of conspecific incipient colonies, suggesting a potential case of hybrid vigor. As all pre-zygotic barriers were lifted between the two species in the field, the apparent absence of post-zygotic barriers in the laboratory raises the possibility for introgressive hybridization in south Florida. While laboratory observations remain to be confirmed in the field, and the alate hybrid fertility is currently unknown, our results raise a tangible concern about the hybridization of two major destructive pest species. Such hybridization would likely be associated with a new economic impact.

  14. Heterogeneous distribution of castes/instars and behaviors in the nest of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki

    Science.gov (United States)

    This study investigated age polyethism and the frequencies of behaviors in relation to the distance from the egg cluster in nests of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, a lower termite. Juvenile colonies of C. formosanus were introduced in planar arenas and termite activity was recorded with camcorders...

  15. Toxicity and anti termite activities of the essential oils from Piper sarmentosum

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chieng, T.C.; Assim, Z.B.; Fasihuddin, B.A.

    2008-01-01

    The leaves of Piper sarmentosum were hydro distilled using the modified Clevenger-type apparatus, and an average yield of essential oil of 1.10 % (v/ dry weight) was obtained. The leaf oils were analyzed by GC and GC-MS. A total of 31 components were identified. Spathulenol (21.0 %), myristicin (18.8 %), β-caryophyllene (18.2 %) and (E,E)-farnesol (10.5 %) were the major compounds found in the leaf oil. The leaf oil showed inhibitory activity against the larvae of Artemia salina with LC 50 value of 35.2 μg/ mL, and 100 % mortality within two days at 1 % concentration against the subterranean termite (Coptotermes sp.). The crude extract was then subjected to bioassay-guided isolation using silica gel column chromatography, and eluted with hexane containing increasing volumes of ethyl acetate and yielded three pure compounds. Their toxicity and anti termite activities of the three compounds were determined. Compound 2 showed the most potent activity against the larvae of A. salina with LC 50 value of 7.5 μg/ mL, while the LC 50 values for compound 3 and compound 1 were 17.2 μg/ mL and 22.5 μg/ mL respectively. Compound 3 showed the strongest inhibitory activity against the subterranean termite (Coptotermes sp.) with 100 % mortality after 3 days at 0.1 % concentration followed by compound 2 with the same mortality rate at 0.5 % concentration. Compound 1 showed the weakest inhibitory activity with 80 % mortality after 3 days at 2 % concentration. Based on spectroscopic data and comparison with published information, compound 1 and 2 have been identified as caryophyllene and myristicin respectively. Compound 3 is still being studied in order to elucidate its structure. (author)

  16. Subterranean termite open-air foraging and tolerance to desiccation: Comparative water relation of two sympatric Macrotermes spp. (Blattodea: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Jian; Neoh, Kok-Boon; Appel, Arthur G; Lee, Chow-Yang

    2012-02-01

    The foraging patterns of termites are strongly related to physiological limits in overcoming desiccation stress. In this study, we examined moisture preferences and physiological characteristics of Macrotermes carbonarius (Hagen) and M. gilvus (Hagen) as both exhibit conspicuous patterns of foraging activity. Despite both species showing no significant differences in calculated cuticular permeability, and percentage of total body water, they differed greatly in rate of water loss and surface area to volume ratio. For example, M. carbonarius which had a lower surface area to volume ratio (29.26-53.66) showed lower rate of water loss and percentage of total body water loss. This also resulted in higher LT(50) when exposed to extreme conditions (≈2% RH). However, contrasting observations were made in M. gilvus that has smaller size with higher surface area to volume ratio of 40.28-69.75. It is likely that the standard equation for calculating insect surface areas is inadequate for these termite species. The trend was further supported by the result of a moisture preference bioassay that indicated M. carbonarius had a broader range of moisture preference (between 5% and 20%) than M. gilvus which had a relatively narrow moisture preference (only 20%). These results explain why M. carbonarius can tolerate desiccation stress for a longer period foraging above-ground in the open air; while M. gilvus only forages below ground or concealed within foraging mud tubes. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Pillotinas and hollandinas: distribution and behaviour of large spirochaetes symbiotic in termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    To, L; Margulis, L; Cheung, A T

    1978-01-01

    Pillotina spirochaetes have been observed in the hindguts of wood-eating cockroaches (Cryptocercus punctulatus), and in 25 out of 28 species of termites examined. They were especially abundant in 21 species of dry wood termites of the family Kalotermitidae, from Europe, North America and Australia. These included many species of Kalotermes and one or a few of the following: Glyptotermes, Bifidotermes, Neotermes, Ceratokalotermes, Paraneotermes, Cryptotermes, Porotermes, Marginitermes, Pterotermes, Zootermopsis, Reticulitermes, Coptotermes, Heterotermes, and nasutitermitids. Identifications of pillotinas were made on the basis of large size (0.5--2 micromtere in diameter, 50 to greater than 100 micrometers in length) and wave pattern; these were verified by electron microscopy in K. schwarzi, Pterotermes occidentis and others. Pillotinas were also present in all species of subterranean termites (Family Rhinotermitidae) examined, and in the most primitive Australian termite, Mastotermes darwiniensis (Family Mastotermitidae). They were not observed in damp wood termites (Family Hodotermidiae). Pillotinas are invariably associated with a rich, complex xylophagous microbial community composed primarily of motile prokaryotes, and hypermastigote and polymastigote flagellates. Some have been previously described by those primarily concerned with termite hindgut protozoa. Observations were made on their modes of behaviour, division, and microbial associates. A new genus of spirochaetes, Hollandina, is also described. It is distinguished from Pillotina by a smaller size and several ultrastructural features, but is otherwise closely related taxonomically. Evidence is provided to support Hollande and Gharagozlou's (1967) concept that the pillotinas and hollandinas deserve the taxonomic status of 'family' and that they should be classified with the cristispire siprochaetes a-cording to the scheme developed by Hovind-Hougen (1976). Spirochaetes are treated as a Phylum of the

  18. Determination of the major compounds in the extract of the subterranean termite Macrotermes gilvus Hagen digestive tract by GC-MS method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Subekti

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Degradation of woody components by termites is associated with symbionts inside their digestive tract. In this study, the major compounds were determined in the extract of the termite guts by GC-MS method. Macrotermes gilvus Hagen (worker caste termites were collected and their dissected guts underwent methanol extraction. It was found that the gut of the termites has an alkaline environment (pH 8.83 ± 0.31 that supports the digestion of lignocellulose biomass and also helps to solubilize phenolic and recalcitrant compounds resul­ting from the depolymerization of woody components. The GC-MS analysis showed that termite guts contained hydrophobic organosilicon components including dodecamethylcyclohexasiloxane, tetradecamethylcyclohexa­siloxane, hexadecamethylcyclooctasiloxane, and octasiloxane, 1,1,3,3,5,5,7,7,9,9,11,11,13,13,15,15-hexa­decamethyl. The guts also contained a phytosterol, which was identified as β-sitosterol. Further analysis of these water-insoluble compounds is needed to reveal their importance in termite digestion.

  19. How Termite Mounds Breath?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saxena, Saurabh; Yaghoobian, Neda

    2017-11-01

    Fungus-cultivating termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae that are extensively found throughout sub-Saharan Africa and south East Asia are one species of termites that collectively build massive, uninhabited, complex structures. These structures, which are much larger than the size of an individual termite, effectively use natural wind and solar energies and the energy embodied in colony's metabolic activity to maintain the necessary condition for termite survival. These mounds enclose a subterranean nest, where the termite live and cultivate fungus, as well as a complex network of tunnels consisting of a large, vertically oriented central chimney, surface conduits, and lateral connectives that connect the chimney and the surface conduits. In this study, we use computational modeling to explore the combined interaction of geometry, heterogeneous thermal mass, and porosity with the external turbulent wind and solar radiation to investigate the physical principles and fundamental aero-thermodynamics underlying the controlled and stable climate of termite mounds. Exploitation of natural resources of wind and solar energies in these natural systems for the purpose of ventilation will lead to new lessons for improving human habitats conditions.

  20. Differential cellulolytic activity of native-form and C-terminal tagged-form cellulase derived from coptotermes formosanus and expressed in E. coli

    Science.gov (United States)

    The endogenous cellulase gene (CfEG3a) of Coptotermes formosanus, an economically important pest termite, was cloned and overexpressed in both native form (nCfEG) and C-terminal His-tagged form (tCfEG) in E.coli. Both forms of recombinant cellulases showed hydrolytic activity on cellulosic substrate...

  1. External development of the entomopathogenic fungi Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium anisopliae in the subterranean termite Heterotermes tenuis Desenvolvimento dos fungos entomopatogênicos Beauveria bassiana E Metarhizium anisopliae no cupim subterrâneo Heterotermes tenuis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alcides Moino Jr.

    2002-06-01

    Full Text Available The subterranean termite Heterotermes tenuis is one of the main pests of sugarcane and eucalyptus in Brazil, and the use of entomopathogenic fungi, alone or associated to chemicals, is an efficient and environmentally favorable method for its control. Studies related to the fungal development on these insects are important due to the effect of insect behavior on entomopathogens. The objective of this work was to describe the external development of Beauveria bassiana and Metarhizium anisopliae on H. tenuis using Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM, determining the duration of the different phases of fungal infection. Two fixation techniques for preparing SEM samples were also evaluated. Worker specimens of H. tenuis were inoculated with a 1 x 10(9 conidia mL-1 suspension of the fungi and maintained at 25±1ºC and 70±10% relative humidity. Insects were collected from 0 to 144 hours after inoculation and prepared on SEM stubs for each of the two fixation techniques. The results obtained with the two techniques were compared and duration of the different phases of the infection process were estimated from SEM observations and compared for three fungal isolates. B. bassiana and M. anisopliae have similar development cycles on the termite, but some important differences exist. The penetration, colonization and conidiogenesis phases are relatively faster for M. anisopliae than for B. bassiana, which results in a faster rate of insect mortality. The fixation technique with OsO4 vapor is suitable for preparation of insects to be used in SEM observation of the developmental stages of entomopathogenic fungi.O cupim subterrâneo Heterotermes tenuis , uma das principais pragas da cana-de-açúcar e eucalipto no Brasil, e o uso de fungos entomopatogênicos, isoladamente ou associados a produtos químicos, é um método eficiente e ambientalmente seguro para seu controle. Estudos relacionados ao desenvolvimento fúngico nestes insetos são importantes devido

  2. Borate protection of softwood from Coptotermes acinaciformis (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) damage: variation in protection thresholds explained.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Brenton C; Fitzgerald, Christopher J

    2006-10-01

    Laboratory and field data reported in the literature are confusing with regard to "adequate" protection thresholds for borate timber preservatives. The confusion is compounded by differences in termite species, timber species and test methodology. Laboratory data indicate a borate retention of 0.5% mass/mass (m/m) boric acid equivalent (BAE) would cause > 90% termite mortality and restrict mass loss in test specimens to 0.5% m/m BAE are required. We report two field experiments with varying amounts of untreated feeder material in which Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt) (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) responses to borate-treated radiata (Monterey) pine, Pinus radiata D. Don, were measured. The apparently conflicting results between laboratory and field data are explained by the presence or absence of untreated feeder material in the test environment. In the absence of untreated feeder material, wood containing 0.5% BAE provided adequate protection from Coptotermes sp., whereas in the presence of untreated feeder material, increased retentions were required. Furthermore, the retentions required increased with increased amounts of susceptible material present. Some termites, Nasutitermes sp. and Mastotermes darwiniensis Froggatt, for example, are borate-tolerant and borate timber preservatives are not a viable management option with these species. The lack of uniform standards for termite test methodology and assessment criteria for efficacy across the world is recognized as a difficulty with research into the performance of timber preservatives with termites. The many variables in laboratory and field assays make "prescriptive" standards difficult to recommend. The use of "performance" standards to define efficacy criteria ("adequate" protection) is discussed.

  3. Rehydration After Water Stress in Forager Workers of Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann) (Blattaria: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janei, V; Lima, J T; Costa-Leonardo, A M

    2015-06-01

    Water maintenance is vital for termite survival under dry conditions, hence environment humidity is one of the most important factors that controls the distribution of Isoptera. To understand the dynamics of termite rehydration after water loss, two bioassays were performed with forager workers of Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann) submitted to water stress. Insects were weighed and placed into Petri dishes without water and food for periods of 3, 15, and 30 h. For each period of water stress, 10 replicates were performed in the treatment and control groups, totalling 120 experimental units. Forager workers lost body mass across all periods of water stress and tested with the highest reduction for the 30 h exposure period. Subsequent access to water resulted in termite rehydration, and final weight values were near to initial body mass values. These results demonstrate that workers of C. gestroi experienced large reductions of body mass under water stress, but these reductions were not severe enough to cause mortality. Additionally, termites were able to rehydrate after water stress conditions. This is a potential risk factor to be considered in cases of new infestations because C. gestroi workers will be able to cause economic damage in their new locations even when deprived of water during their transportation by humans.

  4. Influence of the diet components on the symbiotic microorganisms community in hindgut of Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Hideo; Aoyagi, Hideki; Shiina, Shunsuke; Shina, Syunsuke; Doudou, Yuri; Dodo, Yuri; Yoshimura, Tsuyoshi; Nakamura, Ryosuke; Uchiyama, Hiroo

    2006-08-01

    Artificial diet was developed for rearing of lower termites (workers) Coptotermes formosanus. C. formosanus was fed with either wood powder of Japanese red pine, cellulose, cellobiose, or glucose for 30 days. The effect of carbon sources in the diet on the structure and function of the symbiotic intestinal microbial community and on the physiological activity of C. formosanus was studied. Three symbiont protozoa, Pseudotrichonympha grassi, Holomastigotoides hartmanni, and Spirotrichonympha leidyi, were found in the hindgut of C. formosanus that fed on the diets containing carbon sources with high molecular weight (MW). However, when artificial diets containing carbohydrate with low MW were used, both P. grassi and H. hartmanni disappeared, and only few S. leidyi were alive. This suggested that both P. grassi and H. hartmanni play important roles in the digestion and utilization of carbohydrate with high MW. The denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis analysis of bacterial community in the hindgut of termites showed that the similarity between intestinal bacteria community in termites fed with diets containing high-MW carbon sources and those with low MW was only about 40%. It was apparent that changes in diets resulted to changes in intestinal microbial community, and this in turn affected cellulase activity in C. formosanus.

  5. Differentially expressed genes of Coptotermes formosanus (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) challenged by chemical insecticides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yi; Zhao, Yuanyuan; Qiu, Xuehong; Han, Richou

    2013-08-01

    Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) termites are harmful social insects to wood constructions. The current control methods heavily depend on the chemical insecticides with increasing resistance. Analysis of the differentially expressed genes mediated by chemical insecticides will contribute to the understanding of the termite resistance to chemicals and to the establishment of alternative control measures. In the present article, a full-length cDNA library was constructed from the termites induced by a mixture of commonly used insecticides (0.01% sulfluramid and 0.01% triflumuron) for 24 h, by using the RNA ligase-mediated Rapid Amplification cDNA End method. Fifty-eight differentially expressed clones were obtained by polymerase chain reaction and confirmed by dot-blot hybridization. Forty-six known sequences were obtained, which clustered into 33 unique sequences grouped in 6 contigs and 27 singlets. Sixty-seven percent (22) of the sequences had counterpart genes from other organisms, whereas 33% (11) were undescribed. A Gene Ontology analysis classified 33 unique sequences into different functional categories. In general, most of the differential expression genes were involved in binding and catalytic activity.

  6. Watching termites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carrard, G.

    1983-01-01

    Radioactive tracking techniques are being used to aid the investigation and control of termites. Studies include work related to the restoration of historic buildings when the damage inflicted on the timbers needs to be determined with minimum disturbance to the building. Another investigation has been the radioactive monitoring of pest-control techniques. Scandium-46, lanthanum-140 and gold-198 have been used in different investigations

  7. Termites utilise clay to build structural supports and so increase foraging resources.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oberst, Sebastian; Lai, Joseph C S; Evans, Theodore A

    2016-02-08

    Many termite species use clay to build foraging galleries and mound-nests. In some cases clay is placed within excavations of their wooden food, such as living trees or timber in buildings; however the purpose for this clay is unclear. We tested the hypotheses that termites can identify load bearing wood, and that they use clay to provide mechanical support of the load and thus allow them to eat the wood. In field and laboratory experiments, we show that the lower termite Coptotermes acinaciformis, the most basal species to build a mound-nest, can distinguish unloaded from loaded wood, and use clay differently when eating each type. The termites target unloaded wood preferentially, and use thin clay sheeting to camouflage themselves while eating the unloaded wood. The termites attack loaded wood secondarily, and build thick, load-bearing clay walls when they do. The termites add clay and build thicker walls as the load-bearing wood is consumed. The use of clay to support wood under load unlocks otherwise unavailable food resources. This behaviour may represent an evolutionary step from foraging behaviour to nest building in lower termites.

  8. Monthly fluctuation of termite caste proportions (Isoptera) within fire ant mounds (hymenoptera: formicidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas G. Shelton; J.T. Vogt; Marla J. Tanley; Arthur G. Appel

    2003-01-01

    Monthly abundance and caste proportions of subterranean termites (Reticulitennes spp.) inhabiting red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta Buren) mounds were recorded during 1999 and 2000 from a relatively undisturbed forest edge in Tuskegee, Alabama. Temperature data were also recorded at these mounds; mean air, soil, and mound temperatures followed a sine model over...

  9. Vertical Distribution of Termites on Trees in Two Forest Landscapes in Taiwan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Hou-Feng; Yeh, Hsin-Ting; Chiu, Chun-I; Kuo, Chih-Yu; Tsai, Ming-Jer

    2016-03-25

    Termites are a key functional group in the forest ecosystem, but they damage trees. To investigate the termite infestation pattern on the whole tree, we cut 108 blackboard trees,Alstonia scholaris(L.) R. Br., and 50 Japanese cedars,Cryptomeria japonica (L. f.) D. Don, into sections. The bark surface and cross sections of the tree trunk were examined along the axes. A high percentage of blackboard trees (92.6%) was infested by fungus-growing termites,Odontotermes formosanus(Shiraki), but damage was limited to the bark surface at a 2-m height. The infestation rate of dampwood termites,Neotermes koshunensis(Shiraki), was only 4.6% (5/108), and all infestations were associated with trunk wounds.N. koshunensiswas found at significantly higher portion of a tree thanO. formosanus Among 50 Japanese cedars, 20 living trees were not infested by any termites, but 26 of the 30 dead trees were infested by subterranean termites,Reticulitermes flaviceps(Oshima), which excavated tunnels in the trunk. The infestation rate at basal sections was higher than that at distal sections. Only one Japanese cedar tree was infested by another dampwood termite,Glyptotermes satsumensis(Matsumura). The two dominant termite species,O. formosanusandR. flaviceps, had subterranean nests and infested trees from bottom up. The two primitive termitesN. koshunensis andG. satsumensishad low infestation rates and are most likely to infest trees by alates from top down. The niche segregation in trees of three termite families, Kalotermitidae, Rhinotermitidae, and Termitidae, was distinct. © The Authors 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  10. Elimination of Coptotermes lacteus (Froggatt (Blattodea: Rhinotemitidae Colonies Using Bistrifluron Bait Applied through In-Ground Bait Stations Surrounding Mounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Garry Webb

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The efficacy of bistrifluron termite bait was evaluated using in-ground bait stations placed around Coptotermes lacteus mounds in south-eastern Australia during late summer and autumn (late February to late May 2012. Four in-ground bait stations containing timber billets were placed around each of twenty mounds. Once sufficient numbers of in-ground stations were infested by termites, mounds were assigned to one of four groups (one, two, three or four 120 g bait canisters or 120 to 480 g bait in total per mound and bait canisters installed. One mound, nominally assigned treatment with two canisters ultimately had no termite interception in any of the four in-ground stations and not treated. Eighteen of the remaining 19 colonies were eliminated by 12 weeks after bait placement, irrespective of bait quantity removed (range 43 to 480 g. Measures of colony decline—mound repair capability and internal core temperature—did not accurately reflect the colony decline, as untreated colonies showed a similar pattern of decline in both repair capability and internal mound core temperature. However, during the ensuing spring–summer period, capacity to repair the mound was restored in untreated colonies and the internal core temperature profile was similar to the previous spring–summer period which indicated that these untreated colonies remained healthy.

  11. Elimination of Coptotermes lacteus (Froggatt) (Blattodea: Rhinotemitidae) Colonies Using Bistrifluron Bait Applied through In-Ground Bait Stations Surrounding Mounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webb, Garry

    2017-09-12

    The efficacy of bistrifluron termite bait was evaluated using in-ground bait stations placed around Coptotermes lacteus mounds in south-eastern Australia during late summer and autumn (late February to late May 2012). Four in-ground bait stations containing timber billets were placed around each of twenty mounds. Once sufficient numbers of in-ground stations were infested by termites, mounds were assigned to one of four groups (one, two, three or four 120 g bait canisters or 120 to 480 g bait in total per mound) and bait canisters installed. One mound, nominally assigned treatment with two canisters ultimately had no termite interception in any of the four in-ground stations and not treated. Eighteen of the remaining 19 colonies were eliminated by 12 weeks after bait placement, irrespective of bait quantity removed (range 43 to 480 g). Measures of colony decline-mound repair capability and internal core temperature-did not accurately reflect the colony decline, as untreated colonies showed a similar pattern of decline in both repair capability and internal mound core temperature. However, during the ensuing spring-summer period, capacity to repair the mound was restored in untreated colonies and the internal core temperature profile was similar to the previous spring-summer period which indicated that these untreated colonies remained healthy.

  12. Cellulolytic activity of gut extract of subterranean termite ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Lignocellulosic biomass is a chief and cheap raw material for bioethanol production. However, pretreatment is a critical and most expensive step in lignocellulosic ... alternative for lignocellulosic biomass conversion using enzyme hydrolysis.

  13. Fipronil: Toxicity to subterranean termites and dissipation in soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. E. Mulrooney; T. L. Wagner; P. D. Gerard

    2009-01-01

    Fipronil (Termidor 80 WG) was applied to covered and exposed plots at one secondary and four primary USDA Forest Service termiticide test sites in the U.S. Residue analyses and bioassays of soil samples were conducted over 5 y.

  14. Termite feeding preference to four wood species after gamma irradiation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Katsumata, N.; Yoshimura, T.; Tsunoda, K.; Imamura, Y.

    2007-01-01

    The effect of gamma irradiation at 100 kGy and at lower levels on termite resistance was examined in the laboratory by no-choice and choice feeding termite tests (Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki) using four wood species: sapwood of Cryptomeria japonica D. Don, and heartwoods of Pseudotsuga menziesii (Mirbel) Franco, Larix kaempferi (Lambert) Carriere, and Chamaecyparis obtusa Endl. The wood consumption rates in C. japonica and P. menziesii specimens were likely to increase with increases in gamma-irradiation levels, whereas little effect of gamma irradiation was seen in L. kaempferi and C. obtusa. Similar results were obtained in the two-choice test. The current results indicated that in the two-choice test with C. formosanus, 100-kGy-irradiated C. japonica and P. menziesii, which are not rich in antitermite substances, were eaten more than other wood samples with or without gamma irradiation. However, only C. japonica showed significant difference in termite feeding activity. The mass loss in 100-kGy-irradiated C. japonica was significantly higher in the multichoice test

  15. Efikasi Asap Cair dari Kayu Laban (Vitex pubescens terhadap Rayap Coptotermes curvignathus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    HA Oramahi

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Efficacy of liquid smoke from laban wood (Vitex pubescens against Coptotermes curvignathus. Antitermitic activities of liquid smoke produced from Vitex pubescens against C. curvignathus was evaluated in this study. This research was conducted in two steps, i.e. pyrolisis of liquid smoke and efficacy test of liquid smoke as antitermite. Three kinds of liquid smoke were produced at three different pyrolysis temperatures, i.e.  350 oC, 400 oC and 450 oC. Termiticidal activity was evaluated by a no-choice test.  The research indicates that concentration of liquid smoke and pyrolysis temperatures significantly affected  termite mortality and mass losses of the filter paper. The relationship between the concentration of liquid smoke (X and termite mortality (Y at 350 oC, 400 oC,  and  450 oC were Y = 31,4 + 11,76X,  (r2 = 0,60,  Y = 30 + 11,86X (r2 = 0,59,  and Y = 26,66 + 7,6X (r2 = 0,429. The relationship between concentration of liquid smoke (X and mass losses (Y at 350 oC,  400 oC, and 450 oC were Y= 85,12 -3,188X (r2 = 0,723, Y= 88,06 – 3,435X + (r2 = 0,953 and Y= 91,56 – 3,867X  (r2 = 0,886.

  16. Subterranean stress engineering experiments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Campbell, J.R.; Colgate, S.A.; Wheat, B.M.

    1980-01-01

    The state of stress in a subterranean rock mass has classically been assumed to be constant at best. In soil with a high clay content, preconsolidation and drainage methods can lead to more stable foundation material, but methods for engineering the stresses in large masses of rock are not well known. This paper shows the results from an experiment designed to alter the in situ rock stress field in an oil shale mine. This was done by hydrofracturing the rock by use of a packed-well injection system and then propping the crack open with a thixotropic gel, which slowly hardened to the consistency of cement. Successive hydrofracture and high-pressure grouting resulted in an overstressed region. Well-head injection pressures, surface tilts, injection rates, and subterranean strains were measured and recorded on floppy disk by a Z-80 microprocessor. The results were then transmitted to the large computer system at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory (LASL). To put the data in a more useful form, computer-generated movies of the tilts and strains were made by use of computer graphics developed at LASL. The purpose of this paper is to present results from the Single Large Instrumented Test conducted in the Colony Oil Shale Mine near Rifle, Colorado. 13 figures

  17. Escaping and repairing behaviors of the termite Odontotermes formosanus (Blattodea: Termitidae in response to disturbance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongpeng Xiong

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available The escaping behavior of termites has been documented under laboratory conditions; however, no study has been conducted in a field setting due to the difficulty of observing natural behaviors inside wood or structures (e.g., nests, tunnels, etc.. The black-winged termite, Odontotermes formosanus (Shiraki, is a subterranean macrotermitine species which builds extensive mud tubes on tree trunks. In the present study, 41 videos (totaling ∼2,700 min were taken on 22 colonies/subcolonies of O. formosanus after their mud tubes were partially damaged by hand. In general, termites consistently demonstrated three phases of escape, including initiation (wandering near the mud-tube breach, individual escaping (single termites moving downward, and massive, unidirectional escaping flows (groups of termites moving downward. Downward moving and repairing were the dominant behavioral activities of individuals and were significantly more frequent than upward moving, turning/backward moving, or wandering. Interestingly, termites in escaping flows moved significantly faster than escaping individuals. Repairing behavior was observed shortly after the disturbance, and new mud tubes were preferentially constructed from the bottom up. When predators (i.e., ants were present, however, termites stopped moving and quickly sealed the mud-tube openings by capping the broken ends. Our study provides an interesting example that documents an animal (besides humans simultaneously carrying out pathway repairs and emergency evacuation without congestion.

  18. Escaping and repairing behaviors of the termite Odontotermes formosanus (Blattodea: Termitidae) in response to disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xiong, Hongpeng; Chen, Xuan; Wen, Yuzhen; Layne, Michael; Sun, Zhaohui; Ma, Tao; Wen, Xiujun; Wang, Cai

    2018-01-01

    The escaping behavior of termites has been documented under laboratory conditions; however, no study has been conducted in a field setting due to the difficulty of observing natural behaviors inside wood or structures (e.g., nests, tunnels, etc.). The black-winged termite, Odontotermes formosanus (Shiraki), is a subterranean macrotermitine species which builds extensive mud tubes on tree trunks. In the present study, 41 videos (totaling ∼2,700 min) were taken on 22 colonies/subcolonies of O. formosanus after their mud tubes were partially damaged by hand. In general, termites consistently demonstrated three phases of escape, including initiation (wandering near the mud-tube breach), individual escaping (single termites moving downward), and massive, unidirectional escaping flows (groups of termites moving downward). Downward moving and repairing were the dominant behavioral activities of individuals and were significantly more frequent than upward moving, turning/backward moving, or wandering. Interestingly, termites in escaping flows moved significantly faster than escaping individuals. Repairing behavior was observed shortly after the disturbance, and new mud tubes were preferentially constructed from the bottom up. When predators (i.e., ants) were present, however, termites stopped moving and quickly sealed the mud-tube openings by capping the broken ends. Our study provides an interesting example that documents an animal (besides humans) simultaneously carrying out pathway repairs and emergency evacuation without congestion.

  19. Diurnal respiration of a termite mound

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Hunter; Ocko, Samuel; Mahadevan, L.

    2014-11-01

    Many species of fungus-harvesting termites build largely empty, massive mound structures which protrude from the ground above their subterranean nests. It has been long proposed that the function of these mounds is to facilitate exchange of heat, humidity, and respiratory gases; this would give the colony a controlled climate in which to raise fungus and brood. However, the specific mechanism by which the mound achieves ventilation has remained a topic of debate, as direct measurement of internal air flows has remained difficult. By directly measuring these elusive, tiny flows with a custom sensor, we find that the mound architecture of the species Odontotermes obesus takes advantage of daily oscillations in ambient temperature to drive convection and gas transport. This contradicts previous theories, which point to internal metabolic heating and external wind as driving forces. Our result, a novel example of deriving useful work from a fluctuating scalar parameter, should contribute to better understanding insect swarm construction and possible development in passive human architecture, both of which have been spurred by previous research on termites. We acknowledge support from HFSP.

  20. Predicting the geographical distribution of two invasive termite species from occurrence data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tonini, Francesco; Divino, Fabio; Lasinio, Giovanna Jona; Hochmair, Hartwig H; Scheffrahn, Rudolf H

    2014-10-01

    Predicting the potential habitat of species under both current and future climate change scenarios is crucial for monitoring invasive species and understanding a species' response to different environmental conditions. Frequently, the only data available on a species is the location of its occurrence (presence-only data). Using occurrence records only, two models were used to predict the geographical distribution of two destructive invasive termite species, Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann) and Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki. The first model uses a Bayesian linear logistic regression approach adjusted for presence-only data while the second one is the widely used maximum entropy approach (Maxent). Results show that the predicted distributions of both C. gestroi and C. formosanus are strongly linked to urban development. The impact of future scenarios such as climate warming and population growth on the biotic distribution of both termite species was also assessed. Future climate warming seems to affect their projected probability of presence to a lesser extent than population growth. The Bayesian logistic approach outperformed Maxent consistently in all models according to evaluation criteria such as model sensitivity and ecological realism. The importance of further studies for an explicit treatment of residual spatial autocorrelation and a more comprehensive comparison between both statistical approaches is suggested.

  1. Distribution of corazonin and pigment-dispersing factor in the cephalic ganglia of termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Závodská, Radka; Wen, Chih-Jen; Hrdý, Ivan; Sauman, Ivo; Lee, How-Jing; Sehnal, Frantisek

    2008-07-01

    Distribution of neurones detectable with antisera to the corazonin (Crz) and the pigment-dispersing factor (PDF) was mapped in the workers or pseudergates of 10 species representing six out of seven termite families. All species contained two triads of Crz-immunoreactive (Crz-ir) neurones in the protocerebrum. Their fibres were linked to the opposite hemisphere, formed a network in the fronto-lateral protocerebrum, and projected to the corpora cardiaca (CC); in most species the fibres also supplied the deuto- and tritocerebrum and the frontal ganglion. Some species possessed additional Crz-ir perikarya in the protocerebrum and the suboesophageal ganglion (SOG). The PDF-ir somata were primarily located in the optic lobe (OL) and SOG. OL harboured a group (3 groups in Coptotermes) of 2-6 PDF-ir cells with processes extending to the medulla, connecting to the contralateral OL, forming 1-2 networks in the protocerebrum, and in most species running also to CC. Such a PDF-ir system associated with the OL was missing in Reticulitermes. Except for Mastotermes, the termites contained 1-2 PDF-ir cell pairs in the SOG and two species had additional perikarya in the protocerebrum. The results are consistent with the view of a monophyletic termite origin and demonstrate how the Crz-ir and PDF-ir systems diversified in the course of termite phylogeny.

  2. Convergent and Divergent Adaptations of Subterranean Rodents

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fang, Xiaodong

    Subterranean rodents comprise approximately 250 species that spend their entire lives in underground, unventilated tunnels, distributed along all continents except Australia and Antarctica. Subterranean rodents escape from predators and extreme climatic fluctuations in their underground habitats,...

  3. ( Voandze subterranean ) and pigeon pea

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Formulation and evaluation of complementary food based on bambara nut ( Voandze subterranean ) and pigeon pea ( Cajanus cajan ) ... Nigerian Journal of Nutritional Sciences ... Objectives: The study formulated and evaluated complementary food made from composites of maize, bambara nut and pigeon pea. Materials ...

  4. NATURAL RESISTANCE OF SEVEN WOODS TO XYLOPHOGOUS FUNGI AND TERMITES UNDER LABORATORY CONDITION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juarez Benigno Paes

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available This research aimed at evaluating the natural resistance of seven woods to xylophogous fungi and subterranean termites under laboratory assay. The studied woods were Leucaena leucocephala, Cordia trichotoma, Mimosa tenuiflora, Croton sonderianus, Mimosa caesalpiniifolia, Azadirachta indica and Tectona grandis. Test samples measuring 2.54 x 2.00 x 1.00 cm (fungi and 2.54 x 2.00 x 0.64 cm (termites, with larger dimensions in fiber direction were obtained in four positions in pith-to-bark direction. The samples were submitted by 98 days to action of Postia placenta and Polyporus fumosus fungi or 28 days to the termite Nasutitermes corniger action. To fungi, the Mimosa tenuiflora and Mimosa caesalpiniifolia woods were the more resistant and those of Azadirachta indica and Croton sonderianus the less resistant. The fungus Postia placenta attacked more severely the tested woods. To termites, the Mimosa tenuiflora, Cordia trichotoma, and Mimosa caesalpiniifolia were the most resistant and the Leucaena leucocephala the less resistant. The coming wood of external section of log were the more attacked. To fungi, there was an inverse relationship between the density and the loss of mass. Already for the termites, there was not relationship between the resistance and the density of the wood.

  5. Vibrational communication of subterranean rodents

    OpenAIRE

    HROUZKOVÁ, Ema

    2012-01-01

    This PhD. thesis focuses on the vibrational communication of subterranean mammals, in particular, vocal communication of bathyergids (Heliophobius argenteocinereus, Fukomys mechowii, Fukomys darlingi) and seismic communication of Tachyoryctes. We recorded and analyzed the vocalization of three species and discussed the physical parameters of their vocalization in relationship to the special underground acoustic environment. Moreover, social systems of African mole-rats range from solitary to ...

  6. Termite nests as an abundant source of cultivable actinobacteria for biotechnological purposes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sujada, Nikhom; Sungthong, Rungroch; Lumyong, Saisamorn

    2014-01-01

    A total of 118 actinobacterial isolates were collected from the three types of termite nests (mound, carton, and subterranean nests) to evaluate their potential as a source of bioactive actinobacteria with antimicrobial activity. The highest number (67 isolates) and generic abundance (7 known genera) of actinobacterial isolates were obtained from carton nests. Streptomyces was the dominant genus in each type of termite nest. In the non-Streptomyces group, Nocardia was the dominant genus detected in mound and carton nests, while Pseudonocardia was the dominant genus in subterranean nests. A discovery trend of novel species (20% of bioactive actinobacteria that could inhibit the growth of at least one test organism, while 12 isolates, belonging to the genera Streptomyces, Amycolatopsis, Pseudonocardia, Micromonospora and Nocardia, exhibited distinct antimicrobial activities. Streptomyces sp. CMU-NKS-3 was the most distinct bioactive isolate. It was closely related to S. padanus MITKK-103T, which was confirmed by 99% similarities in their 16S rRNA gene sequences. The highest level of extracellular antimicrobial substances was produced by the isolate CMU-NKS-3, which was grown in potato dextrose broth and exhibited a wide range (6.10×10(-4)-1.25 mg mL(-1)) of minimum inhibitory concentrations against diverse pathogens. We concluded that termite nests are an abundant source of bioactive strains of cultivable actinobacteria for future biotechnological needs.

  7. Thermoregulation of the subterranean rodent genus Bathyergus ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The thermoregulation of the largest subterranean rodent, genus Bathyergus, comprising two species, B. suillus and B. janetta,occurring in mesic and semiarid habitats respectively, was investigated and compared with that of other subterranean rodents. Both species display low resting metabolic rates and low body ...

  8. Putting the bite on termites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1984-01-01

    An Australian program for studying and controlling termites traces the insects by feeding them a bait containing a short-lived isotope such as lanthanum-140 or scandium-46. It has been discovered that termites can live entirely above the ground. Another discovery is that colonies often occupy several shared mounds

  9. TERMITES ENDANGERED TRADITIONAL MEDICAL PLANTS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Syaukani Syaukani

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available Surveys on traditional medical plants affected by termites have been conducted since June to August 2010 at Ketambe, northern Aceh. Traditional medical plants and their natural habitats were obtained through interviewing local people. Termites were collected by adopted a Standardized Sampling Protocol and final. taxonomic confirmation was done with the help of Termite Research Group (the Natural History Museum, London. About 20 species of medical plants were attacked by termites with various levels. Nine genera and 20 species were collected from various habitats throughout Ketambe, Simpur as well as Gunung Setan villages. Coffe (Coffea arabica, hazelnut (Aleurites moluccana , and areca (Area catechu were among the worse of traditional medical  plant that had been attached by the termites.

  10. Digital Levelling in Subterranean Spaces

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomáš Jiřikovský

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available For precision levelling works are now more often used digital levels and code-scale staffs. Advantages in (and problems with their application to the regular line-levelling are well known and described. However, when using the digital levelling for measurements in specific local geodetic networks, monitoring networks and inside of buildings and underground spaces, new problems appear with the signalisation of the observed points, readability of the code (non-uniform illumination, temperature changes etc. The article informs about the application of two types of digital levels (Sokkia SDL-2, Trimble Zeiss DiNi 12T in the experimental subterranean levelling network for the basement settlement monitoring of a ten-floor building; the solution of marking of the points, field calibration and the system calibration of digital levels.

  11. Tool for treating subterranean wells

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muller, L.; Randermann, E.

    1991-01-01

    This paper describes a system for treating subterranean wells. It comprises: elongated treatment tool having inflatable packers, a support tube connected to one end of the tool operable to lower tool from a well head into a well and to supply liquid to tool, the tool providing valve means operable in response changes in tension ins aid tube and without rotating the tube sequentially: (a) inflate the packers to isolate one portion of the from the remaining portions thereof and to lock the against movement along the well; (b) inject treatment fluid supplied to the tool through support tube into the one portion of the well and (c) deflate the packers permitting further movement of tool along the well

  12. The clypeal gland: a new exocrine gland in termite imagoes (Isoptera: Serritermitidae, Rhinotermitidae, Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Křížková, Barbora; Bourguignon, Thomas; Vytisková, Blahoslava; Sobotník, Jan

    2014-11-01

    Social insects possess a rich set of exocrine organs producing diverse pheromones and defensive compounds. This is especially true for termite imagoes, which are equipped with several glands producing, among others, sex pheromones and defensive compounds protecting imagoes during the dispersal flight and colony foundation. Here, we describe the clypeal gland, a new termite exocrine organ occurring in the labro-clypeal region of imagoes of most Rhinotermitidae, Serritermitidae and Termitidae species. The clypeal gland of Coptotermes testaceus consists of class 1 (modified epidermal cell) and class 3 (bicellular gland unit) secretory cells. Ultrastructural features suggest that the gland secretes volatile compounds and proteins, probably after starting the reproduction. One peculiar feature of the gland is the presence of multiple secretory canals in a single canal cell, a feature never observed before in other insect glands. Although the function of the gland remains unknown, we hypothesize that it could produce secretion signalling the presence of functional reproductives or their need to be fed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Termites as targets and models for biotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharf, Michael E

    2015-01-07

    Termites have many unique evolutionary adaptations associated with their eusocial lifestyles. Recent omics research has created a wealth of new information in numerous areas of termite biology (e.g., caste polyphenism, lignocellulose digestion, and microbial symbiosis) with wide-ranging applications in diverse biotechnological niches. Termite biotechnology falls into two categories: (a) termite-targeted biotechnology for pest management purposes, and (b) termite-modeled biotechnology for use in various industrial applications. The first category includes several candidate termiticidal modes of action such as RNA interference, digestive inhibition, pathogen enhancement, antimicrobials, endocrine disruption, and primer pheromone mimicry. In the second category, termite digestomes are deep resources for host and symbiont lignocellulases and other enzymes with applications in a variety of biomass, industrial, and processing applications. Moving forward, one of the most important approaches for accelerating advances in both termite-targeted and termite-modeled biotechnology will be to consider host and symbiont together as a single functional unit.

  14. Termites create spatial structure and govern ecosystem function by affecting N2 fixation in an East African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox-Dobbs, Kena; Doak, Daniel F; Brody, Alison K; Palmer, Todd M

    2010-05-01

    The mechanisms by which even the clearest of keystone or dominant species exert community-wide effects are only partially understood in most ecosystems. This is especially true when a species or guild influences community-wide interactions via changes in the abiotic landscape. Using stable isotope analyses, we show that subterranean termites in an East African savanna strongly influence a key ecosystem process: atmospheric nitrogen fixation by a monodominant tree species and its bacterial symbionts. Specifically, we applied the 15N natural abundance method in combination with other biogeochemical analyses to assess levels of nitrogen fixation by Acacia drepanolobium and its effects on co-occurring grasses and forbs in areas near and far from mounds and where ungulates were or were not excluded. We find that termites exert far stronger effects than do herbivores on nitrogen fixation. The percentage of nitrogen derived from fixation in Acacia drepanolobium trees is higher (55-80%) away from mounds vs. near mounds (40-50%). Mound soils have higher levels of plant available nitrogen, and Acacia drepanolobium may preferentially utilize soil-based nitrogen sources in lieu of fixed nitrogen when these sources are readily available near termite mounds. At the scale of the landscape, our models predict that termite/soil derived nitrogen sources influence >50% of the Acacia drepanolobium trees in our system. Further, the spatial extent of these effects combine with the spacing of termite mounds to create highly regular patterning in nitrogen fixation rates, resulting in marked habitat heterogeneity in an otherwise uniform landscape. In summary, we show that termite-associated effects on nitrogen processes are not only stronger than those of more apparent large herbivores in the same system, but also occur in a highly regular spatial pattern, potentially adding to their importance as drivers of community and ecosystem structure.

  15. Caste-Specific and Sex-Specific Expression of Chemoreceptor Genes in a Termite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuki Mitaka

    Full Text Available The sophisticated colony organization of eusocial insects is primarily maintained through the utilization of pheromones. The regulation of these complex social interactions requires intricate chemoreception systems. The recent publication of the genome of Zootermopsis nevadensis opened a new avenue to study molecular basis of termite caste systems. Although there has been a growing interest in the termite chemoreception system that regulates their sophisticated caste system, the relationship between division of labor and expression of chemoreceptor genes remains to be explored. Using high-throughput mRNA sequencing (RNA-seq, we found several chemoreceptors that are differentially expressed among castes and between sexes in a subterranean termite Reticulitermes speratus. In total, 53 chemoreception-related genes were annotated, including 22 odorant receptors, 7 gustatory receptors, 12 ionotropic receptors, 9 odorant-binding proteins, and 3 chemosensory proteins. Most of the chemoreception-related genes had caste-related and sex-related expression patterns; in particular, some chemoreception genes showed king-biased or queen-biased expression patterns. Moreover, more than half of the genes showed significant age-dependent differences in their expression in female and/or male reproductives. These results reveal a strong relationship between the evolution of the division of labor and the regulation of chemoreceptor gene expression, thereby demonstrating the chemical communication and underlining chemoreception mechanism in social insects.

  16. Sex-specific inhibition and stimulation of worker-reproductive transition in a termite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Qian; Haynes, Kenneth F.; Hampton, Jordan D.; Zhou, Xuguo

    2017-10-01

    In social insects, the postembryonic development of individuals exhibits strong phenotypic plasticity in response to the environment, thus generating the caste system. Different from eusocial Hymenoptera, in which queens dominate reproduction and inhibit worker fertility, the primary reproductive caste in termites (kings and queens) can be replaced by neotenic reproductives derived from functionally sterile individuals. Feedback regulation of nestmate differentiation into reproductives has been suggested, but the sex specificity remains inconclusive. In the eastern subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes, we tested the hypothesis that neotenic reproductives regulate worker-reproductive transition in a sex-specific manner. With this R. flavipes system, we demonstrate a sex-specific regulatory mechanism with both inhibitory and stimulatory functions. Neotenics inhibit workers of the same sex from differentiating into additional reproductives but stimulate workers of the opposite sex to undergo this transition. Furthermore, this process is not affected by the presence of soldiers. Our results highlight the reproductive plasticity of termites in response to social cues and provide insights into the regulation of reproductive division of labor in a hemimetabolous social insect.

  17. Diatom flora in subterranean ecosystems: a review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisa Falasco

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available In scarcity of light and primary producers, subterranean ecosystems are generally extremely oligotrophic habitats, receiving poor supplies of degradable organic matter from the surface. Human direct impacts on cave ecosystems mainly derive from intensive tourism and recreational caving, causing important alterations to the whole subterranean environment. In particular, artificial lighting systems in show caves support the growth of autotrophic organisms (the so-called lampenflora, mainly composed of cyanobacteria, diatoms, chlorophytes, mosses and ferns producing exocellular polymeric substances (EPSs made of polysaccharides, proteins, lipids and nucleic acids. This anionic EPSs matrix mediates to the intercellular communications and participates to the chemical exchanges with the substratum, inducing the adsorption of cations and dissolved organic molecules from the cave formations (speleothems. Coupled with the metabolic activities of heterotrophic microorganisms colonising such layer (biofilm, this phenomenon may lead to the corrosion of the mineral surfaces. In this review, we investigate the formation of biofilms, especially of diatom-dominated ones, as a consequence of artificial lighting and its impacts on speleothems. Whenever light reaches the subterranean habitat (both artificially and naturally a relative high number of species of diatoms may indeed colonise it. Cave entrances, artificially illuminated walls and speleothems inside the cave are generally the preferred substrates. This review focuses on the diatom flora colonising subterranean habitats, summarizing the information contained in all the scientific papers published from 1900 up to date. In this review we provide a complete checklist of the diatom taxa recorded in subterranean habitats, including a total of 363 taxa, belonging to 82 genera. The most frequent and abundant species recorded in caves and other low light subterranean habitats are generally aerophilic and

  18. Cuticular hydrocarbons for species determination of tropical termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael I. Haverty; Lori J. Nelson; Barbara L. Thorne; Margaret S. Collins; Johanna P.E.C. Darlington; Marion Page

    1992-01-01

    Cuticular hydrocarbons can be used to discriminate species in Coptotermes and Nasutitermes, here discussed for selected species from locations in the Pacific Rim and several Caribbean islands. We recently reexamined the cuticular hydrocarbons of Coptotermes formosanus and identified several dimethylalkanes that...

  19. Termite mounds harness diurnal temperature oscillations for ventilation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    King, Hunter; Ocko, Samuel; Mahadevan, L

    2015-09-15

    Many species of millimetric fungus-harvesting termites collectively build uninhabited, massive mound structures enclosing a network of broad tunnels that protrude from the ground meters above their subterranean nests. It is widely accepted that the purpose of these mounds is to give the colony a controlled microclimate in which to raise fungus and brood by managing heat, humidity, and respiratory gas exchange. Although different hypotheses such as steady and fluctuating external wind and internal metabolic heating have been proposed for ventilating the mound, the absence of direct in situ measurement of internal air flows has precluded a definitive mechanism for this critical physiological function. By measuring diurnal variations in flow through the surface conduits of the mounds of the species Odontotermes obesus, we show that a simple combination of geometry, heterogeneous thermal mass, and porosity allows the mounds to use diurnal ambient temperature oscillations for ventilation. In particular, the thin outer flutelike conduits heat up rapidly during the day relative to the deeper chimneys, pushing air up the flutes and down the chimney in a closed convection cell, with the converse situation at night. These cyclic flows in the mound flush out CO2 from the nest and ventilate the colony, in an unusual example of deriving useful work from thermal oscillations.

  20. An American termite in Paris: temporal colony dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baudouin, Guillaume; Dedeine, Franck; Bech, Nicolas; Bankhead-Dronnet, Stéphanie; Dupont, Simon; Bagnères, Anne-Geneviève

    2017-12-01

    Termites of the genus Reticulitermes are widespread invaders, particularly in urban habitats. Their cryptic and subterranean lifestyle makes them difficult to detect, and we know little about their colony dynamics over time. In this study we examined the persistence of Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) colonies in the city of Paris over a period of 15 years. The aim was (1) to define the boundaries of colonies sampled within the same four areas over two sampling periods, (2) to determine whether the colonies identified during the first sampling period persisted to the second sampling period, and (3) to compare the results obtained when colonies were delineated using a standard population genetic approach versus a Bayesian clustering method that combined both spatial and genetic information. Herein, colony delineations were inferred from genetic differences at nine microsatellite loci and one mitochondrial locus. Four of the 18 identified colonies did not show significant differences in their genotype distributions between the two sampling periods. While allelic richness was low, making it hard to reliably distinguish colony family type, most colonies appeared to retain the same breeding structure over time. These large and expansive colonies showed an important ability to fuse (39% were mixed-family colonies), contained hundreds of reproductives and displayed evidence of isolation-by-distance, suggesting budding dispersal. These traits, which favor colony persistence over time, present a challenge for pest control efforts, which apply treatment locally. The other colonies showed significant differences, but we cannot exclude the possibility that their genotype distributions simply changed over time.

  1. Termite-egg mimicry by a sclerotium-forming fungus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Matsuura, Kenji

    2006-05-22

    Mimicry has evolved in a wide range of organisms and encompasses diverse tactics for defence, foraging, pollination and social parasitism. Here, I report an extraordinary case of egg mimicry by a fungus, whereby the fungus gains competitor-free habitat in termite nests. Brown fungal balls, called 'termite balls', are frequently found in egg piles of Reticulitermes termites. Phylogenetic analysis illustrated that termite-ball fungi isolated from different hosts (Reticulitermes speratus, Reticulitermes flavipes and Reticulitermes virginicus) were all very similar, with no significant molecular differences among host species or geographical locations. I found no significant effect of termite balls on egg survivorship. The termite-ball fungus rarely kills termite eggs in natural colonies. Even a termite species (Reticulitermes okinawanus) with no natural association with the fungus tended termite balls along with its eggs when it was experimentally provided with termite balls. Dummy-egg bioassays using glass beads showed that both morphological and chemical camouflage were necessary to induce tending by termites. Termites almost exclusively tended termite balls with diameters that exactly matched their egg size. Moreover, scanning electron microscopic observations revealed sophisticated mimicry of the smooth surface texture of eggs. These results provide clear evidence that this interaction is beneficial only for the fungus, i.e. termite balls parasitically mimic termite eggs.

  2. The nest growth of the neotropical mound-building termite, Cornitermes cumulans: a micromorphological analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cosarinsky, Marcela I

    2011-01-01

    The nests of Cornitermes cumulans K. (Isoptera: Termitidae), a very common termite in South American grasslands, display notable morphological transformations during the development of the colony. Young colonies inhabit small subterranean nests that develop into large, conspicuous, epigean mounds, inhabited by very populous colonies. Those macromorphological transformations are accompanied by micromorphological changes occurring gradually in the nest walls. The micromorphological changes during nest development described in the present study expand on previous macromorphological descriptions by explaining the re-organization of the soil components during nest growth. In subterranean nests, walls are composed of piles of lensshaped aggregates of soil material, each one surrounded by a thin organic coating. As the nest grows, mound walls are constructed by disassembling this first lenticular structure and rearranging the materials in a new fabric, where sand grains are loosely distributed among soil microaggregates of organic matter and clay. This is also a temporary construction, because the walls of large nests are composed of a porous mass of sands densely cemented with organic matter and clay in the mound, and a compact mass of the same components in the floor.

  3. Integrating Ethno-Ecological and Scientific Knowledge of Termites for Sustainable Termite Management and Human Welfare in Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gudeta W. Sileshi

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available Despite their well-known role as pests, termites also provide essential ecosystem services. In this paper, we undertook a comprehensive review of studies on human-termite interactions and farmers' indigenous knowledge across Sub-Saharan Africa in an effort to build coherent principles for termite management. The review revealed that local communities have comprehensive indigenous knowledge of termite ecology and taxonomy, and apply various indigenous control practices. Many communities also have elaborate knowledge of the nutritional and medicinal value of termites and mushrooms associated with termite nests. Children and women also widely consume termite mound soil for nutritional or other benefits encouraged by indigenous belief systems. In addition, subsistence farmers use termites as indicators of soil fertility, and use termite mound soil in low-risk farming strategies for crop production. In the past, chemical control of termites has been initiated without empirical data on the termite species, their damage threshold, and the social, ecological, or economic risks and trade-offs of the control. This review has provided new insights into the intimate nature of human-termite interactions in Africa and the risks of chemical control of termites to human welfare and the environment. We recommend that management of termites in future should be built on farmers' indigenous knowledge and adequate understanding of the ecology of the local termite species.

  4. Green house gas emissions from termite ecosystem

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    USER

    sink for chlorine (Cl) molecules and a source of water vapor, which is a dominant greenhouse gas. Analysis has .... termite gut harbors different kinds of bacteria, fungi and protozoa. ..... responses to the presence of oxygen and their sensitivity.

  5. Experimental infrared measurements for hydrocarbon pollutant determination in subterranean waters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lay-Ekuakille, A.; Palamara, I.; Caratelli, D.; Morabito, F.C.

    2013-01-01

    Subterranean waters are often polluted by industrial and anthropic effluents that are drained in subsoil. To prevent and control pollution, legislations of different developed countries require an online monitoring measurement, especially for detecting organic solvents (chlorinated and unchlorinated

  6. Termite activity in relation to natural grassland soil attributes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaschuk, G.; Pires Santos, J.C.; Almeida, J.A.; Sinhorati, D.S.; Berton-Junior, J.F.

    2006-01-01

    Soil-feeding termites transport soil for mound building, and this process can affect soil characteristics. To verify the influence of soil termite activity on soil characteristics, samples were collected from top, bottom and center of termite mounds, and of the adjacent area, to assess chemical and

  7. Immobilisation of bifenthrin for termite control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guan, Yan-Qing; Chen, Jia Mei; Li, Zhi Bin; Feng, Qi Li; Liu, Jun-Ming

    2011-02-01

    Termites are worldwide pests causing considerable damage to agriculture, forestry and buildings. While various approaches have been tried to eliminate termite populations, the relevant toxicants are associated with certain risks to the environment and human health. In this study, to combine the merits of effective chemical control by bifenthrin and a drug photoimmobilisation technique, silk fibroin was used as a carrier to embed bifenthrin, which was then photoactively immobilised by ultraviolet treatment on the surface of wood (cellulose). The immobilised bifenthrin embedded in the photoactive silk fibroin was characterised by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR), ultraviolet absorption spectroscopy (UV), fluorescence measurement and CHN analysis. The surface structures and biological activity were examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), electron spectroscopy for chemical analysis (ESCA) and bioassays respectively. The results indicate that the embedded and immobilised bifenthrin has been very well protected from free release and has a long-term stability allowing slow release with a high efficiency against termites at a low dose of 1.25 µg cm(-2). This study provides a novel and environmentally benign technique for termite control by photoimmobilising silk-fibroin-embedded bifenthrin on the surface of materials that are otherwise easily attacked by termites. Copyright © 2010 Society of Chemical Industry.

  8. Evaluation of cellulose substrates treated with Metarhizium anisopliae (Metschnikoff Sorokin as a biological control agent against the termite Microcerotermes diversus Silvestri (Isoptera: Termitidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Behzad Habibpour

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available This article is the first report on the promising effect of an entomopathogenic fungus, Metarhizium anisopliae (Metschnikoff Sorokin to control populations of Microcerotermes diversus Silvestri. Biological control is an alternative to the long-term usage of chemical pesticides. M. anisopliae, the causal agent of green muscardine disease of insects, is an important fungus in biological control of insect pests. Bait systems can eliminate entire colonies of subterranean termites. Baiting reduces adverse environmental impacts caused by organochlorine and organophosphate pesticides in the control of termites and creates sustainable protection of buildings against their invasion. Treated-sawdust bait was applied by two methods: a combination of treated sawdust and untreated filter paper, and b combination of treated sawdust and untreated sawdust. When combinations of treated sawdust and untreated sawdust were used, LC50 and LC90 were 8.4×106 and 3.9×107 (spore/ml, respectively. With the use of improved bait formula and more virulent strains, we hope to achieve better control of termite colonies and enable pathogens to become a useful element in the Integrated Pest Management system.

  9. No evidence for an elephant-termite feedback loop in Sand Forest, South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lagendijk, D. D G; Davies, A. B.; Eggleton, P.; Slotow, R.

    2016-01-01

    Termites and mammalian herbivores might derive mutual benefit from each other through positive feedback loops, but empirical evidence is lacking. One suggested positive feedback loop is between termites and elephant, both ecosystem engineers. Termites, as decomposer organisms, contribute to nutrient

  10. Exploring the Potential for Actinobacteria as Defensive Symbionts in Fungus-Growing Termites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Visser, A.A.; Mesquita Nobre, T.; Currie, C.R.; Aanen, D.K.; Poulsen, M.

    2012-01-01

    In fungus-growing termites, fungi of the subgenus Pseudoxylaria threaten colony health through substrate competition with the termite fungus (Termitomyces). The potential mechanisms with which termites suppress Pseudoxylaria have remained unknown. Here we explore if Actinobacteria potentially play a

  11. Colonization of subterranean habitats by spiders in Central Europe

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlastimil Růžička

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Using data from the Czech Republic, we studied the distribution of spiders in soils, crevice systems, scree and caves, i.e. subterranean habitats at depths spanning from 10 cm to 100 m. In total, we found 161 species. The number of species declines with increasing habitat depth, with a major drop in species richness at the depth of 10 meters. Thirteen species exhibit morphological adaptations to life in subterranean habitats. At depths greater than 10 meters, spider assemblages are almost exclusively composed of troglomorphic species. We propose a hypothesis of evolution of troglomorphisms at spiders during Quaternary climatic cycles.

  12. A genomic comparison of two termites with different social complexity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith eKorb

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The termites evolved eusociality and complex societies before the ants, but have been studied much less. The recent publication of the first two termite genomes provides a unique comparative opportunity, particularly because the sequenced termites represent opposite ends of the social complexity spectrum. Zootermopsis nevadensis has simple colonies with totipotent workers that can develop into all castes (dispersing reproductives, nest-inheriting replacement reproductives, and soldiers. In contrast, the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis belongs to the higher termites and has very large and complex societies with morphologically distinct castes that are life-time sterile. Here we compare key characteristics of genomic architecture, focusing on genes involved in communication, immune defenses, mating biology and symbiosis that were likely important in termite social evolution. We discuss these in relation to what is known about these genes in the ants and outline hypotheses for further testing.

  13. A genomic comparison of two termites with different social complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korb, Judith; Poulsen, Michael; Hu, Haofu; Li, Cai; Boomsma, Jacobus J; Zhang, Guojie; Liebig, Jürgen

    2015-01-01

    The termites evolved eusociality and complex societies before the ants, but have been studied much less. The recent publication of the first two termite genomes provides a unique comparative opportunity, particularly because the sequenced termites represent opposite ends of the social complexity spectrum. Zootermopsis nevadensis has simple colonies with totipotent workers that can develop into all castes (dispersing reproductives, nest-inheriting replacement reproductives, and soldiers). In contrast, the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis belongs to the higher termites and has very large and complex societies with morphologically distinct castes that are life-time sterile. Here we compare key characteristics of genomic architecture, focusing on genes involved in communication, immune defenses, mating biology and symbiosis that were likely important in termite social evolution. We discuss these in relation to what is known about these genes in the ants and outline hypothesis for further testing.

  14. A genomic comparison of two termites with different social complexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Korb, Judith; Thomas-Poulsen, Michael; Hu, Haofu

    2015-01-01

    large and complex societies with morphologically distinct castes that are life-time sterile. Here we compare key characteristics of genomic architecture, focusing on genes involved in communication, immune defenses, mating biology and symbiosis that were likely important in termite social evolution. We......The termites evolved eusociality and complex societies before the ants, but have been studied much less. The recent publication of the first two termite genomes provides a unique comparative opportunity, particularly because the sequenced termites represent opposite ends of the social complexity...

  15. Mildew fungi found in termites (Reticulitermes lucifugus and their nests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Wójcik

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents the results of observation of mould growth in laboratory colonies of termites. It also attempts to determine the species of mould fungi present in the research laboratory and the main colonies and their entomopathogenic for the termites. The following four species were found in test termite colonies: Trichoderme viride, Mucor himeralis, Rhizopus nigricans, Aspergillus sp., Aspergillus flavus, Alternaria sp., Penicylium verucosum and Fusarium sp. were recognisable in test colonies with domestic and exotic wood. Morphological observations of the fungi were carried out using a microscope with a 40x magnification. The growth of mould fungi in test containers caused death of whole termite colonies.

  16. Comparative analysis of expressed sequence tags from three castes and two life stages of the termite Reticulitermes flavipes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steller Matthew M

    2010-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Termites (Isoptera are eusocial insects whose colonies consist of morphologically and behaviorally specialized castes of sterile workers and soldiers, and reproductive alates. Previous studies on eusocial insects have indicated that caste differentiation and behavior are underlain by differential gene expression. Although much is known about gene expression in the honey bee, Apis mellifera, termites remain relatively understudied in this regard. Therefore, our objective was to assemble an expressed sequence tag (EST data base for the eastern subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes, for future gene expression studies. Results Soldier, worker, and alate caste and two larval cDNA libraries were constructed, and approximately 15,000 randomly chosen clones were sequenced to compile an EST data base. Putative gene functions were assigned based on a BLASTX Swissprot search. Categorical in silico expression patterns for each library were compared using the R-statistic. A significant proportion of the ESTs of each caste and life stages had no significant similarity to those in existing data bases. All cDNA libraries, including those of non-reproductive worker and soldier castes, contained sequences with putative reproductive functions. Genes that showed a potential expression bias among castes included a putative antibacterial humoral response and translation elongation protein in soldiers and a chemosensory protein in alates. Conclusions We have expanded upon the available sequences for R. flavipes and utilized an in silico method to compare gene expression in different castes of an eusocial insect. The in silico analysis allowed us to identify several genes which may be differentially expressed and involved in caste differences. These include a gene overrepresented in the alate cDNA library with a predicted function of neurotransmitter secretion or cholesterol absorption and a gene predicted to be involved in protein

  17. Critical fluid extraction of Juniperus virginiana L. and bioactivity of extracts against subterranean termites and wood-rot fungi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    F. J. Eller; Carol A. Clausen; Frederick Green; S.L. Taylor

    2010-01-01

    Eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana L.) is an abundant renewable resource and represents a vast potential source of valuable natural products that may serve as natural biocides. Both the wood and needles from J. virginiana were extracted using liquid carbon dioxide (L-CO2) as well as ethanol (EtOH) and the yields determined.Woodblocks were...

  18. Explosive Backpacks in Old Termite Workers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šobotník, Jan; Bourguignon, T.; Hanus, Robert; Demianova, Zuzana; Pytelková, Jana; Mareš, Michael; Foltynová, P.; Preisler, J.; Cvačka, Josef; Krasulová, Jana; Roisin, Y.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 337, č. 6093 (2012), s. 436-436 ISSN 0036-8075 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP525/09/P600 Grant - others:CEITEC(CZ) CZ.1.05/1.1.00/02.0068; GA ČR(CZ) GAP206/12/0538 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : Neocapritermes taracua * chemical defense * termites * worker defense * suicidal defense Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 31.027, year: 2012

  19. Termite: Emulation Testbed for Encounter Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodrigo Bruno

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Cutting-edge mobile devices like smartphones and tablets are equipped with various infrastructureless wireless interfaces, such as WiFi Direct and Bluetooth. Such technologies allow for novel mobile applications that take advantage of casual encounters between co-located users. However, the need to mimic the behavior of real-world encounter networks makes testing and debugging of such applications hard tasks. We present Termite, an emulation testbed for encounter networks. Our system allows developers to run their applications on a virtual encounter network emulated by software. Developers can model arbitrary encounter networks and specify user interactions on the emulated virtual devices. To facilitate testing and debugging, developers can place breakpoints, inspect the runtime state of virtual nodes, and run experiments in a stepwise fashion. Termite defines its own Petri Net variant to model the dynamically changing topology and synthesize user interactions with virtual devices. The system is designed to efficiently multiplex an underlying emulation hosting infrastructure across multiple developers, and to support heterogeneous mobile platforms. Our current system implementation supports virtual Android devices communicating over WiFi Direct networks and runs on top of a local cloud infrastructure. We evaluated our system using emulator network traces, and found that Termite is expressive and performs well.

  20. Aerodynamics of Ventilation in Termite Mounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bailoor, Shantanu; Yaghoobian, Neda; Turner, Scott; Mittal, Rajat

    2017-11-01

    Fungus-cultivating termites collectively build massive, complex mounds which are much larger than the size of an individual termite and effectively use natural wind and solar energy, as well as the energy generated by the colony's own metabolic activity to maintain the necessary environmental condition for the colony's survival. We seek to understand the aerodynamics of ventilation and thermoregulation of termite mounds through computational modeling. A simplified model accounting for key mound features, such as soil porosity and internal conduit network, is subjected to external draft conditions. The role of surface flow conditions in the generation of internal flow patterns and the ability of the mound to transport gases and heat from the nursery are examined. The understanding gained from our study could be used to guide sustainable bio-inspired passive HVAC system design, which could help optimize energy utilization in commercial and residential buildings. This research is supported by a seed Grant from the Environment, Energy Sustainability and Health Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.

  1. Stability of termite mound populations in a variable environment ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Of all the climatic variables in the environment of termites in southern Kenya, only rainfall shows marked seasonality and unpredictability. But despite the great variability in rainfall patterns, the populations of termite mounds of various species in three well-separated study areas remained remarkably constant over a period ...

  2. The draft genome of a termite illuminates alternative social organization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Termites have substantial economic and ecological impact worldwide. They are also the oldest organisms living in complex societies, having evolved a caste system independent of that of eusocial Hymenoptera (ants, bees and wasps). Here we provide the first genome sequence for a termite, Zootermopsis ...

  3. Influence of Soil Properties on Soldierless Termite Distribution

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Bourguignon, T.; Drouet, T.; Šobotník, J.; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Y.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 10, č. 8 (2015), e0135341/1-e0135341/11 E-ISSN 1932-6203 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : tropical termites * soil -feeding termites * soil properties * soil preference Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 3.057, year: 2015 http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0135341

  4. Termites facilitate methane oxidation and shape the methanotrophic community

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ho, A.; Erens, H.; Mujinya, B.B.; Boeckx, P.; Baert, G.; Schneider, B.; Frenzel, P.; Boon, N.; Van Ranst, E.

    2013-01-01

    Termite-derived methane contributes 3-4% to the total methane budget globally. Termites are not known to harbor methane-oxidizing microorganisms (methanotrophs). However, a considerable fraction of methane produced can be consumed by methanotrophs that inhabit the mound material. Yet, methanotroph

  5. Anti-termite efficacy of Capparis decidua and its combinatorial ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Michael Horsfall

    ABSTRACT: Capparis deciduas and its combinatorial mixtures were evaluated to observe the anti-termite efficacy against Indian white termite Odontotermes obesus. These have shown very high termiticidal activity and wood protection in the soil. It is proved by very low LD50 values i.e. 0.0218mg/g and 0.021mg/g obtained ...

  6. appraisal of the economic activities of termites: a review

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DR.AMIN

    result of their feeding habits cannot be over emphasized. It includes ... Termites are a highly successful group of true social animals, as .... 90.6% Alate termites are eaten by people in West. Africa. ..... Biological Letters, June 7, cited in. Science ...

  7. Termite Population Dynamics in Arenic Kandiudults as Influenced by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Result shows that carbofuran significantly (P=<0.0001) recorded least termite population per square meter after tuber harvest, whereas A. indica leaves and municipal waste increased termite population per square meter. Also, cassava tuber yield was significantly influenced with application of A. indica leaves and ...

  8. Indigenous methods of controlling termites in agroforestry systems in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Mo

    Termites are one of the major agroforestry pests in the tropics causing substantial economic losses. Losses ranging from 50% to 100% have been reported. Control of termites has largely relied on insecticides. There are however serious limitations to these pesticides in terms of cost, pollution and destruction of non targets.

  9. Potential for nitrogen fixation in fungus-growing termite symbiosis

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sapountzis, Panagiotis; de Verges, Jane; Rousk, Kathrin

    2016-01-01

    Termites host a gut microbiota of diverse and essential symbionts that enable specialization on dead plant material; an abundant, but nutritionally imbalanced food source. To supplement the severe shortage of dietary nitrogen (N), some termite species make use of diazotrophic bacteria to fix atmo...

  10. Cultural significance of termites in sub-Saharan Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Huis, Arnold

    2017-01-26

    The number of termite species in the world is more than 2500, and Africa with more than 1000 species has the richest intercontinental diversity. The family Termitidae contains builders of great mounds up to 5 m high. Colonies are composed of casts: a queen, a king, soldiers and workers. Some species of termite cultivate specialised fungi to digest cellulose. Termites constitute 10% of all animal biomass in the tropics. The purpose of the study was to make an overview of how termites are utilized, perceived and experienced in daily life across sub-Saharan Africa. Ethno-entomological information on termites (Isoptera) in sub-Saharan Africa was collected by: (1) interviews with more than 300 people from about 120 ethnic groups from 27 countries in the region; (2) library studies in Africa, London, Paris and Leiden. Vernacular names relate to mounds, insects as food, the swarming, and the behaviour of termites. Swarming reproductive, soldiers and queens are collected as food. There are many different ways to harvest them. Termites can also be used as feed for poultry or as bait to catch birds and fish. The mushrooms that grow each year from the fungus gardens on the termite mounds are eaten. The soldiers, the fungus gardens and the soil of termite mounds are used for multiple medicinal purposes. Mounds and soil of termites have numerous functions: for geochemical prospecting, making bricks, plastering houses, making pots, and for storage. Termite soil is often used as fertilizer. The act of eating soil (geophagy) among women, especially those that are pregnant, is practised all over Africa. The mounds can serve as burying places and are often associated with the spiritual world, especially containing the spirits of ancestors. Termites also play a role as oracle, in superstitious beliefs, in art and literature. The following characteristics make termites so appealing: the dominance in the landscape, the social organization, the destructive power, and the provision of

  11. Building mud castles: a perspective from brick-laying termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zachariah, Nikita; Das, Aritra; Murthy, Tejas G; Borges, Renee M

    2017-07-05

    Animal constructions such as termite mounds have received scrutiny by architects, structural engineers, soil scientists and behavioural ecologists but their basic building blocks remain uncharacterized and the criteria used for material selection unexplored. By conducting controlled experiments on Odontotermes obesus termites, we characterize the building blocks of termite mounds and determine the key elements defining material choice and usage by these accomplished engineers. Using biocement and a self-organized process, termites fabricate, transport and assemble spherical unitary structures called boluses that have a bimodal size distribution, achieving an optimal packing solution for mound construction. Granular, hydrophilic, osmotically inactive, non-hygroscopic materials with surface roughness, rigidity and containing organic matter are the easiest to handle and are crucial determinants of mass transfer during mound construction. We suggest that these properties, along with optimal moisture availability, are important predictors of the global geographic distribution of termites.

  12. CO2 efflux from subterranean nests of ant communities in a seasonal tropical forest, Thailand

    OpenAIRE

    Hasin, Sasitorn; Ohashi, Mizue; Yamada, Akinori; Hashimoto, Yoshiaki; Tasen, Wattanachai; Kume, Tomonori; Yamane, Seiki

    2014-01-01

    Many ant species construct subterranean nests. The presence of their nests may explain soil respiration “hot spots”, an important factor in the high CO2 efflux from tropical forests. However, no studies have directly measured CO2 efflux from ant nests. We established 61 experimental plots containing 13 subterranean ant species to evaluate the CO2 efflux from subterranean ant nests in a tropical seasonal forest, Thailand. We examined differences in nest CO2 efflux among ant species. We determi...

  13. Currency Demand, the Subterranean Economy and Tax Evasion: The Case of Tanzania

    OpenAIRE

    EPAPHRA, Manamba; JILENGA, Moga Tano

    2017-01-01

    Abstract. This paper estimates the magnitude of, and changes to the subterranean economy in Tanzania, as well as its adverse effect on tax revenue during the 1966-2015 period. To achieve this objective, the paper applies currency -ratio due to Gutmann and the traditional currency-demand approach à la Tanzi. Despite their differences, both approaches suggest the existence of a substantial size of the subterranean economy in Tanzania. This persistent large size of the subterranean economy is an...

  14. Subterranean Fire. Changing theories of the earth during the Renaissance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vermij, R

    1998-11-01

    Aristotle described the earth as a cold and dry body and paid no attention to the phenomenon of terrestrial heat. Renaissance physicians, by contrast, when seeking to understand the origin of hot springs in the context of their balneological studies, came to defend a theory of subterranean fires. This tradition, which started in Italy, became widely known through the works of Georgius Agricola. But although it had implications for the explanation of further natural phenomena, it remained almost exclusively confined to medical circles. As far as physics as an academic discipline was concerned, the ideas concerning subterranean fire were hardly taken note of. Only with the collapse of Aristotelian philosophy in the seventeenth century could these by then "old innovations" obtain a wider significance.

  15. Experimental infrared measurements for hydrocarbon pollutant determination in subterranean waters

    OpenAIRE

    Lay-Ekuakille, A.; Palamara, I.; Caratelli, D.; Morabito, F.C.

    2013-01-01

    Subterranean waters are often polluted by industrial and anthropic effluents that are drained in subsoil. To prevent and control pollution, legislations of different developed countries require an online monitoring measurement, especially for detecting organic solvents (chlorinated and unchlorinated ones). Online measurements include both real-time and no real-time measurements. In general, it is difficult to implement real-time measurements in stricto sensu for online acquisitions on aqueous...

  16. Subterranean ant nests: Trace fossils past and future?

    OpenAIRE

    Tschinkel, Walter R.

    2003-01-01

    Many species of ants excavate complex, species-typical nests in soil. The basic structural units of many nests are descending tunnels connecting flattened, generally horizontal chambers of oval to lobed outline. The species-typical structure of many nests results from variation in the size, shape, number and arrangement of these basic elements. Nest architecture can be rendered by filling subterranean nests with a thin slurry of orthodontal plaster, then excavating and reconstructing the hard...

  17. Colonization of subterranean habitats by spiders in Central Europe

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Růžička, Vlastimil; Šmilauer, P.; Mlejnek, R.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 42, č. 2 (2013), s. 133-140 ISSN 0392-6672 Grant - others:GA JU(CZ) GAJU 04-142/2010/P Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : superficial and deep subterranean habitats * caves * spider s Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 1.275, year: 2013 http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1288&context=ijs

  18. Polymers for subterranean containment barriers for underground storage tanks (USTs)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heiser, J.H.; Colombo, P.; Clinton, J.

    1992-12-01

    The US Department of Energy (DOE) set up the Underground Storage Tank Integrated Demonstration Program (USTID) to demonstrate technologies for the retrieval and treatment of tank waste, and closure of underground storage tanks (USTs). There are more than 250 underground storage tanks throughout the DOE complex. These tanks contain a wide variety of wastes including high level, low level, transuranic, mixed and hazardous wastes. Many of the tanks have performed beyond the designed lifetime resulting in leakage and contamination of the local geologic media and groundwater. To mitigate this problem it has been proposed that an interim subterranean containment barrier be placed around the tanks. This would minimize or prevent future contamination of soil and groundwater in the event that further tank leakages occur before or during remediation. Use of interim subterranean barriers can also provide sufficient time to evaluate and select appropriate remediation alternatives. The DOE Hanford site was chosen as the demonstration site for containment barrier technologies. A panel of experts for the USTID was convened in February, 1992, to identify technologies for placement of subterranean barriers. The selection was based on the ability of candidate grouts to withstand high radiation doses, high temperatures and aggressive tank waste leachates. The group identified and ranked nine grouting technologies that have potential to place vertical barriers and five for horizontal barriers around the tank. The panel also endorsed placement technologies that require minimal excavation of soil surrounding the tanks

  19. Influence of Soil Properties on Soldierless Termite Distribution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourguignon, Thomas; Drouet, Thomas; Šobotník, Jan; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Yves

    2015-01-01

    In tropical rainforests, termites constitute an important part of the soil fauna biomass, and as for other soil arthropods, variations in soil composition create opportunities for niche partitioning. The aim of this study was twofold: first, we tested whether soil-feeding termite species differ in the foraging substrate; second, we investigated whether soil-feeding termites select their foraging sites to enhance nutrients intake. To do so, we collected termites and analysed the composition and structure of their feeding substrates. Although Anoplotermes-group members are all considered soil-feeders, our results show that some species specifically feed on abandoned termite nests and very rotten wood, and that this substrate selection is correlated with previous stable isotope analyses, suggesting that one component of niche differentiation among species is substrate selection. Our results show that the composition and structure of bare soils on which different termite species foraged do not differ, suggesting that there is no species specialization for a particular type of bare soil. Finally, the bare soil on which termites forage does not differ from random soil samples. Overall, our results suggest that few species of the Anoplotermes-group are specialized toward substrates rich in organic matter, but that the vast majority forage on soil independently of its structural and chemical composition, being ecologically equivalent for this factor.

  20. Perceptions of termites in urban areas of semiarid Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Avany Bezerra Gusmão

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-7925.2014v27n4p117 Perception of termites in urban areas of semiarid Brazil. Termites are present in the daily life of most people, although they usually evoke a sense of strong dislike, especially in populations of urban areas. This study sought to analyze the perception of these insects in human populations in urban areas in the towns of Fagundes (A1 and Pocinhos (A2, in Paraíba state, Brazil. Semi-structured questionnaires were answered by 100 residents in these two areas, following both synchronic and diachronic situations. In spite of the fact that most of the interviewees (64% in A1 and 72% in A2 were able to identify termites by morphology and had knowledge of use for treating eight types of human diseases, very few understood their ecological roles in nature. Attempts to eliminate termites from human environments were linked to the popular belief that these animals are sources of bad luck. Twenty-two percent of the interviewees in A1 and 8% in A2 believe that termites are capable of doing damage or harm, of having a foul smell, and/or of containing pus.In this sense, academic studies are important because they can inform people of the ecological roles of termites in natural and urban environments, while demystifying the termite as an agent of fear and destruction.

  1. Behaviour and Ecological Impacts of Termites: Fecundity Investigations in Mounds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wako Sutuma Edessa

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available A radical study was conducted on the behaviour and ecological impacts of termites in Haru District of Western Oromia, Ethiopia. It was aimed at investigating the natural behaviour, fecundity in mounds, ecological impacts and recommending possible solutions to termite problems. Four mounds in different sites were vertically dug down to display the profile of the queen, soldiers, workers, number of laid eggs, nymphs and colonies of termites. On an average, termite queens of the study site may lay about 25 eggs per minute, 36, 000 eggs per day and 13, 140, 000 eggs annually. The fourth queen was unearthed to study the structure, size, number of ovaries and fecundity. It was examined that the death of a queen does not affect the colony, because four small queens are formed and one of them becomes the queen of queens and replaced the dead queen promptly. Accordingly, termites are found to be one of the most destructive agents of our ecosystems and their management requests careful and biological control methods. As a result, the negative effect of termites outweighs the positive effect of termites so that minimising the population size is important for human beings.

  2. Thermoregulation and ventilation of termite mounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korb, Judith

    2003-05-01

    Some of the most sophisticated of all animal-built structures are the mounds of African termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae, the fungus-growing termites. They have long been studied as fascinating textbook examples of thermoregulation or ventilation of animal buildings. However, little research has been designed to provide critical tests of these paradigms, derived from a very small number of original papers. Here I review results from recent studies on Macrotermes bellicosus that considered the interdependence of ambient temperature, thermoregulation, ventilation and mound architecture, and that question some of the fundamental paradigms of termite mounds. M. bellicosus achieves thermal homeostasis within the mound, but ambient temperature has an influence too. In colonies in comparably cool habitats, mound architecture is adapted to reduce the loss of metabolically produced heat to the environment. While this has no negative consequences in small colonies, it produces a trade-off with gas exchange in large colonies, resulting in suboptimally low nest temperatures and increased CO2 concentrations. Along with the alteration in mound architecture, the gas exchange/ventilation mechanism also changes. While mounds in the thermally appropriate savannah have a very efficient circular ventilation during the day, the ventilation in the cooler forest is a less efficient upward movement of air, with gas exchange restricted by reduced surface exchange area. These results, together with other recent findings, question entrenched ideas such as the thermosiphon-ventilation mechanism or the assumption that mounds function to dissipate internally produced heat. Models trying to explain the proximate mechanisms of mound building, or building elements, are discussed.

  3. Identifying the core microbial community in the gut of fungus-growing termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Otani, Saria; Mikaelyan, Aram; Nobre, Tânia

    2014-01-01

    Gut microbes play a crucial role in decomposing lignocellulose to fuel termite societies, with protists in the lower termites and prokaryotes in the higher termites providing these services. However, a single basal subfamily of the higher termites, the Macrotermitinae, also domesticated a plant......, and Synergistetes. A set of 42 genus-level taxa was present in all termite species and accounted for 56-68% of the species-specific reads. Gut communities of termites from the same genus were more similar than distantly related species, suggesting that phylogenetic ancestry matters, possibly in connection...... with specific termite genus-level ecological niches. Finally, we show that gut communities of fungus-growing termites are similar to cockroaches, both at the bacterial phylum level and in a comparison of the core Macrotermitinae taxa abundances with representative cockroach, lower termite, and higher non...

  4. Fungus-Growing Termites Originated in African Rain Forest

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur Kornelis; Eggleton, Paul

    2005-01-01

    are consumed (cf. [ [1] and [2] ]). Fungus-growing termites are found throughout the Old World tropics, in rain forests and savannas, but are ecologically dominant in savannas [ 3 ]. Here, we reconstruct the ancestral habitat and geographical origin of fungus-growing termites. We used a statistical model...... of habitat switching [ 4 ] repeated over all phylogenetic trees sampled in a Bayesian analysis of molecular data [ 5 ]. Our reconstructions provide strong evidence that termite agriculture originated in African rain forest and that the main radiation leading to the extant genera occurred there. Because...

  5. Biogeochemical study of termite mounds: a case study from Tummalapalle area of Andhra Pradesh, India.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arveti, Nagaraju; Reginald, S; Kumar, K Sunil; Harinath, V; Sreedhar, Y

    2012-04-01

    Termite mounds are abundant components of Tummalapalle area of uranium mineralization of Cuddapah District of Andhra Pradesh, India. The systematic research has been carried out on the application of termite mound sampling to mineral exploration in this region. The distribution of chemical elements Cu, Pb, Zn, Ni, Co, Cr, Li, Rb, Sr, Ba, and U were studied both in termite soils and adjacent surface soils. Uranium accumulations were noticed in seven termite mounds ranging from 10 to 36 ppm. A biogeochemical parameter called "Biological Absorption Coefficient" of the termite mounds indicated the termite affected soils contained huge amounts of chemical elements than the adjacent soils.

  6. Caverns Measureless to Man: Subterranean Rivers and Adventurous Masculinities in the Victorian Lost World Novel

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McCausland, Elly

    2018-01-01

    This article examines a recurring trope in late Victorian ‘lost world’ adventure novels: the terrifying descent down a subterranean river into the bowels of the earth. More than simply an exciting episode, the subterranean river journey reflects narrative strategies and thematic concerns key to b...

  7. Metagenomic mining of feruloyl esterases from termite enteric flora

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Rashamuse, K

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available A metagenome expression library was created from Trinervitermes trinervoides termite hindgut symbionts and subsequently screened for feruloyl esterase (FAE) activities, resulting in seven recombinant fosmids conferring feruloyl esterase phenotypes...

  8. The complexities of hydrolytic enzymes from the termite digestive system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saadeddin, Anas

    2014-06-01

    The main challenge in second generation bioethanol production is the efficient breakdown of cellulose to sugar monomers (hydrolysis). Due to the recalcitrant character of cellulose, feedstock pretreatment and adapted hydrolysis steps are needed to obtain fermentable sugar monomers. The conventional industrial production process of second-generation bioethanol from biomass comprises several steps: thermochemical pretreatment, enzymatic hydrolysis and sugar fermentation. This process is undergoing continuous optimization in order to increase the bioethanol yield and reduce the economic cost. Therefore, the discovery of new enzymes with high lignocellulytic activity or new strategies is extremely important. In nature, wood-feeding termites have developed a sophisticated and efficient cellulose degrading system in terms of the rate and extent of cellulose hydrolysis and exploitation. This system, which represents a model for digestive symbiosis has attracted the attention of biofuel researchers. This review describes the termite digestive system, gut symbionts, termite enzyme resources, in vitro studies of isolated enzymes and lignin degradation in termites.

  9. Farmers' perception of termites in agriculture production and their indigenous utilization in Northwest Benin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yêyinou Loko, Laura Estelle; Orobiyi, Azize; Agre, Paterne; Dansi, Alexandre; Tamò, Manuele; Roisin, Yves

    2017-11-21

    Although termites are considered as agricultural pests, they play an important role in maintaining the ecosystem. Therefore, it matters to investigate the farmers' perception of the impacts of the termites on the agriculture and their indigenous utilization. A semi-structured questionnaire was used to interview 94 farmers through 10 villages of Atacora department, in the northwestern region of Benin, to obtain information for the development of successful strategies of termite management and conservation. Their perceptions on the importance and management of termites along with the indigenous nomenclature and utilization of termite mounds were assessed. Termite species identified by farmers were collected and preserved in 80% alcohol for identification. Eight crops were identified by farmers as susceptible to termites with maize, sorghum, and yam as being the most susceptible. According to farmers, the susceptibility to termites of these crops is due to their high-water content and sweet taste. A total of 27 vernacular names of termites were recorded corresponding to 10 species, Amitermes evuncifer, Macrotermes subhyalinus, and Trinervitermes oeconomus being the most damaging termite species. All the names given to termite species had a meaning. The drought was identified by farmers as the main factor favouring termite attacks. Demolition of termite mounds in the fields was the most commonly reported control method. Salt and other pesticides were commonly used by farmers to protect stored farm products. The lack of effective control methods is the main constraint for termite management. In northwestern Benin, farmers reported different purpose utilizations of termite mounds and termites. The study has shown that farmers perceived termites as pests of several agricultural crops and apply various indigenous control practices whose efficiency need to be verified. Utilization of termites and termite mound soil as food and medicinal resources underlines the need for a

  10. Are termite mounds biofilters for methane? - Challenges and new approaches to quantify methane oxidation in termite mounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nauer, Philipp A.; Hutley, Lindsay B.; Bristow, Mila; Arndt, Stefan K.

    2015-04-01

    Methane emissions from termites contribute around 3% to global methane in the atmosphere, although the total source estimate for termites is the most uncertain among all sources. In tropical regions, the relative source contribution of termites can be far higher due to the high biomass and relative importance of termites in plant decomposition. Past research focused on net emission measurements and their variability, but little is known about underlying processes governing these emissions. In particular, microbial oxidation of methane (MOX) within termite mounds has rarely been investigated. In well-studied ecosystems featuring an oxic matrix above an anoxic methane-producing habitat (e.g. landfills or sediments), the fraction of oxidized methane (fox) can reach up to 90% of gross production. However, conventional mass-balance approaches to apportion production and consumption processes can be challenging to apply in the complex-structured and almost inaccessible environment of a termite mound. In effect, all field-based data on termite-mound MOX is based on one study that measured isotopic shifts in produced and emitted methane. In this study a closed-system isotope fractionation model was applied and estimated fox ranged from 10% to almost 100%. However, it is shown here that by applying an open-system isotope-pool model, the measured isotopic shifts can also be explained by physical transport of methane alone. Different field-based methods to quantify MOX in termite mounds are proposed which do not rely on assumptions of physical gas transport. A simple approach is the use of specific inhibitors for MOX, e.g. difluoromethane (CH2F2), combined with chamber-based flux measurements before and after their application. Data is presented on the suitability of different inhibitors and first results of their application in the field. Alternatively, gas-tracer methods allow the quantification of methane oxidation and reaction kinetics without knowledge of physical gas

  11. Levels of specificity of Xylaria species associated with fungus-growing termites: a phylogenetic approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Visser, Andre; Ros, V I D; De Beer, Z. W.

    2009-01-01

    of the ascomycete genus Xylaria appear and rapidly cover the fungus garden. This raises the question whether certain Xylaria species are specialised in occupying termite nests or whether they are just occasional visitors. We tested Xylaria specificity at four levels: (1) fungus-growing termites, (2) termite genera...... of the ITS region revealed 16 operational taxonomic units of Xylaria, indicating high levels of Xylaria species richness. Not much of this variation was explained by termite genus, species, or colony; thus, at level 2-4 the specificity is low. Analysis of the large subunit rDNA region, showed that all...... termite-associated Xylaria belong to a single clade, together with only three of the 26 non-termite-associated strains. Termite-associated Xylaria thus show specificity for fungus-growing termites (level 1). We did not find evidence for geographic or temporal structuring in these Xylaria phylogenies...

  12. Differential Ecological Specificity of Protist and Bacterial Microbiomes across a Set of Termite Species

    KAUST Repository

    Waidele, Lena; Korb, Judith; Voolstra, Christian R.; Kü nzel, Sven; Dedeine, Franck; Staubach, Fabian

    2017-01-01

    The gut microbiome of lower termites comprises protists and bacteria that help these insects to digest cellulose and to thrive on wood. The composition of the termite gut microbiome correlates with phylogenetic distance of the animal host and host

  13. Farming termites determine the genetic population structure of Termitomyces fungal symbionts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nobre, Tânia; Fernandes, Cecília; Boomsma, Jacobus J

    2011-01-01

    Symbiotic interactions between macrotermitine termites and their fungal symbionts have a moderate degree of specificity. Consistent with horizontal symbiont transmission, host switching has been frequent over evolutionary time so that single termite species can often be associated with several fu...

  14. [Status of termite-mushroom artificial domestication cultivation--a review].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yujin; Guo, Huachun; Li, Rongchun

    2010-10-01

    Two models of domestication and cultivation of termite-mushroom were discussed: the cultivation of termitomyces model, which method of woodrotting fungi cultivation was emphasized and the original ecological model, which multiplication of symbiotic termites was focused. The problems and possible solutions during termite-mushroom cultivation were also discussed.

  15. Effects of heartwood extractives on symbiotic protozoan communities and mortality in two termite species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babar Hassan; Mark E. Mankowski; Grant Kirker; Sohail Ahmed

    2017-01-01

    Lower termites (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) are considered severe pests of wood in service, crops and plantation forests. Termites mechanically remove and digest lignocellulosic material as a food source. The ability to digest lignocellulose not only depends on their digestive physiology, but also on the symbiotic relationship between termites and their intestinal...

  16. Comparison of termite assemblages along a landuse gradient on peat areas in Sarawak, Malaysia.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vaessen, T.; Verwer, C.; Demies, M.; Kaliang, H.; Meer, van der P.J.

    2011-01-01

    VAESSEN T, VERWER C, DEMIES M, KALIANG H & VAN DER MEER PJ. 2011. Comparison of termite assemblages along a landuse gradient on peat areas in Sarawak, Malaysia. In this study we assessed the species density and relative abundance of termites in peat land in Sarawak, Malaysia. Termites were

  17. Geochemical prospecting for rare earth elements using termite mound materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horiuchi, Yu; Ohno, Tetsuji; Hoshino, Mihoko; Shin, Ki-Cheol; Murakami, Hiroyasu; Tsunematsu, Maiko; Watanabe, Yasushi

    2014-12-01

    The Blockspruit fluorite prospect, located in North West State of the Republic of South Africa, occurs within an actinolite rock zone that was emplaced into the Kenkelbos-type granite of Proterozoic age. There are a large number of termite mounds in the prospect. For geochemical prospecting for rare earth elements (REEs), in total, 200 samples of termite mound material were collected from actinolite rock and granite zones in the prospect. Geochemical analyses of these termite mound materials were conducted by two methods: portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectrometry and inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Comparison of the two methods broadly indicates positive correlations of REEs (La, Ce, Pr, Nd, and Y), in particular Y and La having a strong correlation. As the result of modal abundance analyses, the actinolite rock at surface mainly consists of ferro-actinolite (89.89 wt%) and includes xenotime (0.26 wt%) and monazite (0.21 wt%) grains as REE minerals. Termite mound materials from actinolite rock also contain xenotime (0.27 wt%) and monazite (0.41 wt%) grains. In addition, termite mound materials from the actinolite rock zone have high hematite and Fe silicate contents compared to those from granite zone. These relationships suggest that REE minerals in termite mound materials originate form actinolite rock. Geochemical anomaly maps of Y, La, and Fe concentrations drawn based on the result of the portable XRF analyses show that high concentrations of these elements trend from SW to NE which broadly correspond to occurrences of actinolite body. These results indicate that termite mounds are an effective tool for REE geochemical prospection in the study area for both light REEs and Y, but a more detailed survey is required to establish the distribution of the actinolite rock body.

  18. Diet Segregation between Cohabiting Builder and Inquiline Termite Species.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Faria Florencio

    Full Text Available How do termite inquilines manage to cohabit termitaria along with the termite builder species? With this in mind, we analysed one of the several strategies that inquilines could use to circumvent conflicts with their hosts, namely, the use of distinct diets. We inspected overlapping patterns for the diets of several cohabiting Neotropical termite species, as inferred from carbon and nitrogen isotopic signatures for termite individuals. Cohabitant communities from distinct termitaria presented overlapping diet spaces, indicating that they exploited similar diets at the regional scale. When such communities were split into their components, full diet segregation could be observed between builders and inquilines, at regional (environment-wide and local (termitarium scales. Additionally, diet segregation among inquilines themselves was also observed in the vast majority of inspected termitaria. Inquiline species distribution among termitaria was not random. Environmental-wide diet similarity, coupled with local diet segregation and deterministic inquiline distribution, could denounce interactions for feeding resources. However, inquilines and builders not sharing the same termitarium, and thus not subject to potential conflicts, still exhibited distinct diets. Moreover, the areas of the builder's diet space and that of its inquilines did not correlate negatively. Accordingly, the diet areas of builders which hosted inquilines were in average as large as the areas of builders hosting no inquilines. Such results indicate the possibility that dietary partitioning by these cohabiting termites was not majorly driven by current interactive constraints. Rather, it seems to be a result of traits previously fixed in the evolutionary past of cohabitants.

  19. Termites facilitate methane oxidation and shape the methanotrophic community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ho, Adrian; Erens, Hans; Mujinya, Basile Bazirake; Boeckx, Pascal; Baert, Geert; Schneider, Bellinda; Frenzel, Peter; Boon, Nico; Van Ranst, Eric

    2013-12-01

    Termite-derived methane contributes 3 to 4% to the total methane budget globally. Termites are not known to harbor methane-oxidizing microorganisms (methanotrophs). However, a considerable fraction of the methane produced can be consumed by methanotrophs that inhabit the mound material, yet the methanotroph ecology in these environments is virtually unknown. The potential for methane oxidation was determined using slurry incubations under conditions with high (12%) and in situ (∼0.004%) methane concentrations through a vertical profile of a termite (Macrotermes falciger) mound and a reference soil. Interestingly, the mound material showed higher methanotrophic activity. The methanotroph community structure was determined by means of a pmoA-based diagnostic microarray. Although the methanotrophs in the mound were derived from populations in the reference soil, it appears that termite activity selected for a distinct community. Applying an indicator species analysis revealed that putative atmospheric methane oxidizers (high-indicator-value probes specific for the JR3 cluster) were indicative of the active nest area, whereas methanotrophs belonging to both type I and type II were indicative of the reference soil. We conclude that termites modify their environment, resulting in higher methane oxidation and selecting and/or enriching for a distinct methanotroph population.

  20. Methods and compositions for treating low temperature subterranean well formations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chatterji, J.

    1979-08-21

    An aqueous composition is described for treating subterranean formations having temperatures of up to 120 F. The aqueous composition consists of water, a water-soluble organic gelling agent, an oxidizing agent to supply free radicals, and a reducing agent to accelerate the generation of free radicals. Reducing agents are water-soluble metal salts of the halides, sulfates, nitrates or mixtures thereof. Oxidizing agents are water-soluble peroxides, persulfates or mixtures thereof. Gelling agents may be sodium polyacrylate, polyacrylic acid, polysodium-2-acrylamide-3-propylsulfonate polyacrylamides or polymetharylamides that have been hydrolyzed from 0 to 70% and neturalized with ammonium or alkali metal hydroxides; or gums such as guar, locust bean, taaga tragacanth, hydroxyethyl guar, hydroxy-propyl guar, carboxymethyl guar or mixtures thereof. 22 claims.

  1. Global optimization in the adaptive assay of subterranean uranium nodules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vulkan, U.; Ben-Haim, Y.

    1989-01-01

    An adaptive assay is one in which the design of the assay system is modified during operation in response to measurements obtained on-line. The present work has two aims: to design an adaptive system for borehole assay of isolated subterranean uranium nodules, and to investigate globality of optimal design in adaptive assay. It is shown experimentally that reasonably accurate estimates of uranium mass are obtained for a wide range of nodule shapes, on the basis of an adaptive assay system based on a simple geomorphological model. Furthermore, two concepts are identified which underlie the optimal design of the assay system. The adaptive assay approach shows promise for successful measurement of spatially random material in many geophysical applications. (author)

  2. Methane- and dissolved organic carbon-fueled microbial loop supports a tropical subterranean estuary ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brankovits, D.; Pohlman, J.W.; Niemann, H.; Leigh, M.B.; Leewis, M.C.; Becker, K.W.; Iliffe, T.M.; Alvarez, F.; Lehmann, M.F.; Phillips, B.

    2017-01-01

    Subterranean estuaries extend inland into density-stratified coastal carbonate aquifers containing a surprising diversity of endemic animals (mostly crustaceans) within a highly oligotrophic habitat. How complex ecosystems (termed anchialine) thrive in this globally distributed, cryptic environment

  3. Does subterranean flow initiate mud banks off the southwest coast of India?

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Balachandran, K.K.

    Coastal waters off the southwest coast of India draw special attention because of the occurrence of mud banks at certain locations during southwest monsoon period. The present study puts forward a hypothesis of a subterranean flow, which could be a...

  4. A Preliminary Study on Elimination of Colonies of the Mound Building Termite Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen) Using a Chlorfluazuron Termite Bait in the Philippines

    OpenAIRE

    Partho Dhang

    2011-01-01

    The effectiveness of a chlorfluazuron termite bait in eliminating colonies of the termite species Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen) was evaluated under field conditions. Three active termite mounds were chosen for this study, two acted as test mounds and the other as the control. Four In-Ground Stations (IGS) were installed around each mound. Interception occurred almost immediately in all the stations, which were subsequently baited. The control mound was fed a bait matrix lacking the active ingred...

  5. Adaptations in bacterial and fungal communities to termite fungiculture

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Otani, Saria

    in the bacterial and fungal communities. To do this, we used pyrosequencing, fluorescent in situ hybridisation, light and confocal microscopy, enzymatic assays, chemical extractions, in vitro assays, and feeding experiments in this thesis work to elucidate these predicted changes in fungus-growing termite...... in the proportion of fungal material provided to the cockroaches. However, gut microbiotas remained distinct from those of termites after Termitomyces-feeding, indicating that a fungal diet can play a role in structuring gut community composition, but at the same time exemplifies how original community compositions......, and possibly gut microenvironment constrain the magnitude of change. This thesis also characterises the fungus comb fungal communities (mycobiotas) in fungusgrowing termites, and shows that non-Termitomyces fungi were essentially absent in combs, and that Termitomyces fungal crops are maintained...

  6. The Physiology of Microbial Symbionts in Fungus-Farming Termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rodrigues da Costa, Rafael

    . The termites provide the fungus with optimal growth conditions (e.g., stable temperature and humidity), as well as with constant inoculation of growth substrate and protection against alien fungi. In reward, the fungus provides the termites with a protein-rich fungal biomass based diet. In addition...... with their symbionts are main decomposer of organic matter in Africa, and this is reflect of a metabolic complementarity to decompose plant biomass in the genome of the three organisms involved in this symbiosis. Many of the physiological aspects of this symbiosis remain obscure, and here I focus on physiology...... of microbial symbionts associated with fungus-growing termites. Firstly, by using a set of enzyme assays, plant biomass compositional analyses, and RNA sequencing we gained deeper understanding on what enzymes are produced and active at different times of the decomposition process. Our results show that enzyme...

  7. A molecular phylogeny shows the single origin of the Pyrenean subterranean Trechini ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faille, A; Ribera, I; Deharveng, L; Bourdeau, C; Garnery, L; Quéinnec, E; Deuve, T

    2010-01-01

    Trechini ground beetles include some of the most spectacular radiations of cave and endogean Coleoptera, but the origin of the subterranean taxa and their typical morphological adaptations (loss of eyes and wings, depigmentation, elongation of body and appendages) have never been studied in a formal phylogenetic framework. We provide here a molecular phylogeny of the Pyrenean subterranean Trechini based on a combination of mitochondrial (cox1, cyb, rrnL, tRNA-Leu, nad1) and nuclear (SSU, LSU) markers of 102 specimens of 90 species. We found all Pyrenean highly modified subterranean taxa to be monophyletic, to the exclusion of all epigean and all subterranean species from other geographical areas (Cantabrian and Iberian mountains, Alps). Within the Pyrenean subterranean clade the three genera (Geotrechus, Aphaenops and Hydraphaenops) were polyphyletic, indicating multiple origins of their special adaptations to different ways of life (endogean, troglobitic or living in deep fissures). Diversification followed a geographical pattern, with two main clades in the western and central-eastern Pyrenees respectively, and several smaller lineages of more restricted range. Based on a Bayesian relaxed-clock approach, and using as an approximation a standard mitochondrial mutation rate of 2.3% MY, we estimate the origin of the subterranean clade at ca. 10 MY. Cladogenetic events in the Pliocene and Pleistocene were almost exclusively within the same geographical area and involving species of the same morphological type.

  8. Methane oxidation by termite mounds estimated by the carbon isotopic composition of methane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sugimoto, Atsuko; Inoue, Tetsushi; Kirtibutr, Nit; Abe, Takuya

    1998-12-01

    Emission rates and carbon isotope ratios of CH4, emitted by workers of termites, and of CH4, emitted from their mounds, were observed in a dry evergreen forest in Thailand to estimate the proportion of CH4 oxidized during emission through the mound. The δ13C of CH4 emitted from a termite mound (-70.9 to -82.4‰) was higher than that of CH4 emitted by workers in the mound (-85.4 to -97. l‰). Using a fractionation factor (a = 0.987) for oxidation of CH4 which was obtained in the incubation experiment, an emission factor defined as (CH4 emitted from a termite mound/CH4 produced by termites) was calculated. The emission factor obtained in each termite mound was nearly zero for Macrotermes (fungus-growing termites), of which the nest has a thick soil wall and subterrannean termites, and 0.17 to 0.47 for Termitinae (small-mound-making termites). Global CH4 emission by termites was estimated on the basis of the CH4 emission rates by workers and termite biomass with the emission factors. The calculated result was 1.5 to 7.4 Tg/y (0.3 to 1.3% of total source), which is considerably smaller than the estimate by the IPCC [1994].

  9. Impact of termite activity on soil environment: A perspective from their soluble chemical components

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Semhi, K.; Chaudhuri, S.; Clauer, N.; Boeglin, J. L.

    2008-01-01

    An investigation on varied types of termite mounds relative to the nearby soils that are not inhabited by the termites in different places of Cameroon show that the activity of the termites is increasing the contents of most major and some trace elements in the termite mounds, except for Si and sometimes Fe, Mn, Na and K. These released elements are relocated into newly formed mineral phases that are dissolved by either H 2 O dilute HCl leaching. The Ca and Mn released by the termite activity testify for crystallization of Ca-Mg carbonates and phosphates as well as of Fe oxy-hydroxides and/or Mn hydroxides. Termite activity also induces an increase in the lanthanide contents, the mound materials being especially enriched in light lanthanides relative to the corresponding soils without termite activity. The shapes of the patterns support precipitation of Mn-Fe oxy-hydroxides and Ca carbonates-phosphates. The increased amounts of Eu and Ce linked to termite activity seem to relate to the occurrence of reducing agents that are released by the termites, modifying Eu +3 into Eu +2 and Ce +4 into Ce +3 , favoring in turn selective incorporation of Eu +2 and Ce +3 in the new phases of the termite mounds. Another consequence of the termite activity is the precipitation of H 2 O and HCl extractable phases having low Sr/Ca ratios. Even if the K/Rb values of the termite mounds are typical for common soil-forming silicate minerals, their relocation by an inorganic process alone does not explain an abnormally high ratio in the H 2 O leachable mineral phases. It was also shown that the main source for K and Rb of the dissolved phases is not only the interlayer site of clay particles, but also nutrients immobilized in and by the termites

  10. Tyraminergic and Octopaminergic Modulation of Defensive Behavior in Termite Soldier.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuki Ishikawa

    Full Text Available In termites, i.e. a major group of eusocial insects, the soldier caste exhibits specific morphological characteristics and extremely high aggression against predators. Although the genomic background is identical to the other non-aggressive castes, they acquire the soldier-specific behavioral character during the course of caste differentiation. The high aggressiveness and defensive behavior is essential for colony survival, but the neurophysiological bases are completely unknown. In the present study, using the damp-wood termite Hodotermopsis sjostedti, we focused on two biogenic amines, octopamine (OA and tyramine (TA, as candidate neuromodulators for the defensive behavior in soldiers. High-performance liquid chromatographic analysis revealed that TA levels in the brain and suboesophageal ganglion (SOG and the OA level in brain were increased in soldiers than in pseudergates (worker caste. Immunohistochemical analysis revealed that TA/OA neurons that innervate specific areas, including the mandibular muscles, antennal nerve, central complex, suboesophageal ganglion, and thoracic and/or abdominal ganglia, were enlarged in a soldier-specific manner. Together with the results that pharmacological application of TA promoted the defensive behavior in pseudergates, these findings suggest that the increased TA/OA levels induce the higher aggressiveness and defensive behavior in termite soldiers. The projection targets of these soldier-specific enlarged TA/OA neurons may have important roles in the higher aggressiveness and defensive behavior of the termite soldiers, inducing the neuronal transition that accompanies external morphological changes.

  11. Green house gas emissions from termite ecosystem | Gomati ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Recent estimates of the total annual source strength of CH4 vary from 400 to 1200 Tg. Activities such as rice cultivation, cattle production, mining, use of fossil fuels and biomass burning is believed to be the cause of increasing methane levels in the atmosphere. To add to this list is the source from termites, which contributes ...

  12. Chemical alarm in the termite Termitogeton planus (Rhinotermitidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Dolejšová, Klára; Krasulová, Jana; Kutalová, K.; Hanus, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 40, 11/12 (2014), s. 1269-1276 ISSN 0098-0331 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/1570 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : termites * soldiers * frontal gland * alarm pheromone * Rhinotermitidae * Termitogeton Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 2.747, year: 2014

  13. appraisal of the economic activities of termites: a review

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    DR.AMIN

    within the soil increases the rate of percolation of water into the soil, thereby ... into the soil, mineral nutrients of these trees. Man in ... soil barrier termiticides, treated zone termiticides, dust and fumigant, and, non ... a result of man's interference with natural food supply .... The destructive effects of termites to man, whenever.

  14. Effects of termites on infiltration in crusted soil.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mando, A.; Stroosnijder, L.; Brussaard, L.

    1996-01-01

    In northern Burkina Faso (West Africa), a study was undertaken to explore the possibilities of restoring the infiltration capacity of crusted soils through the stimulation of termite activity. Treatments consisted of the application of a mulch of a mixture of wood and straw without insecticides

  15. Solar-powered ventilation of African termite mounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ocko, Samuel A; King, Hunter; Andreen, David; Bardunias, Paul; Turner, J Scott; Soar, Rupert; Mahadevan, L

    2017-09-15

    How termite mounds function to facilitate climate control is still only partially understood. Recent experimental evidence in the mounds of a single species, the south Asian termite Odontotermes obesus , suggests that the daily oscillations of radiant heating associated with diurnal insolation patterns drive convective flow within them. How general this mechanism is remains unknown. To probe this, we consider the mounds of the African termite Macrotermes michaelseni , which thrives in a very different environment. By directly measuring air velocities and temperatures within the mound, we see that the overall mechanisms and patterns involved are similar to that in the south Asian species. However, there are also some notable differences between the physiology of these mounds associated with the temporal variations in radiant heating patterns and CO 2 dynamics. Because of the difference between direct radiant heating driven by the position of the sun in African conditions, and the more shaded south Asian environments, we see changes in the convective flows in the two types of mounds. Furthermore, we also see that the south Asian mounds show a significant overturning of stratified gases, once a day, while the African mounds have a relatively uniform concentration of CO 2 Overall, our observations show that despite these differences, termite architectures can harness periodic solar heating to drive ventilation inside them in very different environments, functioning as an external lung, with clear implications for human engineering. © 2017. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  16. Cultural significance of termites in sub-Saharan Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huis, van Arnold

    2017-01-01

    Background: The number of termite species in the world is more than 2500, and Africa with more than 1000 species has the richest intercontinental diversity. The family Termitidae contains builders of great mounds up to 5 m high. Colonies are composed of casts: a queen, a king, soldiers and workers.

  17. Termites and flooding affect microbial communities in decomposing wood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michael D. Ulyshen; Susan V. Diehl; Dragica Jeremic

    2016-01-01

    Wood properties and microbial community characteristics were compared between loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) logs protected or unprotected from termites (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae: Reticulitermes spp.) and other arthropods for two years in seasonally flooded and unflooded forests in the southeastern United States. Significant compositional differences were observed...

  18. Utilization of the termite Hodotermes mossambicus (Hagen) by ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Five species of primarily nocturnal geckos (Ptenopus garrulus maculatus, Chondrodactylus angulifer angulifer, Pachydactylus bibronii, P. mariquensis latirosths and P. punctatus) collected near Keetmanshoop, South West Africa on the night of 3 October 1987 were found to contain large numbers of the harvester termite ...

  19. Termites of the Savanna ecosystem project study area, Nylsvley

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Ferrar, P

    1982-09-01

    Full Text Available This report describes the termite fauna of the Savanna Ecosystem Project study area at the Nylsvley Nature Reserve, with an illustrated key for identification of species. Twenty-one species of fifteen genera and two families are recorded, and notes...

  20. Processed products of termites and lake flies: improving ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The lake region is endowed with plenty of edible insects. Edible insects can provide partial solution to food insecurity. The aim of this project was to promote entomophagy for food security by adding value to termites and lake flies, enhancing taste and preference of edible insects, and improving shelf life of edible insect ...

  1. Determining termite diversity in arid Namibian rangelands – a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Three methods of sampling termite diversity in arid rangelands were tested in Namibia during the wet (March) and dry (October) seasons of 1998. Six sites were chosen: one pair on each of three farms representing a gradient of land use intensity. At each site, two adjacent plots of 1 ha each were sampled: one plot by a ...

  2. Phylogeny of not-yet-cultured spirochetes from termite guts

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paster, B.J.; Dewhirst, F.E.; Cooke, S.M.

    1996-01-01

    Comparisons of 16S rDNA sequences were used to determine the phylogeny of not-yet-cultured spirochetes from hindguts of the African higher termite, Nasutitermes lujae (Wasmann). The 16S rRNA genes were amplified directly from spirochete-rich hindguts by using universal primers, and the amplified...

  3. Resistance of treated rubber wood ( Hevea brasiliensis ) to termite ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Spent rubber trees from a 25 year old plantation were cut, sawn and treated with Copper Chromium Arsenate (CCA) and Cashew Nut Shell Liquid (CNSL). Two sets of wood samples were treated with CCA and CNSL respectively while the third set was not treated to serve as control. The three sets were exposed to termite ...

  4. Asexual queen succession in the higher termite Embiratermes neotenicus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fougeyrollas, R.; Dolejšová, Klára; Sillam-Dusses, D.; Roy, V.; Poteaux, C.; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Y.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 282, č. 1809 (2015), 20150260/1-20150260/7 ISSN 0962-8452 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-12774S Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : thelytokous parthenogenesis * breeding system * termites * Isoptera * Termitidae * reproductive strategies Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 4.823, year: 2015

  5. Sorptive removal of arsenate using termite mound.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fufa, Fekadu; Alemayehu, Esayas; Lennartz, Bernd

    2014-01-01

    Long-term consumption of arsenic results in severe and permanent health damages. The aim of the study was to investigate arsenate (As(V)) sorption capacity of termite mound (TM), containing mainly silicon, aluminum, iron and titanium oxides, under batch adsorption setup. The pattern of As(V) removal with varying contact time, solution pH, adsorbent dose, As(V) concentration and competing anions was investigated. Dissolution of the adsorbent was insignificant under the equilibrium conditions. Equilibrium was achieved within 40 min of agitation time. Kinetic data of As(V) adsorption followed well the pseudo-second order equation (R(2) > 0.99). High As(V) removal efficiency (∼ 99%) was observed over a pH range ∼ 3-∼ 10, which is of great importance in the practical application. The Freundlich and Dubinin-Radushkevich isotherms well described (R(2) > 0.99, χ(2) ∼ 0.05) the equilibrium As(V) adsorption, giving a coefficient of adsorption 1.48 mg(1-1/n)L(1/n)/g and a saturation capacity 13.50 mg/g respectively. The obtained value of mean sorption energy (EDR = 13.32 kJ/mol) suggested the chemisorption mechanism of As(V) adsorption on TM. The removal of As(V) was significantly decreased in the presence of phosphate ions. The As(V) loaded adsorbent was successfully regenerated using NaOH solution with insignificant loss of metals. Therefore, the results of the study demonstrated that TM could be considered as a promising adsorbent for the treatment of As(V) in drinking water. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Termites, vertebrate herbivores, and the fruiting success of Acacia drepanolobium.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brody, Alison K; Palmer, Todd M; Fox-Dobbs, Kena; Doak, Dan F

    2010-02-01

    In African savannas, vertebrate herbivores are often identified as key determinants of plant growth, survivorship, and reproduction. However, plant reproduction is likely to be the product of responses to a suite of abiotic and biotic factors, including nutrient availability and interactions with antagonists and mutualists. In a relatively simple system, we examined the role of termites (which act as ecosystem engineers--modifying physical habitat and creating islands of high soil fertility), vertebrate herbivores, and symbiotic ants, on the fruiting success of a dominant plant, Acacia drepanolobium, in East African savannas. Using observational data, large-scale experimental manipulations, and analysis of foliar N, we found that Acacia drepanolobium trees growing at the edge of termite mounds were more likely to reproduce than those growing farther away, in off-mound soils. Although vertebrate herbivores preferentially used termite mounds as demonstrated by dung deposits, long-term exclusion of mammalian grazers did not significantly reduce A. drepanolobium fruit production. Leaf N was significantly greater in trees growing next to mounds than in those growing farther away, and this pattern was unaffected by exclusion of vertebrates. Thus, soil enrichment by termites, rather than through dung and urine deposition by large herbivores, is of primary importance to fruit production near mounds. Across all mound-herbivore treatment combinations, trees that harbored Crematogaster sjostedti were more likely to fruit than those that harbored one of the other three ant species. Although C. sjostedti is less aggressive than the other ants, it tends to inhabit large, old trees near termite mounds which are more likely to fruit than smaller ones. Termites play a key role in generating patches of nutrient-rich habitat important to the reproductive success of A. drepanolobium in East African savannas. Enhanced nutrient acquisition from termite mounds appears to allow plants to

  7. Experimental infrared measurements for hydrocarbon pollutant determination in subterranean waters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lay-Ekuakille, A.; Palamara, I.; Caratelli, D.; Morabito, F. C.

    2013-01-01

    Subterranean waters are often polluted by industrial and anthropic effluents that are drained in subsoil. To prevent and control pollution, legislations of different developed countries require an online monitoring measurement, especially for detecting organic solvents (chlorinated and unchlorinated ones). Online measurements include both real-time and no real-time measurements. In general, it is difficult to implement real-time measurements in stricto sensu for online acquisitions on aqueous effluents since they need to be processed by a modeling. This research presents an experimental measurement system based on infrared (IR) spectroscopy for aqueous effluents containing hydrocarbons and capable of displaying excellent values of pollutant concentrations even in instable conditions; the system is able to detect pollutants either in laminar or turbulent flow. The results show the possibility of avoiding the use of "Pitot tube" that is employed to create a stagnation point in order to convert kinetic energy into potential one. This conversion allows the transformation of a turbulent flow in a laminar flow making easy measurement of pollutants included in an aqueous effluent. Obviously, "Pitot tube" is also used for other fluid effluents. The obtained results have been compared with those produced by means of sophisticated IR instrumentation for laboratory applications.

  8. Uranium export from a sandy beach subterranean estuary in Australia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Christian J.; Santos, Isaac R.; Sadat-Noori, Mahmood; Maher, Damien T.; Holloway, Ceylena; Schnetger, Bernhard; Brumsack, Hans-J.

    2017-11-01

    Few studies exist on the contribution of subterranean estuaries (STEs) to the oceanic uranium (U) budget. Here, we estimate the dissolved U fluxes out of a quartz sand STE located on the east coast of Australia. Our results indicate that the advective flow of seawater in permeable sands enhances cycling of U in the STE. Dissolved U concentrations ranged from 25 nM in the STE to an effective zero salinity end-member of 3.8 nM in the surface estuary. The dissolved U (salinity corrected) concentrations were positively correlated to Fe (r2 = 0.49 p based on shallow saline groundwater exchange pathways and 0.4 μmol U m-2 day-1 based on deep fresh submarine groundwater discharge (SGD). Uranium's behavior in STEs is diverse and site specific. Out of the seven investigations available here and in the literature, three suggested a SGD-derived U source to the coastal ocean, while four suggested a U sink within STEs removing seawater U. Therefore, it remains unclear whether SGD is a source or sink of U to the ocean and additional investigations in contrasting settings are required to resolve the global contribution of SGD to the marine U cycle.

  9. Use of termite mounds in geochemical exploration in North Ethiopia [rapid communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kebede, Fassil

    2004-09-01

    The geochemistry of the termite mounds was studied in lower Giba River basin, Kolla Tambien district, northern Ethiopia to show that they are useful in searching for metals. Specimens from the termite mounds and parent materials were collected to quantify gold, silver, copper, zinc, cobalt, manganese, iron and nickel. The results of the geochemical analysis of the samples indicated that these metals exist both in the termite mound and the parent material in the surrounding area. Correlation analysis shows that termite mounds and the parent materials are positively correlated for gold ( r = 0.75∗), copper ( r = 0.77∗), silver ( r = 0.56∗) and manganese ( r = 0.72). This positive correlation leads to the conclusion that there is a direct relation between the concentration of metals in termite mound and the parent rocks. Termite mounds can therefore be used as tools in exploring for these metals.

  10. Exploring the potential for actinobacteria as defensive symbionts in fungus-growing termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Visser, Anna A.; Nobre, Tânia; Currie, Cameron R.

    2012-01-01

    In fungus-growing termites, fungi of the subgenus Pseudoxylaria threaten colony health through substrate competition with the termite fungus (Termitomyces). The potential mechanisms with which termites suppress Pseudoxylaria have remained unknown. Here we explore if Actinobacteria potentially play...... a role as defensive symbionts against Pseudoxylaria in fungus-growing termites. We sampled for Actinobacteria from 30 fungus-growing termite colonies, spanning the three main termite genera and two geographically distant sites. Our isolations yielded 360 Actinobacteria, from which we selected subsets...... for morphological (288 isolates, grouped in 44 morphotypes) and for 16S rRNA (35 isolates, spanning the majority of morphotypes) characterisation. Actinobacteria were found throughout all sampled nests and colony parts and, phylogenetically, they are interspersed with Actinobacteria from origins other than fungus...

  11. Living in a ``stethoscope'': burrow-acoustics promote auditory specializations in subterranean rodents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lange, Simone; Burda, Hynek; Wegner, Regina E.; Dammann, Philip; Begall, Sabine; Kawalika, Mathias

    2007-02-01

    Subterranean mammals rely to a great extent on audition for communication and to be alerted to danger. The only hitherto published report on burrow acoustics revealed that in tunnels of blind mole-rats ( Spalax ehrenbergi), airborne sounds of 440 Hz propagated best whereas lower and higher frequencies were effectively attenuated. Morpho-functional analyses classify the ear of subterranean mammals as a low-sensitivity and low-frequency device. Concordantly, hearing is characterized by low sensitivity and a restricted frequency range tuned to low frequencies (0.5-4 kHz). Some authors considered the restricted hearing in subterranean mammals vestigial and degenerate due to under-stimulation. In contrast to this view stand a rich (mostly low-frequency) vocal repertoire and progressive structural specializations of the middle and inner ear. Thus, other authors considered these hearing characteristics adaptive. To test the hypothesis that acoustical environment in burrows of different species of subterranean mammals is similar, we measured sound attenuation in burrows of Fukomys mole-rats (formerly known as Cryptomys, cf. Kock et al. 2006) of two differently sized species at different locations in Zambia. We show that in these burrows, low-frequency sounds (200-800 Hz) are not only least attenuated but also their amplitude may be amplified like in a stethoscope (up to two times over 1 m). We suggest that hearing sensitivity has decreased during evolution of subterranean mammals to avoid over-stimulation of the ear in their natural environment.

  12. Methane emissions from termites - landscape level estimates and methods of measurement

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, Hizbullah; Livesley, Stephen J.; Hutley, Lindsay B.; Arndt, Stefan K.

    2013-04-01

    Termites contribute between mound-building termite species diurnally and seasonally in tropical savannas in the Northern Territory, Australia. Our results showed that there were significant diel and seasonal variations of methane emissions from termite mounds and we observed large species-specific differences. On a diurnal basis, methane fluxes were least at the coolest time of the day and greatest at the warmest for all species for both wet and dry seasons. We observed a strong and significant positive correlation between methane flux and mound temperature for all species. Fluxes in the wet season were 5-26-fold greater than those in the dry season and this was related to population dynamics of the termites. We observed significant relationships between mound methane flux and mound carbon dioxide flux, enabling the prediction of methane flux from measured carbon dioxide flux. However, these relationships were clearly termite species specific. We also determined significant relationships between mound flux and gas concentration inside mound, for both gases, and for all termite species, thereby enabling the prediction of flux from measured mound internal gas concentration. However, these relationships were also termite species specific. Consequently, there was no generic relationship that would enable an easier prediction of methane flux from termite mounds. On a landscape scale we estimated that termites were a methane source of +0.24 kg methane-C ha-1 year-1 whilst savanna soils were a methane sink of 1.14 kg methane-C ha-1 year-1. Termites therefore only offset 21% of methane consumed by savanna soil resulting in net sink strength of -0.90 kg methane-C ha-1 year-1 for these savannas. Assuming a similar contribution of termites in the savannas and tropical rain forests worldwide, termites would globally produce around 27 Tg CO2-e year-1, which is 0.2% of the global methane source budget or an order of magnitude smaller than many of the previous estimates.

  13. Termite Infestation Associated with Type of Soil in Pulau Pinang, Malaysia (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae)

    OpenAIRE

    Majid, Abdul Hafiz Ab; Ahmad, Abu Hassan

    2013-01-01

    Nine soil samples from nine buildings infested with Coptotermes gestroi in Pulau Pinang, Malaysia, were tested for the type of soil texture. The soil texture analysis procedures used the hydrometer method. Four of nine buildings (44%) yielded loamy sand-type soil, whereas five of nine buildings (56%) contained sandy loam-type soil.

  14. Termite infestation associated with type of soil in pulau pinang, malaysia (isoptera: rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Majid, Abdul Hafiz Ab; Ahmad, Abu Hassan

    2013-12-01

    Nine soil samples from nine buildings infested with Coptotermes gestroi in Pulau Pinang, Malaysia, were tested for the type of soil texture. The soil texture analysis procedures used the hydrometer method. Four of nine buildings (44%) yielded loamy sand-type soil, whereas five of nine buildings (56%) contained sandy loam-type soil.

  15. Diversity, Roles, and Biotechnological Applications of Symbiotic Microorganisms in the Gut of Termite.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhou, Jing; Duan, Jiwei; Gao, Mingkun; Wang, Ying; Wang, Xiaohua; Zhao, Kai

    2018-05-12

    Termites are global pests and can cause serious damage to buildings, crops, and plantation forests. The symbiotic intestinal flora plays an important role in the digestion of cellulose and nitrogen in the life of termites. Termites and their symbiotic microbes in the gut form a synergistic system. These organism work together to digest lignocellulose to make the termites grow on nitrogen deficient food. In this paper, the diversity of symbiotic microorganisms in the gut of termites, including protozoan, spirochetes, actinomycetes, fungus and bacteria, and their role in the digestion of lignocellulose and also the biotechnological applications of these symbiotic microorganisms are discussed. The high efficiency lignocellulose degradation systems of symbiotic microbes in termite gut not only provided a new way of biological energy development, but also has immense prospect in the application of cellulase enzymes. In addition, the study on the symbiotic microorganisms in the gut of termites will also provide a new method for the biological control of termites by the endophytic bacteria in the gut of termites.

  16. Termite Mounds Effects on Soil Properties in the Atlantic Forest Biome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Santana de Lima

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT Termites have peculiar activities in the soil, inducing significant changes in the soil properties. The objective of this study was to assess physical and chemical properties and soil organic matter to evaluate the effect of termite activity and termite mounds on the soil. Two toposequences were selected and divided in slope thirds (shoulder, backslope, and footslope. In each of these, four termite mounds were selected. Samples were taken from the soils and termite mounds (top, center, and base along with a variety of termites for identification. Analyses were carried out for physical, soil texture, and chemical properties, as well as for particle size and chemical fractioning of organic matter. The species Cornitermes cumulans was found in all mounds. Soil with termite mound presented higher clay content, acidity, and Al3+ content. Phosphorus contents differed considerably between mound material and soil. Sum of bases and cation exchange capacity of the soil were higher in mounds, and differed within the mounds, according to the sampling height. Total organic carbon and particulate carbon content were highest at the mound base. A marked disparity was observed between the contents of humic substances in the mounds and surrounding soil, with humin fraction differences in distinct topographic position. The high nutrient contents detected in the termite mounds confirm the importance of termites in concentrating nutrients.

  17. Subterranean karst environments as a global sink for atmospheric methane

    Science.gov (United States)

    Webster, Kevin D.; Drobniak, Agnieszka; Etiope, Giuseppe; Mastalerz, Maria; Sauer, Peter E.; Schimmelmann, Arndt

    2018-03-01

    The air in subterranean karst cavities is often depleted in methane (CH4) relative to the atmosphere. Karst is considered a potential sink for the atmospheric greenhouse gas CH4 because its subsurface drainage networks and solution-enlarged fractures facilitate atmospheric exchange. Karst landscapes cover about 14% of earth's continental surface, but observations of CH4 concentrations in cave air are limited to localized studies in Gibraltar, Spain, Indiana (USA), Vietnam, Australia, and by incomplete isotopic data. To test if karst is acting as a global CH4 sink, we measured the CH4 concentrations, δ13CCH4, and δ2HCH4 values of cave air from 33 caves in the USA and three caves in New Zealand. We also measured CO2 concentrations, δ13CCO2, and radon (Rn) concentrations to support CH4 data interpretation by assessing cave air residence times and mixing processes. Among these caves, 35 exhibited subatmospheric CH4 concentrations in at least one location compared to their local atmospheric backgrounds. CH4 concentrations, δ13CCH4, and δ2HCH4 values suggest that microbial methanotrophy within caves is the primary CH4 consumption mechanism. Only 5 locations from 3 caves showed elevated CH4 concentrations compared to the atmospheric background and could be ascribed to local CH4 sources from sewage and outgassing swamp water. Several associated δ13CCH4 and δ2HCH4 values point to carbonate reduction and acetate fermentation as biochemical pathways of limited methanogenesis in karst environments and suggest that these pathways occur in the environment over large spatial scales. Our data show that karst environments function as a global CH4 sink.

  18. Subterranean systems provide a suitable overwintering habitat for Salamandra salamandra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monika Balogová

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra has been repeatedly noted to occur in natural and artificial subterranean systems. Despite the obvious connection of this species with underground shelters, their level of dependence and importance to the species is still not fully understood. In this study, we carried out long-term monitoring based on the capture-mark-recapture method in two wintering populations aggregated in extensive underground habitats. Using the POPAN model we found the population size in a natural shelter to be more than twice that of an artificial underground shelter. Survival and recapture probabilities calculated using the Cormack-Jolly-Seber model were very constant over time, with higher survival values in males than in females and juveniles, though in terms of recapture probability, the opposite situation was recorded. In addition, survival probability obtained from Cormack-Jolly-Seber model was higher than survival from POPAN model. The observed bigger population size and the lower recapture rate in the natural cave was probably a reflection of habitat complexity. Our study showed that regular visits are needed to detect the true significance of underground shelters for fire salamanders. The presence of larvae was recorded in both wintering sites, especially in bodies of water near the entrance. On the basis of previous and our observations we incline to the view, that karst areas can induce not only laying in underground shelters but also group wintering in this species. Our study highlights the strong connection of the life cycle of fire salamanders with underground shelters and their essential importance for the persistence of some populations during unfavourable conditions and breeding activity. In addition, the study introduces the POPAN and Cormac-Jolly-Seber models for estimating of population size, survival and recapture probability in wintering populations of the species, which could provide important information

  19. The evolutionary history of termites as inferred from 66 mitochondrial genomes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourguignon, Thomas; Lo, Nathan; Cameron, Stephen L; Šobotník, Jan; Hayashi, Yoshinobu; Shigenobu, Shuji; Watanabe, Dai; Roisin, Yves; Miura, Toru; Evans, Theodore A

    2015-02-01

    Termites have colonized many habitats and are among the most abundant animals in tropical ecosystems, which they modify considerably through their actions. The timing of their rise in abundance and of the dispersal events that gave rise to modern termite lineages is not well understood. To shed light on termite origins and diversification, we sequenced the mitochondrial genome of 48 termite species and combined them with 18 previously sequenced termite mitochondrial genomes for phylogenetic and molecular clock analyses using multiple fossil calibrations. The 66 genomes represent most major clades of termites. Unlike previous phylogenetic studies based on fewer molecular data, our phylogenetic tree is fully resolved for the lower termites. The phylogenetic positions of Macrotermitinae and Apicotermitinae are also resolved as the basal groups in the higher termites, but in the crown termitid groups, including Termitinae + Syntermitinae + Nasutitermitinae + Cubitermitinae, the position of some nodes remains uncertain. Our molecular clock tree indicates that the lineages leading to termites and Cryptocercus roaches diverged 170 Ma (153-196 Ma 95% confidence interval [CI]), that modern Termitidae arose 54 Ma (46-66 Ma 95% CI), and that the crown termitid group arose 40 Ma (35-49 Ma 95% CI). This indicates that the distribution of basal termite clades was influenced by the final stages of the breakup of Pangaea. Our inference of ancestral geographic ranges shows that the Termitidae, which includes more than 75% of extant termite species, most likely originated in Africa or Asia, and acquired their pantropical distribution after a series of dispersal and subsequent diversification events. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. Influence of soil pedological properties on termite mound stability

    OpenAIRE

    Jouquet, Pascal; Guilleux, N.; Caner, L.; Chintakunta, S.; Ameline, M.; Shanbhag, R. R.

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the influence of soil properties on the density and shape of epigeous fungus-growing termite nests in a dry deciduous forest in Karnataka, India. In this environment, Odontotermes obesus produces cathedral shaped mounds. Their density, shape (height and volume) and soil physicochemical properties were analyzed in ferralsol and vertisol environments. No significant difference was observed in O. obesus mound density (n = 2.7 mound ha(-1) on average in the vertisol and fe...

  1. Uric acid, an important antioxidant contributing to survival in termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tasaki, Eisuke; Sakurai, Hiroki; Nitao, Masaru; Matsuura, Kenji; Iuchi, Yoshihito

    2017-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are generated spontaneously in all organisms and cause oxidative damage to biomolecules when present in excess. Accumulated oxidative damage accelerates aging; enhanced antioxidant capacity may be a positive factor for longevity. Recently, numerous studies of aging and longevity have been performed using short-lived animals, however, longevity mechanisms remain unknown. Here we show that a termite Reticulitermes speratus that is thought to be long-lived eusocial insect than other solitary insects uses large quantities of uric acid as an antioxidant against ROS. We demonstrated that the accumulation of uric acid considerably increases the free radical-scavenging activity and resistance against ultraviolet-induced oxidative stress in laboratory-maintained termites. In addition, we found that externally administered uric acid aided termite survival under highly oxidative conditions. The present data demonstrates that in addition to nutritional and metabolic roles, uric acid is an essential antioxidant for survival and contributes significantly to longevity. Uric acid also plays important roles in primates but causes gout when present in excess in humans. Further longevity studies of long-lived organisms may provide important breakthroughs with human health applications. PMID:28609463

  2. Inducible immune proteins in the dampwood termite Zootermopsis angusticollis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosengaus, Rebeca B.; Cornelisse, Tara; Guschanski, Katerina; Traniello, James F. A.

    2007-01-01

    Dampwood termites, Zootermopsis angusticollis (Isoptera: Termopsidae), mount an immune response to resist microbial infection. Here we report on results of a novel analysis that allowed us to electrophoretically assess changes in hemolymph proteins in the same individual before and after exposure to a pathogen. We demonstrate that contact with a sublethal concentration of the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae (Deuteromycotina:Hypomycetes) induces the production of protective proteins in nymphs, pseudergates (false workers), and soldiers. Termites exposed to an immunizing dosage of fungal conidia consistently showed an enhancement of constitutive proteins (62-85 kDa) in the hemolymph as well as an induction of novel proteins (28-48 kDa) relative to preimmunization levels. No significant differences in protein banding patterns relative to baseline levels in control and naïve termites were observed. Incubating excised and eluted induced proteins produced by immunized pseudergates or immunized soldiers with conidia significantly reduced the germination of the fungus. The fungistatic effect of eluted proteins differed significantly among five colonies examined. Our results show that the upregulation of protective proteins in the hemolymph underscores the in vivo immune response we previously recorded in Z. angusticollis.

  3. Associations of Two Ecologically Significant Social Insect Taxa in the Litter of an Amazonian Rainforest: Is There a Relationship between Ant and Termite Species Richness?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amy L. Mertl

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In spite of the ecological dominance of Neotropical ants and termites, little is understood about how their interactions influence their species richness and distribution. We surveyed ground-dwelling termite and ant species in a primary rainforest in Ecuador and analyzed ecological correlates of diversity. Termite richness was positively correlated with ant richness and abundance of twig-nesting ants. We found no evidence of competition for twigs between termites and ants. No ecological factors were correlated with termite diversity although elevation and twig and log abundance influenced ant diversity. When ant richness was compared to the richness of termites employing different predator defenses, a positive correlation was found with soldierless termites, but not genera employing chemical or mechanical defense. Our results suggest that multiple ecological factors influence ant and termite diversity, and that ant predation on termites may have a greater effect than competition between ant and termites for nest sites and food sources.

  4. Effects of rice husk ash and termite hill types on the physical and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This waste can be recycled through inclusion as stabilizer in brick making, thereby eliminating the hazard posed to the environment. This paper examined the effects of rice husk ash (RHA) on the two termite clay soils in brick making. The two termite clay soils obtained from red and gray anthills were stabilized with rice husk ...

  5. Patterns of interaction specificity of fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces symbionts in South Africa

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur K; Ros, Vera I D; de Fine Licht, Henrik H

    2007-01-01

    BACKGROUND: Termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae live in a mutualistic symbiosis with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Termitomyces. Here, we explored interaction specificity in fungus-growing termites using samples from 101 colonies in South-Africa and Senegal, belonging to eight species di...

  6. Asymmetric interaction specificity between two sympatric termites and their fungal symbionts.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fine Licht, De H.H.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2007-01-01

    1. Fungus-growing termites live in an obligate mutualistic symbiosis with Termitomyces fungi. The functions of the fungal symbiont have been hypothesised to differ between species and to range from highly specific roles of providing plant-degrading enzymes complementary to termite gut enzymes, to

  7. Patterns of interaction specificity of fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces symbionts in South Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aanen, D.K.; Ros, V.I.D.; Fine Licht, de H.H.; Mitchell, J.; Beer, de Z.W.; Slippers, B.; Rouland-Lefevre, C.; Boomsma, J.J.

    2007-01-01

    Background Termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae live in a mutualistic symbiosis with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Termitomyces. Here, we explored interaction specificity in fungus-growing termites using samples from 101 colonies in South-Africa and Senegal, belonging to eight species

  8. Parametric City Scale Energy Modeling Perspectives on using Termite in city scaled models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Negendahl, Kristoffer; Nielsen, Toke Rammer

    Termite is a parametric tool using the Danish building performance simulation engine Be10 written for the Grasshopper3D/Rhino3D environment. The tool Be10 is originally intended for building energy frame calculations and is required by Danish law when constructing new buildings. Termite opens up...... requirements, placing solar energy production facilities etc....

  9. Control Of Book Termites Using Solid Attractants At The Central Library Of Universitas Sumatera Utara USU

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ameilia Zuliyanti Siregar

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available It has been identified the extent of damage due to the activity of Captotermes sp Microtermis sp Formica sp Araneus sp and Stegonium sp on books in the USU Library. Furthermore prevention of dominant pest attack on the book containing cellulose as the main food of termites termites control action term control by Action Research method action research Kurt Lewin adoption is done intensively from July to September 2017. used are of neem leaf Azadirachta indica tobacco leaf Nicotiana tabacum rubber cassava leaf Manihot glaziovii and betel nut Areca catechu which can be used as Termite Baiting System TBS. This method includes three stages in the form of planning planning activity and reflection actuating and reflexion and evaluation evaluation. The results show the higher number of termites in F1799.3 0.328 with zero days after application. Based on the research recorded in sampling for 3 months with 4 treatments had a significant effect on the percentage of the number of termites that died and collected with the value of F is 86.27 p amp706 0000 and the percentage of death is F 59.13 p amp706 0000. Pearson correlation value recorded percentage of termite mortality r 0.349 and percentage of book affected r -0597 showed a very significant relationship. Pinet pellet is the best attractant in controlling termite pests followed by tobacco plants poisonous yams and neem. Optimal FFB techniques in its use can control termite colonies in an environmentally friendly manner.

  10. Seasonality of major redox constituents in a shallow subterranean estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Alison E.; Krask, Julie L.; Canuel, Elizabeth A.; Beck, Aaron J.

    2018-03-01

    The subterranean estuary (STE), the subsurface mixing zone of outflowing fresh groundwater and infiltrating seawater, is an area of extensive geochemical reactions that determine the composition of groundwater that flows into coastal environments. This study examined the porewater composition of a shallow STE (redox gradients on STE geochemistry. Two freshwater endmembers were identified, between which redox potential and composition varied with depth-a shallow freshwater endmember was oxidizing and high in DOC, whereas a deep freshwater endmember was reducing, lower in DOC, and high in sulfide. Results showed that dissolved Fe, Mn, and sulfide varied along a redox gradient distinct from the salinity gradient, and that three-endmember mixing was required to quantify non-conservative chemical addition/removal in the STE. In addition to salinity, humic carbon was used as a quasi-conservative tracer to quantify mixing according to a three-endmember model. The vertical distributions of DOC and reduced metabolites remained approximately constant over time, but concentrations varied with season. Dissolved organic carbon concentrations were greatest in the summer, and shallow meteoric groundwater supplied the majority of DOC to the STE. In summer, there was additional evidence for shallow non-conservative addition of DOC. Dissolved Fe and Mn were highest in a subsurface plume through the middle of the STE (100-140 cm below sediment surface at the high tide line) which was characterized by higher concentrations and greater non-conservative addition in the winter. In contrast, sulfide was higher in summer at depths within the Fe and Mn plume (100-140 cm). We attribute the contrasting seasonal patterns of dissolved Fe, Mn, and sulfide to differences in microbial response to temperature changes and organic matter availability, and to competition at the ferrous-sulfidic transition zone between dissimilatory metal reduction and sulfate reduction, leading to sulfate

  11. Nasal aerodynamics protects brain and lung from inhaled dust in subterranean diggers, Ellobius talpinus

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    M.P. Moshkin; D.V. Petrovski; A.E. Akulov; A.V. Romashchenko; L.A. Gerlinskaya; V.L. Ganimedov; M.I. Muchnaya; A.S. Sadovsky; I.V. Koptyug; A.A. Savelov; S. Yu Troitsky; Y.M. Moshkn; V.I. Bukhtiyarov; N.A. Kolchanov; R.Z. Sagdeev; V.M. Fomin

    2014-01-01

    textabstractInhalation of air-dispersed sub-micrometre and nano-sized particles presents a risk factor for animal and human health. Here, we show that nasal aerodynamics plays a pivotal role in the protection of the subterranean mole vole Ellobius talpinus from an increased exposure to

  12. Kinship structure and mating system in a solitary subterranean rodent, the silvery mole-rat

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Patzenhauerová, Hana; Bryja, Josef; Šumbera, R.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 64, č. 5 (2010), s. 757-767 ISSN 0340-5443 R&D Projects: GA AV ČR IAA601410802 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60930519 Keywords : subterranean rodent * kinship structure * mating system * dispersal Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 2.565, year: 2010

  13. CO2 efflux from subterranean nests of ant communities in a seasonal tropical forest, Thailand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hasin, Sasitorn; Ohashi, Mizue; Yamada, Akinori; Hashimoto, Yoshiaki; Tasen, Wattanachai; Kume, Tomonori; Yamane, Seiki

    2014-10-01

    Many ant species construct subterranean nests. The presence of their nests may explain soil respiration "hot spots", an important factor in the high CO2 efflux from tropical forests. However, no studies have directly measured CO2 efflux from ant nests. We established 61 experimental plots containing 13 subterranean ant species to evaluate the CO2 efflux from subterranean ant nests in a tropical seasonal forest, Thailand. We examined differences in nest CO2 efflux among ant species. We determined the effects of environmental factors on nest CO2 efflux and calculated an index of nest structure. The mean CO2 efflux from nests was significantly higher than those from the surrounding soil in the wet and dry seasons. The CO2 efflux was species-specific, showing significant differences among the 13 ant species. The soil moisture content significantly affected nest CO2 efflux, but there was no clear relationship between nest CO2 efflux and nest soil temperature. The diameter of the nest entrance hole affected CO2 efflux. However, there was no significant difference in CO2 efflux rates between single-hole and multiple-hole nests. Our results suggest that in a tropical forest ecosystem the increase in CO2 efflux from subterranean ant nests is caused by species-specific activity of ants, the nest soil environment, and nest structure.

  14. Adaptations to a Subterranean Environment and Longevity Revealed by the Analysis of Mole Rat Genomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xiaodong Fang

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Subterranean mammals spend their lives in dark, unventilated environments that are rich in carbon dioxide and ammonia and low in oxygen. Many of these animals are also long-lived and exhibit reduced aging-associated diseases, such as neurodegenerative disorders and cancer. We sequenced the genome of the Damaraland mole rat (DMR, Fukomys damarensis and improved the genome assembly of the naked mole rat (NMR, Heterocephalus glaber. Comparative genome analyses, along with the transcriptomes of related subterranean rodents, revealed candidate molecular adaptations for subterranean life and longevity, including a divergent insulin peptide, expression of oxygen-carrying globins in the brain, prevention of high CO2-induced pain perception, and enhanced ammonia detoxification. Juxtaposition of the genomes of DMR and other more conventional animals with the genome of NMR revealed several truly exceptional NMR features: unusual thermogenesis, an aberrant melatonin system, pain insensitivity, and unique processing of 28S rRNA. Together, these genomes and transcriptomes extend our understanding of subterranean adaptations, stress resistance, and longevity.

  15. Into the dark: patterns of middle ear adaptations in subterranean eulipotyphlan mammals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koyabu, Daisuke; Hosojima, Misato; Endo, Hideki

    2017-09-01

    Evolution of the middle ear ossicles was a key innovation for mammals, enhancing the transmission of airborne sound. Radiation into various habitats from a terrestrial environment resulted in diversification of the auditory mechanisms among mammals. However, due to the paucity of phylogenetically controlled investigations, how middle ear traits have diversified with functional specialization remains unclear. In order to identify the respective patterns for various lifestyles and to gain insights into fossil forms, we employed a high-resolution tomography technique and compared the middle ear morphology of eulipotyphlan species (moles, shrews and hedgehogs), a group that has radiated into various environments, such as terrestrial, aquatic and subterranean habitats. Three-dimensional geometric morphometric analysis was conducted within a phylogenetically controlled framework. Quantitative shapes were found to strongly reflect the degree of subterranean lifestyle and weakly involve phylogeny. Our analyses demonstrate that subterranean adaptation should include a relatively shorter anterior process of the malleus, an enlarged incus, an enlarged stapes footplate and a reduction of the orbicular apophysis. These traits arguably allow improving low-frequency sound transmission at low frequencies and inhibiting the low-frequency noise which disturbs the subterranean animals in hearing airborne sounds.

  16. A Preliminary Survey of Species Composition of Termites (Insecta: Isoptera) in Samunsam Wildlife Sanctuary, Sarawak.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamil, Norsyarizan; Ismail, Wan Nurainie Wan; Abidin, Siti Shamimi; Amaran, Mazdan Ali; Hazali, Ratnawati

    2017-07-01

    A survey on termite species composition was conducted in Samunsam Wildlife Sanctuary, Sarawak in February 2015. Overall 19 species of termite belonging to 13 genera and 8 subfamilies was found in the sanctuary. It was recorded the subfamily of Termitinae had the highest number of species (6 species, equal to 31.58% of total species), followed by Nasutermitinae (3 species, 15.79%), Macrotermitinae, Amitermitinae, Rhinotermitinae, Coptotermitinae, (2 species, 10.53% respectively), and Heterotermitinae, Termitogetoninae (1 species, 5.26% respectively). Since this rapid survey is the first termite assemblage representation in Samunsam Wildlife Sanctuary, the preliminary result may serve as the baseline data for termite composition in the area. Therefore, a whole coverage for the area within this sanctuary would definitely increase the number of termite species found in the sanctuary.

  17. Effects of permethrin treated wood on the subterranean termite Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) and comparison of solvent extraction for HPLC analysis of permethrin in wood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mark Mankowski; Blossie Boyd; Geoffrey Webb

    2016-01-01

    Permethrin is a common insecticide used in wood preservation. It is an effective synthetic pyrethroid that is considered to be less toxic to higher organisms than organochlorine insecticides. In wood preservation, it can be used in combination with fungicides such as 3-iodo-2-propynyl butyl carbamate (IPBC). Permethrin has a dual mode of action as it is a repellent and...

  18. The antibacterial protein lysozyme identified as the termite egg recognition pheromone.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kenji Matsuura

    Full Text Available Social insects rely heavily on pheromone communication to maintain their sociality. Egg protection is one of the most fundamental social behaviours in social insects. The recent discovery of the termite-egg mimicking fungus 'termite-ball' and subsequent studies on termite egg protection behaviour have shown that termites can be manipulated by using the termite egg recognition pheromone (TERP, which strongly evokes the egg-carrying and -grooming behaviours of workers. Despite the great scientific and economic importance, TERP has not been identified because of practical difficulties. Herein we identified the antibacterial protein lysozyme as the TERP. We isolated the target protein using ion-exchange and hydrophobic interaction chromatography, and the MALDI-TOF MS analysis showed a molecular size of 14.5 kDa. We found that the TERP provided antibacterial activity against a gram-positive bacterium. Among the currently known antimicrobial proteins, the molecular size of 14.5 kDa limits the target to lysozyme. Termite lysozymes obtained from eggs and salivary glands, and even hen egg lysozyme, showed a strong termite egg recognition activity. Besides eggs themselves, workers also supply lysozyme to eggs through frequent egg-grooming, by which egg surfaces are coated with saliva containing lysozyme. Reverse transcript PCR analysis showed that mRNA of termite lysozyme was expressed in both salivary glands and eggs. Western blot analysis confirmed that lysozyme production begins in immature eggs in queen ovaries. This is the first identification of proteinaceous pheromone in social insects. Researchers have focused almost exclusively on hydrocarbons when searching for recognition pheromones in social insects. The present finding of a proteinaceous pheromone represents a major step forward in, and result in the broadening of, the search for recognition pheromones. This novel function of lysozyme as a termite pheromone illuminates the profound influence

  19. Permanent groundwater storage in basaltic dyke fractures and termite mound viability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mège, Daniel; Rango, Tewodros

    2010-04-01

    Many basaltic dykes of the Ethiopian flood basalt province are observed in the northwestern Ethiopian lowlands. In this area, the termites preferentially build their epigeous mounds on the top of dolerite dykes. The relationship between termite mounds and dykes is investigated from the analysis of their distribution along one of these dykes, of thickness 2-5 m, that we could follow over 2000 m. Termite mounds are periodically spaced (mean distance 63 m, R2 = 0.995), and located exclusively where the topographic relief of the dyke is not more than 2 m above the surrounding area. From these observations and from the geological context, a hydrological circuit model is proposed in which (1) dykes are preferential conduits for groundwater drainage during the rainy season due to pervasive jointing, (2) during the dry season, the portion of the dyke forming a local topographic relief area dries up more quickly than the surroundings, the elevation difference between the dyke summit and the surroundings being a factor restricting termite mound development. For dyke topographic relief >2 m, drying is an obstacle for maintaining the appropriate humidity for the termite colony life. Periodic termite mound spacing is unlikely to be related to dyke or other geological properties. It is more likely related to termite population behaviour, perhaps to clay shortage, which restricts termite population growth by limiting the quantity of building material available for mound extension, and triggers exploration for a new colonization site that will be located along the dyke at a distance from the former colony that may be controlled by the extent of the zone covered by its trail pheromones. This work brings out the importance of dykes in channelling and storing groundwater in semiarid regions, and shows that dykes can store groundwater permanently in such settings even though the dry season is half the year long. It contributes also to shedding light on water supply conditions

  20. Exploring the potential for actinobacteria as defensive symbionts in fungus-growing termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Visser, Anna A; Nobre, Tânia; Currie, Cameron R; Aanen, Duur K; Poulsen, Michael

    2012-05-01

    In fungus-growing termites, fungi of the subgenus Pseudoxylaria threaten colony health through substrate competition with the termite fungus (Termitomyces). The potential mechanisms with which termites suppress Pseudoxylaria have remained unknown. Here we explore if Actinobacteria potentially play a role as defensive symbionts against Pseudoxylaria in fungus-growing termites. We sampled for Actinobacteria from 30 fungus-growing termite colonies, spanning the three main termite genera and two geographically distant sites. Our isolations yielded 360 Actinobacteria, from which we selected subsets for morphological (288 isolates, grouped in 44 morphotypes) and for 16S rRNA (35 isolates, spanning the majority of morphotypes) characterisation. Actinobacteria were found throughout all sampled nests and colony parts and, phylogenetically, they are interspersed with Actinobacteria from origins other than fungus-growing termites, indicating lack of specificity. Antibiotic-activity screening of 288 isolates against the fungal cultivar and competitor revealed that most of the Actinobacteria-produced molecules with antifungal activity. A more detailed bioassay on 53 isolates, to test the specificity of antibiotics, showed that many Actinobacteria inhibit both Pseudoxylaria and Termitomyces, and that the cultivar fungus generally is more susceptible to inhibition than the competitor. This suggests that either defensive symbionts are not present in the system or that they, if present, represent a subset of the community isolated. If so, the antibiotics must be used in a targeted fashion, being applied to specific areas by the termites. We describe the first discovery of an assembly of antibiotic-producing Actinobacteria occurring in fungus-growing termite nests. However, due to the diversity found, and the lack of both phylogenetic and bioactivity specificity, further work is necessary for a better understanding of the putative role of antibiotic-producing bacteria in the fungus

  1. Convergent Reduction of Ovariole Number Associated with Subterranean Life in Beetles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faille, Arnaud; Pluot-Sigwalt, Dominique

    2015-01-01

    Background Some species of obligate cavernicolous beetles are known to possess a unique feature—a contraction of the larval cycle. In contrast to many other subterranean beetles, life-cycle contraction in Trechini ground beetles (Carabidae) is correlated with a reduction in the number of eggs and a drastic reduction in the number of ovarioles. This remarkable peculiarity has only been reported for a small number of closely related species. Results We give a description of the female internal reproductive system for six species of Trechini, including five subterranean species, with a particular focus on the western Pyrenean radiation of Aphaenops, a group for which nothing is known regarding the early life stages. We redescribe the internal female genitalia of A. crypticola Linder. Study of the ovarioles allowed us to infer the postembryonic development of the larvae for each species examined. We then used a phylogenetic framework to recognize two independent reductions in the number of ovarioles in the Pyrenean lineage. We discuss the multiple convergent evolutions in ovariole number and the potential link between a reduction of ovariole number and troglobiomorphism in a phylogenetic context. Conclusions There is an extreme reduction in ovariole number and size within the species studied; the eggs produced by small ovarioles have a remarkably large size. A reduction to one ovariole has occurred independently at least twice in this subterranean group. A reduction in the number of ovarioles in ground beetles is one of the striking consequences of subterranean specialization and it is correlated with another remarkable adaptation of subterranean beetles, a reduction in the number of larval instars. PMID:26151557

  2. Convergent Reduction of Ovariole Number Associated with Subterranean Life in Beetles.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnaud Faille

    Full Text Available Some species of obligate cavernicolous beetles are known to possess a unique feature-a contraction of the larval cycle. In contrast to many other subterranean beetles, life-cycle contraction in Trechini ground beetles (Carabidae is correlated with a reduction in the number of eggs and a drastic reduction in the number of ovarioles. This remarkable peculiarity has only been reported for a small number of closely related species.We give a description of the female internal reproductive system for six species of Trechini, including five subterranean species, with a particular focus on the western Pyrenean radiation of Aphaenops, a group for which nothing is known regarding the early life stages. We redescribe the internal female genitalia of A. crypticola Linder. Study of the ovarioles allowed us to infer the postembryonic development of the larvae for each species examined. We then used a phylogenetic framework to recognize two independent reductions in the number of ovarioles in the Pyrenean lineage. We discuss the multiple convergent evolutions in ovariole number and the potential link between a reduction of ovariole number and troglobiomorphism in a phylogenetic context.There is an extreme reduction in ovariole number and size within the species studied; the eggs produced by small ovarioles have a remarkably large size. A reduction to one ovariole has occurred independently at least twice in this subterranean group. A reduction in the number of ovarioles in ground beetles is one of the striking consequences of subterranean specialization and it is correlated with another remarkable adaptation of subterranean beetles, a reduction in the number of larval instars.

  3. Termites community as environmental bioindicators in highlands: a case study in eastern slopes of Mount Slamet, Central Java

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    IDHAM SAKTI HARAHAP

    2011-10-01

    Full Text Available Pribadi T,Raffiudin R,HarahapIS (2011Termites community as environmental bioindicators in highlands: a case study in eastern slopes of Mount Slamet, Central Java. Biodiversitas 12: 235-240. Termites ecological behaviour is much affected by land use change and disturbance level. Their variation in diversity can be used as bioindicator of environmental quality. However, termite community response to land use changes and habitat disturbance in highland ecosystems remains poorly understood. This study was conducted to investigate the response of termite community to land use intensification and to explore their role as environmental bioindicator in Mount Slamet. A standard survey protocol was used to collect termites in five land use typesof various disturbance levels,i.e. protected forest, recreation forest, production forest,agroforestry, and urban area. It was found two termite families i.e. Rhinotermitidae and Termitidae with seven species, i.e Schedorhinotermes javanicus, Procapritermes sp, Pericapritermes semarangi, Macrotermes gilvus, Microtermes insperatus, Nasutitermes javanicus, and N. matanganensis. Termite species’ richness and evenness, Shannon-Wiener index, relative abundance, and biomass of termite were declined along with the land use types and disturbance level from protected forest to urban area. Habitat disturbance was the main declining factor of termite diversity. Termite composition changed along with the land use disturbance level. Soil feeding termites were sensitive to the disturbance – they were not found in urban area. Hence, their presence or absence can be used as environmental bioindicator to detect habitat disturbance.

  4. Response of Termite (Blattodea: Termitoidae) Assemblages to Lower Subtropical Forest Succession: A Case Study in Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Zhi-Qiang; Ke, Yun-Ling; Zeng, Wen-Hui; Zhang, Shi-Jun; Wu, Wen-Jing

    2016-02-01

    Termite (Blattodea: Termitoidae) assemblages have important ecological functions and vary in structure between habitats, but have not been studied in lower subtropical forests. To examine whether differences in the richness and relative abundance of termite species and functional groups occur in lower subtropical regions, termite assemblages were sampled in Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve, China, among pine forest, pine and broad-leaved mixed forest (mixed forest), and monsoon evergreen broad-leaved forest (monsoon forest). The dominant functional group was wood-feeding termites (family Termitidae), and the mixed forest hosted the greatest richness and relative abundance. Soil-feeding termites were absent from the lower subtropical system, while humus-feeding termites were sporadically distributed in mixed forest and monsoon forest. The species richness and functional group abundance of termites in our site may be linked to the forest succession. Altitude, soil temperature, air temperature, surface air relative humidity, and litter depth were significant influences on species and functional group diversity.

  5. Towards an integrated understanding of the consequences of fungus domestication on the fungus-growing termite gut microbiota

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomas-Poulsen, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Approximately 30 million years ago (MYA), the subfamily of higher termites Macrotermitinae domesticated a fungus, Termitomyces, as the main plant decomposer and food source for the termite host. The origin of fungiculture shifted the composition of the termite gut microbiota, and some of the func......Approximately 30 million years ago (MYA), the subfamily of higher termites Macrotermitinae domesticated a fungus, Termitomyces, as the main plant decomposer and food source for the termite host. The origin of fungiculture shifted the composition of the termite gut microbiota, and some...... will be powerful, particularly if executed in comparative analyses across the well-established congruent termite-fungus phylogenies. This will allow for testing if gut communities have evolved in parallel with their hosts, with implications for our general understanding of the evolution of gut symbiont communities...

  6. Termites in the hominin diet: a meta-analysis of termite genera, species and castes as a dietary supplement for South African robust australopithecines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesnik, Julie J

    2014-06-01

    Termite foraging by chimpanzees and present-day modern humans is a well-documented phenomenon, making it a plausible hypothesis that early hominins were also utilizing this resource. Hominin termite foraging has been credited by some to be the explanation for the unexpected carbon isotope signatures present in South African hominin teeth, which suggest the diet was different from that of extant non-human great apes, consisting of a significant amount of resources that are not from woody-plants. Grass-eating termites are one potential resource that could contribute to the carbon signature. However, not all termites eat grasses, and in fact, the termites that are most widely consumed by chimpanzees and by many present-day human populations at best have a mixed diet that includes small amounts of grasses. Here I review the ecology of termites and how it affects their desirability as a food resource for hominins, and conduct a meta-analysis of nutritional values for various genera, species and castes from the literature. Termites are very diverse, even within species, and this variability affects both their carbon signatures and nutritional value, hindering generalizations regarding the contribution of termites to the hominin diet. It is concluded here that a combination of soldiers and alates of the genus Macrotermes be used to model the insectivory component of the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diet due to their significant amounts of energy-yielding nutrients and potential role as a critical resource for supporting larger-brained hominins. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  7. IDENTIFICATION, PRODUCTION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF NOVEL LIGNASE PROTEINS FROM TERMITES FOR DEPOLYMERIZATION OF LIGNOCELLULOSE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    SLACK, JEFFREY, M.

    2012-12-06

    Wood is a potential source for biofuels such as ethanol if it can be digested into sugars and fermented by yeast. Biomass derived from wood is a challenging substrate for ethanol production since it is made of lignin and cellulose which cannot be broken down easily into fermentable sugars. Some insects, and termites in particular, are specialized at using enzymes in their guts to digest wood into sugars. If termite gut enzymes could be made abundantly by a recombinant protein expression vector system, they could be applied to an industrial process to make biofuels from wood. In this study, a large cDNA library of relevant termite genes was made using termites fed a normal diet, or a diet with added lignin. A subtracted library yielded genes that were overexpressed in the presence of lignin. Termite gut enzyme genes were identified and cloned into recombinant insect viruses called baculoviruses. Using our PERLXpress system for protein expression, these termite gene recombinant baculoviruses were prepared and used to infect insect larvae, which then expressed abundant recombinant termite enzymes. Many of these expressed enzymes were prepared to very high purity, and the activities were studied in conjunction with collaborators at Purdue University. Recombinant termite enzymes expressed in caterpillars were shown to be able to release sugars from wood. Mixing different combinations of these enzymes increased the amount of sugars released from a model woody biomass substrate. The most economical, fastest and energy conserving way to prepare termite enzymes expressed by recombinant baculoviruses in caterpillars was by making crude liquid homogenates. Making enzymes stable in homogenates therefore was a priority. During the course of these studies, improvements were made to the recombinant baculovirus expression platform so that caterpillar-derived homogenates containing expressed termite enzymes would be more stable. These improvements in the baculoviruses included

  8. Trees as indicators of subterranean migration of tritium at a commercial shallow land radioactive waste disposal site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rickard, W.H.; Kirby, L.J.

    1984-09-01

    Leaf water and tree sap collected from deciduous trees in a natural forest growing outside the fenced exclusion area of the Maxey Flats Waste Disposal Facility in eastern Kentucky, USA were radiochemically analyzed to detect movement of tritium via subterranean flows of water at depths of three meters. These data indicate that trees can be used to detect the subterranean migration of tritium from shallow land burial sites. 4 references, 5 figures, 1 table

  9. Termites Are Resistant to the Effects of Fire at Multiple Spatial Scales.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah C Avitabile

    Full Text Available Termites play an important ecological role in many ecosystems, particularly in nutrient-poor arid and semi-arid environments. We examined the distribution and occurrence of termites in the fire-prone, semi-arid mallee region of south-eastern Australia. In addition to periodic large wildfires, land managers use fire as a tool to achieve both asset protection and ecological outcomes in this region. Twelve taxa of termites were detected by using systematic searches and grids of cellulose baits at 560 sites, clustered in 28 landscapes selected to represent different fire mosaic patterns. There was no evidence of a significant relationship between the occurrence of termite species and time-since-fire at the site scale. Rather, the occurrence of species was related to habitat features such as the density of mallee trees and large logs (>10 cm diameter. Species richness was greater in chenopod mallee vegetation on heavier soils in swales, rather than Triodia mallee vegetation of the sandy dune slopes. At the landscape scale, there was little evidence that the frequency of occurrence of termite species was related to fire, and no evidence that habitat heterogeneity generated by fire influenced termite species richness. The most influential factor at the landscape scale was the environmental gradient represented by average annual rainfall. Although termites may be associated with flammable habitat components (e.g. dead wood, they appear to be buffered from the effects of fire by behavioural traits, including nesting underground, and the continued availability of dead wood after fire. There is no evidence to support the hypothesis that a fine-scale, diverse mosaic of post-fire age-classes will enhance the diversity of termites. Rather, termites appear to be resistant to the effects of fire at multiple spatial scales.

  10. A juvenile hormone analogue with potential for termite control: laboratory tests with .I.Reticulitermes santonensis, Reticulitermes flaviceps./I. and .I.Coptotermes formosanus./I. (Isopt., Rhinotermitidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hrdý, Ivan; Kuldová, Jelena; Wimmer, Zdeněk

    2001-01-01

    Roč. 125, - (2001), s. 403-411 ISSN 0931-2048 R&D Projects: GA ČR GA522/97/0126 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z4055905 Keywords : juvenile hormone analogue Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 0.354, year: 2001

  11. Trees as indicators of subterranean water flow from a retired radioactive waste disposal site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rickard, W.H.; Kirby, L.J.

    1987-01-01

    Tree sampling helped locate a subterranean flow of tritiated water from a low-level radioactive waste disposal site that had not been detected by well water monitoring alone. Deciduous trees growing in a natural forest on the hillsides downslope from the site were sampled for the presence of tritiated water in sap of maple trees and in leaf water extracted from oak and hickory trees. Elevated concentrations of 3 H were detected in the leaf water extracted from several trees located 50 m downslope from the western boundary of the fenced exclusion zone. A 3-m-deep well drilled near these trees indicated that the source of tritiated water was a narrow zone of subterranean flow

  12. Seismic communication in a blind subterranean mammal: a major somatosensory mechanism in adaptive evolution underground.

    OpenAIRE

    Nevo, E; Heth, G; Pratt, H

    1991-01-01

    Seismic communication, through low-frequency and patterned substrate-borne vibrations that are generated by head thumping, and which travel long distances underground, is important in the nonvisual communication of subterranean mole rats of the Spalax ehrenbergi superspecies (2n = 52, 54, 58, and 60) in Israel. This importance pertains both intraspecifically in adaptation and interspecifically in speciation. Neurophysiologic, behavioral, and anatomic findings in this study suggest that the me...

  13. Evaluation of chemical, botanical and cultural managements of termites control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dufera, Jiregna Tasisa; Fufa, Tena Gobena

    2014-01-15

    The study was conducted at Bojdi Dirmaji District, Wollega Zone (Western Ethiopia) using Randomized Complete Block Design with three replications. Eight different treatments of chemical, botanical and cultural control methods independently and in combinations were evaluated to identify the most effective method which is environmentally sustainable and economically feasible in controlling the termite problems. The data were collected over 12 weeks and analysis of variance showed significant difference among the treatments for all parameters. Maesa lanceolata 100 g alone showed lower percent damage between 2-8 weeks (33.3%), later on after 9-12 weeks it become non significant and the destructed mound was recovered. Mound treated with Diazinon 60% EC at the rate of 25 and 20 mL alone and Diazinon 60% EC combination with queen removal at rate of 15 and 10 mL showed significant control overall the treatment. From the results of the study the lower rate of Diazinon 60% EC (10 mL per mound) and queen removal could be better option to manage the termite problem and could be more sustainable and integrated manner in the study area.

  14. Ventilation of subterranean CO2 and Eddy covariance incongruities over carbonate ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Domingo

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available Measurements of CO2 fluxes with Eddy Covariance (EC systems are ongoing over different ecosystems around the world, through different measuring networks, in order to assess the carbon balance of these ecosystems. In carbonate ecosystems, characterized by the presence of subterranean pores and cavities, ventilation of the CO2 accumulated in these cavities and pores can act as an extra source of CO2 exchange between the ecosystem and the atmosphere. In this work we analyse the effect of the subterranean heterogeneity of a carbonate ecosystem on measurements of CO2 fluxes by comparing measurements from two EC systems with distinct footprints. Results showed that both EC systems agreed for measurements of evapotranspiration and of CO2 in periods when respiratory and photosynthetic processes were dominant (biological periods, with a regression slope of 0.99 and 0.97, respectively. However, in periods when the main source of CO2 comes from the ventilation of subterranean pores and cavities (abiotic periods agreement is not good, with a regression slope of 0.6. Ground-penetrating radar measurements of the sub-surface confirmed the existence of high sub-surface heterogeneity that, combined with different footprints, lead to differences in the measurements of the two EC systems. These results show that measurements of CO2 fluxes with Eddy covariance systems over carbonate ecosystems must be taken carefully, as they may not be representative of the ecosystem under consideration.

  15. The deep subterranean environment as a potential model system in ecological, biogeographical and evolutionary research

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Sánchez-Fernández

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available One of the main challenges in ecology, biogeography and evolution is to understand and predict how species may respond to environmental changes. Here we focus on the deep subterranean environment, a system that minimizes most of the typical uncertainties of studies on epigean (surface environments. Caves are relatively homogeneous habitats with nearly constant environmental conditions and simplified biological communities, allowing to control for biotic interactions. Thus, this particular system could be considered a natural habitat whose environmental conditions are similar to what can be reproduced in a laboratory, being an ideal model system for ecological, biogeographical and evolutionary studies. Subterranean species may potentially be used to assess the capability to persist in situ in a global change scenario, as they cannot accommodate to drastic changing conditions by behavioural plasticity, microhabitat use or by migrating to distant, more suitable areas, something frequent in epigean environments. In order to provide accurate predictions of the response of the subterranean biodiversity to climate change, we encourage evolutionary biologist, biogeographers and conservation biologist to work in this interesting ecosystem.

  16. Sleep in the Cape Mole Rat: A Short-Sleeping Subterranean Rodent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kruger, Jean-Leigh; Gravett, Nadine; Bhagwandin, Adhil; Bennett, Nigel C; Archer, Elizabeth K; Manger, Paul R

    2016-01-01

    The Cape mole rat Georychus capensis is a solitary subterranean rodent found in the western and southern Cape of South Africa. This approximately 200-gram bathyergid rodent shows a nocturnal circadian rhythm, but sleep in this species is yet to be investigated. Using telemetric recordings of the electroencephalogram (EEG) and electromyogram (EMG) in conjunction with video recordings, we were able to show that the Cape mole rat, like all other rodents, has sleep periods composed of both rapid eye movement (REM) and slow-wave (non-REM) sleep. These mole rats spent on average 15.4 h awake, 7.1 h in non-REM sleep and 1.5 h in REM sleep each day. Cape mole rats sleep substantially less than other similarly sized terrestrial rodents but have a similar percentage of total sleep time occupied by REM sleep. In addition, the duration of both non-REM and REM sleep episodes was markedly shorter in the Cape mole rat than has been observed in terrestrial rodents. Interestingly, these features (total sleep time and episode duration) are similar to those observed in another subterranean bathyergid mole rat, i.e. Fukomys mechowii. Thus, there appears to be a bathyergid type of sleep amongst the rodents that may be related to their environment and the effect of this on their circadian rhythm. Investigating further species of bathyergid mole rats may fully define the emerging picture of sleep in these subterranean African rodents. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  17. Protozoacidal Trojan-Horse: use of a ligand-lytic peptide for selective destruction of symbiotic protozoa within termite guts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sethi, Amit; Delatte, Jennifer; Foil, Lane; Husseneder, Claudia

    2014-01-01

    For novel biotechnology-based termite control, we developed a cellulose bait containing freeze-dried genetically engineered yeast which expresses a protozoacidal lytic peptide attached to a protozoa-recognizing ligand. The yeast acts as a 'Trojan-Horse' that kills the cellulose-digesting protozoa in the termite gut, which leads to the death of termites, presumably due to inefficient cellulose digestion. The ligand targets the lytic peptide specifically to protozoa, thereby increasing its protozoacidal efficiency while protecting non-target organisms. After ingestion of the bait, the yeast propagates in the termite's gut and is spread throughout the termite colony via social interactions. This novel paratransgenesis-based strategy could be a good supplement for current termite control using fortified biological control agents in addition to chemical insecticides. Moreover, this ligand-lytic peptide system could be used for drug development to selectively target disease-causing protozoa in humans or other vertebrates.

  18. Termites as ecological indicators of mine-land rehabilitation in tropical Australia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hinz, D.A.

    2001-01-01

    This paper presents examples from field research of termites as indicators of rehabilitation success in the wet-dry tropics at Nabalco's bauxite mine, Gove, Australia and in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Field studies indicate that soil-plant-animal interactions are crucial in determining the recovery of disturbed land and that termites play an over-riding role in the process. Termites are seen as ecological indicators for successful soil and vegetation development in humid tropical environments. In land rehabilitation, termites help to create healthy, self-regulated vegetation systems that integrate with the surrounding landscapes and build structures and functions equal to those of the pre-disturbed system. They are reliable in signaling the health and stress factors of a system and provide a predictable response

  19. LBA-ECO ND-04 Termite Mound and Soil Characterization, Amazonas, Brazil: 1999-2001

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: This data set reports the results of a comprehensive study of mound building termites at the Embrapa research station in the Distrito Agropecuario da...

  20. LBA-ECO ND-04 Termite Mound and Soil Characterization, Amazonas, Brazil: 1999-2001

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set reports the results of a comprehensive study of mound building termites at the Embrapa research station in the Distrito Agropecuario da SUFRAMA,...

  1. Characterization of magnetic material in the mound-building termite Macrotermes gilvus in Southeast Asia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Esa, Mohammad Faris Mohammad; Hassan, Ibrahim Haji [School of Chemical Sciences and Food Technology, Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor (Malaysia); Rahim, Faszly; Hanifah, Sharina Abu [School of Environmental Scieces and Natural Resources Faculty of Science and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor (Malaysia)

    2015-09-25

    Magnetic material such as magnetite are known as particles that respond to external magnetic field with their ferromagnetic properties as they are believed contribute to in responding to the geomagnetic field. These particles are used by terrestrial animals such as termites for navigation and orientation. Since our earth react as giant magnetic bar, the magnitude of this magnetic field present by intensity and direction (inclination and direction). The magnetic properties and presence of magnetite in termites Macrotermes gilvus, common mound-building termite were tested. M. gilvus termites was tested with a Vibrating Sample Magnetometer VSM to determine the magnetic properties of specimen. The crushed body sample was characterized with X-Ray Diffraction XRD to show the existent of magnetic material (magnetite) in the specimens. Results from VSM indicate that M. gilvus has diamagnetism properties. The characterization by XRD shows the existent of magnetic material in our specimen in low concentration.

  2. Characterization of magnetic material in the mound-building termite Macrotermes gilvus in Southeast Asia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Esa, Mohammad Faris Mohammad; Hassan, Ibrahim Haji; Rahim, Faszly; Hanifah, Sharina Abu

    2015-01-01

    Magnetic material such as magnetite are known as particles that respond to external magnetic field with their ferromagnetic properties as they are believed contribute to in responding to the geomagnetic field. These particles are used by terrestrial animals such as termites for navigation and orientation. Since our earth react as giant magnetic bar, the magnitude of this magnetic field present by intensity and direction (inclination and direction). The magnetic properties and presence of magnetite in termites Macrotermes gilvus, common mound-building termite were tested. M. gilvus termites was tested with a Vibrating Sample Magnetometer VSM to determine the magnetic properties of specimen. The crushed body sample was characterized with X-Ray Diffraction XRD to show the existent of magnetic material (magnetite) in the specimens. Results from VSM indicate that M. gilvus has diamagnetism properties. The characterization by XRD shows the existent of magnetic material in our specimen in low concentration

  3. Characterization of magnetic material in the mound-building termite Macrotermes gilvus in Southeast Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Esa, Mohammad Faris Mohammad; Rahim, Faszly; Hassan, Ibrahim Haji; Hanifah, Sharina Abu

    2015-09-01

    Magnetic material such as magnetite are known as particles that respond to external magnetic field with their ferromagnetic properties as they are believed contribute to in responding to the geomagnetic field. These particles are used by terrestrial animals such as termites for navigation and orientation. Since our earth react as giant magnetic bar, the magnitude of this magnetic field present by intensity and direction (inclination and direction). The magnetic properties and presence of magnetite in termites Macrotermes gilvus, common mound-building termite were tested. M. gilvus termites was tested with a Vibrating Sample Magnetometer VSM to determine the magnetic properties of specimen. The crushed body sample was characterized with X-Ray Diffraction XRD to show the existent of magnetic material (magnetite) in the specimens. Results from VSM indicate that M. gilvus has diamagnetism properties. The characterization by XRD shows the existent of magnetic material in our specimen in low concentration.

  4. A phylogenetic community approach for studying termite communities in a West African savannah.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hausberger, Barbara; Korb, Judith

    2015-10-01

    Termites play fundamental roles in tropical ecosystems, and mound-building species in particular are crucial in enhancing species diversity, from plants to mammals. However, it is still unclear which factors govern the occurrence and assembly of termite communities. A phylogenetic community approach and null models of species assembly were used to examine structuring processes associated with termite community assembly in a pristine savannah. Overall, we did not find evidence for a strong influence of interspecific competition or environmental filtering in structuring these communities. However, the presence of a single species, the mound-building termite Macrotermes bellicosus, left a strong signal on structuring and led to clustered communities of more closely related species. Hence, this species changes the assembly rules for a whole community. Our results show the fundamental importance of a single insect species for community processes, suggesting that more attention to insect species is warranted when developing conservation strategies. © 2015 The Author(s).

  5. Caste-Specific and Sex-Specific Expression of Chemoreceptor Genes in a Termite

    OpenAIRE

    Mitaka, Yuki; Kobayashi, Kazuya; Mikheyev, Alexander; Tin, Mandy M. Y.; Watanabe, Yutaka; Matsuura, Kenji

    2016-01-01

    The sophisticated colony organization of eusocial insects is primarily maintained through the utilization of pheromones. The regulation of these complex social interactions requires intricate chemoreception systems. The recent publication of the genome of Zootermopsis nevadensis opened a new avenue to study molecular basis of termite caste systems. Although there has been a growing interest in the termite chemoreception system that regulates their sophisticated caste system, the relationship ...

  6. Density-body mass relationships: Inconsistent intercontinental patterns among termite feeding-groups

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dahlsjö, Cecilia A. L.; Parr, Catherine L.; Malhi, Yadvinder; Meir, Patrick; Rahman, Homathevi; Eggleton, Paul

    2015-02-01

    Allometric relationships are useful for estimating and understanding resource distribution in assemblages with species of different masses. Damuth's law states that body mass scales with population density as M-0.75, where M is body mass and -0.75 is the slope. In this study we used Damuth's law (M-0.75) as a null hypothesis to examine the relationship between body mass and population density for termite feeding-groups in three different countries and regions (Cameroon, West Africa; Peru South America; and Malaysia SE Asia). We found that none of the feeding-groups had a relationship where M-0.75 while the data suggested that population density-body mass relationships for true soil-feeding termites in Cameroon (M2.7) and wood-feeding termites in Peru (M1.5) were significantly different from the expected values given by Damuth's law. The dominance of large-bodied true soil-feeding termites in Cameroon and the absence of fungus-growing termites from Peru suggest that these allometric patterns are due to heterogeneities in termite biogeographical evolution. Additionally, as these feeding-groups have higher population density than expected by their body masses it may be suggested that they also have a higher energy throughput than expected. The results presented here may be used to gain further understanding of resource distribution among termite feeding-groups across regions and an insight into the importance of evolutionary history and biogeography on allometric patterns. Further understanding of population density-body mass relationships in termite feeding-groups may also improve understanding of the role these feeding-groups play in ecosystem processes in different regions.

  7. Natalamycin A, an ansamycin from a termite-associated Streptomyces sp

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kim, Ki Hyun; Ramadhar, Timothy R.; Beemelmanns, Christine

    2014-01-01

    We report a preliminary functional and complete structural characterization of a highly unusual geldanamycin analog, natalamycin A, that was isolated from Streptomyces strain M56 recovered from a South African nest of Macrotermes natalensis termites. Bioassay-guided fractionation based on antifun......We report a preliminary functional and complete structural characterization of a highly unusual geldanamycin analog, natalamycin A, that was isolated from Streptomyces strain M56 recovered from a South African nest of Macrotermes natalensis termites. Bioassay-guided fractionation based...

  8. Differential Ecological Specificity of Protist and Bacterial Microbiomes across a Set of Termite Species

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lena Waidele

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The gut microbiome of lower termites comprises protists and bacteria that help these insects to digest cellulose and to thrive on wood. The composition of the termite gut microbiome correlates with phylogenetic distance of the animal host and host ecology (diet in termites collected from their natural environment. However, carryover of transient microbes from host collection sites are an experimental concern and might contribute to the ecological imprints on the termite gut microbiome. Here, we set out to test whether an ecological imprint on the termite gut microbiome remains, when focusing on the persistent microbiome. Therefore, we kept five termite species under strictly controlled dietary conditions and subsequently profiled their protist and bacterial gut microbial communities using 18S and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing. The species differed in their ecology; while three of the investigated species were wood-dwellers that feed on the piece of wood they live in and never leave except for the mating flight, the other two species were foragers that regularly leave their nests to forage for food. Despite these prominent ecological differences, protist microbiome structure aligned with phylogenetic relatedness of termite host species. Conversely, bacterial communities seemed more flexible, suggesting that microbiome structure aligned more strongly with the foraging and wood-dwelling ecologies. Interestingly, protist and bacterial community alpha-diversity correlated, suggesting either putative interactions between protists and bacteria, or that both types of microbes in the termite gut follow shared structuring principles. Taken together, our results add to the notion that bacterial communities are more variable over evolutionary time than protist communities and might react more flexibly to changes in host ecology.

  9. Differential Ecological Specificity of Protist and Bacterial Microbiomes across a Set of Termite Species

    KAUST Repository

    Waidele, Lena

    2017-12-19

    The gut microbiome of lower termites comprises protists and bacteria that help these insects to digest cellulose and to thrive on wood. The composition of the termite gut microbiome correlates with phylogenetic distance of the animal host and host ecology (diet) in termites collected from their natural environment. However, carryover of transient microbes from host collection sites are an experimental concern and might contribute to the ecological imprints on the termite gut microbiome. Here, we set out to test whether an ecological imprint on the termite gut microbiome remains, when focusing on the persistent microbiome. Therefore, we kept five termite species under strictly controlled dietary conditions and subsequently profiled their protist and bacterial gut microbial communities using 18S and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing. The species differed in their ecology; while three of the investigated species were wood-dwellers that feed on the piece of wood they live in and never leave except for the mating flight, the other two species were foragers that regularly leave their nests to forage for food. Despite these prominent ecological differences, protist microbiome structure aligned with phylogenetic relatedness of termite host species. Conversely, bacterial communities seemed more flexible, suggesting that microbiome structure aligned more strongly with the foraging and wood-dwelling ecologies. Interestingly, protist and bacterial community alpha-diversity correlated, suggesting either putative interactions between protists and bacteria, or that both types of microbes in the termite gut follow shared structuring principles. Taken together, our results add to the notion that bacterial communities are more variable over evolutionary time than protist communities and might react more flexibly to changes in host ecology.

  10. A Novel Approach to Managing Invasive Termite Species Using Genetically Engineered Bacteria

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-08-01

    Coptotcnnes fonnosanus; lytic peptide; defaunation; tennite gut bacteria ; yeast 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF: 17. LIMITATION OF 18. NUMBER 19a. NAME OF...genetically modified bacteria in a termite colony ; no detrimental gene products were expressed for termite control. Preliminary data suggested that lytic...defaunated within 4 weeks. The yeast -based prototype paratransgenesis system provided proof of concept that a symbiotic microorganism can act as a “Trojan

  11. Efficiency of fipronil in the control of the mound-building termite, Nasutitermes sp. (Isoptera: Termitidae) in sugarcane

    OpenAIRE

    Melo Fo, Reinaldo M.; Veiga, Antônio F.S.L.

    1998-01-01

    The efficiency of fipronil was evaluated in field conditions at different dosages and two formulations, against Nasutitermes sp. (isopteran: Termitidae) in sugarcane (Sccharum sp.). Termite mounds were indentified, measured and drilled until cellulosic chamber to allow insecticide application. Nine treatments were tested with ten replications in a completely randomized design and each termite mound considered as an experimental unit. after 50 days the termite mounds were opened and the mortal...

  12. Temperature fluctuations inside savanna termite mounds: Do size and plant shade matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ndlovu, M; Pérez-Rodríguez, A

    2018-05-01

    Mound building termites are key ecosystem engineers of subtropical savanna regions. Mounds allow termites to maintain suitable conditions for termite reproduction and food cultivation ('fungus gardens'). We studied how the internal mound temperature of Macrotermes natalensis, a dominant mound-building termite of the subtropical savanna of southern Africa, responds to a number of environmental variables. We used general additive mixed models (GAMM) to determine how external temperature, mound size (volume) and the amount of vegetation shade affects mound internal temperature over a 24-h period. Internal mound temperature varied daily following changes of the external temperature, although the range of variation was much smaller. Active termite mounds maintained a higher internal temperature than inactive ones, and mound activity reinforced the positive effect of mound size and moderated the negative effect of vegetation shade on internal temperatures. In turn, external temperature fluctuations equally affected active and inactive mounds. Large mounds maintained near optimal internal temperatures compared to smaller sized mounds. We therefore conclude that termite mound size is a stronger determinant of internal mound temperature stability compared to plant shade cover. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Large herbivores maintain termite-caused differences in herbaceous species diversity patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Okullo, Paul; Moe, Stein R

    2012-09-01

    Termites and large herbivores affect African savanna plant communities. Both functional groups are also important for nutrient redistribution across the landscape. We conducted an experiment to study how termites and large herbivores, alone and in combination, affect herbaceous species diversity patterns in an African savanna. Herbaceous vegetation on large vegetated Macrotermes mounds (with and without large herbivores) and on adjacent savanna areas (with and without large herbivores) was monitored over three years in Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda. We found substantial differences in species richness, alpha diversity, evenness, and stability between termite mound herbaceous vegetation and adjacent savanna vegetation. Within months of fencing, levels of species richness, evenness, and stability were no longer significantly different between savanna and mounds. However, fencing reduced the cumulative number of species, particularly for forbs, of which 48% of the species were lost. Fencing increased the beta diversity (dissimilarity among plots) on the resource-poor (in terms of both nutrients and soil moisture) savanna areas, while it did not significantly affect beta diversity on the resource-rich termite mounds. While termites cause substantial heterogeneity in savanna vegetation, large herbivores further amplify these differences by reducing beta diversity on the savanna areas. Large herbivores are, however, responsible for the maintenance of a large number of forbs at the landscape level. These findings suggest that the mechanisms underlying the effects of termites and large herbivores on savanna plant communities scale up to shape community structure and dynamics at a landscape level.

  14. Monitoring Termite-Mediated Ecosystem Processes Using Moderate and High Resolution Satellite Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lind, B. M.; Hanan, N. P.

    2016-12-01

    Termites are considered dominant decomposers and prominent ecosystem engineers in the global tropics and they build some of the largest and architecturally most complex non-human-made structures in the world. Termite mounds significantly alter soil texture, structure, and nutrients, and have major implications for local hydrological dynamics, vegetation characteristics, and biological diversity. An understanding of how these processes change across large scales has been limited by our ability to detect termite mounds at high spatial resolutions. Our research develops methods to detect large termite mounds in savannas across extensive geographic areas using moderate and high resolution satellite imagery. We also investigate the effect of termite mounds on vegetation productivity using Landsat-8 maximum composite NDVI data as a proxy for production. Large termite mounds in arid and semi-arid Senegal generate highly reflective `mound scars' with diameters ranging from 10 m at minimum to greater than 30 m. As Sentinel-2 has several bands with 10 m resolution and Landsat-8 has improved calibration, higher radiometric resolution, 15 m spatial resolution (pansharpened), and improved contrast between vegetated and bare surfaces compared to previous Landsat missions, we found that the largest and most influential mounds in the landscape can be detected. Because mounds as small as 4 m in diameter are easily detected in high resolution imagery we used these data to validate detection results and quantify omission errors for smaller mounds.

  15. The impact of edge effect on termite community (Blattodea: Isoptera) in fragments of Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida, C S; Cristaldo, P F; Florencio, D F; Ribeiro, E J M; Cruz, N G; Silva, E A; Costa, D A; Araújo, A P A

    2017-01-01

    Habitat fragmentation is considered to be one of the biggest threats to tropical ecosystem functioning. In this region, termites perform an important ecological role as decomposers and ecosystem engineers. In the present study, we tested whether termite community is negatively affected by edge effects on three fragments of Brazilian Atlantic Rainforest. Termite abundance and vegetation structure were sampled in 10 transects (15 × 2 m), while termite richness, activity, and soil litter biomass were measured in 16 quadrants (5 × 2 m) at forest edge and interior of each fragment. Habitat structure (i.e. number of tree, diameter at breast height and soil litter biomass) did not differ between forest edge and interior of fragments. Termite richness, abundance and activity were not affected by edge effect. However, differences were observed in the β diversity between forest edge and interior as well as in the fragments sampled. The β diversity partitioning indicates that species turnover is the determinant process of termite community composition under edge effect. Our results suggest that conservation strategies should be based on the selection of several distinct sites instead of few rich sites (e.g. nesting).

  16. Saving the injured: Rescue behavior in the termite-hunting ant Megaponera analis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Erik Thomas; Schmitt, Thomas; Hovestadt, Thomas; Mitesser, Oliver; Stiegler, Jonas; Linsenmair, Karl Eduard

    2017-04-01

    Predators of highly defensive prey likely develop cost-reducing adaptations. The ant Megaponera analis is a specialized termite predator, solely raiding termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae (in this study, mostly colonies of Pseudocanthotermes sp.) at their foraging sites. The evolutionary arms race between termites and ants led to various defensive mechanisms in termites (for example, a caste specialized in fighting predators). Because M. analis incurs high injury/mortality risks when preying on termites, some risk-mitigating adaptations seem likely to have evolved. We show that a unique rescue behavior in M. analis , consisting of injured nestmates being carried back to the nest, reduces combat mortality. After a fight, injured ants are carried back by their nestmates; these ants have usually lost an extremity or have termites clinging to them and are able to recover within the nest. Injured ants that are forced experimentally to return without help, die in 32% of the cases. Behavioral experiments show that two compounds, dimethyl disulfide and dimethyl trisulfide, present in the mandibular gland reservoirs, trigger the rescue behavior. A model accounting for this rescue behavior identifies the drivers favoring its evolution and estimates that rescuing enables maintenance of a 28.7% larger colony size. Our results are the first to explore experimentally the adaptive value of this form of rescue behavior focused on injured nestmates in social insects and help us to identify evolutionary drivers responsible for this type of behavior to evolve in animals.

  17. Nitrous Oxide (N2O) Emissions by Termites: Does the Feeding Guild Matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brauman, Alain; Majeed, Muhammad Zeeshan; Buatois, Bruno; Robert, Alain; Pablo, Anne-Laure; Miambi, Edouard

    2015-01-01

    In the tropics, termites are major players in the mineralization of organic matter leading to the production of greenhouse gases including nitrous oxide (N2O). Termites have a wide trophic diversity and their N-metabolism depends on the feeding guild. This study assessed the extent to which N2O emission levels were determined by termite feeding guild and tested the hypothesis that termite species feeding on a diet rich in N emit higher levels of N2O than those feeding on a diet low in N. An in-vitro incubation approach was used to determine the levels of N2O production in 14 termite species belonging to different feeding guilds, collected from a wide range of biomes. Fungus-growing and soil-feeding termites emit N2O. The N2O production levels varied considerably, ranging from 13.14 to 117.62 ng N2O-N d(-1) (g dry wt.)(-1) for soil-feeding species, with Cubitermes spp. having the highest production levels, and from 39.61 to 65.61 ng N2O-N d(-1) (g dry wt.)(-1) for fungus-growing species. Wood-feeding termites were net N2O consumers rather than N2O producers with a consumption ranging from 16.09 to 45.22 ng N2O-N d(-1) (g dry wt.)(-1). Incubating live termites together with their mound increased the levels of N2O production by between 6 and 13 fold for soil-feeders, with the highest increase in Capritermes capricornis, and between 14 and 34 fold for fungus-growers, with the highest increase in Macrotermes muelleri. Ammonia-oxidizing (amoA-AOB and amoA-AOA) and denitrifying (nirK, nirS, nosZ) gene markers were detected in the guts of all termite species studied. No correlation was found between the abundance of these marker genes and the levels of N2O production from different feeding guilds. Overall, these results support the hypothesis that N2O production rates were higher in termites feeding on substrates with higher N content, such as soil and fungi, compared to those feeding on N-poor wood.

  18. Nitrous Oxide (N2O Emissions by Termites: Does the Feeding Guild Matter?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Brauman

    Full Text Available In the tropics, termites are major players in the mineralization of organic matter leading to the production of greenhouse gases including nitrous oxide (N2O. Termites have a wide trophic diversity and their N-metabolism depends on the feeding guild. This study assessed the extent to which N2O emission levels were determined by termite feeding guild and tested the hypothesis that termite species feeding on a diet rich in N emit higher levels of N2O than those feeding on a diet low in N. An in-vitro incubation approach was used to determine the levels of N2O production in 14 termite species belonging to different feeding guilds, collected from a wide range of biomes. Fungus-growing and soil-feeding termites emit N2O. The N2O production levels varied considerably, ranging from 13.14 to 117.62 ng N2O-N d(-1 (g dry wt.(-1 for soil-feeding species, with Cubitermes spp. having the highest production levels, and from 39.61 to 65.61 ng N2O-N d(-1 (g dry wt.(-1 for fungus-growing species. Wood-feeding termites were net N2O consumers rather than N2O producers with a consumption ranging from 16.09 to 45.22 ng N2O-N d(-1 (g dry wt.(-1. Incubating live termites together with their mound increased the levels of N2O production by between 6 and 13 fold for soil-feeders, with the highest increase in Capritermes capricornis, and between 14 and 34 fold for fungus-growers, with the highest increase in Macrotermes muelleri. Ammonia-oxidizing (amoA-AOB and amoA-AOA and denitrifying (nirK, nirS, nosZ gene markers were detected in the guts of all termite species studied. No correlation was found between the abundance of these marker genes and the levels of N2O production from different feeding guilds. Overall, these results support the hypothesis that N2O production rates were higher in termites feeding on substrates with higher N content, such as soil and fungi, compared to those feeding on N-poor wood.

  19. Mitochondrial Phylogenomics Resolves the Global Spread of Higher Termites, Ecosystem Engineers of the Tropics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourguignon, Thomas; Lo, Nathan; Šobotník, Jan; Ho, Simon Y W; Iqbal, Naeem; Coissac, Eric; Lee, Maria; Jendryka, Martin M; Sillam-Dussès, David; Krížková, Barbora; Roisin, Yves; Evans, Theodore A

    2017-03-01

    The higher termites (Termitidae) are keystone species and ecosystem engineers. They have exceptional biomass and play important roles in decomposition of dead plant matter, in soil manipulation, and as the primary food for many animals, especially in the tropics. Higher termites are most diverse in rainforests, with estimated origins in the late Eocene (∼54 Ma), postdating the breakup of Pangaea and Gondwana when most continents became separated. Since termites are poor fliers, their origin and spread across the globe requires alternative explanation. Here, we show that higher termites originated 42-54 Ma in Africa and subsequently underwent at least 24 dispersal events between the continents in two main periods. Using phylogenetic analyses of mitochondrial genomes from 415 species, including all higher termite taxonomic and feeding groups, we inferred 10 dispersal events to South America and Asia 35-23 Ma, coinciding with the sharp decrease in global temperature, sea level, and rainforest cover in the Oligocene. After global temperatures increased, 23-5 Ma, there was only one more dispersal to South America but 11 to Asia and Australia, and one dispersal back to Africa. Most of these dispersal events were transoceanic and might have occurred via floating logs. The spread of higher termites across oceans was helped by the novel ecological opportunities brought about by environmental and ecosystem change, and led termites to become one of the few insect groups with specialized mammal predators. This has parallels with modern invasive species that have been able to thrive in human-impacted ecosystems. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  20. A Laboratory Maintenance Regime for a Fungus-Growing Termite Macrotermes gilvus (Blattodea: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ching-Chen; Lee, Chow-Yang

    2015-06-01

    The optimum maintenance conditions of the fungus-growing termite, Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen) (Blattodea: Termitidae), in the laboratory were studied. Termites were kept on a matrix of moist sand and with fungus comb as food. The survival of groups of termites was measured when maintained at different population densities by changing group size and container volume. Larger groups (≥0.6 g) were more vigorous and had significant higher survival rates than smaller groups (≤0.3 g). The population density for optimal survival of M. gilvus is 0.0025 g per container volume (ml) or 0.0169 g per matrix volume (cm(3)), i.e., 1.2 g of termites kept in a 480-ml container filled with 71 cm3 of sand. In termite groups of smaller size (i.e., 0.3 g) or groups maintained in smaller container (i.e., 100 ml) the fungus comb was overgrown with Xylaria spp., and subsequently all termites died within the study period. The insufficient number of workers for regulating the growth of unwanted fungi other than Termitomyces spp. in the fungus comb is the most likely reason. Unlike some other mound-building termite species, M. gilvus showed satisfactory survival when maintained in non-nutritious matrix (i.e., sand). There was no significant difference in the survival rate between different colonies of M. gilvus (n=5), with survival in the range of 78.5-84.4% after 4 wk. Advances in the maintenance of Macrotermes will enable researchers to study with more biological relevance many aspects of the biology, behavior, and management of this species. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  1. Bacteroidales ectosymbionts of gut flagellates shape the nitrogen-fixing community in dry-wood termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desai, Mahesh S; Brune, Andreas

    2012-01-01

    Although it is well documented that the lack of nitrogen in the diet of wood-feeding termites is compensated by the nitrogen-fixing capacity of their gut microbiota, the bacteria responsible for this activity are largely unknown. Here, we analyzed the diversity and expression of nitrogenase genes (homologs of nifH) in four species of dry-wood termites (Kalotermitidae), which thrive on a particularly nitrogen-poor resource. Although each species harbored a highly diverse suite of termite-specific homologs in their microliter-sized hindgut, only a core set related to nifH genes of Treponema and Azoarcus spp., ‘Azobacteroides pseudotrichonymphae', the first member of the Bacteroidales identified as a diazotroph, and termite-gut-specific anfH genes of hitherto unknown origin were preferentially expressed. Transcription patterns corroborated that the populations of active diazotrophs differ fundamentally between termite genera. Capillary-picked suspensions of the flagellates Devescovina arta and Snyderella tabogae revealed that their bacterial ectosymbionts each possess two paralogs of nifH, which apparently have been acquired consecutively during evolution of Bacteroidales, but only one of them (anfH) is actively expressed. Transcription patterns correlated neither with the molybdenum content of the diet nor with intestinal hydrogen concentrations, measured with microsensors. We propose that the nitrogen-fixing community in different dry-wood termites is shaped by the symbionts of their specific flagellate populations. Our findings suggest that the diazotrophic nature of ‘Armantifilum devescovinae' has an important role in the nitrogen metabolism of dry-wood termites and is the driving force of co-evolution with its flagellate host. PMID:22189498

  2. Non-conservative behavior of fluorescent dissolved organic matter (FDOM) within a subterranean estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suryaputra, I. G. N. A.; Santos, I. R.; Huettel, M.; Burnett, W. C.; Dittmar, T.

    2015-11-01

    The role of submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) in releasing fluorescent dissolved organic matter (FDOM) to the coastal ocean and the possibility of using FDOM as a proxy for dissolved organic carbon (DOC) was investigated in a subterranean estuary in the northeastern Gulf of Mexico (Turkey Point, Florida). FDOM was continuously monitored for three weeks in shallow beach groundwater and in the adjacent coastal ocean. Radon (222Rn) was used as a natural groundwater tracer. FDOM and DOC correlated in groundwater and seawater samples, implying that FDOM may be a proxy of DOC in waters influenced by SGD. A mixing model using salinity as a seawater tracer revealed FDOM production in the high salinity region of the subterranean estuary. This production was probably a result of infiltration and transformation of labile marine organic matter in the beach sediments. The non-conservative FDOM behavior in this subterranean estuary differs from most surface estuaries where FDOM typically behaves conservatively. At the study site, fresh and saline SGD delivered about 1800 mg d-1 of FDOM (quinine equivalents) to the coastal ocean per meter of shoreline. About 11% of this input was related to fresh SGD, while 89% were related to saline SGD resulting from FDOM production within the shallow aquifer. If these fluxes are representative of the Florida Gulf Coast, SGD-derived FDOM fluxes would be equivalent to at least 18% of the potential regional riverine FDOM inputs. To reduce uncertainties related to the scarcity of FDOM data, further investigations of river and groundwater FDOM inputs in Florida and elsewhere are necessary.

  3. Eidinemacheilus proudlovei, a new subterranean loach from Iraqi Kurdistan (Teleostei; Nemacheilidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freyhof, Jörg; Abdullah, Younis Sabir; Ararat, Korsh; Ibrahim, Hamad; Geiger, Matthias F

    2016-10-04

    Eidinemacheilus proudlovei, new species, is described from subterranean waters in the Little Zab River drainage in Iraqi Kurdistan. After the discovery of E. smithi in 1976, E. proudlovei is the second troglomorphic nemacheilid loach found in the Middle East and the second species placed in Eidinemacheilus. Eidinemacheilus proudlovei is distinguished from E. smithi by having 8+8 or 8+7 branched caudal-fin rays, no adipose keel on the caudal peduncle, enlarged jaws and a fully developed head canal system. It furthers differs substantially in its DNA barcode (>8% K2P distance) from all other nemacheilid loaches in the Middle East, Europe and Western India.

  4. A line technology of subterranean mining by means of nuclear explosions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gushchin, V.V.; Vasin, K.D.; Nifontov, B.I.; Odrov, Yu.L.; Myasnikov, K.V.; Kol'tsov, V.M.; Kornev, G.N.; Degtyarev, V.A.

    1976-01-01

    The basic principles of a line technology of extracting firm ores, including break-up of ore by means of subterranean nuclear explosions, the removal of ore from sorting blocks by means of vibrator feeders and transporting it to intermediate levels via a new type of belt conveyor on mobile supports are considered. A method of crushing ore by nuclear explosions on reflecting surfaces is proposed to obtain a more uniform fragmentation of ore, increase the output of fragmented ore per unit capacity, and to preserve mining output. The basic principles of designing a system of mining based on a line technology are formulated and one variant of such a system is presented

  5. Chemical Composition of the Essential Oil of the Subterranean Parts of Valeriana alliariifolia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kemal Husnu Can Baser

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The subterranean parts of Valeriana alliariifolia Adams were subjected to hydrodistillation and traceamount of essential oil was obtained. The chemical composition of the oil was identified by using capillary GasChromatography (GC and GC/MS simultaneously. In total 68 constituents were identified, representing 87.6 %of the total oil. The essential oil was dominated by isovaleric acid (28.6%, which is followed by -guaiane(7.2%, -humulene (4.7%, hexadecanoic acid (4.3%, valeric acid (3.7% and humulene epoxide-II (3.6% asthe major components.

  6. Simulation of nitrogen attenuation in a subterranean estuary, representative of the southern coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colman, John A.; Carlson, Carl S.; Robinson, C.

    2015-01-01

    A two-dimensional model was developed by the U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, to assess flow and chemical reaction associated with groundwater discharge through the subterranean estuary representative of coastal salt ponds of southern Cape Cod. The model simulated both the freshwater and saltwater flow systems and accounted for density-dependent flow, tidal fluctuation, and chemical reactivity among oxygen, dissolved organic carbon, nitrate, and ammonia. Not previously incorporated into one model, the interaction of these effects can now be simulated in the subterranean estuary context.

  7. A Preliminary Study on Elimination of Colonies of the Mound Building Termite Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen Using a Chlorfluazuron Termite Bait in the Philippines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Partho Dhang

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The effectiveness of a chlorfluazuron termite bait in eliminating colonies of the termite species Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen was evaluated under field conditions. Three active termite mounds were chosen for this study, two acted as test mounds and the other as the control. Four In-Ground Stations (IGS were installed around each mound. Interception occurred almost immediately in all the stations, which were subsequently baited. The control mound was fed a bait matrix lacking the active ingredient. Stations were re-baited every 2 weeks for 10–12 weeks until bait consumption ceased in the test mounds. The mounds were left undisturbed for four more weeks before being destructively sampled. The desiccated remains of workers, soldiers, late instars and queen were found upon sampling the treated mounds. A few live termites were located in one treated mound but were darkly pigmented indicating bait consumption. The control mound remained healthy and did not show any visible sign of negative impact. The bait successfully suppressed or eliminated both M. gilvus colonies within 16 weeks from commencement of feeding.

  8. Termite mounds as hot spots of nitrous oxide emissions in South-Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso (West Africa)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brümmer, Christian; Papen, Hans; Wassmann, Reiner; Brüggemann, Nicolas

    2009-05-01

    Despite a considerable knowledge of the significant role of termites in the global methane budget, very little is known about their contribution to the global nitrous oxide (N2O) budget. Release of N2O from termite (Cubitermes fungifaber) mounds was measured at a natural savanna site in the southwest of Burkina Faso from May to September 2006. Termite N2O emissions were around 20 μg N2O-N m-2 h-1 at the end of the dry season, and up to two orders of magnitude higher than N2O emissions from the surrounding termite-free soil after the onset of the rainy season. The average N2O emission rate from termite mounds during the observation period was 204 μg N2O-N m-2 h-1, and termite mounds contributed 3.0% to total N2O emissions from this savanna ecosystem. However, in other tropical terrestrial ecosystems with other termite species and/or higher termite density this share might be significantly higher.

  9. A Preliminary Study on Termite Mound Soil as Agricultural Soil for Crop Production in South West, Nigeria

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. E. Omofunmi

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available It is a popular belief of the people in the Southern region of Nigeria that a land infested with termite usually brings prosperity to the land owner regardless of the type of its usage. Therefore, the present study assessed termite mounds soil properties which are important to crop production. Two soil samples were collected and their physical and chemical properties determined in accordance with American Public Health Association (APHA, 2005. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. The textural classes showed that the termite mound soil was sand clay loam while the surrounding soil was clay loam. This results revealed that: Termites’ activity induced significant chemical changes in the soil possible due to the materials used in building their nests. There was increase the concentrations of nitrogen, phosphorus, Potassium, calcium and magnesium higher in the termite’s mounds, while the micro-nutrients (zinc, iron and copper except sulphur and manganese lower in the soil infested by termites. There were significant differences (p ≥ 0.05 between termite mound soil and surrounding soil. It showed highly positive correlation between termite mound and surrounding soil (r= 0.92. The concentration of the soil properties around the termite mound are within the range of soil nutrients suitable for arable crop production. Termite mound soil is recommended to be used as an alternative to local farmers who cannot afford to buy expensive inorganic fertilizers.

  10. Effects of erosion from mounds of different termite genera on distinct functional grassland types in an African savannah

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gosling, Cleo M.; Cromsigt, Joris P. G. M.; Mpanza, Nokukhanya; Olff, Han

    A key aspect of savannah vegetation heterogeneity is mosaics formed by two functional grassland types, bunch grasslands, and grazing lawns. We investigated the role of termites, important ecosystem engineers, in creating high-nutrient patches in the form of grazing lawns. Some of the ways termites

  11. Phylogenetic analyses of Podaxis specimens from Southern Africa reveal hidden diversity and new insights into associations with termites

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Conlon, Benjamin H.; Beer, de Z.W.; Fine Licht, De Henrik H.; Aanen, Duur K.; Poulsen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Although frequently found on mounds of the grass-cutting termite genus . Trinervitermes, virtually nothing is known about the natural history of the fungal genus . Podaxis (Agaricaceae) nor why it associates with termite mounds. More than 40 species of this secotioid genus have been described

  12. Variation in the Gut Microbiota of Termites (Tsaitermes ampliceps) Against Different Diets.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Su, Lijuan; Yang, Lele; Huang, Shi; Li, Yan; Su, Xiaoquan; Wang, Fengqin; Bo, Cunpei; Wang, En Tao; Song, Andong

    2017-01-01

    Termites are well recognized for their thriving on recalcitrant lignocellulosic diets through nutritional symbioses with gut-dwelling microbiota; however, the effects of diet changes on termite gut microbiota are poorly understood, especially for the lower termites. In this study, we employed high-throughput 454 pyrosequencing of 16S V1-V3 amplicons to compare gut microbiotas of Tsaitermes ampliceps fed with lignin-rich and lignin-poor cellulose diets after a 2-week-feeding period. As a result, the majority of bacterial taxa were shared across the treatments with different diets, but their relative abundances were modified. In particular, the relative abundance was reduced for Spirochaetes and it was increased for Proteobacteria and Bacteroides by feeding the lignin-poor diet. The evenness of gut microbiota exhibited a significant difference in response to the diet type (filter paper diets corn stover diets < wood diets), while their richness was constant, which may be related to the lower recalcitrance of this biomass to degradation. These results have important implications for sampling and analysis strategies to probe the lignocellulose degradation features of termite gut microbiota and suggest that the dietary lignocellulose composition could cause shifting rapidly in the termite gut microbiota.

  13. Microbial community diversity in the gut of the South American termite Cornitermes cumulans (Isoptera: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grieco, Maria Angela B; Cavalcante, Janaina J V; Cardoso, Alexander M; Vieira, Ricardo P; Machado, Ednildo A; Clementino, Maysa M; Medeiros, Marcelo N; Albano, Rodolpho M; Garcia, Eloi S; de Souza, Wanderley; Constantino, Reginaldo; Martins, Orlando B

    2013-01-01

    Termites inhabit tropical and subtropical areas where they contribute to structure and composition of soils by efficiently degrading biomass with aid of resident gut microbiota. In this study, culture-independent molecular analysis was performed based on bacterial and archaeal 16S rRNA clone libraries to describe the gut microbial communities within Cornitermes cumulans, a South American litter-feeding termite. Our data reveal extensive bacterial diversity, mainly composed of organisms from the phyla Spirochaetes, Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, Actinobacteria, and Fibrobacteres. In contrast, a low diversity of archaeal 16S rRNA sequences was found, comprising mainly members of the Crenarchaeota phylum. The diversity of archaeal methanogens was further analyzed by sequencing clones from a library for the mcrA gene, which encodes the enzyme methyl coenzyme reductase, responsible for catalyzing the last step in methane production, methane being an important greenhouse gas. The mcrA sequences were diverse and divided phylogenetically into three clades related to uncultured environmental archaea and methanogens found in different termite species. C. cumulans is a litter-feeding, mound-building termite considered a keystone species in natural ecosystems and also a pest in agriculture. Here, we describe the archaeal and bacterial communities within this termite, revealing for the first time its intriguing microbiota.

  14. Genes underlying reproductive division of labor in termites, with comparisons to social Hymenoptera

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith eKorb

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available All social insects are characterized by a reproductive division of labor. Within a colony only a few individuals reproduce (queens and in termites, also a king while the large majority (workers and soldiers forgo reproduction, at least temporarily. The evolution of such reproductive altruism can ultimately be explained by inclusive fitness theory. Here, I will review the proximate genetic mechanisms underlying this altruism in termites. As social cockroaches they evolved eusociality independently from the social Hymenoptera, which makes them interesting test cases to look for common underlying mechanisms of eusociality and lineage specific idiosyncrasies. First, I will provide a summary of the genes and their function that have been identified to underlie reproductive division of labor - so called 'queen genes,' - in the drywood termite Cryptotermes secundus, an emerging model to study termite social evolution. Second, I outline how widespread these queen genes are across the termite phylogeny, using also evidence from recent genome analyses. I will provide hypotheses about the evolutionary origin of these queen genes, aiming to link proximate mechanisms with ultimate functions. Finally, I will draw comparisons to social Hymenoptera to indicate potential common underpinnings that warrant further testing.

  15. First forensic records of termite activity on non-fossilized human bones in Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. A. Queiroz

    Full Text Available Abstract The aim of this study was to describe the first records of termite activity on non-fossilized human bones in Brazil. The cases reported in this study resulted from forensic analysis of six human skeletons found in northeastern Brazil between 2012 and 2014. Traces of tunnels and nests commonly produced by termites were found on several human bone surfaces as well as the specimens and characteristic signs of osteophagic activity. In four cases, the species were identified: Amitermes amifer Silvestri, 1901, Nasutitermes corniger (Motschulsky, 1855 (on two skeletons, and Microcerotermes indistinctus Mathews, 1977. In two other cases, the activity of termites on bone surfaces was evidenced by remains of nests and tunnels produced by these insects. At least in the samples of human remains available for this report, the number of termites collected was greater on bones found during autumn, the rainy season in the Northeast of Brazil. The human bones examined showed termites like insects with lots of strength at bone degradation, capable of continuing the process of decomposition of human remains even in completely skeletonized bodies.

  16. Termite assemblages in five semideciduous Atlantic Forest fragments in the northern coastland limit of the biome

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heitor Bruno de Araújo Souza

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Termites are abundant organisms in tropical ecosystems and strongly influence the litter decomposition and soil formation. Despite their importance, few studies about their assemblage structures have been made in Brazilian Atlantic Forest fragments, especially in the area located north of the São Francisco River. This study aims to analyze the assemblage composition of five Atlantic Forest fragments located in the northern biome limit along the Brazilian coast. A standardized sampling protocol of termites was applied in each fragment. Thirty-three termite species belonging to twenty genera and three families were found in the forest fragments. The wood-feeder group was dominant both concerning to species richness and number of encounters in all areas. In sites northern to 7°S, there is an evident simplification of the termite assemblage composition regarding species richness and number of encounters by feeding group. This fact is apparently due to a higher sandy level in soils and to semideciduous character of the vegetation in the northern fragments. Thus, even on the north of São Francisco River, termite biodiversity is heterogeneously spread with highest density of species in the portion between 07°S and São Francisco River mouth (10°29'S.

  17. Molecular signatures of nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in the termite gut.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruchira Sen

    Full Text Available Previous studies in lower termites revealed unexpected synergies between nicotinoid insecticides and fungal entomopathogens. The present study investigated molecular mechanisms of nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in the lower termite Reticulitermes flavipes, using the nicotinoid, imidacloprid, in combination with fungal and bacterial entomopathogens. Particular focus was placed on metatranscriptome composition and microbial dynamics in the symbiont-rich termite gut, which houses diverse mixes of protists and bacteria. cDNA microarrays containing a mix of host and protist symbiont oligonucleotides were used to simultaneously assess termite and protist gene expression. Five treatments were compared that included single challenges with sublethal doses of fungi (Metharizium anisopliae, bacteria (Serratia marcescens or imidacloprid, and dual challenges with fungi + imidacloprid or bacteria + imidacloprid. Our findings point towards protist dysbiosis and compromised social behavior, rather than suppression of stereotypical immune defense mechanisms, as the dominant factors underlying nicotinoid-pathogen synergy in termites. Also, greater impacts observed for the fungal pathogen than for the bacterial pathogen suggest that the rich bacterial symbiont community in the R. flavipes gut (>5000 species-level phylotypes exists in an ecological balance that effectively excludes exogenous bacterial pathogens. These findings significantly advance our understanding of antimicrobial defenses in this important eusocial insect group, as well as provide novel insights into how nicotinoids can exert deleterious effects on social insect colonies.

  18. Ant and termite mound coinhabitants in the wetlands of Santo Antonio da Patrulha, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Diehl

    Full Text Available This paper reports on ant and termite species inhabiting the mounds (murundus found in three wetland sites in Santo Antonio da Patrulha. Ants and termites were found in 100% of the mounds of two sites and in 20% of those in the third site. Colonies of Camponotus fastigatus were found inhabiting all the mounds, while colonies of Brachymyrmex sp., Linepithema sp., Pheidole sp., and/or Solenopsis sp. were collected in less than 30% of the mounds. In the mounds of the three sites, colonies of Anoplotermes sp. and/or Aparatermes sp. termites were found together with the ant colonies. Another cohabiting termite species, Cortaritermes sp., was found only in the mounds of one site. The results suggest that C. fastigatus is the species building the mounds, with the other species, whether ants or termites, being the inquilines.

  19. Ant and termite mound coinhabitants in the wetlands of Santo Antonio da Patrulha, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diehl, E; Junqueira, L K; Berti-Filho, E

    2005-08-01

    This paper reports on ant and termite species inhabiting the mounds (murundus) found in three wetland sites in Santo Antonio da Patrulha. Ants and termites were found in 100% of the mounds of two sites and in 20% of those in the third site. Colonies of Camponotus fastigatus were found inhabiting all the mounds, while colonies of Brachymyrmex sp., Linepithema sp., Pheidole sp., and/or Solenopsis sp. were collected in less than 30% of the mounds. In the mounds of the three sites, colonies of Anoplotermes sp. and/or Aparatermes sp. termites were found together with the ant colonies. Another cohabiting termite species, Cortaritermes sp., was found only in the mounds of one site. The results suggest that C. fastigatus is the species building the mounds, with the other species, whether ants or termites, being the inquilines.

  20. As you reap, so shall you sow: coupling of harvesting and inoculating stabilizes the mutualism between termites and fungi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur Kornelis

    2006-01-01

    is likely to be in monoculture and (ii) the termites ‘artificially' select for high nodule production, because their fungal food source also provides the inoculum for the next harvest. I also provide a brief comparison of the termite-fungus mutualism with the analogous agricultural mutualism between attine......At present there is no consensus theory explaining the evolutionary stability of mutualistic interactions. However, the question is whether there are general ‘rules', or whether each particular mutualism needs a unique explanation. Here, I address the ultimate evolutionary stability...... of the ‘agricultural' mutualism between fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces fungi, and provide a proximate mechanism for how stability is achieved. The key to the proposed mechanism is the within-nest propagation mode of fungal symbionts by termites. The termites suppress horizontal fungal transmission...

  1. Differences between bacterial communities in the gut of a soil-feeding termite (Cubitermes niokoloensis) and its mounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fall, Saliou; Hamelin, Jérôme; Ndiaye, Farma; Assigbetse, Komi; Aragno, Michel; Chotte, Jean Luc; Brauman, Alain

    2007-08-01

    In tropical ecosystems, termite mound soils constitute an important soil compartment covering around 10% of African soils. Previous studies have shown (S. Fall, S. Nazaret, J. L. Chotte, and A. Brauman, Microb. Ecol. 28:191-199, 2004) that the bacterial genetic structure of the mounds of soil-feeding termites (Cubitermes niokoloensis) is different from that of their surrounding soil. The aim of this study was to characterize the specificity of bacterial communities within mounds with respect to the digestive and soil origins of the mound. We have compared the bacterial community structures of a termite mound, termite gut sections, and surrounding soil using PCR-denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) analysis and cloning and sequencing of PCR-amplified 16S rRNA gene fragments. DGGE analysis revealed a drastic difference between the genetic structures of the bacterial communities of the termite gut and the mound. Analysis of 266 clones, including 54 from excised bands, revealed a high level of diversity in each biota investigated. The soil-feeding termite mound was dominated by the Actinobacteria phylum, whereas the Firmicutes and Proteobacteria phyla dominate the gut sections of termites and the surrounding soil, respectively. Phylogenetic analyses revealed a distinct clustering of Actinobacteria phylotypes between the mound and the surrounding soil. The Actinobacteria clones of the termite mound were diverse, distributed among 10 distinct families, and like those in the termite gut environment lightly dominated by the Nocardioidaceae family. Our findings confirmed that the soil-feeding termite mound (C. niokoloensis) represents a specific bacterial habitat in the tropics.

  2. Genetic and morphological support for possible sympatric origin of fish from subterranean habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hashemzadeh Segherloo, Iraj; Normandeau, Eric; Benestan, Laura; Rougeux, Clément; Coté, Guillaume; Moore, Jean-Sébastien; Ghaedrahmati, NabiAllah; Abdoli, Asghar; Bernatchez, Louis

    2018-02-13

    Two blind Iran cave barbs, Garra typhlops and Garra lorestanensis, exist in sympatry in a single subterranean habitat, raising the hypothesis that they may represent a case of sympatric speciation following a colonization event. Their different mental disc forms have prompted some authors to propose the alternative hypothesis of two separate colonization events. In this study, we analysed a genome-wide panel of 11,257 SNPs genotyped by means of genotyping-by-sequencing combined with mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase sub-unit I sequence data, field observations and morphological traits to test these two hypotheses. Field data suggest some degree of ecological divergence despite some possible niche overlap such that hybridization is possible. According to both nuclear and mtDNA data, the cave barb species are monophyletic with close phylogenetic relationships with Garra gymnothorax from the Karun-Dez and Karkheh river basins. The historical demography analysis revealed that a model of Isolation-with-Migration (IM) best fitted the data, therefore better supporting a scenario of sympatric origin than that of allopatric isolation followed by secondary contact. Overall, our results offer stronger support to the hypothesis that speciation in the subterranean habitat could have occurred in sympatry following a colonization event from the Karun-Dez-Karkheh basins in the Zagros Mountains of Iran.

  3. Molecular identification of Taenia mustelae cysts in subterranean rodent plateau zokors (Eospalax baileyi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Fang; Ma, Jun-Ying; Cai, Hui-Xia; Su, Jian-Ping; Hou, Zhi-Bin; Zhang, Tong-Zuo; Lin, Gong-Hua

    2014-07-01

    Cestode larvae spend one phase of their two-phase life cycle in the viscera of rodents, but cases of cestodes infecting subterranean rodents have only been rarely observed. To experimentally gain some insight into this phenomenon, we captured approximately 300 plateau zokors (Eospalax baileyi), a typical subterranean rodent inhabiting the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and examined their livers for the presence of cysts. Totally, we collected five cysts, and using a mitochondrial gene (cox1) and two nuclear genes (pepck and pold) as genetic markers, we were able to analyze the taxonomy of the cysts. Both the maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods showed that the cysts share a monophyly with Taenia mustelae, while Kimura 2-parameter distances and number of different sites between our sequences and T. mustelae were far less than those found between the examined sequences and other Taeniidae species. These results, alongside supporting paraffin section histology, imply that the cysts found in plateau zokors can be regarded as larvae of T. mustelae, illustrating that zokors are a newly discovered intermediate host record of this parasite.

  4. Modeling natural photic entrainment in a subterranean rodent (Ctenomys aff. knighti, the Tuco-Tuco.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danilo E F L Flôres

    Full Text Available Subterranean rodents spend most of the day inside underground tunnels, where there is little daily change in environmental variables. Our observations of tuco-tucos (Ctenomys aff. knighti in a field enclosure indicated that these animals perceive the aboveground light-dark cycle by several bouts of light-exposure at irregular times during the light hours of the day. To assess whether such light-dark pattern acts as an entraining agent of the circadian clock, we first constructed in laboratory the Phase Response Curve for 1 h light-pulses (1000lux. Its shape is qualitatively similar to other curves reported in the literature and to our knowledge it is the first Phase Response Curve of a subterranean rodent. Computer simulations were performed with a non-linear limit-cycle oscillator subjected to a simple model of the light regimen experienced by tuco-tucos. Results showed that synchronization is achieved even by a simple regimen of a single daily light pulse scattered uniformly along the light hours of the day. Natural entrainment studies benefit from integrated laboratory, field and computational approaches.

  5. The geochemical aspect for the evaluations of radioelements transfers in subterranean porous media

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rancon, Daniel.

    1978-10-01

    Radiological safety studies upon radioactivity transfers in soils and subterranean waters need geochemical studies to evaluate the retention of radionuclides by the solid matrix of porous media. The interaction between radionuclides water and substratum allow determination of the retention term in the transfer equation and estimation of relative speeds of the pollutant and the water which carries it. The retention, characterized by the distribution coefficient or by the soption isotherms, can be due to several mechanisms: precipitation, adsorption, ions exchange which have to be determined because they introduce the important concepts of reversibility, irreversible fixation and saturation. Retention is a function of various factors which can have a great influence: temperature, nature and texture of the solid, composition and pH of the solution, presence of complexing agent. This report is illustrated by original examples chosen among well know elements (Cs, Sr) and mainly among less studied elements (Co, Ba, Ra, U, Th, Np, Pu). Recommendations are proposed to make these transfer measurements more realistic and more adapted to the natural conditions of subterranean media [fr

  6. Sharing the space: distribution, habitat segregation and delimitation of a new sympatric area of subterranean rodents.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bruno Busnello Kubiak

    Full Text Available Subterranean rodents of the genus Ctenomys usually present an allopatric or parapatric distribution. Currently, two cases of sympatry have been recognized for the genus in the coastal dunes of southern Argentina and southern Brazil. In this context, they are ideal models to test hypotheses about the factors that delimit the patterns of space use and to understand interspecific interactions in small mammals. We investigated the vegetation structure, plant biomass and soil hardness selected by two species of subterranean rodents (Ctenomys flamarioni and C. minutus when distributed in sympatry and allopatry from nine different areas along the line of coastal dunes in southern Brazil. In addition, our work presents a new record of a third area of sympatry for the genus Ctenomys. Ctenomys flamarioni and C. minutus show habitat segregation in the area where they occur in sympatry. These species show segregation in their selection of microhabitats, differing in relation to soil hardness, plant biomass, and plant cover. Ctenomys flamarioni showed a distinction in habitat selection when occurring in allopatry and sympatry, whereas C. minutus selected the same habitat characteristics under both conditions. A possible explanation to the observed pattern is that these species have acquired different adaptations over time which allows them the ability to exploit different resources and thus avoid competitive interactions all together.

  7. The “Alluvial Mesovoid Shallow Substratum”, a New Subterranean Habitat

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ortuño, Vicente M.; Gilgado, José D.; Jiménez-Valverde, Alberto; Sendra, Alberto; Pérez-Suárez, Gonzalo; Herrero-Borgoñón, Juan J.

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we describe a new type of subterranean habitat associated with dry watercourses in the Eastern Iberian Peninsula, the “Alluvial Mesovoid Shallow Substratum” (alluvial MSS). Historical observations and data from field sampling specially designed to study MSS fauna in the streambeds of temporary watercourses support the description of this new habitat. To conduct the sampling, 16 subterranean sampling devices were placed in a region of Eastern Spain. The traps were operated for 12 months and temperature and relative humidity data were recorded to characterise the habitat. A large number of species was captured, many of which belonged to the arthropod group, with marked hygrophilous, geophilic, lucifugous and mesothermal habits. In addition, there was also a substantial number of species showing markedly ripicolous traits. The results confirm that the network of spaces which forms in alluvial deposits of temporary watercourses merits the category of habitat, and here we propose the name of “alluvial MSS”. The “alluvial MSS” may be covered or not by a layer of soil, is extremely damp, provides a buffer against above ground temperatures and is aphotic. In addition, compared to other types of MSS, it is a very unstable habitat. It is possible that the “alluvial MSS” may be found in other areas of the world with strongly seasonal climatic regimes, and could play an important role as a biogeographic corridor and as a refuge from climatic changes. PMID:24124544

  8. Environmental DNA in subterranean biology: range extension and taxonomic implications for Proteus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorički, Špela; Stanković, David; Snoj, Aleš; Kuntner, Matjaž; Jeffery, William R.; Trontelj, Peter; Pavićević, Miloš; Grizelj, Zlatko; Năpăruş-Aljančič, Magdalena; Aljančič, Gregor

    2017-03-01

    Europe’s obligate cave-dwelling amphibian Proteus anguinus inhabits subterranean waters of the north-western Balkan Peninsula. Because only fragments of its habitat are accessible to humans, this endangered salamander’s exact distribution has been difficult to establish. Here we introduce a quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction-based environmental DNA (eDNA) approach to detect the presence of Proteus using water samples collected from karst springs, wells or caves. In a survey conducted along the southern limit of its known range, we established a likely presence of Proteus at seven new sites, extending its range to Montenegro. Next, using specific molecular probes to discriminate the rare black morph of Proteus from the closely related white morph, we detected its eDNA at five new sites, thus more than doubling the known number of sites. In one of these we found both black and white Proteus eDNA together. This finding suggests that the two morphs may live in contact with each other in the same body of groundwater and that they may be reproductively isolated species. Our results show that the eDNA approach is suitable and efficient in addressing questions in biogeography, evolution, taxonomy and conservation of the cryptic subterranean fauna.

  9. Uranium and barium cycling in a salt wedge subterranean estuary: The influence of tidal pumping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, I.R.; Burnett, W.C.; Misra, S.; Suryaputra, I.G.N.A.; Chanton, J.P.; Dittmar, T.; Peterson, R.N.; Swarzenski, P.W.

    2011-01-01

    The contribution of submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) to oceanic metal budgets is only beginning to be explored. Here, we demonstrate that biogeochemical processes in a northern Florida subterranean estuary (STE) significantly alter U and Ba concentrations entering the coastal ocean via SGD. Tidal pumping controlled the distribution of dissolved metals in shallow beach groundwater. Hourly observations of intertidal groundwaters revealed high U and low Ba concentrations at high tide as a result of seawater infiltration into the coastal aquifer. During ebb tide, U decreased and Ba increased due to freshwater dilution and, more importantly, biogeochemical reactions that removed U and added Ba to solution. U removal was apparently a result of precipitation following the reduction of U(VI) to U(IV). A significant correlation between Ba and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in shallow beach groundwaters implied a common source, likely the mineralization of marine particulate organic matter driven into the beach face by tidal pumping. In deeper groundwaters, where the labile organic matter had been depleted, Ba correlated with Mn. We estimate that net SGD fluxes were − 163 and + 1660 μmol m− 1 d− 1 for U and Ba, respectively (or − 1 and + 8 μmol m− 2 d− 1 if a 200-m wide seepage area is considered). Our results support the emerging concept that subterranean estuaries are natural biogeochemical reactors where metal concentrations are altered relative to conservative mixing between terrestrial and marine endmembers. These deviations from conservative mixing significantly influence SGD-derived trace metal fluxes.

  10. Ecological feedbacks. Termite mounds can increase the robustness of dryland ecosystems to climatic change.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonachela, Juan A; Pringle, Robert M; Sheffer, Efrat; Coverdale, Tyler C; Guyton, Jennifer A; Caylor, Kelly K; Levin, Simon A; Tarnita, Corina E

    2015-02-06

    Self-organized spatial vegetation patterning is widespread and has been described using models of scale-dependent feedback between plants and water on homogeneous substrates. As rainfall decreases, these models yield a characteristic sequence of patterns with increasingly sparse vegetation, followed by sudden collapse to desert. Thus, the final, spot-like pattern may provide early warning for such catastrophic shifts. In many arid ecosystems, however, termite nests impart substrate heterogeneity by altering soil properties, thereby enhancing plant growth. We show that termite-induced heterogeneity interacts with scale-dependent feedbacks to produce vegetation patterns at different spatial grains. Although the coarse-grained patterning resembles that created by scale-dependent feedback alone, it does not indicate imminent desertification. Rather, mound-field landscapes are more robust to aridity, suggesting that termites may help stabilize ecosystems under global change. Copyright © 2015, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  11. Soil Physical and Chemical Properties in Epigeal Termite Mounds in Pastures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Santana de Lima

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT We characterized soil physical and chemical properties and soil organic matter in epigeal termite mounds in pastures to evaluate the changes promoted by termites in comparison to an adjacent area. We selected seven active epigeal termite mounds in the municipality of Seropédica, state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Soil samples were collected from top, center and base positions of each mound, at 0.50 and 1.50 m distance from the base of the mound. We identified individuals of the genus Embiratermes, Velocitermes, and Orthognathotermes. The humin fraction predominated over the humic and fulvic acid fractions both in mounds and adjacent soil. The amount of organic matter and the mineral fractions (mineral-associated organic carbon - MOC varied among builder species. The studied chemical attributes point to a higher concentration of nutrients in the mounds than in the adjacent soil.

  12. Use of biocides for the control of fungal outbreaks in subterranean environments: The case of the Lascaux Cave in France

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Martín-Sánchez, P.M.; Nováková, Alena; Bastian, F.; Alabouvette, C.; Saiz-Jimenez, C.

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 46, č. 7 (2012), s. 3762-3770 ISSN 0013-936X Grant - others:Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (ES) TCP CSD2007-00058 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : fungal outbreaks * subterranean environments * Lascaux Cave Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour Impact factor: 5.257, year: 2012

  13. The visual system in subterranean African mole-rats (Rodentia, Bathyergidae): Retina, subcortical visual nuclei and primary visual cortex

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Němec, P.; Cveková, P.; Benada, Oldřich; Wielkopolska, E.; Olkowitz, S.; Turlejski, K.; Burda, H.; Bennett, N. C.; Peichl, L.

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 75, 2-4 (2008), s. 356-364 ISSN 0361-9230 Grant - others:GA AV ČR(CZ) GA206/06/1469; ZA(ZA) 2069070 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50200510 Keywords : microphthalmia * ocular regression * subterranean mammals Subject RIV: EE - Microbiology, Virology Impact factor: 2.281, year: 2008

  14. Gene expression polymorphisms and ESTs associated with gravitropic response of subterranean branch meristems and growth habit in Leymus wildryes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parminder Kaur; Ivan W. Mott; Steven R. Larson; B. Shaun Bushman; Alvaro G. Hernandez; W. Ryan Kim; Lei Liu; Mark A. Mikel

    2008-01-01

    Negatively orthogeotropic (NOGT) tiller and diageotropic (DGT) rhizome meristems develop from the same type of lateral axillary meristems and phytomer structure. Although subterranean NOGT and DGT buds appear similar, they display different responses to gravity and perhaps other cues governing branch angle and overall growth habit (GH). Leymus wildryes show remarkable...

  15. Bacterial density and community structure associated with aggregate size fractions of soil-feeding termite mounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fall, S; Nazaret, S; Chotte, J L; Brauman, A

    2004-08-01

    The building and foraging activities of termites are known to modify soil characteristics such as the heterogeneity. In tropical savannas the impact of the activity of soil-feeding termites ( Cubitermes niokoloensis) has been shown to affect the properties of the soil at the aggregate level by creating new soil microenvironments (aggregate size fractions) [13]. These changes were investigated in greater depth by looking at the microbial density (AODC) and the genetic structure (automated rRNA intergenic spacer analysis: ARISA) of the communities in the different aggregate size fractions (i.e., coarse sand, fine sand, coarse silt, fine silt, and dispersible clays) separated from compartments (internal and external wall) of three Cubitermes niokoloensis mounds. The bacterial density of the mounds was significantly higher (1.5 to 3 times) than that of the surrounding soil. Within the aggregate size fractions, the termite building activity resulted in a significant increase in bacterial density within the coarser fractions (>20 mum). Multivariate analysis of the ARISA profiles revealed that the bacterial genetic structures of unfractionated soil and soil aggregate size fractions of the three mounds was noticeably different from the savanna soil used as a reference. Moreover, the microbial community associated with the different microenvironments in the three termite mounds revealed three distinct clusters formed by the aggregate size fractions of each mound. Except for the 2-20 mum fraction, these results suggest that the mound microbial genetic structure is more dependent upon microbial pool affiliation (the termite mound) than on the soil location (aggregate size fraction). The causes of the specificity of the microbial community structure of termite mound aggregate size fractions are discussed.

  16. Testing the assumptions of the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis for termites in semi-arid Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davis, Hayley; Ritchie, Euan G; Avitabile, Sarah; Doherty, Tim; Nimmo, Dale G

    2018-04-01

    Fire shapes the composition and functioning of ecosystems globally. In many regions, fire is actively managed to create diverse patch mosaics of fire-ages under the assumption that a diversity of post-fire-age classes will provide a greater variety of habitats, thereby enabling species with differing habitat requirements to coexist, and enhancing species diversity (the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis). However, studies provide mixed support for this hypothesis. Here, using termite communities in a semi-arid region of southeast Australia, we test four key assumptions of the pyrodiversity begets biodiversity hypothesis (i) that fire shapes vegetation structure over sufficient time frames to influence species' occurrence, (ii) that animal species are linked to resources that are themselves shaped by fire and that peak at different times since fire, (iii) that species' probability of occurrence or abundance peaks at varying times since fire and (iv) that providing a diversity of fire-ages increases species diversity at the landscape scale. Termite species and habitat elements were sampled in 100 sites across a range of fire-ages, nested within 20 landscapes chosen to represent a gradient of low to high pyrodiversity. We used regression modelling to explore relationships between termites, habitat and fire. Fire affected two habitat elements (coarse woody debris and the cover of woody vegetation) that were associated with the probability of occurrence of three termite species and overall species richness, thus supporting the first two assumptions of the pyrodiversity hypothesis. However, this did not result in those species or species richness being affected by fire history per se. Consequently, landscapes with a low diversity of fire histories had similar numbers of termite species as landscapes with high pyrodiversity. Our work suggests that encouraging a diversity of fire-ages for enhancing termite species richness in this study region is not necessary.

  17. Microtermolides A and B from termite-associated Streptomyces sp. and structural revision of vinylamycin

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Carr, Gavin; Poulsen, Michael; Klassen, Jonathan L.

    2012-01-01

    Microtermolides A (1) and B (2) were isolated from a Streptomyces sp. strain associated with fungus-growing termites. The structures of 1 and 2 were determined by 1D- and 2D-NMR spectroscopy and high-resolution mass spectrometry. Structural elucidation of 1 led to the re-examination of the struct......Microtermolides A (1) and B (2) were isolated from a Streptomyces sp. strain associated with fungus-growing termites. The structures of 1 and 2 were determined by 1D- and 2D-NMR spectroscopy and high-resolution mass spectrometry. Structural elucidation of 1 led to the re...

  18. Relative repellency and lethality of the neonicotinoids thiamethoxam and acetamiprid and an acetamiprid/bifenthrin combination to Reticulitermes flavipes termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Joseph A; Pereira, Roberto M; Koehler, Philip G

    2008-12-01

    Field-collected Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) termites were placed in bioassay tubes containing soil treated with one of three termiticides: thiamethoxam, acetamiprid, or a combination of acetamiprid + bifenthrin. In the bioassay tubes, treated soil was placed in a layer centered within untreated sand between two 1.5-cm agar plugs. All termiticides were tested at concentrations of 0.1, 1, 10, and 100 ppm with narrow (1 mm), medium (5 mm), and broad (50 mm) thicknesses of treated soil. Soil penetration and termite mortality were measured after 7 d, and repellency was assessed. Thiamethoxam treatments allowed the greatest soil penetration, whereas acetamiprid + bifenthrin treatments were the most inhibitory to soil penetration. Thiamethoxam treatments also caused consistently greater termite mortality than acetamiprid treatments. These data indicated that acetamiprid prevented soil penetration by termites more than thiamethoxam, although both were less repellent compared with bifenthrin alone, which causes little termite mortality at the tested doses. When there was direct contact of treated soil with the agar plugs in broad treatments, the combination of acetamiprid + bifenthrin was more toxic to R. flavipes termites than either acetamiprid or thiamethoxam alone. The combination acetamiprid + bifenthrin termiticide may be effective in keeping termites away from the treated soil, because of the combined effects of acetamiprid and bifenthrin.

  19. Cospeciation in the triplex symbiosis of termite gut protists (Pseudotrichonympha spp.), their hosts, and their bacterial endosymbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noda, S; Kitade, O; Inoue, T; Kawai, M; Kanuka, M; Hiroshima, K; Hongoh, Y; Constantino, R; Uys, V; Zhong, J; Kudo, T; Ohkuma, M

    2007-03-01

    A number of cophylogenetic relationships between two organisms namely a host and a symbiont or parasite have been studied to date; however, organismal interactions in nature usually involve multiple members. Here, we investigated the cospeciation of a triplex symbiotic system comprising a hierarchy of three organisms -- termites of the family Rhinotermitidae, cellulolytic protists of the genus Pseudotrichonympha in the guts of these termites, and intracellular bacterial symbionts of the protists. The molecular phylogeny was inferred based on two mitochondrial genes for the termites and nuclear small-subunit rRNA genes for the protists and their endosymbionts, and these were compared. Although intestinal microorganisms are generally considered to have looser associations with the host than intracellular symbionts, the Pseudotrichonympha protists showed almost complete codivergence with the host termites, probably due to strict transmissions by proctodeal trophallaxis or coprophagy based on the social behaviour of the termites. Except for one case, the endosymbiotic bacteria of the protists formed a monophyletic lineage in the order Bacteroidales, and the branching pattern was almost identical to those of the protists and the termites. However, some non-codivergent evolutionary events were evident. The members of this triplex symbiotic system appear to have cospeciated during their evolution with minor exceptions; the evolutionary relationships were probably established by termite sociality and the complex microbial community in the gut.

  20. Indigenous utilization of termite mounds and their sustainability in a rice growing village of the central plain of Laos

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sivilay Sengdeaune

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The objective of this study was to investigate the indigenous utilization of termite mounds and termites in a rain-fed rice growing village in the central plain of Laos, where rice production is low and varies year-to-year, and to assess the possibility of sustainable termite mound utilization in the future. This research was carried out from 2007 to 2009. Methods The termites were collected from their mounds and surrounding areas and identified. Twenty villagers were interviewed on their use of termites and their mounds in the village. Sixty-three mounds were measured to determine their dimensions in early March, early July and middle to late November, 2009. Results Eleven species of Termitidae were recorded during the survey period. It was found that the villagers use termite mounds as fertilizer for growing rice, vegetable beds and charcoal kilns. The villagers collected termites for food and as feed for breeding fish. Over the survey period, 81% of the mounds surveyed increased in volume; however, the volume was estimated to decrease by 0.114 m3 mound-1 year-1 on average due to several mounds being completely cut out. Conclusion It was concluded that current mound utilization by villagers is not sustainable. To ensure sustainable termite utilization in the future, studies should be conducted to enhance factors that promote mound restoration by termites. Furthermore, it will be necessary to improve mound conservation methods used by the villagers after changes in the soil mass of mounds in paddy fields and forests has been measured accurately. The socio-economic factors that affect mound utilization should also be studied.

  1. Indigenous utilization of termite mounds and their sustainability in a rice growing village of the central plain of Laos.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyagawa, Shuichi; Koyama, Yusaku; Kokubo, Mika; Matsushita, Yuichi; Adachi, Yoshinao; Sivilay, Sengdeaune; Kawakubo, Nobumitsu; Oba, Shinya

    2011-08-18

    The objective of this study was to investigate the indigenous utilization of termite mounds and termites in a rain-fed rice growing village in the central plain of Laos, where rice production is low and varies year-to-year, and to assess the possibility of sustainable termite mound utilization in the future. This research was carried out from 2007 to 2009. The termites were collected from their mounds and surrounding areas and identified. Twenty villagers were interviewed on their use of termites and their mounds in the village. Sixty-three mounds were measured to determine their dimensions in early March, early July and middle to late November, 2009. Eleven species of Termitidae were recorded during the survey period. It was found that the villagers use termite mounds as fertilizer for growing rice, vegetable beds and charcoal kilns. The villagers collected termites for food and as feed for breeding fish. Over the survey period, 81% of the mounds surveyed increased in volume; however, the volume was estimated to decrease by 0.114 m3 mound(-1) year(-1) on average due to several mounds being completely cut out. It was concluded that current mound utilization by villagers is not sustainable. To ensure sustainable termite utilization in the future, studies should be conducted to enhance factors that promote mound restoration by termites. Furthermore, it will be necessary to improve mound conservation methods used by the villagers after changes in the soil mass of mounds in paddy fields and forests has been measured accurately. The socio-economic factors that affect mound utilization should also be studied.

  2. I. Structural studies of termite defense secretions. II. Structural studies of natural products of marine nudibranchs. [Kempene, tridachione

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Solheim, B.A.

    1977-12-01

    Three families of termites have the ability to produce a sticky secretion that envelopes and immobilizes the enemy. In the family Termitidae the secretion contains the diterpenoid hydrocarbons, kempene I and kempene II. The molecular structure of kempene II from the termite, Nasutitermes kempae, is described in detail. Another species of termite, Cubitermes umbratus, contained the diterpenoid hydrocarbon biflora-4,10-19,15-triene in the secretion and this compound is described. Studies were also conducted on the mucous secretion of the pedal gland of the marine nudibranch, Tidachiella diomedea. Tridachione, a substituted ..gamma..-pyrone, was isolated in the pure state and its molecular structure is described in detail. (HLW)

  3. The relationships between termite mound CH4/CO2 emissions and internal concentration ratios are species specific

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Jamali

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the relative importance of CH4 and CO2 fluxes from soil and termite mounds at four different sites in the tropical savannas of northern Australia near Darwin and assessed different methods to indirectly predict CH4 fluxes based on CO2 fluxes and internal gas concentrations. The annual flux from termite mounds and surrounding soil was dominated by CO2 with large variations among sites. On a carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e basis, annual CH4 flux estimates from termite mounds were 5- to 46-fold smaller than the concurrent annual CO2 flux estimates. Differences between annual soil CO2 and soil CH4 (CO2-e fluxes were even greater, soil CO2 fluxes being almost three orders of magnitude greater than soil CH4 (CO2-e fluxes at site. The contribution of CH4 and CO2 emissions from termite mounds to the total CH4 and CO2 emissions from termite mounds and soil in CO2-e was less than 1%. There were significant relationships between mound CH4 flux and mound CO2 flux, enabling the prediction of CH4 flux from measured CO2 flux; however, these relationships were clearly termite species specific. We also observed significant relationships between mound flux and gas concentration inside mound, for both CH4 and CO2, and for all termite species, thereby enabling the prediction of flux from measured mound internal gas concentration. However, these relationships were also termite species specific. Using the relationship between mound internal gas concentration and flux from one species to predict mound fluxes from other termite species (as has been done in the past would result in errors of more than 5-fold for mound CH4 flux and 3-fold for mound CO2 flux. This study highlights that CO2 fluxes from termite mounds are generally more than one order of magnitude greater than CH4 fluxes. There are species-specific relationships between CH4 and CO2 fluxes from a mound, and between the inside mound concentration of a gas and the mound flux emission of the

  4. The relationships between termite mound CH4/CO2 emissions and internal concentration ratios are species specific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, H.; Livesley, S. J.; Hutley, L. B.; Fest, B.; Arndt, S. K.

    2013-04-01

    We investigated the relative importance of CH4 and CO2 fluxes from soil and termite mounds at four different sites in the tropical savannas of northern Australia near Darwin and assessed different methods to indirectly predict CH4 fluxes based on CO2 fluxes and internal gas concentrations. The annual flux from termite mounds and surrounding soil was dominated by CO2 with large variations among sites. On a carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) basis, annual CH4 flux estimates from termite mounds were 5- to 46-fold smaller than the concurrent annual CO2 flux estimates. Differences between annual soil CO2 and soil CH4 (CO2-e) fluxes were even greater, soil CO2 fluxes being almost three orders of magnitude greater than soil CH4 (CO2-e) fluxes at site. The contribution of CH4 and CO2 emissions from termite mounds to the total CH4 and CO2 emissions from termite mounds and soil in CO2-e was less than 1%. There were significant relationships between mound CH4 flux and mound CO2 flux, enabling the prediction of CH4 flux from measured CO2 flux; however, these relationships were clearly termite species specific. We also observed significant relationships between mound flux and gas concentration inside mound, for both CH4 and CO2, and for all termite species, thereby enabling the prediction of flux from measured mound internal gas concentration. However, these relationships were also termite species specific. Using the relationship between mound internal gas concentration and flux from one species to predict mound fluxes from other termite species (as has been done in the past) would result in errors of more than 5-fold for mound CH4 flux and 3-fold for mound CO2 flux. This study highlights that CO2 fluxes from termite mounds are generally more than one order of magnitude greater than CH4 fluxes. There are species-specific relationships between CH4 and CO2 fluxes from a mound, and between the inside mound concentration of a gas and the mound flux emission of the same gas, but

  5. Subterranean World

    CERN Multimedia

    Magos,B

    1981-01-01

    Monsieur B.Magos, spéléologue, est né à Bruxelles et découvre déjà pendant sa jeunesse et ses études sécondaires à Godin, petite ville des Ardennes belges, des grottes et gouffres qui l'interessent et l'intriguent. Il découvre et sonde à l'age de 18 ans le gouffre le plus profond de Belgique.

  6. Subterranean science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paling, Sean; Sadler, Stephen

    2015-05-01

    The deep underground laboratories of the world are no longer the scientific realm of astroparticle physics alone. From Mars rovers to muon tomography, and from radioactive dating to astrobiology, Sean Paling and Stephen Sadler describe the renaissance in the science taking place far beneath our feet.

  7. O2 binding and CO2 sensitivity in haemoglobins of subterranean African mole rats

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Weber, Roy E.; Jarvis, Jennifer U. M.; Fago, Angela

    2017-01-01

    that predictably safeguard pulmonary loading under hypoxic and hypercapnic burrow conditions. The O2 binding characteristics are discussed in relation to available information on the primary structure of Hbs from adult and developmental stages of mammals subjected to hypoxia and hypercapnia and the molecular......Inhabiting deep and sealed subterranean burrows, mole rats exhibit a remarkable suite of specializations, including eusociality (living in colonies with single breeding queens), extraordinary longevity, cancer immunity and poikilothermy, and extreme tolerance of hypoxia and hypercapnia. With little...... and 2,3-diphosphoglycerate (DPG, the major allosteric modulator of Hb-O2 affinity in red blood cells) in four social and two solitary species of African mole rats (family Bathyergidae) originating from different biomes and soil types across Central and Southern Africa. We found no consistent patterns...

  8. Solid state characterization and rheological properties of native and modified Bambara groundnut (Vigna subterranean starches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael Odeniyi

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This study was designed to determine the suitability of native, pregelatinized and carboxymethylated Vigna subterranean (Bambara nut starches for pharmaceutical applications, through their characterization by means of physicochemical, rheological, thermal, morphological and instrumental spectroscopic methods. The native starch was extracted from Bambara nut, after which it was used to prepare both pregelatinized and carboxymethylated forms. Microscopy revealed increased in granular size on modification. Both pregelatinized and carboxymethylated Bambara starches had better flow properties and swellability compared to the native starch. Native Bambara starch had greater tendency to retrogradation, was more sensitive to heat and heat change, these were alleviated by both pregelatinization and carboxymethylation. DSC confirmed that carboxymethylated Bambara starch was the most thermally stable starch. Presence of functional groups and crystallinity were established by FTIR and XRD, respectively. Native and modified Bambara starches can be used as locally and readily available alternative excipients in pharmaceutical formulations.

  9. Subterranean Microhabitat Dependent Intra Versus Extracellular Enzyme Secretion Capabilities of Deinococcus radiodurans

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jayant Biswas

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available Deinococcus radiodurans is one of the most yet discovered extremophilic microbe, the isolation of which from the various habitats of Kotumsar cave is always a matter of enticement to discover its ecological economics. In the present work we studied the intra versus extracellular alkaline protease and glucose isomerase secretion capabilities of Deinococcus radiodurans; KCB21, KCB50, KCB93 isolated from three distinct subterranean niches of Kotumsar cave. The selected niches/zones were the entrance zone, transient zone and the deep inner zone from where the soil sediments were collected to isolate the bacterial strains. The results revealed high extracellular alkaline protease activity from the Deinococcus radiodurans strain which was isolated from the deeper zones of the cave, whereas no such phenomenon was revealed for glucose isomerase. The possible reason for the obtained results has been discussed.

  10. Shrimps down under: evolutionary relationships of subterranean crustaceans from Western Australia (Decapoda: Atyidae: Stygiocaris.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Timothy J Page

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: We investigated the large and small scale evolutionary relationships of the endemic Western Australian subterranean shrimp genus Stygiocaris (Atyidae using nuclear and mitochondrial genes. Stygiocaris is part of the unique cave biota of the coastal, anchialine, limestones of the Cape Range and Barrow Island, most of whose nearest evolutionary relations are found in coastal caves of the distant North Atlantic. The dominance of atyids in tropical waters and their food resources suggest they are pivotal in understanding these groundwater ecosystems. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPLE FINDINGS: Our nuclear and mitochondrial analyses all recovered the Mexican cave genus Typhlatya as the sister taxon of Stygiocaris, rather than any of the numerous surface and cave atyids from Australia or the Indo-Pacific region. The two described Stygiocaris species were recovered as monophyletic, and a third, cryptic, species was discovered at a single site, which has very different physiochemical properties from the sites hosting the two described species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings suggest that Stygiocaris and Typhlatya may descend from a common ancestor that lived in the coastal marine habitat of the ancient Tethys Sea, and were subsequently separated by plate tectonic movements. This vicariant process is commonly thought to explain the many disjunct anchialine faunas, but has rarely been demonstrated using phylogenetic techniques. The Cape Range's geological dynamism, which is probably responsible for the speciation of the various Stygiocaris species, has also led to geographic population structure within species. In particular, Stygiocaris lancifera is split into northern and southern groups, which correspond to population splits within other sympatric subterranean taxa.

  11. Chemical systematics of Neotropical termite genera with symmetrically snapping soldiers (Termitidae: Termitinae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kyjaková, Pavlína; Roy, V.; Jirošová, Anna; Krasulová, Jana; Dolejšová, Klára; Křivánek, Jan; Hadravová, Romana; Rybáček, Jiří; Pohl, Radek; Roisin, Y.; Sillam-Dusses, D.; Hanus, Robert

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 180, č. 1 (2017), s. 66-81 ISSN 0024-4082 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP13-25354P Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : chemical defence * frontal gland * termites * chemical systematics * Termitinae Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Biodiversity conservation Impact factor: 2.711, year: 2016

  12. Sex Pheromone and Trail Pheromone of the Sand Termite Psammotermes hybostoma

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Sillam-Dusses, David; Hanus, Robert; Abd El-Latif, A. O.; Jiroš, Pavel; Krasulová, Jana; Kalinová, Blanka; Valterová, Irena; Šobotník, Jan

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 37, č. 2 (2011), s. 179-188 ISSN 0098-0331 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/1570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : sex pheromone * trail pheromone * Psammotermes hybostoma * termites * Rhinotermitidae Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 2.657, year: 2011

  13. Long-Lived Termite Queens Exhibit High Cu/Zn-Superoxide Dismutase Activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eisuke Tasaki

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available In most organisms, superoxide dismutases (SODs are among the most effective antioxidant enzymes that regulate the reactive oxygen species (ROS generated by oxidative energy metabolism. ROS are considered main proximate causes of aging. However, it remains unclear if SOD activities are associated with organismal longevity. The queens of eusocial insects, such as termites, ants, and honeybees, exhibit extraordinary longevity in comparison with the nonreproductive castes, such as workers. Therefore, the queens are promising candidates to study the underlying mechanisms of aging. Here, we found that queens have higher Cu/Zn-SOD activity than nonreproductive individuals of the termite Reticulitermes speratus. We identified three Cu/Zn-SOD sequences and one Mn-SOD sequence by RNA sequencing in R. speratus. Although the queens showed higher Cu/Zn-SOD activity than the nonreproductive individuals, there were no differences in their expression levels of the Cu/Zn-SOD genes RsSOD1 and RsSOD3A. Copper (Cu2+ and Cu+ is an essential cofactor for Cu/Zn-SOD enzyme activity, and the queens had higher concentrations of copper than the workers. These results suggest that the high Cu/Zn-SOD activity of termite queens is related to their high levels of the cofactor rather than gene expression. This study highlights that Cu/Zn-SOD activity contributes to extraordinary longevity in termites.

  14. SPATIAL VARIABILITY AND VITALITY OF EPIGEOUS TERMITE MOUNDS IN PASTURES OF MATO GROSSO DO SUL, BRAZIL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Santana Lima

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Epigeous termite mounds are frequently observed in pasture areas, but the processes regulating their population dynamics are poorly known. This study evaluated epigeous termite mounds in cultivated grasslands used as pastures, assessing their spatial distribution by means of geostatistics and evaluating their vitality. The study was conducted in the Cerrado biome in the municipality of Rio Brilhante, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil. In two pasture areas (Pasture 1 and Pasture 2, epigeous mounds (nests were georeferenced and analyzed for height, circumference and vitality (inhabited or not. The area occupied by the mounds was calculated and termite specimens were collected for taxonomic identification. The spatial distribution pattern of the mounds was analyzed with geostatistical procedures. In both pasture areas, all epigeous mounds were built by the same species, Cornitermes cumulans. The mean number of mounds per hectare was 68 in Pasture 1 and 127 in Pasture 2, representing 0.4 and 1 % of the entire area, respectively. A large majority of the mounds were active (vitality, 91 % in Pasture 1 and 84 % in Pasture 2. A “pure nugget effect” was observed in the semivariograms of height and nest circumference in both pastures reflecting randomized spatial distribution and confirming that the distribution of termite mounds in pastures had a non-standard distribution.

  15. Facultative asexual reproduction and genetic diversity of populations in the humivorous termite Cavitermes tuberosus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fournier, D.; Hellemans, S.; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Y.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 283, č. 1832 (2016), č. článku 20160196. ISSN 0962-8452 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-12774S Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : thelytokous parthenogenesis * breeding systems * termites * reproductive strategies * Isoptera * Termitidae Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 4.940, year: 2016

  16. Studies on thermal degradation and termite resistant properties of chemically modified wood

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Deka, M.; Saikia, C.N. [Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), Regional Research Laboratory, Jorhat (India); Baruah, K.K. [Assam Agricultural University, Jorhat (India)

    2002-09-01

    A series of experiments were carried out to examine the resistant capacity of a chemically treated hard wood, Anthocephalus cadamba (Roxb) Miq. to thermal and termite degradation. The treatment with thermosetting resins viz. urea formaldehyde (UF), melamine formaldehyde (MF) and phenol formaldehyde (PF) at 31-33 levels of weight percent gain (WPG) increased the strength property i.e. modulus of rupture (MOR) by 7.50-21.02% and stiffness i.e. modulus of elasticity (MOE) by 9.50-12.18% over the untreated one with no remarkable effect on specific gravity. The treated samples were found resistant to termite attack, while the untreated one was badly damaged by termites on 12 months' exposure to a termite colony. The thermal degradations of untreated and treated wood samples were studied using thermogravimetric (TGA) and differential thermogravimetric (DTG) techniques at heating rates 20 and 30 {sup o}Cmin{sup -1} in temperature range 30-650{sup o}C. The treated wood was found to be thermally more stable than the untreated one. (author)

  17. Termitomyces sp. associated with the termite Macrotermes natalensis has a heterothallic mating system and multinucleate cells

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    De Fine Licht, Henrik H; Andersen, Anders; Aanen, Duur Kornelis

    2005-01-01

    Fungi of the genus Termitomyces live in an obligate symbiosis with termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae. Many species of Termitomyces frequently form fruit bodies, which develop from the fungus comb within the nest. In this study, we determined the mating system of a species of Termitomyces ...

  18. Effects of extractives and ash on natural resistance of four woods to xylophogous termites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juarez Benigno Paes

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available This study tested the natural resistance of wood of four tree species to Nasutitermes corniger Motsch. xylophogous termite attack and correlate the resistance with the amount of extract and ash in the chemical composition of the tested species. The species evaluated were Anadenanthera colubrina (Vell. Brenan. var. cebil (Gris. Alts., Tabebuia aurea (Mart. Bureau., Amburana cearensis (Allem. A.C.Sm. and Eucalyptus camaldulensis Dehnh. Test samples with dimensions of 2.00 x 10.16 x 0.64 cm (radial x longitudinal x tangential were obtained at two positions (external heartwood and sapwood of each species. The samples were exposed to action of termites for 45 days in food preference assay. The content of wood extractives was obtained through the sawdust that went through sieve of 40 mesh and were retained in the 60 mesh. The natural resistance was not associated with wood extractive contents. The wood more resistant to termite attack was the Anadenanthera colubrina var. cebil in the two positions (external heartwood and sapwood and Eucalyptus camaldulensis wood presented the greatest wear. The biological resistance of wood was correlated with ash content, i.e., the species with the highest levels was the most resistant to termite attack.

  19. Unrelated secondary reproductives in the neotropical termite Silvestritermes euamignathus (Isoptera: Termitidae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haifig, Ives; Vargo, Edward L.; Labadie, Paul; Costa-Leonardo, Ana Maria

    2016-02-01

    A termite colony is usually founded by a pair of alates, the primary reproductives, which produce all the nestmates. In some species, secondary reproductives appear to either replace the primaries or supplement colony reproduction. In termites, secondary reproductives are generally ergatoids derived from workers or nymphoids derived from nymphs. Silvestritermes euamignathus is a termite species that forms multiple nymphoid reproductives, and to date it was hypothesized that these secondary reproductives were the progeny of the primary founding reproductives. We developed markers for 12 microsatellite loci and used COI mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to genotype 59 nymphoid neotenics found in a colony of S. euamignathus to test this hypothesis. Our results showed that nymphoids of S. euamignathus are not all siblings. The microsatellite analysis suggests that the secondary reproductives derived from a minimum of four different pairs of reproductives belonging to at least two different matrilines. This is the first record of non-sibling secondary reproductives occupying the same nest in a higher termite. These unrelated reproductives might be the result of either pleometrotic colony foundation or colony fusion.

  20. Identification of the Trail-Following Pheromone of the Pest Termite Amitermes evuncifer (Isoptera: Termitidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Kotoklo, E. A.; Sillam-Dusses, David; Kétoh, G.; Sémon, E.; Robert, A.; Bordereau, Ch.; Glitho, I. A.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 55, č. 2 (2010), s. 579-588 ISSN 0361-6525 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : dodecatrienol * neocembrene * multicomponent pheromone * termites Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 0.534, year: 2010

  1. Decay and termite resistance, water absorption and swelling of thermally compressed wood panels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oner Unsal; S. Nami Kartal; Zeki Candan; Rachel A. Arango; Carol A. Clausen; Frederick Green

    2009-01-01

    This study evaluated decay and termite resistance of thermally compressed pine wood panels under pressure at either 5 or 7 MPa and either 120 or 150 °C for 1 h. Wood specimens from the panels were exposed to laboratory decay resistance by using the wood degrading fungi, Gloeophyllum trabeum and Trametes versicolor. The thermal compression process caused increases in...

  2. Two new termite (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) feeding indexes for woods of varing palatability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chris J. Peterson; P.D. Gerard

    2009-01-01

    In order for bait matrices, treated wood and resistant wood species to be properly evaluated in the laboratory for termite resistance or palatability, reliable tests that can distinguish between food choices must be developed; otherwise, inferior products may enter the marketplace. In the current study, a bioassay method is proposed that allows the calculation of two...

  3. EFFECTS OF EXTRACTIVES AND DENSITY ON NATURAL RESISTANCE OF WOODS TO TERMITE Nasutitermes corniger

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juarez Benigno Paes

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The evaluation of the natural resistance of wood to wood-destroying organisms is of fundamental importance in the choice of species to be used in buildings and furniture industry. Thus, the effects of extractives and wood density on biological resistance of Acacia mangium, Casuarina equisetifolia, Corymbia torelliana, Eucalyptus cloeziana, Tectona grandis and Caesalpinia echinata woods to the xylophagous termite Nasutitermes corniger was evaluated under laboratory conditions. Test samples, with dimensions of 2.00 x 2.54 x 0.64 cm (radial x tangential x longitudinal in four positions in pith-bark direction (internal heart, intermediate heart, outer heart and sapwood were taken. The woods were exposed to termite action for 28 days in no-choice feeding test. The samples not selected for the termite test were turned into sawdust and the extractive contents were obtained using the shavings that passed through the sieve of 40 and were retained in the sieve of 60 mesh. The wood natural resistance, within the pith-bark positions, for the studied species, is not correlated with the density and extractive content. However, among the woods, those with higher density and extractive content are more resistant. The woods with greater biological resistance to the termite Nasutitermes corniger (smaller mass loss, waste and survival time of insects are Corymbia torelliana and Caesalpinia echinata and of less resistance is Casuarina equisetifolia.

  4. Presumptive horizontal symbiont transmission in the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fine Licht, de H.H.; Boomsma, J.J.; Aanen, D.K.

    2006-01-01

    All colonies of the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis studied so far are associated with a single genetically variable lineage of Termitomyces symbionts. Such limited genetic variation of symbionts and the absence of sexual fruiting bodies (mushrooms) on M. natalensis mounds would be

  5. Preliminary evaluation of storax and its constituents: Fungal decay mold and termite resistance

    Science.gov (United States)

    S. Nami Kartal; Evren Terzi; Tsuyoshi Yoshimura; Rachel Arango; Carol A. Clausen; Frederick Green III

    2012-01-01

    Essential oils and their derivatives might be one of the promising preserving agents to prevent funga ldecay and termite/insect attack in wood since such compounds have a long history of safe usage as antimicrobial agents in various industries. Considerable research has focused on utilizing bioactive essential oils and wood extractives based on green technologies to...

  6. Susceptibility of Seven Termite Species (Isoptera) to the Entomopathogenic Fungus Metarhizium anisopliae

    OpenAIRE

    Chouvenc , Thomas; Su , Nan-Yao; Robert , Alain

    2009-01-01

    Seven termite species (Isoptera) from five families were tested for disease susceptibility against the entomopathogenic fungus Metarhizium anisopliae using a standard protocol: Mastotermes darwiniensis (Mastotermitidae), Hodotermopsis sjoestedti (Termopsidae), Hodotermes mossambicus (Hodotermitidae), Kalotermes flavicollis (Kalotermitidae), Reticulitermes flavipes and Prorhinotermes canalifrons (Rhinotermitidae), and Nasutitermes voeltzkowi (Termitidae). Our results showed a large diversity i...

  7. Secondary queens in the parthenogenetic termite Cavitermes tuberosus develop through a transitional helper stage

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hellemans, S.; Fournier, D.; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Y.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 19, č. 6 (2017), s. 253-262 ISSN 1520-541X Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : facultative parthenogenesis * replacement queens * termites * asexual queen succession * ontogeny * Cavitermes Subject RIV: EG - Zoology OBOR OECD: Developmental biology Impact factor: 2.243, year: 2016

  8. Discovery of ectosymbiotic Endomicrobium lineages associated with protists in the gut of stolotermitid termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Izawa, Kazuki; Kuwahara, Hirokazu; Sugaya, Kaito; Lo, Nathan; Ohkuma, Moriya; Hongoh, Yuichi

    2017-08-01

    The genus Endomicrobium is a dominant bacterial group in the gut of lower termites, and most phylotypes are intracellular symbionts of gut protists. Here we report the discovery of Endomicrobium ectosymbionts of termite gut protists. We found that bristle-like Endomicrobium cells attached to the surface of spirotrichosomid protist cells inhabiting the termite Stolotermes victoriensis. Transmission electron microscopy revealed that a putative Endomicrobium cell likely attached to the protist surface via a protrusion from the tip of the bacterium. A phylotype, sharing 98.9% 16S rRNA sequence identity with the Endomicrobium ectosymbionts of the spirotrichosomid protists, was also found on the cell surface of the protist Trichonympha magna in the gut of the termite Porotermes adamsoni. We propose the novel species 'Candidatus Endomicrobium superficiale' for these bacteria. T. magna simultaneously harboured another Endomicrobium ectosymbiont that shared 93.5-94.2% 16S rRNA sequence identities with 'Ca. Endomicrobium superficiale'. Furthermore, Spirotrichonympha-like protists in P. adamsoni guts were associated with an Endomicrobium phylotype that possibly attached to the host flagella. A phylogenetic analysis suggested that these ectosymbiotic lineages have evolved multiple times from free-living Endomicrobium lineages and are relatively distant from the endosymbionts. Our results provide novel insights into the ecology and evolution of the Endomicrobium. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  9. effects of rice husk ash and termite hill types on the physical

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    PROF EKWUEME

    especially in the manufacturing of building materials. A particularly potential ... Cassgrande apparatus with a grooving tool was used for the limit test. ... Lean clay. 2.2.1 Compaction Test. The compaction tests on the termite clay samples were ...

  10. Termite and fungal resistance of in situ polymerized tributyltin acrylate and acetylated Indonesian and USA wood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rebecca E. Ibach; Yusuf Sudo Hadi; Dodi Nandika; Sulaeman Yusuf; Yuliati Indrayani

    2000-01-01

    Wood [Indonesian pine (IP), Indonesian Jabon (IJ) and USA southern yellow pine (USP)] was either in situ polymerized with tributyltin acrylate (TBTA) or acetylated and then exposed to termite and fungal degradation both in laboratory tests and field exposure. The TBTA woods had an average weight percent gain (WPG) of 11% for IP, 12% for IJ, and 10% for USP. The...

  11. Chemistry and Anatomy of the Frontal Gland in Soldiers of the Sand Termite Psammotermes hybostoma

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Krasulová, Jana; Hanus, Robert; Kutalová, Kateřina; Šobotník, Jan; Sillam-Dusses, David; Tichý, Michal; Valterová, Irena

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 38, č. 5 (2012), s. 557-565 ISSN 0098-0331 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/1570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : termites * frontal gland of soldiers * chemical defense * Rhinotermitidae * Psammotermes hybostoma Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 2.462, year: 2012

  12. Termites amplify effects of wood traits on decomposition rates among multiple bamboo and dicot woody species

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liu, Guofang; Cornwell, W.K.; Cao, Kunfang; Hu, Yukun; van Logtestijn, R.S.P; Yang, Shijian; Xie, Xiufang; Zhang, Yalin; Ye, Duo; Pan, Xu; Ye, Xuehua; Huang, Zhenying; Dong, Ming; Cornelissen, J.H.C.

    2015-01-01

    Wood decomposition is a key process in the terrestrial carbon cycle, controlling carbon storage with feedback to climate. In (sub) tropical forest, termites are major players in wood decomposition, but their role relative to that of microbial decomposers and wood traits of different tree species is

  13. Termite- and mulch-mediated rehabilitation of vegetation on crusted soil in West Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mando, A.; Brussaard, L.; Stroosnijder, L.

    1999-01-01

    The rehabilitation of vegetation on structurally crusted soils by triggering termite activity through mulch was studied on three soil types in northern Burkina Faso, West Africa. A split-plot design was used in a fenced environment for the experiment. Insecticide (Dieldrin) was used at a rate of 500

  14. Evaluating the role of Actinobacteria in the gut of wood-feeding termites (Reticulitermes spp.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rachel A. Arango; Frederick Green III; Vina W. Yang; Joliene R. Lindholm; Nathaniel P. Chotlos; Kenneth F. Raffa

    2017-01-01

    Nitrogen has been shown to be a limiting nutrient across a range of xylophagous insects. These insects often rely on symbiotic microorganisms in the gut for nitrogen acquisition, via fixation of atmospheric nitrogen or break down of other available nitrogenous substances. In phylogenetically lower, wood-feeding termites, the role of nitrogen fixing bacteria has been...

  15. Excavation and aggregation as organizing factors in de novo construction by mound-building termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, Ben; Bardunias, Paul; Turner, J Scott; Nagpal, Radhika; Werfel, Justin

    2017-06-14

    Termites construct complex mounds that are orders of magnitude larger than any individual and fulfil a variety of functional roles. Yet the processes through which these mounds are built, and by which the insects organize their efforts, remain poorly understood. The traditional understanding focuses on stigmergy, a form of indirect communication in which actions that change the environment provide cues that influence future work. Termite construction has long been thought to be organized via a putative 'cement pheromone': a chemical added to deposited soil that stimulates further deposition in the same area, thus creating a positive feedback loop whereby coherent structures are built up. To investigate the detailed mechanisms and behaviours through which termites self-organize the early stages of mound construction, we tracked the motion and behaviour of major workers from two Macrotermes species in experimental arenas. Rather than a construction process focused on accumulation of depositions, as models based on cement pheromone would suggest, our results indicated that the primary organizing mechanisms were based on excavation. Digging activity was focused on a small number of excavation sites, which in turn provided templates for soil deposition. This behaviour was mediated by a mechanism of aggregation, with termites being more likely to join in the work at an excavation site as the number of termites presently working at that site increased. Statistical analyses showed that this aggregation mechanism was a response to active digging, distinct from and unrelated to putative chemical cues that stimulate deposition. Agent-based simulations quantitatively supported the interpretation that the early stage of de novo construction is primarily organized by excavation and aggregation activity rather than by stigmergic deposition. © 2017 The Author(s).

  16. Patterns of interaction specificity of fungus-growing termites and Termitomyces symbionts in South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Beer Z Wilhelm

    2007-07-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Termites of the subfamily Macrotermitinae live in a mutualistic symbiosis with basidiomycete fungi of the genus Termitomyces. Here, we explored interaction specificity in fungus-growing termites using samples from 101 colonies in South-Africa and Senegal, belonging to eight species divided over three genera. Knowledge of interaction specificity is important to test the hypothesis that inhabitants (symbionts are taxonomically less diverse than 'exhabitants' (hosts and to test the hypothesis that transmission mode is an important determinant for interaction specificity. Results Analysis of Molecular Variance among symbiont ITS sequences across termite hosts at three hierarchical levels showed that 47 % of the variation occurred between genera, 18 % between species, and the remaining 35 % between colonies within species. Different patterns of specificity were evident. High mutual specificity was found for the single Macrotermes species studied, as M. natalensis was associated with a single unique fungal haplotype. The three species of the genus Odontotermes showed low symbiont specificity: they were all associated with a genetically diverse set of fungal symbionts, but their fungal symbionts showed some host specificity, as none of the fungal haplotypes were shared between the studied Odontotermes species. Finally, bilaterally low specificity was found for the four tentatively recognized species of the genus Microtermes, which shared and apparently freely exchanged a common pool of divergent fungal symbionts. Conclusion Interaction specificity was high at the genus level and generally much lower at the species level. A comparison of the observed diversity among fungal symbionts with the diversity among termite hosts, indicated that the fungal symbiont does not follow the general pattern of an endosymbiont, as we found either similar diversity at both sides or higher diversity in the symbiont. Our results further challenge the

  17. Cellulolytic Protist Numbers Rise and Fall Dramatically in Termite Queens and Kings during Colony Foundation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimada, Keisuke; Lo, Nathan; Kitade, Osamu; Wakui, Akane

    2013-01-01

    Among the best-known examples of mutualistic symbioses is that between lower termites and the cellulolytic flagellate protists in their hindguts. Although the symbiosis in worker termites has attracted much attention, there have been only a few studies of protists in other castes. We have performed the first examination of protist population dynamics in queens and kings during termite colony foundation. Protist numbers, as well as measurements of hindgut and reproductive tissue sizes, were undertaken at five time points over 400 days in incipient colonies of Reticulitermes speratus, as well as in other castes of mature colonies of this species. We found that protist numbers increased dramatically in both queens and kings during the first 50 days of colony foundation but began to decrease by day 100, eventually disappearing by day 400. Hindgut width followed a pattern similar to that of protist numbers, while ovary and testis widths increased significantly only at day 400. Kings were found to contain higher numbers of protists than queens in incipient colonies, which may be linked to higher levels of nutrient transfer from kings to queens than vice versa, as is known in some other termite species. Protists were found to be abundant in soldiers from mature colonies but absent in neotenics. This probably reflects feeding of soldiers by workers via proctodeal trophallaxis and of reproductives via stomodeal trophallaxis. The results reveal the dynamic nature of protist numbers during colony foundation and highlight the trade-offs that exist between reproduction and parental care during this critical phase of the termite life cycle. PMID:23376945

  18. Incomplete Co-cladogenesis Between Zootermopsis Termites and Their Associated Protists.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taerum, Stephen J; De Martini, Francesca; Liebig, Jürgen; Gile, Gillian H

    2018-02-08

    Coevolution is a major driver of speciation in many host-associated symbionts. In the termite-protist digestive symbiosis, the protists are vertically inherited by anal feeding among nest mates. Lower termites (all termite families except Termitidae) and their symbionts have broadly co-diversified over ~170 million yr. However, this inference is based mainly on the restricted distribution of certain protist genera to certain termite families. With the exception of one study, which demonstrated congruent phylogenies for the protist Pseudotrichonympha and its Rhinotermitidae hosts, coevolution in this symbiosis has not been investigated with molecular methods. Here we have characterized the hindgut symbiotic protists (Phylum Parabasalia) across the genus Zootermopsis (Archotermopsidae) using single cell isolation, molecular phylogenetics, and high-throughput amplicon sequencing. We report that the deepest divergence in the Zootermopsis phylogeny (Zootermopsis laticeps [Banks; Isoptera: Termopsidae]) corresponds with a divergence in three of the hindgut protist species. However, the crown Zootermopsis taxa (Zootermopsis angusticollis [Hagen; Isoptera: Termopsidae], Z. nevadensis nevadensis [Hagen; Isoptera: Termopsidae], and Z. nevadensis nuttingi [Haverty & Thorne; Isoptera: Termopsidae]) share the same protist species, with no evidence of co-speciation under our methods. We interpret this pattern as incomplete co-cladogenesis, though the possibility of symbiont exchange cannot be entirely ruled out. This is the first molecular evidence that identical communities of termite-associated protist species can inhabit multiple distinct host species. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Preliminary evaluation of fungicidal and termiticidal activities of filtrates from biomass slurry fuel production

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kartal, S.N. [Istanbul University (Turkey). Forestry Faculty; Imamura, Y. [Kyoto University (Japan). Wood Research Institute; Tsuchiya, F.; Ohsato, K. [JGC Corporation, Yokohama (Japan)

    2004-10-01

    Biomass slurry fuel (BSF) production has recently been developed as a natural energy for the conversion of solid biomass into fuel. In addition to using fuel, filtrates from BSF production may also serve a chemical source with several organic compounds. There is an increasing interest in the research and application of biomass-based filtrates. In this study, fungicidal and termiticidal properties of filtrates from BSF production using sugi (Cryptomeria japonica) and acacia (Acacia mangium) wood were evaluated in laboratory decay and termite resistance tests. Wood blocks treated with the filtrates showed increased resistance against brown-rot fungus, Formitopsis palustris. However the filtrates from sugi wood processed at 270{sup o}C which contained less phenolic compounds than the other filtrates were effective against white-rot fungus, Trametes versicolor. Phenolic compounds of filtrates seemed to play a role in the decay resistance tests however the filtrates did not increase the durability of the wood blocks against subterranean termites Coptotermes formosanus. Despite high acetic and lactic acid content of the filtrates, vanillin content of the filtrates may have served as an additional food source and promoted termite attack. It can be concluded that filtrates with phenolic compounds from lignin degradation during BSF production can be considered for targeted inhibition of brown-rot. (author)

  20. The fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis harbors bacillaene-producing Bacillus sp. that inhibit potentially antagonistic fungi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Um, Soohyun; Fraimout, Antoine; Sapountzis, Panagiotis

    2013-01-01

    colonies produce a single major antibiotic, bacillaene A (1), which selectively inhibits known and putatively antagonistic fungi of Termitomyces. Comparative analyses of the genomes of symbiotic Bacillus strains revealed that they are phylogenetically closely related to Bacillus subtilis, their genomes...... have high homology with more than 90% of ORFs being 100% identical, and the sequence identities across the biosynthetic gene cluster for bacillaene are higher between termite-associated strains than to the cluster previously reported in B. subtilis. Our findings suggest that this lineage of antibiotic......The ancient fungus-growing termite (Mactrotermitinae) symbiosis involves the obligate association between a lineage of higher termites and basidiomycete Termitomyces cultivar fungi. Our investigation of the fungus-growing termite Macrotermes natalensis shows that Bacillus strains from M. natalensis...

  1. Development and characterization of microsatellite markers from the humivorous termite Cavitermes tuberosus (Isoptera: Termitinae) using pyrosequencing technology

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fournier, D.; Hanus, Robert; Roisin, Y.

    2015-01-01

    Roč. 7, č. 2 (2015), s. 521-524 ISSN 1877-7252 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : Cavitermes tuberosus * termite * microsatellite * pyrosequencing * population genetics Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology Impact factor: 0.446, year: 2015

  2. Functional structure of ant and termite assemblages in old growth forest, logged forest and oil palm plantation in Malaysian Borneo

    OpenAIRE

    Luke, Sarah H.; Fayle, Tom M.; Eggleton, Paul; Turner, Edgar C.; Davies, Richard G.

    2014-01-01

    Forested tropical landscapes around the world are being extensively logged and converted to agriculture, with serious consequences for biodiversity and potentially ecosystem functioning. Here we investigate associations between habitat disturbance and functional diversity of ants and termites – two numerically dominant and functionally important taxa in tropical rain forests that perform key roles in predation, decomposition, nutrient cycling and seed dispersal. We compared ant and termite oc...

  3. Differences between bacterial communities in the gut of a soil-feeding termite (Cubitermes niokoloensis) and its mounds

    OpenAIRE

    Fall, Saliou; Hamelin, J.; Ndiaye, Farma; Assigbetse, Komi; Aragno, M.; Chotte, Jean-Luc; Brauman, Alain

    2007-01-01

    In tropical ecosystems, termite mound soils constitute an important soil compartment covering around 10% of African soils. Previous studies have shown (S. Fall, S. Nazaret, J. L. Chotte, and A. Brauman, Microb. Ecol. 28:191-199, 2004) that the bacterial genetic structure of the mounds of soil-feeding termites (Cubitermes niokoloensis) is different from that of their surrounding soil. The aim of this study was to characterize the specificity of bacterial communities within mounds with respect ...

  4. A Preliminary Study on Termite Mound Soil as Agricultural Soil for Crop Production in South West, Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    Omofunmi, O. E.; Kolo, J. G.; Alli, A. A.; Ojo, A. S.

    2017-01-01

    It is a popular belief of the people in the Southern region of Nigeria that a land infested with termite usually brings prosperity to the land owner regardless of the type of its usage.  Therefore, the present study assessed termite mounds soil properties which are important to crop production. Two soil samples were collected and their physical and chemical properties determined in accordance with American Public Health Association (APHA, 2005). Data were analyzed using descriptive stati...

  5. Saccharification of Agricultural Lignocellulose Feedstocks and Protein-Level Responses by a Termite Gut-Microbe Bioreactor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rajarapu, Swapna Priya; Scharf, Michael E.

    2017-01-01

    This study investigated saccharification and protein-level responses to the candidate biofuel feedstocks corn stover (CS) and soybean residue (SR) by the gut of a lower termite. The focus termite was Reticulitermes flavipes, which is a highly efficient digester of wood lignocellulose that houses a mixture of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbes in its gut. Our specific objectives were to (i) measure saccharification potential of the CS and SR feedstocks by termite gut protein extracts, (ii) identify specific proteins in the termite gut responding to feeding on CS and SR diets, and (iii) evaluate gut lignocellulase and accessory enzyme activity responses to CS and SR feeding. Cellulose paper was the control diet. Although CS was saccharified at higher levels, termite gut protein extracts saccharified both CS and SR irrespective of feedstock loading. Consumption of the CS and SR feedstocks by termites resulted in surprisingly few differences in gut protein profiles, with the main exception being elevated myosin abundance with SR feeding. Activity of potential lignocellulases and accessory enzymes was generally similar between CS and SR fed guts as well; however, cellobiohydrolase/exoglucanase activity was higher with CS feeding and glutathione peroxidase activity with SR feeding. These findings have significance from two perspectives. First, SR feeding/digestion appears to cause physiological stress in the termite gut that likely would extend to other types of microbial environments including those within industrial bioreactors. Second, because termites can survive on exclusive CS and SR diets and their guts exhibit clear CS and SR saccharification activity, this validates the R. flavipes system as a potential source for CS and SR degrading enzymes; in particular, cellobiohydrolases/exoglucanases and glutathione peroxidases from this system may play roles in CS and SR breakdown.

  6. Pycnoscelus surinamensis cockroach gut microbiota respond consistently to a fungal diet without mirroring those of fungus-farming termites.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Callum Richards

    Full Text Available The gut microbiotas of cockroaches and termites play important roles in the symbiotic digestion of dietary components, such as lignocellulose. Diet has been proposed as a primary determinant of community structure within the gut, acting as a selection force to shape the diversity observed within this "bioreactor", and as a key factor for the divergence of the termite gut microbiota from the omnivorous cockroach ancestor. The gut microbiota in most termites supports primarily the breakdown of lignocellulose, but the fungus-farming sub-family of higher termites has become similar in gut microbiota to the ancestral omnivorous cockroaches. To assess the importance of a fungus diet as a driver of community structure, we compare community compositions in the guts of experimentally manipulated Pycnoscelus surinamensis cockroaches fed on fungus cultivated by fungus-farming termites. MiSeq amplicon analysis of gut microbiotas from 49 gut samples showed a step-wise gradient pattern in community similarity that correlated with an increase in the proportion of fungal material provided to the cockroaches. Comparison of the taxonomic composition of manipulated communities to that of gut communities of a fungus-feeding termite species showed that although some bacteria OTUs shared by P. surinamensis and the farming termites increased in the guts of cockroaches on a fungal diet, cockroach communities remained distinct from those of termites. These results demonstrate that a fungal diet can play a role in structuring gut community composition, but at the same time exemplifies how original community compositions constrain the magnitude of such change.

  7. Occurrence of termites (Isoptera on living and standing dead trees in a tropical dry forest in Mexico

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nancy Calderón-Cortés

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Termites play a key role as ecosystem engineers in numerous ecological processes though their role in the dynamics of wood degradation in tropical dry forests, particularly at the level of the crown canopy, has been little studied. In this study, we analysed the occurrence of termites in the forest canopy by evaluating the density and proportion of living and standing dead trees associated with termites in deciduous and riparian habitats of the tropical dry forest in Chamela, Mexico. The results indicated that 60–98% of standing dead trees and 23–59% of living trees in Chamela were associated with termites. In particular, we found that the density of standing dead trees was higher in deciduous forests (0.057–0.066 trees/m2 than in riparian forests (0.022 and 0.027 trees/m2, even though the proportion of trees was not significantly different among habitats. Additionally, we found a higher density of trees associated with termites in trees of smaller size classes (0.01–0.09 trees/m2 than in larger class sizes (0–0.02 trees/m2. Interestingly, 72% of variation in the density of trees associated with termites is explained by the density of standing dead trees. Overall, these results indicate that standing dead tree availability might be the main factor regulating termite populations in Chamela forest and suggest that termites could play a key role in the decomposition of above-ground dead wood, mediating the incorporation of suspended and standing dead wood into the soil.

  8. Occurrence of termites (Isoptera) on living and standing dead trees in a tropical dry forest in Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calderón-Cortés, Nancy; Escalera-Vázquez, Luis H; Oyama, Ken

    2018-01-01

    Termites play a key role as ecosystem engineers in numerous ecological processes though their role in the dynamics of wood degradation in tropical dry forests, particularly at the level of the crown canopy, has been little studied. In this study, we analysed the occurrence of termites in the forest canopy by evaluating the density and proportion of living and standing dead trees associated with termites in deciduous and riparian habitats of the tropical dry forest in Chamela, Mexico. The results indicated that 60-98% of standing dead trees and 23-59% of living trees in Chamela were associated with termites. In particular, we found that the density of standing dead trees was higher in deciduous forests (0.057-0.066 trees/m 2 ) than in riparian forests (0.022 and 0.027 trees/m 2 ), even though the proportion of trees was not significantly different among habitats. Additionally, we found a higher density of trees associated with termites in trees of smaller size classes (0.01-0.09 trees/m 2 ) than in larger class sizes (0-0.02 trees/m 2 ). Interestingly, 72% of variation in the density of trees associated with termites is explained by the density of standing dead trees. Overall, these results indicate that standing dead tree availability might be the main factor regulating termite populations in Chamela forest and suggest that termites could play a key role in the decomposition of above-ground dead wood, mediating the incorporation of suspended and standing dead wood into the soil.

  9. Saccharification of Agricultural Lignocellulose Feedstocks and Protein-Level Responses by a Termite Gut-Microbe Bioreactor

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rajarapu, Swapna Priya; Scharf, Michael E., E-mail: mscharf@purdue.edu [Department of Entomology, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN (United States)

    2017-04-07

    This study investigated saccharification and protein-level responses to the candidate biofuel feedstocks corn stover (CS) and soybean residue (SR) by the gut of a lower termite. The focus termite was Reticulitermes flavipes, which is a highly efficient digester of wood lignocellulose that houses a mixture of prokaryotic and eukaryotic microbes in its gut. Our specific objectives were to (i) measure saccharification potential of the CS and SR feedstocks by termite gut protein extracts, (ii) identify specific proteins in the termite gut responding to feeding on CS and SR diets, and (iii) evaluate gut lignocellulase and accessory enzyme activity responses to CS and SR feeding. Cellulose paper was the control diet. Although CS was saccharified at higher levels, termite gut protein extracts saccharified both CS and SR irrespective of feedstock loading. Consumption of the CS and SR feedstocks by termites resulted in surprisingly few differences in gut protein profiles, with the main exception being elevated myosin abundance with SR feeding. Activity of potential lignocellulases and accessory enzymes was generally similar between CS and SR fed guts as well; however, cellobiohydrolase/exoglucanase activity was higher with CS feeding and glutathione peroxidase activity with SR feeding. These findings have significance from two perspectives. First, SR feeding/digestion appears to cause physiological stress in the termite gut that likely would extend to other types of microbial environments including those within industrial bioreactors. Second, because termites can survive on exclusive CS and SR diets and their guts exhibit clear CS and SR saccharification activity, this validates the R. flavipes system as a potential source for CS and SR degrading enzymes; in particular, cellobiohydrolases/exoglucanases and glutathione peroxidases from this system may play roles in CS and SR breakdown.

  10. Diversity and resilience of the wood?feeding higher termite Mironasutitermes shangchengensis gut microbiota in response to temporal and diet variations

    OpenAIRE

    Wang, Ying; Su, Lijuan; Huang, Shi; Bo, Cunpei; Yang, Sen; Li, Yan; Wang, Fengqin; Xie, Hui; Xu, Jian; Song, Andong

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Termites are considered among the most efficient bioreactors, with high capacities for lignocellulose degradation and utilization. Recently, several studies have characterized the gut microbiota of diverse termites. However, the temporal dynamics of the gut microbiota within a given termite with dietary diversity are poorly understood. Here, we employed 16S rDNA barcoded pyrosequencing analysis to investigate temporal changes in bacterial diversity and richness of the gut microbiota ...

  11. Two new species of the Pterostichus macrogenys species group (Coleoptera, Carabidae discovered in shallow subterranean habitats in northern Honshu, Japan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kôji Sasakawa

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Shallow subterranean environments have recently received attention as a habitat for Carabidae beetles, and many new species have been discovered using collection techniques devised for this habitat. We report the discovery of two new species of the macrogenys species group of the Pterostichus subgenus Nialoe Tanaka, 1958, collected by subterranean baited traps in northern Honshu, Japan. Pterostichus shinbodakensis Sasakawa & Itô, sp. n. is described from Mt. Shinbodake, Niigata Prefecture, and P. tateishiyamanus Sasakawa & Itô, sp. n. is described from the southeastern foot of Mt. Tateishiyama, Fukushima Prefecture. Comparative male genital morphology shows that among the known species, the two new species are most closely related to P. falcispinus Sasakawa, 2005 and P. chokaisanus Sasakawa, 2009, respectively. In addition, sympatric occurrence of P. shinbodakensis with a smaller, unidentified species of the species group was also confirmed. The implications of these results for future studies of the macrogenys species group, as well as those of Nialoe, are discussed.

  12. Phylogenetic placement of the Pacific Northwest subterranean endemic diving beetle Stygoporus oregonensis Larson & LaBonte (Dytiscidae, Hydroporinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kojun Kanda

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available Stygoporus oregonensis Larson & LaBonte is a little-known subterranean diving beetle, which, until recently, had not been collected since the type series was taken from a shallow well in western Oregon, USA, in 1984. Here we report the discovery of additional specimens collected from a nearby well in the Willamette Valley. Sequence data from four mitochondrial genes, wingless, and histone III place Stygoporus Larson & LaBonte in the predominantly Mediterranean subtribe Siettitiina of the Hydroporini. Morphological support for these results is discussed, and details of the collecting circumstances of the new specimens are presented. We argue that the biogeographic patterns of Nearctic Siettitiina highlight the likelihood of additional undiscovered subterranean dytiscids in North America.

  13. Phylogenetic placement of the Pacific Northwest subterranean endemic diving beetle Stygoporus oregonensis Larson & LaBonte (Dytiscidae, Hydroporinae)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanda, Kojun; Gomez, R. Antonio; Van Driesche, Richard; Miller, Kelly B.; Maddison, David R.

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Stygoporus oregonensis Larson & LaBonte is a little-known subterranean diving beetle, which, until recently, had not been collected since the type series was taken from a shallow well in western Oregon, USA, in 1984. Here we report the discovery of additional specimens collected from a nearby well in the Willamette Valley. Sequence data from four mitochondrial genes, wingless, and histone III place Stygoporus Larson & LaBonte in the predominantly Mediterranean subtribe Siettitiina of the Hydroporini. Morphological support for these results is discussed, and details of the collecting circumstances of the new specimens are presented. We argue that the biogeographic patterns of Nearctic Siettitiina highlight the likelihood of additional undiscovered subterranean dytiscids in North America. PMID:27920606

  14. Variations of iron flux and organic carbon remineralization in a subterranean estuary caused by interannual variations in recharge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Moutusi; Martin, Jonathan B.; Cable, Jaye E.; Smith, Christopher G.

    2013-01-01

    We determine the inter-annual variations in diagenetic reaction rates of sedimentary iron (Fe ) in an east Florida subterranean estuary and evaluate the connection between metal fluxes and recharge to the coastal aquifer. Over the three-year study period (from 2004 to 2007), the amount of Fe-oxides reduced at the study site decreased from 192 g/yr to 153 g/yr and associated organic carbon (OC) remineralization decreased from 48 g/yr to 38 g/yr. These reductions occurred although the Fe-oxide reduction rates remained constant around 1 mg/cm2/yr. These results suggest that changes in flow rates of submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) related to changes in precipitation may be important to fluxes of the diagenetic reaction products. Rainfall at a weather station approximately 5 km from the field area decreased from 12.6 cm/month to 8.4 cm/month from 2004 to 2007. Monthly potential evapotranspiration (PET) calculated from Thornthwaite’s method indicated potential evapotranspiration cycled from about 3 cm/month in the winter to about 15 cm/month in the summer so that net annual recharge to the aquifer decreased from 40 cm in 2004 to -10 cm in 2007. Simultaneously, with the decrease in recharge of groundwater, freshwater SGD decreased by around 20% and caused the originally 25 m wide freshwater seepage face to decrease in width by about 5 m. The smaller seepage face reduced the area under which Fe-oxides were undergoing reductive dissolution. Consequently, the observed decrease in Fe flux is controlled by hydrology of the subterranean estuary. These results point out the need to better understand linkages between temporal variations in diagenetic reactions and changes in flow within subterranean estuaries in order to accurately constrain their contribution to oceanic fluxes of solutes from subterranean estuaries.

  15. Variations of iron flux and organic carbon remineralization in a subterranean estuary caused by inter-annual variations in recharge

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roy, Moutusi; Martin, Jonathan B.; Cable, Jaye E.; Smith, Christopher G.

    2013-02-01

    We determine the inter-annual variations in diagenetic reaction rates of sedimentary iron (Fe) in an east Florida subterranean estuary and evaluate the connection between metal fluxes and recharge to the coastal aquifer. Over the three years study period (from 2004 to 2007), the amount of Fe-oxides reduced at the study site decreased from 192 to 153 g/yr and associated organic carbon (OC) remineralization decreased from 48 to 38 g/yr. These reductions occurred although the Fe-oxide reduction rates remained constant around 1 mg/cm2/yr. These results suggest that changes in flow rates of submarine groundwater discharge (SGD) related to changes in precipitation may be important to fluxes of the diagenetic reaction products. Rainfall at a weather station approximately 5 km from the field area decreased from 12.6 to 8.4 cm/month from 2004 to 2007. Monthly potential evapotranspiration (PET) calculated from Thornthwaite's method indicated potential evapotranspiration cycled from about 3 cm/month in the winter to about 15 cm/month in the summer so that net annual recharge to the aquifer decreased from 40 cm in 2004 to -10 cm in 2007. Simultaneously with the decrease in recharge of groundwater, freshwater SGD decreased by around 20% and caused the originally 25 m wide freshwater seepage face to decrease in width by about 5 m. The smaller seepage face reduced the area under which Fe-oxides were undergoing reductive dissolution. Consequently, the observed decrease in Fe flux is controlled by hydrology of the subterranean estuary. These results point out the need to better understand linkages between temporal variations in diagenetic reactions and changes in flow within subterranean estuaries in order to accurately constrain their contribution to oceanic fluxes of solutes from subterranean estuaries.

  16. The interdigital brace and other grips for termite nest perforation by chimpanzees of the Goualougo Triangle, Republic of Congo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesnik, Julie J; Sanz, Crickette M; Morgan, David B

    2015-06-01

    Studies of chimpanzee termite foraging enlighten our understanding of early hominin tool use not only by modeling the cognitive ability of our ancestors but also by emphasizing the possible role of social insects in the hominin diet. The chimpanzees of the Goualougo Triangle are known to have one of the largest and most complex tool repertoires reported for wild chimpanzees. One tool set habitually used by this population includes a perforating tool to penetrate the hard outer crust of elevated termite nests before fishing for termite prey with an herbaceous stem. Here, we report the variation present in the grips used on the perforating tool. Our analysis of video recordings of chimpanzee visitation to termite nests over a 3-year period shows that these chimpanzees use a variety of grips to navigate the challenges encountered in opening a termite nest. For situations in which the soil is most hardened, perforating requires force and a power grip is often used. When the soil in the passageway is loose, precision grips are suitable for the task. One of the preferred grips reported here is an interdigital brace, which has previously been described in studies of how some people hold a pencil. In this study, for the first time, the interdigital brace has been thoroughly described for chimpanzees. The various strategies and grips used during perforation emphasize the importance of termites as a nutritional resource that should be considered more strongly as a food used by early hominins. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Pycnoscelus surinamensis cockroach gut microbiota respond consistently to a fungal diet without mirroring those of fungus-farming termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Richards, Callum; Otani, Saria; Mikaelyan, Aram

    2017-01-01

    The gut microbiotas of cockroaches and termites play important roles in the symbiotic digestion of dietary components, such as lignocellulose. Diet has been proposed as a primary determinant of community structure within the gut, acting as a selection force to shape the diversity observed within......-feeding termite species showed that although some bacteria OTUs shared by P. surinamensis and the farming termites increased in the guts of cockroaches on a fungal diet, cockroach communities remained distinct from those of termites. These results demonstrate that a fungal diet can play a role in structuring gut...

  18. The relationship between termite mound CH4/CO2 emissions and internal concentration ratios are species specific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, H.; Livesley, S. J.; Hutley, L. B.; Fest, B.; Arndt, S. K.

    2012-12-01

    1. We investigated the relative importance of CH4 and CO2 fluxes from soil and termite mounds at four different sites in the tropical savannas of Northern Australia near Darwin and assessed different methods to indirectly predict CH4 fluxes based on CO2 fluxes and internal gas concentrations. 2. The annual flux from termite mounds and surrounding soil was dominated by CO2 with large variations among sites. On a CO2-e basis, annual CH4 flux estimates from termite mounds were 5- to 46-fold smaller than the concurrent annual CO2 flux estimates. Differences between annual soil CO2 and soil CH4 (CO2-e) fluxes were even greater, soil CO2 fluxes being almost three orders of magnitude greater than soil CH4 (CO2-e) fluxes at site. 3. There were significant relationships between mound CH4 flux and mound CO2 flux, enabling the prediction of CH4 flux from measured CO2 flux, however, these relationships were clearly termite species specific. 4. We also observed significant relationships between mound flux and gas concentration inside mound, for both CH4 and CO2, and for all termite species, thereby enabling the prediction of flux from measured mound internal gas concentration. However, these relationships were also termite species specific. Using the relationship between mound internal gas concentration and flux from one species to predict mound fluxes from other termite species (as has been done in past) would result in errors of more than 5-fold for CH4 and 3-fold for CO2. 5. This study highlights that CO2 fluxes from termite mounds are generally more than one order of magnitude greater than CH4 fluxes. There are species-specific relationships between CH4 and CO2 fluxes from a~mound, and between the inside mound concentration of a gas and the mound flux emission of the same gas, but these relationships vary greatly among termite species. Consequently, there is no generic relationship that will allow for the prediction of CH4 fluxes from termite mounds of all species.

  19. Hospitalitermes krishnai, a new nasute termite (Nasutitermitinae, Termitidae, Isoptera, from southern Sumatra, Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Syaukani Syaukani

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available A new species of nasute termite, Hospitalitermes krishnai sp. n., is described from soldiers and workers discovered in Lampung Province, Sumatra. This species can be distinguished from other related Hospitalitermes species from Southeast Asia by the anterior part of head capsule that is much smaller than the posterior part, head capsule that is moderately constricted behind the antennal sockets, and relatively deep depression between the head and nasus and, finally, the short and robust nasus measuring less than half as long as head capsule. Moreover, in profile the nasus is slightly up-curved but slightly decurved at the apical tip. We name this new species after Professor Kumar Krishna in recognition of his life-long contributions to termite taxonomy, systematics and biology.

  20. RESISTANCE TO THE ATTACK OF DRY-WOOD TERMITES (Cryptotermes brevis OF SIX WOOD SPECIES

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabrício Gomes Gonçalves

    2006-03-01

    Full Text Available The dry wood termites are one of the largest causes of damages in wood used in Brazil. This work analyzed the attackof the Cryptotermes brevis in six commercials wood species in the north of the Rio de Janeiro and south of the Espírito Santo. The testobserved the number of holes, the percentage of died individuals and the damage of the pieces. When compared to the Pinus sp(reference, the species with less susceptibility to the attack were Cedrela fissilis, Cariocar brasiliense and Goupia glabra, that alsopresented the largest percentages of mortality of termites. The Schizolobium parahyba, Toona ciliata and the Tachigalia myrmecophyllawere the species with the highest level of damage.

  1. Nocturnal to Diurnal Switches with Spontaneous Suppression of Wheel-Running Behavior in a Subterranean Rodent

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tachinardi, Patricia; Tøien, Øivind; Valentinuzzi, Veronica S.; Buck, C. Loren; Oda, Gisele A.

    2015-01-01

    Several rodent species that are diurnal in the field become nocturnal in the lab. It has been suggested that the use of running-wheels in the lab might contribute to this timing switch. This proposition is based on studies that indicate feed-back of vigorous wheel-running on the period and phase of circadian clocks that time daily activity rhythms. Tuco-tucos (Ctenomys aff. knighti) are subterranean rodents that are diurnal in the field but are robustly nocturnal in laboratory, with or without access to running wheels. We assessed their energy metabolism by continuously and simultaneously monitoring rates of oxygen consumption, body temperature, general motor and wheel running activity for several days in the presence and absence of wheels. Surprisingly, some individuals spontaneously suppressed running-wheel activity and switched to diurnality in the respirometry chamber, whereas the remaining animals continued to be nocturnal even after wheel removal. This is the first report of timing switches that occur with spontaneous wheel-running suppression and which are not replicated by removal of the wheel. PMID:26460828

  2. Investigations of subterranean microorganisms. Their importance for performance assessment of radioactive waste disposal

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pedersen, K.

    1995-06-01

    This report presents a broad and thorough description of how microorganisms may influence safety of repositories for radioactive waste. First, an overview of the Swedish concepts for disposal is given, including a discussion of the geological, chemical and hydrological conditions in repositories. Then the limiting and stimulating factors for life of microorganisms are reviewed, such as relations to oxygen, temperature, pH, radiation, pressure, water and nutrients availability. Bacteria in the cycles of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, iron, manganese and hydrogen are also discussed. A literature review of subterranean bacteria is given in chapter 4. Chapter 5 treats investigations of microorganisms in repository-like environments, and microbial corrosion and redox processes relevant for materials in the repository and for the mobility of radionuclides. Possibilities to predict the activity and presence of microorganisms through mathematical models are discussed in chapter 6. Chapter 7 summarizes the conclusion drawn in the report, how microorganisms may influence performance safety assessment of radioactive waste disposal, and also identifies research needs. 293 refs, 43 figs, 36 tabs

  3. Radiosensitivity of subterranean bacteria in the Hungarian upper permian siltstone formation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farkas, G.; Gazso, L.G.; Diosi, G.

    2002-01-01

    The main purpose of this work was to study the radioresistance of subterranean aerobic and anaerobic isolates from the Hungarian Upper Permian Siltstone (Aleurolite) Formation, in order to assess the safety of potential sites of future underground repositories for nuclear waste. A total of 93 isolates were studied. The radiosensitivities of these aerobic and anaerobic bacteria isolates were determined: the D 10 values (decimal reducing doses) of the aerobic spore-formers lay in the range 0.80-2.44 kGy, and those of the anaerobic spore-formers lay in the range 1.86-4.93 kGy. The D 10 values of the aerobic and anaerobic vegetative isolates were much lower, in the ranges 0.11-0.57 and 0.22-0.40 kGy, respectively. The variability in bacterial radioresistance indicates the biodiversity at this potential disposal site. These results can affect the construction of a future underground repository, since knowledge of the most resistant microorganism may be of importance as concerns calculation of the time required to inactivate the bacteria surrounding the containers

  4. Nocturnal to Diurnal Switches with Spontaneous Suppression of Wheel-Running Behavior in a Subterranean Rodent.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Patricia Tachinardi

    Full Text Available Several rodent species that are diurnal in the field become nocturnal in the lab. It has been suggested that the use of running-wheels in the lab might contribute to this timing switch. This proposition is based on studies that indicate feed-back of vigorous wheel-running on the period and phase of circadian clocks that time daily activity rhythms. Tuco-tucos (Ctenomys aff. knighti are subterranean rodents that are diurnal in the field but are robustly nocturnal in laboratory, with or without access to running wheels. We assessed their energy metabolism by continuously and simultaneously monitoring rates of oxygen consumption, body temperature, general motor and wheel running activity for several days in the presence and absence of wheels. Surprisingly, some individuals spontaneously suppressed running-wheel activity and switched to diurnality in the respirometry chamber, whereas the remaining animals continued to be nocturnal even after wheel removal. This is the first report of timing switches that occur with spontaneous wheel-running suppression and which are not replicated by removal of the wheel.

  5. Ecology and sampling techniques of an understudied subterranean habitat: the Milieu Souterrain Superficiel (MSS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mammola, Stefano; Giachino, Pier Mauro; Piano, Elena; Jones, Alexandra; Barberis, Marcel; Badino, Giovanni; Isaia, Marco

    2016-12-01

    The term Milieu Souterrain Superficiel (MSS) has been used since the early 1980s in subterranean biology to categorize an array of different hypogean habitats. In general terms, a MSS habitat represents the underground network of empty air-filled voids and cracks developing within multiple layers of rock fragments. Its origins can be diverse and is generally covered by topsoil. The MSS habitat is often connected both with the deep hypogean domain-caves and deep rock cracks-and the superficial soil horizon. A MSS is usually characterized by peculiar microclimatic conditions, and it can harbor specialized hypogean, endogean, and surface-dwelling species. In light of the many interpretations given by different authors, we reviewed 235 papers regarding the MSS in order to provide a state-of-the-art description of these habitats and facilitate their study. We have briefly described the different types of MSS mentioned in the scientific literature (alluvial, bedrock, colluvial, volcanic, and other types) and synthesized the advances in the study of the physical and ecological factors affecting this habitat-i.e., microclimate, energy flows, animal communities, and trophic interactions. We finally described and reviewed the available sampling methods used to investigate MSS fauna.

  6. Investigations of subterranean microorganisms. Their importance for performance assessment of radioactive waste disposal

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pedersen, K [Goeteborg Univ. (Sweden). General and Marine Microbiology; Karlsson, Fred [Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co., Stockholm (Sweden)

    1995-06-01

    This report presents a broad and thorough description of how microorganisms may influence safety of repositories for radioactive waste. First, an overview of the Swedish concepts for disposal is given, including a discussion of the geological, chemical and hydrological conditions in repositories. Then the limiting and stimulating factors for life of microorganisms are reviewed, such as relations to oxygen, temperature, pH, radiation, pressure, water and nutrients availability. Bacteria in the cycles of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, iron, manganese and hydrogen are also discussed. A literature review of subterranean bacteria is given in chapter 4. Chapter 5 treats investigations of microorganisms in repository-like environments, and microbial corrosion and redox processes relevant for materials in the repository and for the mobility of radionuclides. Possibilities to predict the activity and presence of microorganisms through mathematical models are discussed in chapter 6. Chapter 7 summarizes the conclusion drawn in the report, how microorganisms may influence performance safety assessment of radioactive waste disposal, and also identifies research needs. 293 refs, 43 figs, 36 tabs.

  7. Anti-termite activity of essential oil and its components from Myristica ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Michael Horsfall

    termite activity test followed the method of (Kang et al. 1990). Samples of 10, 25, and 50 mg of fruit essential oil as well as 1 and 5 mg of each individual compound dissolved in 600 µl of acetone were applied to 1 g filter paper samples (What man #3, 8.5 cm in diam). A piece of filter paper treated with solvent only was used ...

  8. Asexual queen succession mediates an accelerated colony life cycle in the termite Silvestritermes minutus

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Fougeyrollas, R.; Křivánek, Jan; Roy, V.; Dolejšová, Klára; Frechault, S.; Roisin, Y.; Hanus, Robert; Sillam-Dusses, D.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 26, č. 12 (2017), s. 3295-3308 ISSN 0962-1083 R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA14-12774S Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : asexual queen succession * breeding system * life history * parthenogenesis * Silvestritermes minutus * termites Subject RIV: EB - Genetics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Genetics and heredity (medical genetics to be 3) Impact factor: 6.086, year: 2016

  9. Mutual Use of Trail-Following Chemical Cues by a Termite Host and Its Inquiline

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Cristaldo, Paulo Fellipe; DeSouza, O.; Krasulová, Jana; Jirošová, Anna; Kutalová, Kateřina; Lima, E. R.; Šobotník, Jan; Sillam-Dusses, D.

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 9, č. 1 (2014), e85315/1-e85315/9 E-ISSN 1932-6203 Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : inquilinism * trail-following behaviour * termite association * Termitidae * chemical ecology Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 3.234, year: 2014 http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0085315

  10. Nonadecadienone, a New Termite Trail-Following Pheromone Identified in Glossotermes oculatus (Serritermitidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Hanus, Robert; Šobotník, Jan; Krasulová, Jana; Jiroš, Pavel; Žáček, Petr; Kalinová, Blanka; Dolejšová, Klára; Cvačka, Josef; Bourguignon, T.; Roisin, Y.; Lacey, M. J.; Sillam-Dusses, David

    2012-01-01

    Roč. 37, č. 1 (2012), s. 55-63 ISSN 0379-864X R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/1570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506 Keywords : Glossotermes * Serritermitidae * sternal gland * termites * trail-following pheromone * (10Z,13Z)-nonadeca-10,13-dien-2-one Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 3.222, year: 2012

  11. Aquatic biota of different karst habitats in epigean and subterranean systems of Central Brazil – visibility versus relevance of taxa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luiza Simões

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The karstic area of São Domingos, central Brazil, holds extensive drainage systems. In order to understand its biodiversity, various volumes of water were filtered with planktonic nets in stretches of subterranean and superficial rivers on five different occasions. We sampled four drips (152L, three calcite pools (368L, two subterranean rivers fed mainly by percolation water (6,395L, two subterranean rivers fed mainly by water coming from a sinkhole (4,175L along different caves, one resurgence (158L, and four epigean rivers (101,690L. Physical and chemical variables were measured at some sites. Canonical Correlation Analysis was used to verify relationships between taxa and environment. The degree of similarity of the biota was assessed by cluster analysis (Sorensen, single linkage. There were records of exclusive taxa in epigean and subterranean samples, mainly in drips, which harbour the most unique fauna. The high richness of taxa presently recorded reveals the potential of the vadose zone biota in the tropical region, which was neglected in studies on Brazilian subterranean biodiversity. According to our results, the unsaturated zone tropical fauna may have different composition compared to that from temperate habitats. The studied communities were dominated by rotifers, while crustacean are predominant in the latter. The hypothesis can be clarified with the increase of long term studies and taxa identification at species level, besides the use of complementary sampling methods.

  12. Synthesis of AzPhchitosan-bifenthrin-PVC to protect cables against termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Lingkun; Cai, Weiwei; Chen, Wu-Ya; Zhang, Li; Hu, Kaikai; Guan, Yan-Qing

    2016-03-30

    The destruction of PVC cables by termites is a continuing and long-standing problem, which can lead to power leakage and power cut. Given the environmental demerits of insecticide overuse, alternative methods of addressing this problem are a highly desirable goal. In this study, we used photo-immobilization to develop a chitosan carrier system to help bifenthrin immobilize on the surface of the PVC substrate. The immobilization was analyzed using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR), UV absorption, reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC), Raman absorption spectroscopy, and thermal gravimetric analysis (TGA). The surface structure and biological activity of the embedded and immobilized bifenthrin were examined using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), atomic force microscopy (AFM), and X-ray photon-electron spectroscopy (XPS). Its efficacy was assessed in pest experiments. The results indicate a successful embedding and immobilization of bifenthrin. Furthermore, the chemical bonding network between AzPhchitosan, bifenthrin, and PVC is stable, guaranteeing no environmental release of bifenthrin, and also providing more efficacious protection against termites. The evidence suggests that this photo-immobilization of bifenthrin-embedded chitosan on the surface of PVC substrates is a novel and environmentally friendly technique for termite control. This paper also reports a modification of chitosan with respect to its novel application in environmental protection. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Toxicity of Turmeric Extracts to the Termite Reticulitermes flavipes (Blattodea: Rhinotermitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raje, Kapil R; Hughes, Gabriel P; Gondhalekar, Ameya D; Ginzel, Matthew D; Scharf, Michael E

    2015-08-01

    Turmeric is an important spice crop with documented human health benefits associated with chemicals called curcuminoids. In this study, the termite Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar) was exposed to different solvent extracts of turmeric to investigate potential termiticidal properties. Treating termites with hexane extracts of purified lab-grade curcuminoids had no effect on termites. However, in continuous exposure assays, the LC(50) for hexane extracts of crude turmeric powder was 9.6 mg, or 1.0 mg starting material per square centimeter of filter paper substrate. These active components were soluble in a range of polar and apolar solvents, but only hexane could selectively fractionate active components away from the inactive curcuminoids. The active constituents of turmeric separated by thin layer chromatography (TLC) fluoresced in short-wave UV light but were not visible in long-wave UV light. By re-extracting TLC-separated bands in hexane and performing bioassays and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, we demonstrated that termiticidal components of turmeric are extractable as a blend containing mainly ar-turmerone, turmerone, and curlone. This determination is consistent with findings of preceding work by other researchers that investigated insecticidal properties of turmeric in other pest insects. © The Authors 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Entomological Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  14. Parallel evolution of mound-building and grass-feeding in Australian nasute termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arab, Daej A; Namyatova, Anna; Evans, Theodore A; Cameron, Stephen L; Yeates, David K; Ho, Simon Y W; Lo, Nathan

    2017-02-01

    Termite mounds built by representatives of the family Termitidae are among the most spectacular constructions in the animal kingdom, reaching 6-8 m in height and housing millions of individuals. Although functional aspects of these structures are well studied, their evolutionary origins remain poorly understood. Australian representatives of the termitid subfamily Nasutitermitinae display a wide variety of nesting habits, making them an ideal group for investigating the evolution of mound building. Because they feed on a variety of substrates, they also provide an opportunity to illuminate the evolution of termite diets. Here, we investigate the evolution of termitid mound building and diet, through a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of Australian Nasutitermitinae. Molecular dating analysis indicates that the subfamily has colonized Australia on three occasions over the past approximately 20 Myr. Ancestral-state reconstruction showed that mound building arose on multiple occasions and from diverse ancestral nesting habits, including arboreal and wood or soil nesting. Grass feeding appears to have evolved from wood feeding via ancestors that fed on both wood and leaf litter. Our results underscore the adaptability of termites to ancient environmental change, and provide novel examples of parallel evolution of extended phenotypes. © 2017 The Author(s).

  15. Towards the Automatic Detection of Pre-Existing Termite Mounds through UAS and Hyperspectral Imagery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandino, Juan; Wooler, Adam; Gonzalez, Felipe

    2017-09-24

    The increased technological developments in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) combined with artificial intelligence and Machine Learning (ML) approaches have opened the possibility of remote sensing of extensive areas of arid lands. In this paper, a novel approach towards the detection of termite mounds with the use of a UAV, hyperspectral imagery, ML and digital image processing is intended. A new pipeline process is proposed to detect termite mounds automatically and to reduce, consequently, detection times. For the classification stage, several ML classification algorithms' outcomes were studied, selecting support vector machines as the best approach for their role in image classification of pre-existing termite mounds. Various test conditions were applied to the proposed algorithm, obtaining an overall accuracy of 68%. Images with satisfactory mound detection proved that the method is "resolution-dependent". These mounds were detected regardless of their rotation and position in the aerial image. However, image distortion reduced the number of detected mounds due to the inclusion of a shape analysis method in the object detection phase, and image resolution is still determinant to obtain accurate results. Hyperspectral imagery demonstrated better capabilities to classify a huge set of materials than implementing traditional segmentation methods on RGB images only.

  16. The role of the glucose-sensing transcription factor carbohydrate-responsive element-binding protein pathway in termite queen fertility

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sillam-Dussès, David; Hanus, Robert; Thomas-Poulsen, Michael

    2016-01-01

    in eight different termite species. ChREBP is expressed in several tissues, including ovaries and fat bodies, and increases in expression in totipotent workers during their differentiation into neotenic mature queens. We further show that ChREBP is regulated by a carbohydrate diet in termite queens...

  17. BIBLIOMETRICS ON ONE OF THE LARGEST TERMITE INVENTORIES IN THE CERRADO: "STUDIES ON TERMITES FROM THE MATO GROSSO STATE, BRAZIL BY AGA MATHEWS 1977"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    HÉLIDA FERREIRA DA CUNHA

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT This paper consists on a bibliometric analysis of the international influences of the book "Studies on termites from the Mato Grosso State, Brazil", by AGA Mathews (1977. The number of citations has increased over the years after the first citation. Mathews book was cited in articles, reviews, theses, dissertations, books, book chapters, abstracts in conference proceedings, comments and scientific notes. Most these studies are empirical and descriptive. The studies were conducted in 35 countries of the Neotropical, Palearctic, Afrotropical, Nearctic, Australasia and Indomalaya regions. 55% of the studies were carried out in Brazil. The journals Sociobiology and Insectes Sociaux, have social insect studies within its scope, and the highest number of articles citing Mathews. Most of the 71 authors that cited Mathews more than twice are Brazilian. Constrictotermes cyphergaster was the most studied in over 80% of the studies addressing Isoptera. The most frequent keywords were termite, Isoptera and taxonomy, generalist terms indexed in most publications carried out in different countries. Most of the research studies were carried out in laboratories and native vegetation areas. Studies in agroecosystems were implemented predominantly in Brazil. This study shows the diversity of application (citations of Mathews' book, and that the number of citations will continue to increase due to the large amount of information presented by the author.

  18. Variability of soil properties within large termite mounds in South Katanga, DRC - origins and applications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erens, Hans; Bazirake Mujinya, Basile; Boeckx, Pascal; Baert, Geert; Mees, Florias; Van Ranst, Eric

    2014-05-01

    The miombo woodlands of South Katanga (D.R. Congo) are characterized by a high spatial density of large conic termite mounds built by Macrotermes falciger (3 to 5 ha-1). With an average height of 5.05 m and diameter of 14.88 m, these are some of the largest biogenic structures in the world. The mound material is known to differ considerably from the surrounding Ferralsols. Specifically, mound material exhibits a finer texture, higher CEC and exchangeable basic cation content, lower organic matter content, and an accumulation of phosphorous, nitrate and secondary carbonates. However, as demonstrated by the present study, these soil properties are far from uniform within the volume of the mound. The termites' nesting and foraging activity, combined with pedogenic processes over extended periods of time, generates a wide range of physical, chemical, and biological conditions in different parts of the mound. Analysis of samples taken along a cross-section of a large active mound allowed generating contour plots, thus visualizing the variability of soil properties within the mound. The central columns of three other mounds were sampled to confirm apparent trends. The contour plots show that the mounds comprise four functional zones: (i) the active nest, found at the top; (ii) an accumulation zone , in more central parts of the mound; (iii) a dense inactive zone, surrounding the accumulation zone and consisting of accumulated erosion products from former active nests; and (iv) the outer mantle, characterized by intense varied biological activity and by a well-developed soil structure. Intermittent leaching plays a key role in explaining these patterns. Using radiocarbon dating, we found that some of these mounds are at least 2000 years old. Their current size and shape is likely the result of successive stages of erosion and rebuilding, in the course of alternating periods of mound abandonment and recolonization. Over time, termite foraging combined with limited leaching

  19. Dynamic environments of fungus-farming termite mounds exert growth-modulating effects on fungal crop parasites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katariya, Lakshya; Ramesh, Priya B; Borges, Renee M

    2018-03-01

    This study investigated for the first time the impact of the internal mound environment of fungus-growing termites on the growth of fungal crop parasites. Mounds of the termite Odontotermes obesus acted as (i) temperature and relative humidity (RH) 'stabilisers' showing dampened daily variation and (ii) 'extreme environments' exhibiting elevated RH and CO 2 levels, compared to the outside. Yet, internal temperatures exhibited seasonal dynamics as did daily and seasonal CO 2 levels. During in situ experiments under termite-excluded conditions within the mound, the growth of the crop parasite Pseudoxylaria was greater inside than outside the mound, i.e., Pseudoxylaria is 'termitariophilic'. Also, ex situ experiments on parasite isolates differing in growth rates and examined under controlled conditions in the absence of termites revealed a variable effect with fungal growth decreasing only under high CO 2 and low temperature conditions, reflecting the in situ parasite growth fluctuations. In essence, the parasite appears to be adapted to survive in the termite mound. Thus the mound microclimate does not inhibit the parasite but the dynamic environmental conditions of the mound affect its growth to varying extents. These results shed light on the impact of animal-engineered structures on parasite ecology, independent of any direct role of animal engineers. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Do Epigeal Termite Mounds Increase the Diversity of Plant Habitats in a Tropical Rain Forest in Peninsular Malaysia?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaudrot, Lydia; Du, Yanjun; Rahman Kassim, Abdul; Rejmánek, Marcel; Harrison, Rhett D.

    2011-01-01

    The extent to which environmental heterogeneity can account for tree species coexistence in diverse ecosystems, such as tropical rainforests, is hotly debated, although the importance of spatial variability in contributing to species co-existence is well recognized. Termites contribute to the micro-topographical and nutrient spatial heterogeneity of tropical forests. We therefore investigated whether epigeal termite mounds could contribute to the coexistence of plant species within a 50 ha plot at Pasoh Forest Reserve, Malaysia. Overall, stem density was significantly higher on mounds than in their immediate surroundings, but tree species diversity was significantly lower. Canonical correspondence analysis showed that location on or off mounds significantly influenced species distribution when stems were characterized by basal area. Like studies of termite mounds in other ecosystems, our results suggest that epigeal termite mounds provide a specific microhabitat for the enhanced growth and survival of certain species in these species-rich tropical forests. However, the extent to which epigeal termite mounds facilitate species coexistence warrants further investigation. PMID:21625558

  1. Effects of Erosion from Mounds of Different Termite Genera on Distinct Functional Grassland Types in an African Savannah.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosling, Cleo M; Cromsigt, Joris P G M; Mpanza, Nokukhanya; Olff, Han

    A key aspect of savannah vegetation heterogeneity is mosaics formed by two functional grassland types, bunch grasslands, and grazing lawns. We investigated the role of termites, important ecosystem engineers, in creating high-nutrient patches in the form of grazing lawns. Some of the ways termites can contribute to grazing lawn development is through erosion of soil from aboveground mounds to the surrounding soil surface. This may alter the nutrient status of the surrounding soils. We hypothesize that the importance of this erosion varies with termite genera, depending on feeding strategy and mound type. To test this, we simulated erosion by applying mound soil from three termite genera ( Macrotermes , Odontotermes , and Trinervitermes ) in both a field experiment and a greenhouse experiment. In the greenhouse experiment, we found soils with the highest macro nutrient levels (formed by Trinervitermes ) promoted the quality and biomass of both a lawn ( Digitaria longiflora ) and a bunch ( Sporobolus pyramidalis ) grass species. In the field we found that soils with the highest micro nutrient levels (formed by Macrotermes ) showed the largest increase in cover of grazing lawn species. By linking the different nutrient availability of the mounds to the development of different grassland states, we conclude that the presence of termite mounds influences grassland mosaics, but that the type of mound plays a crucial role in determining the nature of the effects.

  2. Subterranean ants (Hymenoptera, Formicidae as prey of fossorial reptiles (Reptilia, Squamata: Amphisbaenidae in Central Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávia de Araújo Esteves

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The ant diversity observed in stomach contents of fossorial reptiles was compared to the subterranean ant richness collected using traditional and modern techniques of ant collections. We analyzed the alimentary tract of 64 specimens of amphisbaenians (4 Amphisbaena alba, 10 A. fuliginosa, 25 A. vermicularis, and 25 Leposternon infraorbitale collected during the fauna rescue for the construction of Serra da Mesa hydroelectric dam in the Tocantins River (from 1992 to 1997, in Minaçu County, Goiás, Brazil. We found only five ant species present in the stomach contents, all belonging to the army ants subfamily Ecitoninae. In contrast, the traditional techniques for subterranean ants' collection are far more efficient than the exam of fossorial reptile's stomach contents, collecting a much richer and diverse ant fauna. The exclusive occurrence of army ants in the alimentary tract of these fossorial reptiles suggests that they trace the chemical trails laid by the ants while moving inside and over the soil. Further, the occurrence of the epigaeic army ants Eciton and Labidus in the stomach contents suggests that amphisbaenians may forage on the soil surface as well.A diversidade de formigas no conteúdo estomacal de répteis fossoriais foi comparada à riqueza de formigas subterrâneas coletadas com o uso de técnicas tradicionais e modernas para sua coleta. Analisamos o trato alimentar de 64 espécimes de anfisbenídeos (4 Amphisbaena alba, 10 A. fuliginosa, 25 A. vermicularis e 25 Leposternon infraorbitale coletados durante o resgate da fauna para a construção da represa da Hidroelétrica da Serra da Mesa no Rio Tocantins (de 1992 a 1997, na cidade de Minaçu, Goiás, Brasil. Encontramos apenas cinco espécies de formigas presentes nos conteúdos estomacais aqui examinados, todas pertencentes à subfamília das formigas-de-correição, Ecitoninae. Ao contrário, as técnicas tradicionais de coleta de formigas subterrâneas são muito mais

  3. Postnatal ontogeny of limb proportions and functional indices in the subterranean rodent Ctenomys talarum (Rodentia: Ctenomyidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Echeverría, Alejandra Isabel; Becerra, Federico; Vassallo, Aldo Iván

    2014-08-01

    Burrow construction in the subterranean Ctenomys talarum (Rodentia: Ctenomyidae) primarily occurs by scratch-digging. In this study, we compared the limbs of an ontogenetic series of C. talarum to identify variation in bony elements related to fossorial habits using a morphometrical and biomechanical approach. Diameters and functional lengths of long bones were measured and 10 functional indices were constructed. We found that limb proportions of C. talarum undergo significant changes throughout postnatal ontogeny, and no significant differences between sexes were observed. Five of six forelimb indices and two of four hindlimb indices showed differences between ages. According to discriminant analysis, the indices that contributed most to discrimination among age groups were robustness of the humerus and ulna, relative epicondylar width, crural and brachial indices, and index of fossorial ability (IFA). Particularly, pups could be differentiated from juveniles and adults by more robust humeri and ulnae, wider epicondyles, longer middle limb elements, and a proportionally shorter olecranon. Greater robustness indicated a possible compensation for lower bone stiffness while wider epicondyles may be associated to improved effective forces in those muscles that originate onto them, compensating the lower muscular development. The gradual increase in the IFA suggested a gradual enhancement in the scratch-digging performance due to an improvement in the mechanical advantage of forearm extensors. Middle limb indices were higher in pups than in juveniles-adults, reflecting relatively more gracile limbs in their middle segments, which is in accordance with their incipient fossorial ability. In sum, our results show that in C. talarum some scratch-digging adaptations are already present during early postnatal ontogeny, which suggests that they are prenatally shaped, and other traits develop progressively. The role of early digging behavior as a factor influencing on

  4. Adaptation of pelage color and pigment variations in Israeli subterranean blind mole rats, Spalax ehrenbergi [corrected].

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natarajan Singaravelan

    Full Text Available Concealing coloration in rodents is well established. However, only a few studies examined how soil color, pelage color, hair-melanin content, and genetics (i.e., the causal chain synergize to configure it. This study investigates the causal chain of dorsal coloration in Israeli subterranean blind mole rats, Spalax ehrenbergi.We examined pelage coloration of 128 adult animals from 11 populations belonging to four species of Spalax ehrenbergi superspecies (Spalax galili, Spalax golani, Spalax carmeli, and Spalax judaei and the corresponding coloration of soil samples from the collection sites using a digital colorimeter. Additionally, we quantified hair-melanin contents of 67 animals using HPLC and sequenced the MC1R gene in 68 individuals from all four mole rat species.Due to high variability of soil colors, the correlation between soil and pelage color coordinates was weak and significant only between soil hue and pelage lightness. Multiple stepwise forward regression revealed that soil lightness was significantly associated with all pelage color variables. Pelage color lightness among the four species increased with the higher southward aridity in accordance to Gloger's rule (darker in humid habitats and lighter in arid habitats. Darker and lighter pelage colors are associated with darker basalt and terra rossa, and lighter rendzina soils, respectively. Despite soil lightness varying significantly, pelage lightness and eumelanin converged among populations living in similar soil types. Partial sequencing of the MC1R gene identified three allelic variants, two of which were predominant in northern species (S. galili and S. golani, and the third was exclusive to southern species (S. carmeli and S. judaei, which might have caused the differences found in pheomelanin/eumelanin ratio.Darker dorsal pelage in darker basalt and terra rossa soils in the north and lighter pelage in rendzina and loess soils in the south reflect the combined results of

  5. Tidal pumping drives nutrient and dissolved organic matter dynamics in a Gulf of Mexico subterranean estuary

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santos, Isaac R.; Burnett, William C.; Dittmar, Thorsten; Suryaputra, I. G. N. A.; Chanton, Jeffrey

    2009-03-01

    We hypothesize that nutrient cycling in a Gulf of Mexico subterranean estuary (STE) is fueled by oxygen and labile organic matter supplied by tidal pumping of seawater into the coastal aquifer. We estimate nutrient production rates using the standard estuarine model and a non-steady-state box model, separate nutrient fluxes associated with fresh and saline submarine groundwater discharge (SGD), and estimate offshore fluxes from radium isotope distributions. The results indicate a large variability in nutrient concentrations over tidal and seasonal time scales. At high tide, nutrient concentrations in shallow beach groundwater were low as a result of dilution caused by seawater recirculation. During ebb tide, the concentrations increased until they reached a maximum just before the next high tide. The dominant form of nitrogen was dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) in freshwater, nitrate in brackish waters, and ammonium in saline waters. Dissolved organic carbon (DOC) production was two-fold higher in the summer than in the winter, while nitrate and DON production were one order of magnitude higher. Oxic remineralization and denitrification most likely explain these patterns. Even though fresh SGD accounted for only ˜5% of total volumetric additions, it was an important pathway of nutrients as a result of biogeochemical inputs in the mixing zone. Fresh SGD transported ˜25% of DOC and ˜50% of total dissolved nitrogen inputs into the coastal ocean, with the remainder associated with a one-dimensional vertical seawater exchange process. While SGD volumetric inputs are similar seasonally, changes in the biogeochemical conditions of this coastal plain STE led to higher summertime SGD nutrient fluxes (40% higher for DOC and 60% higher for nitrogen in the summer compared to the winter). We suggest that coastal primary production and nutrient dynamics in the STE are linked.

  6. Light perception in two strictly subterranean rodents: life in the dark or blue?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ondrej Kott

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: The African mole-rats (Bathyergidae, Rodentia are strictly subterranean, congenitally microphthalmic rodents that are hardly ever exposed to environmental light. Because of the lack of an overt behavioural reaction to light, they have long been considered to be blind. However, recent anatomical studies have suggested retention of basic visual capabilities. In this study, we employed behavioural tests to find out if two mole-rat species are able to discriminate between light and dark, if they are able to discriminate colours and, finally, if the presence of light in burrows provokes plugging behaviour, which is assumed to have a primarily anti-predatory function. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDING: We used a binary choice test to show that the silvery mole-rat Heliophobius argenteocinereus and the giant mole-rat Fukomys mechowii exhibit a clear photoavoidance response to full-spectrum ("white", blue and green-yellow light, but no significant reaction to ultraviolet or red light during nest building. The mole-rats thus retain dark/light discrimination capabilities and a capacity to perceive short to medium-wavelength light in the photopic range of intensities. These findings further suggest that the mole-rat S opsin has its absorption maximum in the violet/blue part of the spectrum. The assay did not yield conclusive evidence regarding colour discrimination. To test the putative role of vision in bathyergid anti-predatory behaviour, we examined the reaction of mole-rats to the incidence of light in an artificial burrow system. The presence of light in the burrow effectively induced plugging of the illuminated tunnel. CONCLUSION/SIGNIFICANCE: Our findings suggest that the photopic vision is conserved and that low acuity residual vision plays an important role in predator avoidance and tunnel maintenance in the African mole-rats.

  7. The Hawaiian cave planthoppers (Homoptera: Fulgoroidea: Cixiidae - A model for rapid subterranean speciation?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hannelore Hoch

    1997-01-01

    Full Text Available After the successful colonization of a single ancestral species in the Hawaiian Islands, planthoppers of the cixiid genus Oliarus underwent intensive adaptive radiation resulting in 80 described endemic species. Oliarus habitats range from montaneous rain forests to dry coastal biotopes and subterranean environments. At least 7 independant evolutionary lines represented by different species have adapted to lava tubes on Molokai (1, Maui (3, and Hawaii Island (3. Behavioral and morphological studies on one of these evolutionary lines on Hawaii Island, the blind, flight- and pigmentless Oliarus polyphentus have provided evidence for reproductive isolation between allopatric populations which may in fact be separate species. Significant differences in song parameters were observed even between populations from neighbouring lava tubes, although the planthoppers are capable of underground migration through the voids and cracks of the mesocavernous rock system which is extant in young basalt: after a little more than 20 years, lava tubes within the Mauna Ulu 1974 flow had been colonized by O. ‘polyphenius” individuals, most probably originating from a near-by forestkipuka. Amazingly, this species complex is found on the youngest of the Hawaiian Islands, with probably less than 0.5 m.y., which suggests rapid speciation processes. Field observations have led to the development of a hypothesis to match underground speciation with the dynamics of vegetational succession on the surface of active volcanoes. Planthopper range partitioning and geographic separation of populations by young lava flows, founder events and small population size may be important factors involved in rapid divergence.

  8. Gamma-ray backscatter applied to the on-line location of termite-damaged railway sleepers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fookes, R.A.; Watt, J.S.; Seatonberry, B.W.; Davison, A.; Greig, R.A.; Lowe, H.W.G.; Abbott, A.C.

    1978-01-01

    A radioisotope system has been developed to locate groups of termite-damaged sleepers during continuous scans of a railway track. It depends on measuring the intensities of collimated beams of 137 Cs γ-rays backscattered from within the sleeper. The detected intensity varies with the amount of termite damage (i.e. voidage). Variations in intensity caused by changes in the density of sound sleepers are minimised by the geometrical arrangement of source, shields and detector. The Atomic Voidage Detector (AVD) has been tested in field trials on the Newman to Port Hedland railway, Western Australia. Four separate groups of termite-damaged sleepers were located and examined. The lower limit of detectable voidage depends mainly on the scanning speed and distribution of voids within the sleeper, and is very approximately 8% voidage at 10.7 km/h and 5% at 2.7 km/h. (author)

  9. Enzyme activities at different stages of plant biomass decomposition in three species of fungus-growing termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    da Costa, Rafael R.; Hu, Haofu; Pilgaard, Bo

    2018-01-01

    contributing to the success of the termites as the main plant decomposers in the Old World. Here we evaluate which plant polymers are decomposed and which enzymes are active during the decomposition process in two major genera of fungus-growing termites. We find a diversity of active enzymes at different...... stages of decomposition and a consistent decrease in plant components during the decomposition process. Furthermore, our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that termites transport enzymes from the older mature parts of the fungus comb through young worker guts to freshly inoculated plant...... substrate. However, preliminary fungal RNAseq analyses suggest that this likely transport is supplemented with enzymes produced in situ Our findings support that the maintenance of an external fungus comb, inoculated with an optimal mix of plant material, fungal spores, and enzymes, is likely the key...

  10. Termites as a factor of spatial differentiation of CO2 fluxes from the soils of monsoon tropical forests in Southern Vietnam

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes de Gerenyu, Valentin; Anichkin, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Termites play the key role in biogeochemical transformation of organic matter acting as "moderators" of fluxes of carbon and other nutrients. They destroy not only leave litter but also coarse woody debris. Termites translocate considerable masses of dead organic materials into their houses, which leads to significant accumulations of organic matter in termite mounds. We studied the impact of termite mounds on redistribution of CO2 fluxes from soils in semi-deciduous monsoon tropical forests of southern Vietnam. Field study was performed in the Cat Tien National Park (11°21'-11°48'N, 107°10'-107°34'E). The spatial and temporary dynamics of CO2 fluxes from soils (Andosols) populated by termites were studied in plain lagerstroemia (Lagerstroemia calyculata Kurz) monsoon tropical forests. The rate of CO2 emission from the soil surface was measured by closed chamber method two-three times per month from November 2010 to December 2011. Permanent cylindrical PVC chambers (9 cm in diameter and 15 cm in height) were installed beyond the areas occupied by termite mounds (5 replications). Litter was not removed from the soil surface before the measurements. To estimate the spatial heterogeneity of the CO2 emission fluxes from soils populated by termites, a special 'termite' plot (TerPl) was equipped. It was 10×10 m in size and included three termite mounds: one mound built up by Globitermes sulphureus and two mounds populated by termites of the Odontotermes genus. Overall, 52 PVC chambers were installed permanently on the 'termite' plot (ca. 1 m apart from one another). The CO2 emission rate from TerPl was also measured by chamber closed method once in the dry season (April) and twice through the wet season (July and August). The average rate of CO2 emission from termite mounds was two times higher than that from the surrounding area (SurAr). In the dry season, it comprised 91±7 mg C/m2/h from the surrounding soils and 196±16 mg C/m2/h from the termite mounds. In the

  11. Methane fluxes from the mound-building termite species of North Australian savannas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamali, H.; Livesely, S. J.; Arndt, S. K.; Dawes-Gromadzki, T.; Cook, G. D.; Hutley, L.

    2009-04-01

    Termites are estimated to contribute 3-19% to the global methane emissions. These estimates have large uncertainties because of the limited number of field-based studies and species studied, as well as issues of diel and seasonal variation. We measured methane fluxes from four common mound-building termite species (Microcerotermes nervosus, n=26; M. serratus, n=4; Tumulitermes pastinator, n=5; and Amitermes darwini, n=4) in tropical savannas near Darwin in the Northern Territory, Australia. Methane fluxes from replicated termite mounds were measured in the field using manual chambers with fluxes reported on a mound volume basis. Methane flux was measured in both wet and dry seasons and diel variation was investigated by measuring methane flux every 4 hours over a 24 hour period. Mound temperature was measured concurrently with flux to examine this relationship. In addition, five M. nervosus mounds removed from the field and incubated under controlled temperature conditions over a 24 hour period to remove the effect of varying temperature. During the observation campaigns, mean monthly minimum and maximum temperatures for February (wet season) were 24.7 and 30.8°C, respectively, and were 20.1 to 31.4 °C in June (dry season). Annual rainfall in 2008 for Darwin was 1970.1 mm, with a maximum of 670 mm falling in February and no rain in May and June. Methane fluxes were greatest in the wet season for all species, ranging from 265.1±101.1 (T. pastinator) to 2256.6±757.1 (M. serratus) µg CH4-C/m3/h. In the dry season, methane fluxes were at their lowest, ranging from 10.0±5.5 (T. pastinator) to 338.0±165.9 (M. serratus) µg CH4-C/m3/h. On a diel basis, methane fluxes were smallest at the coolest time of the day (~0700 hrs) and greatest at the warmest (~1400 hrs) for all species, and for both wet and dry seasons. Typical diel variation in flux from M. serratus dominated mounds ranged from 902.6±261.9 to 1392.1±408.1 µg CH4-C/m3/h in wet season and 99.6±57.4 to

  12. A termite symbiotic mushroom maximizing sexual activity at growing tips of vegetative hyphae.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsieh, Huei-Mei; Chung, Mei-Chu; Chen, Pao-Yang; Hsu, Fei-Man; Liao, Wen-Wei; Sung, Ai-Ning; Lin, Chun-Ru; Wang, Chung-Ju Rachel; Kao, Yu-Hsin; Fang, Mei-Jane; Lai, Chi-Yung; Huang, Chieh-Chen; Chou, Jyh-Ching; Chou, Wen-Neng; Chang, Bill Chia-Han; Ju, Yu-Ming

    2017-09-19

    Termitomyces mushrooms are mutualistically associated with fungus-growing termites, which are widely considered to cultivate a monogenotypic Termitomyces symbiont within a colony. Termitomyces cultures isolated directly from termite colonies are heterokaryotic, likely through mating between compatible homokaryons. After pairing homokaryons carrying different haplotypes at marker gene loci MIP and RCB from a Termitomyces fruiting body associated with Odontotermes formosanus, we observed nuclear fusion and division, which greatly resembled meiosis, during each hyphal cell division and conidial formation in the resulting heterokaryons. Surprisingly, nuclei in homokaryons also behaved similarly. To confirm if meiotic-like recombination occurred within mycelia, we constructed whole-genome sequencing libraries from mycelia of two homokaryons and a heterokaryon resulting from mating of the two homokaryons. Obtained reads were aligned to the reference genome of Termitomyces sp. J132 for haplotype reconstruction. After removal of the recombinant haplotypes shared between the heterokaryon and either homokaryons, we inferred that 5.04% of the haplotypes from the heterokaryon were the recombinants resulting from homologous recombination distributed genome-wide. With RNA transcripts of four meiosis-specific genes, including SPO11, DMC1, MSH4, and MLH1, detected from a mycelial sample by real-time quantitative PCR, the nuclear behavior in mycelia was reconfirmed meiotic-like. Unlike other basidiomycetes where sex is largely restricted to basidia, Termitomyces maximizes sexuality at somatic stage, resulting in an ever-changing genotype composed of a myriad of coexisting heterogeneous nuclei in a heterokaryon. Somatic meiotic-like recombination may endow Termitomyces with agility to cope with termite consumption by maximized genetic variability.

  13. Effect of termite activity on soil under different land management strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Liane Barreto Alves Pinheiro

    2017-03-01

    Full Text Available Mound-building termites are important agents of soil bioperturbation, but these species have not been extensively studied thus far. The present study aimed to evaluate the soil particle-size and the chemical attributes of termite mounds and the surrounding soil under different land use strategies. A one-hectare plot was defined for an unmanaged degraded pasture, planted pasture, and for a eucalyptus Corymbia citriodora plantation. In each plot, the top, center, and base sections of five Cornitermes cumulans mounds, and the surrounding soil at the depths of 0-5; 5-10; 10-20 cm, were sampled in the Pinheiral, Rio de Janeiro state. In the three areas, the center of the mounds contained higher clay content, organic carbon, phosphorous, calcium and magnesium, total bases, and cation exchangeable capacity, when compared to the top, base, and the surrounding soils. However, the center had lower values of exchangeable acidity and potassium, of the three areas. In the eucalyptus plantation, the values of pH, total bases, calcium, and magnesium were lower, whereas aluminum, exchangeable acidity, sodium, and cation exchange capacity were higher both in the mounds and in the surrounding soil, in relation to the pastures. There were no differences among the three areas in terms of organic carbon, potassium, phosphorous, and total bases, in the mounds and adjacent soil. Thus, the termite activity altered the clay content and most of the soil chemical properties in all of the studied areas, but only for the center of the mounds. However, the effect of these organisms was different in the eucalyptus plantation in relation to the pasture areas.

  14. Termites and large herbivores influence seed removal rates in an African savanna.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Acanakwo, Erik Francis; Sheil, Douglas; Moe, Stein R

    2017-12-01

    Seed removal can influence plant community dynamics, composition, and resulting vegetation characteristics. In the African savanna, termites and large herbivores influence vegetation in various ways, likely including indirect effects on seed predators and secondary dispersers. However, the intensity and variation of seed removal rates in African savannas has seldom been studied. We experimentally investigated whether termites and large herbivores were important factors in the mechanisms contributing to observed patterns in tree species composition on and off mounds, in Lake Mburo National Park, Uganda. Within fenced (excluding large herbivores) and unfenced termite mound and adjacent savanna plots, we placed seeds of nine native tree species within small open "cages," accessed by all animals, roofed cages that only allowed access to small vertebrates and invertebrates, and closed cages that permitted access by smaller invertebrates only (5 mm wire mesh). We found that mean seed removal rate was high (up to 87.3% per 3 d). Mound habitats experienced significantly higher removal rates than off-mound habitats. The mean removal rate of native seeds from closed cages was 11.1% per 3 d compared with 19.4% and 23.3% removed per 3 d in the roofed and open cages, respectively. Smaller seeds experienced higher removal rates than larger seeds. Large herbivore exclusion on mounds reduced native seed removal rates by a mean of 8.8% in the open cages, but increased removal rates by 1.7% in the open cages when off-mound habitats were fenced. While removal rates from open cages were higher on active mounds (30.9%) than on inactive mounds (26.7%), the removal rates from closed cages were lower on active vs. inactive mounds (6.1% vs. 11.6%, respectively). Thus, we conclude that large herbivores and Macrotermes mounds influence seed removal rates, though these effects appear indirect. © 2017 by the Ecological Society of America.

  15. Morphophysiological study of digestive system litter-feeding termite Cornitermes cumulans (Kollar, 1832).

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Sousa, Géssica; Dos Santos, Vânia Cristina; de Figueiredo Gontijo, Nelder; Constantino, Reginaldo; de Oliveira Paiva E Silva, Gabriela; Bahia, Ana Cristina; Gomes, Fabio Mendonça; de Alcantara Machado, Ednildo

    2017-06-01

    Termites are the major decomposers of lignocellulosic biomass on Earth and are commonly considered as biological reactor models for lignocellulose degradation. Despite their biotechnological potential, few studies have focused on the morphophysiological aspects of the termite digestive system. We therefore analyze the morphology, ultrastructure and gut luminal pH of the digestive system in workers of the litter-feeding termite Cornitermes cumulans (Blattodea: Termitidae). Their digestive system is composed of salivary glands and an alimentary canal with a pH ranging from neutral to alkaline. The salivary glands have an acinar structure and present cells with secretory characteristics. The alimentary canal is differentiated into the foregut, midgut, mixed segment and hindgut, which comprises the ileum (p1), enteric valve (p2), paunch (p3), colon (p4) and rectum (p5) segments. The foregut has a well-developed chewing system. The midgut possesses a tubular peritrophic membrane and two cell types: digestive cells with secretory and absorptive features and several regenerative cells in mitosis, both cell types being organized into regenerative crypts. The mixed segment exhibits cells rich in glycogen granules. Hindgut p1, p4 and p5 segments have flattened cells with a few apical invaginations related to mitochondria and a thick cuticular lining. Conversely, the hindgut p3 segment contains large cuboid cells with extensive apical invaginations associated with numerous mitochondria. These new insights into the morphophysiology of the digestive system of C. cumulans reveal that it mobilizes lignocellulose components as a nutritional source by means of a highly compartmentalized organization with specialized segments and complex microenvironments.

  16. Molecular characterization, genomic distribution and evolutionary dynamics of Short INterspersed Elements in the termite genome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luchetti, Andrea; Mantovani, Barbara

    2011-02-01

    Short INterspersed Elements (SINEs) in invertebrates, and especially in animal inbred genomes such that of termites, are poorly known; in this paper we characterize three new SINE families (Talub, Taluc and Talud) through the analyses of 341 sequences, either isolated from the Reticulitermes lucifugus genome or drawn from EST Genbank collection. We further add new data to the only isopteran element known so far, Talua. These SINEs are tRNA-derived elements, with an average length ranging from 258 to 372 bp. The tails are made up by poly(A) or microsatellite motifs. Their copy number varies from 7.9 × 10(3) to 10(5) copies, well within the range observed for other metazoan genomes. Species distribution, age and target site duplication analysis indicate Talud as the oldest, possibly inactive SINE originated before the onset of Isoptera (~150 Myr ago). Taluc underwent to substantial sequence changes throughout the evolution of termites and data suggest it was silenced and then re-activated in the R. lucifugus lineage. Moreover, Taluc shares a conserved sequence block with other unrelated SINEs, as observed for some vertebrate and cephalopod elements. The study of genomic environment showed that insertions are mainly surrounded by microsatellites and other SINEs, indicating a biased accumulation within non-coding regions. The evolutionary dynamics of Talu~ elements is explained through selective mechanisms acting in an inbred genome; in this respect, the study of termites' SINEs activity may provide an interesting framework to address the (co)evolution of mobile elements and the host genome.

  17. Social modulation of the daily activity rhythm in a solitary subterranean rodent, the tuco-tuco (Ctenomys sp) : SI: Chronobiology in Latin America

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tomotani, Barbara Mizumo; Amaya, Juan Pablo; Oda, Gisele Akemi; Valentinuzzi, Veronica Sandra

    2016-01-01

    Abstract South American subterranean rodents are mainly described as solitary and mutual synchronization was never observed among individuals maintained together in laboratory. We report that a single birth event was capable of disrupting the robust nocturnal activity rhythm of singly housed

  18. Diversité, nuisances et modes de gestion des termites (Isoptera ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Ce travail présente la première liste des espèces de termites recensées, une revue de la littérature de leurs dégâts sur les essences botaniques et leurs modes de gestion dans les agrosystèmes au Sénégal entre 1966 et 2015. Elle a été faite sur la base d'une revue bibliographique existante et complétée par un récent ...

  19. Mining for hemicellulases in the fungus-growing termite Pseudacanthotermes militaris using functional metagenomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bastien, Géraldine; Arnal, Grégory; Bozonnet, Sophie; Laguerre, Sandrine; Ferreira, Fernando; Fauré, Régis; Henrissat, Bernard; Lefèvre, Fabrice; Robe, Patrick; Bouchez, Olivier; Noirot, Céline; Dumon, Claire; O'Donohue, Michael

    2013-05-14

    The metagenomic analysis of gut microbiomes has emerged as a powerful strategy for the identification of biomass-degrading enzymes, which will be no doubt useful for the development of advanced biorefining processes. In the present study, we have performed a functional metagenomic analysis on comb and gut microbiomes associated with the fungus-growing termite, Pseudacanthotermes militaris. Using whole termite abdomens and fungal-comb material respectively, two fosmid-based metagenomic libraries were created and screened for the presence of xylan-degrading enzymes. This revealed 101 positive clones, corresponding to an extremely high global hit rate of 0.49%. Many clones displayed either β-d-xylosidase (EC 3.2.1.37) or α-l-arabinofuranosidase (EC 3.2.1.55) activity, while others displayed the ability to degrade AZCL-xylan or AZCL-β-(1,3)-β-(1,4)-glucan. Using secondary screening it was possible to pinpoint clones of interest that were used to prepare fosmid DNA. Sequencing of fosmid DNA generated 1.46 Mbp of sequence data, and bioinformatics analysis revealed 63 sequences encoding putative carbohydrate-active enzymes, with many of these forming parts of sequence clusters, probably having carbohydrate degradation and metabolic functions. Taxonomic assignment of the different sequences revealed that Firmicutes and Bacteroidetes were predominant phyla in the gut sample, while microbial diversity in the comb sample resembled that of typical soil samples. Cloning and expression in E. coli of six enzyme candidates identified in the libraries provided access to individual enzyme activities, which all proved to be coherent with the primary and secondary functional screens. This study shows that the gut microbiome of P. militaris possesses the potential to degrade biomass components, such as arabinoxylans and arabinans. Moreover, the data presented suggests that prokaryotic microorganisms present in the comb could also play a part in the degradation of biomass within the

  20. Nutritional and Microbial Parameters of Earthworm Cast, Termite Mound and Surrounding Bulk Soil

    OpenAIRE

    Kawaguchi, Sadao; Nishi, Shingo

    2007-01-01

    A comparative analysis of nutritional and microbial parameters was conducted on two types of biogenetic structures of earthworm cast (8.7 cm in height, 7 casts/1m×1m) formed by litter eating Pheretima sp., and mound (64 cm in height, 1.0 mounds/10m×50m) built by fungus growing termite, Macrotermes gilvus, and compared to the surrounding bulk soil as control in the tropical monsoon forest in Cu Chi National Park of Viet Nam. The proportion of the sand in the earthworm cast was higher than in t...

  1. Evaluation of six techniques for control of the western drywood termite (Isoptera: Kalotermitidae) in structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lewis, V.R.; Haverty, M.I.

    1996-01-01

    Chemical and nonchemical methods for control of western drywood termites, Incisitermes minor (Hager), were evaluated under conditions that simulated infestations in structures. The efficacy of excessive heat or cold, electrocution, microwaves, and 2 fumigants was evaluated. Termite mortality in artificially infested boards was 100% at 3 d after treatment for both fumigant gases. Heating the whole-structure or spot-applications using microwaves resulted in 96 and 90% mortality, respectively, 3 d after treatment. Mortality levels 4 wk after treatment increased to 98% for heat and 92% for microwaves. Spot-applications of liquid nitrogen at 381.8 kg/m3 achieved 100% mortality 3 d after treatment. However, for 122.7 and 57.3 kg/m 3 , mortality levels 4 wk after treatment were 99 and 87%, respectively. Mortality by spot-applications of electricity was 44% 3 d after treatment in the 1st test. Four weeks after treatment drywood termite mortality increased to 81%. In a 2nd electrocution test, using spot-application techniques infrequently used in structures, mortality levels increased to 93% at 3 d and 99% at 4 wk after treatment. The distribution of termite survivors within the test building and test boards varied for some treatment techniques. For naturally infested boards, both fumigants exceeded 99% mortality. Use of heat and microwaves resulted in 100 and 99% mortality levels, respectively, 4 wk after treatment. Applications of liquid nitrogen resulted in mortality greater than or equal to 99.8% at 381.8 and 122.7 kg/m 3 ; however, mortality for 57.3 kg/m 3 was significantly lower (74%). Mortality levels from electrocution were 89 and 95% 4 wk after treatment respectively in the 2 tests. Damage to test boards and the test building did occur. Six test boards were scorched during microwave treatment, 80% of test boards were damaged during electrocution, and visible signs of damage to the test building were noted for whole-structure heating. (author)

  2. High Symbiont Relatedness Stabilizes Mutualistic Cooperation in Fungus-Growing Termites

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Aanen, Duur K; de Fine Licht, Henrik H; Debets, Alfons J M

    2009-01-01

    It is unclear how mutualistic relationships can be stable when partners disperse freely and have the possibility of forming associations with many alternative genotypes. Theory predicts that high symbiont relatedness should resolve this problem, but the mechanisms to enforce this have rarely been...... of spore production in proportion to strain frequency. This positive reinforcement results in an exclusive lifetime association of each host colony with a single fungal symbiont and hinders the evolution of cheating. Our findings explain why vertical symbiont transmission in fungus-growing termites is rare...

  3. RESISTANCE TO THE ATTACK OF DRY-WOOD TERMITES (Cryptotermes brevis) OF SIX WOOD SPECIES

    OpenAIRE

    Fabrício Gomes Gonçalves; José Tarcísio da Silva Oliveira

    2006-01-01

    The dry wood termites are one of the largest causes of damages in wood used in Brazil. This work analyzed the attackof the Cryptotermes brevis in six commercials wood species in the north of the Rio de Janeiro and south of the Espírito Santo. The testobserved the number of holes, the percentage of died individuals and the damage of the pieces. When compared to the Pinus sp(reference), the species with less susceptibility to the attack were Cedrela fissilis, Cariocar brasiliense and Goupia gla...

  4. [Characteristics and Transport Patterns of Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates and Inorganic Nitrogen Flux at Epikarst Springs and a Subterranean Stream in Nanshan, Chongqing].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yuan-zhu; He, Qiu-fang; Jiang, Yong-jun; Li, Yong

    2016-04-15

    In a karst groundwater system, it develops complex multiple flows because of its special geological structure and unique physical patterns of aquifers. In order to investigate the characteristics and transport patterns of ammonia, nitrite and nitrate in epikarst water and subterranean stream, the water samples were collected monthly in a fast-urbanizing karst region. The results showed distinctive characteristics of three forms of inorganic nitrogen. The concentration of inorganic nitrogen was stable in the epikarst water while it was fluctuant in the subterranean stream. Epikarst water was less affected by rainfall and sewage compared with subterranean stream. In epikarst water, the nitrate concentration was much higher than the ammonia concentration. Dissolved inorganic nitrogen, mainly from non-point source pollution related to agricultural activities, passed in and out of the epikarst water based on a series of physical; chemical and biological processes in the epikarst zone, such as ammonification, adsorption and nitrification. On the contrary, subterranean stream showed a result of NH₄⁺-N > NO₃⁻-N in dry seasons and NO₃⁻-N > NH₄⁺-N in rainy seasons. This can be due to the fact that sanitary and industrial sewage flowed into subterranean river through sinkholes, fissures and grikes in dry season. Dissolved inorganic nitrogen in subterranean river was mainly from the non-point source pollution in wet season. Non-point source pollutants entered into subterranean water by two transport ways, one by penetration along with vadose flow through fissures and grikes, and the other by conduit flow through sinkholes from the surface runoff, soil water flow and epikarst flow. The export flux of DIN was 56.05 kg · (hm² · a)⁻¹, and NH₄⁺-N and NO₃⁻-N accounted for 46.03% and 52.51%, respectively. The contributions of point-source pollution and non point-source pollution to the export flux of DIN were 25.08% and 74.92%, respectively, based on run

  5. Deep sequencing analysis of the transcriptomes of peanut aerial and subterranean young pods identifies candidate genes related to early embryo abortion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Xiaoping; Zhu, Wei; Azam, Sarwar; Li, Heying; Zhu, Fanghe; Li, Haifen; Hong, Yanbin; Liu, Haiyan; Zhang, Erhua; Wu, Hong; Yu, Shanlin; Zhou, Guiyuan; Li, Shaoxiong; Zhong, Ni; Wen, Shijie; Li, Xingyu; Knapp, Steve J; Ozias-Akins, Peggy; Varshney, Rajeev K; Liang, Xuanqiang

    2013-01-01

    The failure of peg penetration into the soil leads to seed abortion in peanut. Knowledge of genes involved in these processes is comparatively deficient. Here, we used RNA-seq to gain insights into transcriptomes of aerial and subterranean pods. More than 2 million transcript reads with an average length of 396 bp were generated from one aerial (AP) and two subterranean (SP1 and SP2) pod libraries using pyrosequencing technology. After assembly, sets of 49 632, 49 952 and 50 494 from a total of 74 974 transcript assembly contigs (TACs) were identified in AP, SP1 and SP2, respectively. A clear linear relationship in the gene expression level was observed between these data sets. In brief, 2194 differentially expressed TACs with a 99.0% true-positive rate were identified, among which 859 and 1068 TACs were up-regulated in aerial and subterranean pods, respectively. Functional analysis showed that putative function based on similarity with proteins catalogued in UniProt and gene ontology term classification could be determined for 59 342 (79.2%) and 42 955 (57.3%) TACs, respectively. A total of 2968 TACs were mapped to 174 KEGG pathways, of which 168 were shared by aerial and subterranean transcriptomes. TACs involved in photosynthesis were significantly up-regulated and enriched in the aerial pod. In addition, two senescence-associated genes were identified as significantly up-regulated in the aerial pod, which potentially contribute to embryo abortion in aerial pods, and in turn, to cessation of swelling. The data set generated in this study provides evidence for some functional genes as robust candidates underlying aerial and subterranean pod development and contributes to an elucidation of the evolutionary implications resulting from fruit development under light and dark conditions. © 2012 The Authors Plant Biotechnology Journal © 2012 Society for Experimental Biology, Association of Applied Biologists and Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  6. Origin and alteration of organic matter in termite mounds from different feeding guilds of the Amazon rainforests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siebers, Nina; Martius, Christopher; Eckhardt, Kai-Uwe; Garcia, Marcos V B; Leinweber, Peter; Amelung, Wulf

    2015-01-01

    The impact of termites on nutrient cycling and tropical soil formation depends on their feeding habits and related material transformation. The identification of food sources, however, is difficult, because they are variable and changed by termite activity and nest construction. Here, we related the sources and alteration of organic matter in nests from seven different termite genera and feeding habits in the Terra Firme rainforests to the properties of potential food sources soil, wood, and microepiphytes. Chemical analyses comprised isotopic composition of C and N, cellulosic (CPS), non-cellulosic (NCPS), and N-containing saccharides, and molecular composition screening using pyrolysis-field ionization mass spectrometry (Py-FIMS). The isotopic analysis revealed higher soil δ13C (-27.4‰) and δ15N (6.6‰) values in nests of wood feeding Nasutitermes and Cornitermes than in wood samples (δ13C = -29.1‰, δ15N = 3.4‰), reflecting stable-isotope enrichment with organic matter alterations during or after nest construction. This result was confirmed by elevated NCPS:CPS ratios, indicating a preferential cellulose decomposition in the nests. High portions of muramic acid (MurAc) pointed to the participation of bacteria in the transformation processes. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (MDS) revealed increasing geophagy in the sequence Termes rainforest termites shows variations and evidence of modification by microbial processes, but nevertheless it primarily reflects the trophic niches of the constructors.

  7. Influence de l'activité des termites sur les propriétés du sol dans la ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    SARAH

    30 sept. 2016 ... Mots Clés : Fertilité, sol dégradé, termites, infiltration de l'eau, matière organique, Lamto, Côte d'Ivoire. ABSTRACT ... des cultures et à la bonne production agricole se ..... et un début de dégradation chimique, biologique et.

  8. Differential gene expression in response to juvenile hormone analog treatment in the damp-wood termite Hodotermopsis sjostedti (Isoptera, Archotermopsidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornette, Richard; Hayashi, Yoshinobu; Koshikawa, Shigeyuki; Miura, Toru

    2013-04-01

    Termite societies are characterized by a highly organized division of labor among conspicuous castes, groups of individuals with various morphological specializations. Termite caste differentiation is under control of juvenile hormone (JH), but the molecular mechanism underlying the response to JH and early events triggering caste differentiation are still poorly understood. In order to profile candidate gene expression during early soldier caste differentiation of the damp-wood termite, Hodotermopsis sjostedti, we treated pseudergates (workers) with a juvenile hormone analog (JHA) to induce soldier caste differentiation. We then used Suppressive Subtractive Hybridization to create two cDNA libraries enriched for transcripts that were either up- or downregulated at 24h after treatment. Finally, we used quantitative PCR to confirm temporal expression patterns. Hexamerins represent a large proportion of the genes upregulated following JHA treatment and have an expression pattern that shows roughly an inverse correlation to intrinsic JH titers. This data is consistent with the role of a JH "sink", which was demonstrated for hexamerins in another termite, Reticulitermes flavipes. A putative nuclear protein was also upregulated a few hours after JHA treatment, which suggests a role in the early response to JH and subsequent regulation of transcriptional events associated with soldier caste differentiation. Some digestive enzymes, such as endogenous beta-endoglucanase and chymotrypsin, as well as a protein associated to digestion were identified among genes downregulated after JHA treatment. This suggests that JH may directly influence the pseudergate-specific digestive system. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Functional traits of trees on and off termite mounds : Understanding the origin of biotically-driven heterogeneity in savannas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Plas, F.; Howison, R.; Reinders, J.; Fokkema, W.; Olff, H.

    Questions In African savannas, Macrotermes termites contribute to small-scale heterogeneity by constructing large mounds. Operating as islands of high nutrient and water availability and low fire frequency, these mounds support distinct, diverse communities of trees that have been shown to be highly

  10. Interactions between large herbivores and litter removal by termites across a rainfall gradient in a South African savanna

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buitenwerf, Robert; Stevens, Nicola; Gosling, Cleo M.; Anderson, T. Michael; Olff, Han

    Litter-feeding termites influence key aspects of the structure and functioning of semi-arid ecosystems around the world by altering nutrient and material fluxes, affecting primary production, foodweb dynamics and modifying vegetation composition. Understanding these complex effects depends on

  11. Origin and Alteration of Organic Matter in Termite Mounds from Different Feeding Guilds of the Amazon Rainforests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siebers, Nina; Martius, Christopher; Eckhardt, Kai-Uwe; Garcia, Marcos V. B.; Leinweber, Peter; Amelung, Wulf

    2015-01-01

    The impact of termites on nutrient cycling and tropical soil formation depends on their feeding habits and related material transformation. The identification of food sources, however, is difficult, because they are variable and changed by termite activity and nest construction. Here, we related the sources and alteration of organic matter in nests from seven different termite genera and feeding habits in the Terra Firme rainforests to the properties of potential food sources soil, wood, and microepiphytes. Chemical analyses comprised isotopic composition of C and N, cellulosic (CPS), non-cellulosic (NCPS), and N-containing saccharides, and molecular composition screening using pyrolysis-field ionization mass spectrometry (Py-FIMS). The isotopic analysis revealed higher soil δ13C (-27.4‰) and δ15N (6.6‰) values in nests of wood feeding Nasutitermes and Cornitermes than in wood samples (δ13C = -29.1‰, δ15N = 3.4‰), reflecting stable-isotope enrichment with organic matter alterations during or after nest construction. This result was confirmed by elevated NCPS:CPS ratios, indicating a preferential cellulose decomposition in the nests. High portions of muramic acid (MurAc) pointed to the participation of bacteria in the transformation processes. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (NMDS) revealed increasing geophagy in the sequence Termes termites shows variations and evidence of modification by microbial processes, but nevertheless it primarily reflects the trophic niches of the constructors. PMID:25909987

  12. Antitermite Activities of C. decidua Extracts and Pure Compounds against Indian White Termite Odontotermes obesus (Isoptera: Odontotermitidae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ravi Kant Upadhyay

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available In the present investigation, we have tested antitermite responses of Capparis decidua stem, root, flower, and fruit extracts and pure compounds to Odontotermes obesus in various bioassays. Crude stem extract has shown very high susceptibility and very low LD50 values, that is, 14.171 μg/mg in worker termites. From stem extract, three pure compounds were isolated in pure form namely, heneicosylhexadecanoate (CDS2, triacontanol (CDS3, and 2-carboxy-1, 1-dimethylpyrrolidine (CDS8 which have shown very low LD50 value in a range of 5.537–10.083 μg/mg. Similarly, one novel compound 6-(1-hydroxy-non-3-enyl-tetrahydropyran-2-one (CDF1 was isolated from flower extract that has shown an LD50 8.08 μg/gm. Repellent action of compounds was tested in a Y-shaped glass olfactometer in which CDF1 compounds have significantly repelled termites to the opposite arm. Besides this, C. decidua extracts have shown significant reduction (P<0.05 and 0.01 in termite infestation in garden saplings when it was coated on cotton tags and employed over tree trunks. Further, C. deciduas stem extract was used for wood seasoning, which gave very good results as test wood sticks have shown significantly (P<0.05 and 0.01 very low termite infestation.

  13. Seasonal Population Dynamics of a Specialized Termite-Eating Spider (Araneae: Ammoxenidae) and its Prey (Isoptera: Hodotermitidae)

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Haddad, C. R.; Brabec, Marek; Pekár, S.; Fourie, R.

    2016-01-01

    Roč. 59, č. 3 (2016), s. 105-110 ISSN 0031-4056 Grant - others:GA ČR(CZ) GA15-14762S Institutional support: RVO:67985807 Keywords : activity * phenology * predator-prey dynamics * specialist * termite Subject RIV: BB - Applied Statistics, Operational Research Impact factor: 2.000, year: 2016

  14. Co-option of the sphingolipid metabolism for the production of nitroalkene defensive chemicals in termite soldiers

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jirošová, Anna; Jančařík, Andrej; Menezes, R. C.; Bazalová, Olga; Dolejšová, Klára; Vogel, H.; Jedlička, Pavel; Buček, Aleš; Brabcová, Jana; Majer, Pavel; Hanus, Robert; Svatoš, Aleš

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 82, Mar (2017), s. 52-61 ISSN 0965-1748 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP13-25137P Institutional support: RVO:61388963 ; RVO:60077344 Keywords : biosynthesis * nitro compounds * chemical defence * termites * metabolomics * transcriptomics Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry OBOR OECD: Biochemistry and molecular biology Impact factor: 3.756, year: 2016

  15. Hexadecyl ammonium chloride amylose inclusion complex to emulsify cedarwood oil and treat wood against termites and wood-decay fungi

    Science.gov (United States)

    F.J. Eller; W.T. Hay; G.T. Kirker; M.E. Mankowski; G.W. Sellling

    2018-01-01

    Cedarwood oil (CWO) has a wide range of bioactivities, including insect repellency and toxicity, as well as conferring resistance against termites and wood-decay fungi. In previous work examining pressure treatment of wood, ethanol was used as the diluent/carrier for CWO. However, it is preferable to use a water-based carrier for environmental, safety and cost...

  16. Molecular characterization and phylogeny of four new species of the genus trichonympha (Parabasalia, trichonymphea) from lower termite hindguts

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Boscaro, V.; James, E. R.; Fiorito, R.; Hehenberger, E.; Karnkowska, A.; del Campo, J.; Kolísko, Martin; Irwin, N. A.T.; Mathur, V.; Scheffrahn, R. H.; Keeling, P. J.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 67, č. 9 (2017), s. 3570-3575, č. článku 002169. ISSN 1466-5026 Institutional support: RVO:60077344 Keywords : parabasalids * SSU rRNA phylogeny * termite symbionts * trichonympha Subject RIV: EB - Gene tics ; Molecular Biology OBOR OECD: Biochemistry and molecular biology Impact factor: 2.134, year: 2016

  17. Dominant ectosymbiotic bacteria of cellulolytic protists in the termite gut also have the potential to digest lignocellulose.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuki, Masahiro; Kuwahara, Hirokazu; Shintani, Masaki; Izawa, Kazuki; Sato, Tomoyuki; Starns, David; Hongoh, Yuichi; Ohkuma, Moriya

    2015-12-01

    Wood-feeding lower termites harbour symbiotic gut protists that support the termite nutritionally by degrading recalcitrant lignocellulose. These protists themselves host specific endo- and ectosymbiotic bacteria, functions of which remain largely unknown. Here, we present draft genomes of a dominant, uncultured ectosymbiont belonging to the order Bacteroidales, 'Candidatus Symbiothrix dinenymphae', which colonizes the cell surface of the cellulolytic gut protists Dinenympha spp. We analysed four single-cell genomes of Ca. S. dinenymphae, the highest genome completeness was estimated to be 81.6-82.3% with a predicted genome size of 4.28-4.31 Mb. The genome retains genes encoding large parts of the amino acid, cofactor and nucleotide biosynthetic pathways. In addition, the genome contains genes encoding various glycoside hydrolases such as endoglucanases and hemicellulases. The genome indicates that Ca. S. dinenymphae ferments lignocellulose-derived monosaccharides to acetate, a major carbon and energy source of the host termite. We suggest that the ectosymbiont digests lignocellulose and provides nutrients to the host termites, and hypothesize that the hydrolytic activity might also function as a pretreatment for the host protist to effectively decompose the crystalline cellulose components. © 2015 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  18. Bacterial communities in termite fungus combs are comprised of consistent gut deposits and contributions from the environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Otani, Saria; Hansen, Lars Hestbjerg; Sørensen, Søren J

    2016-01-01

    , Actinobacteria, and Candidate division TM7 jointly accounting for 92 % of the reads. Analyses of gut microbiotas from 25 of the 33 colonies showed that dominant fungus comb taxa originate from the termite gut. While gut communities were consistent between 2011 and 2013, comb community compositions shifted over...

  19. Screening assays of termite gut microbes that potentially as probiotic for human to digest cellulose as new food source

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdullah, R.; Ananda, K. R. T.; Wijanarka

    2018-05-01

    According to UN, earth population will increase approximately 7.3 billion people up to 11.2 billion from 2015 until 2100. On the other side, food needs are not balance with the availability of food on earth. People of the world need solution for a new food source. By cellulose digesting ability, people analyzed can consume cellulose as the new food source to get glucose. The aims of research is obtaining termite gut cellulase bacteria selected which is potential as probiotic to split cellulose. Method used was as follows; isolation of termite gut microbes, microbial cellulase purification by screening method and probiotic test includes microbial pathogenicity test and human stomach acid and salt osmotic concentration resistance test. The result shows, 3 pure isolates of termite gut microbes can break down cellulose in the medium 1% CMC and 0.1% congo red (indicator of cellulose degradation activity) and life at pH 2- 2.5 and osmotic salt condition. Two isolates show the activity of gamma hemolysis (non-pathogenic in terms of pathogenicity on human blood). In conclusion, there are isolated termite gut microbes can be used as probiotic candidate for human to digest cellulose of the new food source for global food scarcity era.

  20. Sphinganine-Like Biogenesis of (E)-1-Nitropentadec-1-ene in Termite Soldiers of the Genus Prorhinotermes

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jirošová, Anna; Majer, Pavel; Jančařík, Andrej; Dolejšová, Klára; Tykva, Richard; Šobotník, Jan; Jiroš, Pavel; Hanus, Robert

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 15, č. 4 (2014), s. 533-536 ISSN 1439-4227 R&D Projects: GA ČR GP13-25137P Institutional support: RVO:61388963 Keywords : biosynthesis * natural products * nitro compounds * Prorhinotermes * termites Subject RIV: CE - Biochemistry Impact factor: 3.088, year: 2014

  1. Isolation and identification of cellulolytic bacteria from termites gut (Cryptotermes sp.)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peristiwati; Natamihardja, Y. S.; Herlini, H.

    2018-05-01

    The energy and environmental crises developed due to a huge amount of cellulosic materials are disposed of as “waste.” Cellulose is the most abundant biopolymer on Earth. The hydrolysis of cellulose to glucose and soluble sugars has thus become a subject of intense research. Termites are one of the most important soil insects that efficiently decompose lignocelluloses with the aid of their associated microbial symbionts to a simpler form of sugars. The steps of this study consisted of cellulose isolation, cellulolytic bacteria isolation and identification. Cellulose degrading bacteria from termite (Cryptotermes sp.) gut flora were isolated, screened and their identification was studied which showed halo zones due to CMC agar. Among 12 isolates of bacteria, six isolates were cellulolytic. MLC-A isolate had shown a maximum in a cellulolytic index (1.32). Each isolate was identified based on standard physical and biochemical tests. Three isolates were identified in the genus of Clostridium, one isolate be placed in the group of Mycobacteriaceae, Lactobacillaceae or Coryneform and the last one in the genus Proteus.

  2. Metagenomic and functional analysis of hindgut microbiota of a wood-feeding higher termite

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Warnecke, Falk; Warnecke, Falk; Luginbuhl, Peter; Ivanova, Natalia; Ghassemian, Majid; Richardson, Toby H.; Stege, Justin T.; Cayouette, Michelle; McHardy, Alice C.; Djordjevic, Gordana; Aboushadi, Nahla; Sorek, Rotem; Tringe, Susannah G.; Podar, Mircea; Martin, Hector Garcia; Kunin, Victor; Dalevi, Daniel; Madejska, Julita; Kirton, Edward; Platt, Darren; Szeto, Ernest; Salamov, Asaf; Barry, Kerrie; Mikhailova, Natalia; Kyrpides, Nikos C.; Matson, Eric G.; Ottesen, Elizabeth A.; Zhang, Xinning; Hernandez, Myriam; Murillo, Catalina; Acosta, Luis G.; Rigoutsos, Isidore; Tamayo, Giselle; Green, Brian D.; Chang, Cathy; Rubin, Edward M.; Mathur, Eric J.; Robertson, Dan E.; Hugenholtz, Philip; Leadbetter, Jared R.

    2007-10-01

    From the standpoints of both basic research and biotechnology, there is considerable interest in reaching a clearer understanding of the diversity of biological mechanisms employed during lignocellulose degradation. Globally, termites are an extremely successful group of wood-degrading organisms and are therefore important both for their roles in carbon turnover in the environment and as potential sources of biochemical catalysts for efforts aimed at converting wood into biofuels. Only recently have data supported any direct role for the symbiotic bacteria in the gut of the termite in cellulose and xylan hydrolysis. Here we use a metagenomic analysis of the bacterial community resident in the hindgut paunch of a wood-feeding Nasutitermes species to show the presence of a large, diverse set of bacterial genes for cellulose and xylan hydrolysis. Many of these genes were expressed in vivo or had cellulase activity in vitro, and further analyses implicate spirochete and fibrobacter species in gut lignocellulose degradation. New insights into other important symbiotic functions including H{sub 2} metabolism, CO{sub 2}-reductive acetogenesis and N{sub 2} fixation are also provided by this first system-wide gene analysis of a microbial community specialized towards plant lignocellulose degradation. Our results underscore how complex even a 1-{micro}l environment can be.

  3. Chlorpyrifos causes decreased organic matter decomposition by suppressing earthworm and termite communities in tropical soil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    De Silva, P. Mangala C.S., E-mail: msilva@falw.vu.n [Department of Animal Ecology, VU University, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands); Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Ruhuna, Matara (Sri Lanka); Pathiratne, Asoka [Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, University of Kelaniya, Kelaniya (Sri Lanka); Straalen, Nico M. van; Gestel, Cornelis A.M. van [Department of Animal Ecology, VU University, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam (Netherlands)

    2010-10-15

    Effects of pesticides on structural and functional properties of ecosystems are rarely studied under tropical conditions. In this study litterbag and earthworm field tests were performed simultaneously at the same tropical field site sprayed with chlorpyrifos (CPF). The recommended dose of CPF (0.6 kg a.i. ha{sup -1}) and two higher doses (4.4-8.8 kg a.i. ha{sup -1}) significantly decreased litter decomposition during the first 3 months after application, which could be explained from lower earthworm and termite abundances during this period. Species-specific effects of CPF on organism abundance and biomass were observed, with termites being mostly affected followed by the earthworm Perionyx excavatus; the earthworm Megascolex sp. was least affected. Recovery was completed within 6 months. Decomposition in the controls and lowest two treatments was completed within 4 months, which suggests the need for modification of standard test guidelines to comply with faster litter degradation under tropical conditions. - Effects of chlorpyrifos on functional and structural endpoints in soil.

  4. Chlorpyrifos causes decreased organic matter decomposition by suppressing earthworm and termite communities in tropical soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Silva, P. Mangala C.S.; Pathiratne, Asoka; Straalen, Nico M. van; Gestel, Cornelis A.M. van

    2010-01-01

    Effects of pesticides on structural and functional properties of ecosystems are rarely studied under tropical conditions. In this study litterbag and earthworm field tests were performed simultaneously at the same tropical field site sprayed with chlorpyrifos (CPF). The recommended dose of CPF (0.6 kg a.i. ha -1 ) and two higher doses (4.4-8.8 kg a.i. ha -1 ) significantly decreased litter decomposition during the first 3 months after application, which could be explained from lower earthworm and termite abundances during this period. Species-specific effects of CPF on organism abundance and biomass were observed, with termites being mostly affected followed by the earthworm Perionyx excavatus; the earthworm Megascolex sp. was least affected. Recovery was completed within 6 months. Decomposition in the controls and lowest two treatments was completed within 4 months, which suggests the need for modification of standard test guidelines to comply with faster litter degradation under tropical conditions. - Effects of chlorpyrifos on functional and structural endpoints in soil.

  5. Raw material procurement for termite fishing tools by wild chimpanzees in the Issa valley, Western Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almeida-Warren, Katarina; Sommer, Volker; Piel, Alex K; Pascual-Garrido, Alejandra

    2017-10-01

    Chimpanzee termite fishing has been studied for decades, yet the selective processes preceding the manufacture of fishing tools remain largely unexplored. We investigate raw material selection and potential evidence of forward planning in the chimpanzees of Issa valley, western Tanzania. Using traditional archaeological methods, we surveyed the location of plants from where chimpanzees sourced raw material to manufacture termite fishing tools, relative to targeted mounds. We measured raw material abundance to test for availability and selection. Statistics included Chi-Squared, two-tailed Wilcoxon, and Kruskall-Wallace tests. Issa chimpanzees manufactured extraction tools only from bark, despite availability of other suitable materials (e.g., twigs), and selected particular plant species as raw material sources, which they often also exploit for food. Most plants were sourced 1-16 m away from the mound, with a maximum of 33 m. The line of sight from the targeted mound was obscured for a quarter of these plants. The exclusive use of bark tools despite availability of other suitable materials indicates a possible cultural preference. The fact that Issa chimpanzees select specific plant species and travel some distance to source them suggests some degree of selectivity and, potentially, forward planning. Our results have implications for the reconstruction of early hominin behaviors, particularly with regard to the use of perishable tools, which remain archaeologically invisible. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Prospects of Coir Fibre as Reinforcement in Termite Mound Clay Bricks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akinyemi Banjo A.

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available The study is to develop an appropriate environmental friendly building material that would be sourced, obtained locally and used for construction of structures at a low cost by using termite mound soil, reinforced with 0%, 1%, 2%, 3%. and 4% coir fibres. Physical and mechanical tests were conducted on the different composition samples after curing. The particle size distribution showed that clay had the largest percentage with a moisture content of 3.53%, specific gravity of 2.0, liquid limit of 30.5% and plastic limit value of 25.4. The compressive strength test showed a decrease with increase in fibre content from 1% upward, modulus of rupture test showed that increase in fibre content leads to a corresponding increase in rupture while the modulus of elasticity test showed that from 3% to 4% fibre content, a decrease in the elasticity occurred. It can be concluded that low fibre inclusion into compressed termite mound brick is feasible if fibre content do not exceed 2% and thus can be used for both load and non-loading bearing structures.

  7. Struvite for composting of agricultural wastes with termite mound: Utilizing the unutilized.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karak, Tanmoy; Sonar, Indira; Nath, Jyoti Rani; Paul, Ranjit Kumar; Das, Sampa; Boruah, Romesh Kumar; Dutta, Amrit Kumar; Das, Kuntal

    2015-01-01

    Although, compost is the store house of different plant nutrients, there is a concern for low amount of major nutrients especially nitrogen content in prepared compost. The present study deals with preparation of compost by using agricultural wastes with struvite (MgNH4PO4·6H2O) along with termite mound. Among four composting mixtures, 50kg termite mound and 2.5kg struvite with crop residues (stover of ground nut: 361.65kg; soybean: 354.59kg; potato: 357.67kg and mustard: 373.19kg) and cow dung (84.90kg) formed a good quality compost within 70days of composting having nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as 21.59, 3.98 and 34.6gkg(-1), respectively. Multivariate analysis of variance revealed significant differences among the composts. The four composts formed two (pit 1, pit 2 and pit 3, pit 4) different groups. Two principal components expressed more than 97% of the total variability. Hierarchical cluster analysis resulted two homogeneous groups of composts. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Composting of cow dung and crop residues using termite mounds as bulking agent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karak, Tanmoy; Sonar, Indira; Paul, Ranjit K; Das, Sampa; Boruah, R K; Dutta, Amrit K; Das, Dilip K

    2014-10-01

    The present study reports the suitability of termite mounds as a bulking agent for composting with crop residues and cow dung in pit method. Use of 50 kg termite mound with the crop residues (stover of ground nut: 361.65 kg; soybean: 354.59 kg; potato: 357.67 kg and mustard: 373.19 kg) and cow dung (84.90 kg) formed a good quality compost within 70 days of composting having nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as 20.19, 3.78 and 32.77 g kg(-1) respectively with a bulk density of 0.85 g cm(-3). Other physico-chemical and germination parameters of the compost were within Indian standard, which had been confirmed by the application of multivariate analysis of variance and multivariate contrast analysis. Principal component analysis was applied in order to gain insight into the characteristic variables. Four composting treatments formed two different groups when hierarchical cluster analysis was applied. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Radiocarbon dating of large termite mounds of the miombo woodland of Katanga, DR Congo

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erens, Hans; Boudin, Mathieu; Mees, Florias; Dumon, Mathijs; Mujinya, Basile; Van Strydonck, Mark; Baert, Geert; Boeckx, Pascal; Van Ranst, Eric

    2015-04-01

    The miombo woodlands of South Katanga (D.R. Congo) are characterized by a high spatial density of large conic termite mounds built by Macrotermes falciger (3 to 5 ha-1, ~5 m high, ~15 m in diameter). The time it takes for these mounds to attain this size is still largely unknown. In this study, the age of four of these mounds is determined by 14C-dating the acid-insoluble organic carbon fraction of samples taken along the central vertical axis of two active and two abandoned mounds. The age sequence in the active mounds is erratic, but the results for the abandoned mounds show a logical increase of 14C-age with depth. The ages measured at 50 cm above ground level were 2335 - 2119 cal yr BP for the large abandoned mound (630 cm high), and 796 - 684 cal yr BP for the small abandoned mound (320 cm high). Cold-water-extractable organic carbon (CWEOC) measurements combined with spectroscopic analysis revealed that the lower parts of the active mounds may have been contaminated with recent carbon that leached from the active nest. Nonetheless, this method appears to provide reliable age estimates of large, abandoned termite mounds, which are older than previously estimated. Furthermore, historical mound growth rates seem to correspond to past temperature changes, suggesting a relation between past environmental conditions and mound occupancy. Keywords : 14C, water-extractable carbon, low-temperature combustion

  10. Draft genome of the fungus-growing termite pathogenic fungus Ophiocordyceps bispora (Ophiocordycipitaceae, Hypocreales, Ascomycota

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin H. Conlon

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available This article documents the public availability of genome sequence data and assembled contigs representing the partial draft genome of Ophiocordyceps bispora. As one of the few known pathogens of fungus-farming termites, a draft genome of O. bispora represents the opportunity to further the understanding of disease and resistance in these complex termite societies. With the ongoing attempts to resolve the taxonomy of the Hypocralaean family, more genetic data will also help to shed light on the phylogenetic relationship between sexual and asexual life stages. Next generation sequence data is available from the European Nucleotide Archive (ENA under accession PRJEB13655; run numbers: ERR1368522, ERR1368523, and ERR1368524. Genome assembly available from ENA under accession numbers: FKNF01000001–FKNF01000302. Gene prediction available as protein fasta, nucleotide fasta and GFF file from Mendeley Data with accession doi:10.17632/r99fd6g3s4.2 (http://dx.doi.org/10.17632/r99fd6g3s4.2.

  11. The first report of gynandromorphy in termites (Isoptera; Kalotermitidae; Neotermes koshunensis)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyaguni, Yasushi; Nozaki, Tomonari; Yashiro, Toshihisa

    2017-08-01

    This is the first report of gynandromorphy in Isoptera. An Asian dry-wood termite, Neotermes koshunensis (Shiraki) [Kalotermitidae], possessing both male and female phenotypic characteristics, was found on Okinawa Island, Japan. This deformed individual showed morphological and anatomical hermaphroditism in the abdomen. The right side of the seventh sternite was the female form and contained an ovary, while the left side was the male form and contained a testis. Genotypic analysis revealed that this individual was a genotypic bilateral chimera. These results suggested that the termite was a bilateral gynandromorph with a male left side and a female right side. As reported previously in other insects, double fertilization (by two sperms, one with an X and one with a Y chromosome) of a binucleate egg is the most likely mechanism that generated this genotypic bilateral chimera. N. koshunensis has the ability to reproduce through parthenogenesis, in which the secondary polar body is likely to be used for nuclear phase recovery. If the second polar body in this mechanism has high fertility and healthy embryogenic potential, like an egg nucleus, some of gynandromorphs might be produced by a side effect of parthenogenetic ability.

  12. The frontal weapon of the termite Armitermes euamignathus Silvestri (Isoptera, Termitidae, Nasutitermitinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Maria Costa-Leonardo

    2001-06-01

    Full Text Available Frontal weapon is the term used to designate the apparatus consisting of frontal gland and associated structures that participate in the chemical defense of termite soldiers. The ultra structure of the frontal gland and the scanning microscopy of the soldier head was investigated in the termite Amiitermes euamignathus Silvestri, 1901.Campaniform sensilla was not observed but there were 80 to100 sensory bristles around the frontal pore. The glandular epithelium shows only class 1 cells according 10 the classification of NOIROT & QUENNEDEY (1974, 1991. The glandular cells are characterized by apical microvilli, a basal labyrinth and a large quantity of smooth endoplasmic reticulum which forms dense zones throughout the cytoplasm. The secretion is concentrated mainly in the basal pole of the cell and consists of large lipid droplets. The secretory epithelium is covered by a thick apical cuticle composed of a thin outer epicuticle, a layer of epicuticular filaments and a dense procuticle. The cytological results concerning the frontal pore showed a reduced cuticle and the presence of a subcuticular space where the lipid droplets are accumulated. The lack of class 3 cells and the presence of an intrinsic musculature are two anatomical features of the A. euamignathus frontal gland that will be important in the phylogenetic relationships of the Nasutitermitinae.

  13. Molecular basis for the reproductive division of labour in a lower termite

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rehli Michael

    2007-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Polyphenism, the expression of different phenotypes with the same genetic background, is well known for social insects. The substantial physiological and morphological differences among the castes generally are the result of differential gene expression. In lower termites, workers are developmentally flexible to become neotenic replacement reproductives via a single moult after the death of the founding reproductives. Thus, both castes (neotenics and workers are expected to differ mainly in the expression of genes linked to reproductive division of labour, which constitutes the fundamental basis of insect societies. Results Representational difference analysis of cDNAs was used to study differential gene expression between neotenics and workers in the drywood termite Cryptotermes secundus (Kalotermitidae. We identified and, at least partially cloned five novel genes that were highly expressed in female neotenics. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis of all five genes in different castes (neotenics, founding reproductives, winged sexuals and workers of both sexes confirmed the differential expression patterns. In addition, the relative expression of these genes was determined in three body parts of female neotenics (head, thorax, and abdomen using quantitative real-time PCR. Conclusion The identified genes could be involved in the control and regulation of reproductive division of labour. Interestingly, this study revealed an expression pattern partly similar to social Hymenoptera indicating both common and species-specific regulatory mechanisms in hemimetabolous and holometabolous social insects.

  14. Levy flights and self-similar exploratory behaviour of termite workers: beyond model fitting.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Octavio Miramontes

    Full Text Available Animal movements have been related to optimal foraging strategies where self-similar trajectories are central. Most of the experimental studies done so far have focused mainly on fitting statistical models to data in order to test for movement patterns described by power-laws. Here we show by analyzing over half a million movement displacements that isolated termite workers actually exhibit a range of very interesting dynamical properties--including Lévy flights--in their exploratory behaviour. Going beyond the current trend of statistical model fitting alone, our study analyses anomalous diffusion and structure functions to estimate values of the scaling exponents describing displacement statistics. We evince the fractal nature of the movement patterns and show how the scaling exponents describing termite space exploration intriguingly comply with mathematical relations found in the physics of transport phenomena. By doing this, we rescue a rich variety of physical and biological phenomenology that can be potentially important and meaningful for the study of complex animal behavior and, in particular, for the study of how patterns of exploratory behaviour of individual social insects may impact not only their feeding demands but also nestmate encounter patterns and, hence, their dynamics at the social scale.

  15. Colony Size Affects the Efficacy of Bait Containing Chlorfluazuron Against the Fungus-Growing Termite Macrotermes gilvus (Blattodea: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ching-Chen; Neoh, Kok-Boon; Lee, Chow-Yang

    2014-12-01

    The efficacy of chitin synthesis inhibitors (CSIs) against fungus-growing termites is known to vary. In this study, 0.1% chlorfluazuron (CFZ) cellulose bait was tested against medium and large field colonies of Macrotermes gilvus (Hagen). The termite mounds were dissected to determine the health of the colony. Individual termites (i.e., workers and larvae) and fungus combs were subjected to gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis to detect the presence of CFZ. In this study, 540.0 ± 25.8 g (or equivalent to 540.0 ± 25.8 mg active ingredient) and 680.0 ± 49.0 g (680.0 ± 49.0 mg active ingredient) of bait matrix were removed by the medium- and large-sized colonies, respectively, after baiting. All treated medium-sized colonies were moribund. The dead termites were scattered in the mound, larvae were absent, population size had decreased by 90%, and the queens appeared unhealthy. In contrast, no or limited effects were found in large-sized colonies. Only trace amounts of CFZ were detected in workers, larvae, and fungus combs, and the population of large-sized colonies had declined by only up to 40%. This might be owing to the presence of large amount of basidiomycete fungus and a drastic decrease of CFZ content per unit fungus comb (a main food source of larvae) in the large-sized colonies, and hence reduced the toxic effect and longer time is required to accumulate the lethal dose in larvae. Nevertheless, we do not deny the possibility of CSI bait eliminating or suppressing the higher termite if the test colonies could pick up adequate lethal dose by installing more bait stations and prolonging the baiting period. © 2014 Entomological Society of America.

  16. Screening and characterizing of xylanolytic and xylose-fermenting yeasts isolated from the wood-feeding termite, Reticulitermes chinensis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sameh Samir Ali

    Full Text Available The effective fermentation of xylose remains an intractable challenge in bioethanol industry. The relevant xylanase enzyme is also in a high demand from industry for several biotechnological applications that inevitably in recent times led to many efforts for screening some novel microorganisms for better xylanase production and fermentation performance. Recently, it seems that wood-feeding termites can truly be considered as highly efficient natural bioreactors. The highly specialized gut systems of such insects are not yet fully realized, particularly, in xylose fermentation and xylanase production to advance industrial bioethanol technology as well as industrial applications of xylanases. A total of 92 strains from 18 yeast species were successfully isolated and identified from the gut of wood-feeding termite, Reticulitermes chinensis. Of these yeasts and strains, seven were identified for new species: Candida gotoi, Candida pseudorhagii, Hamamotoa lignophila, Meyerozyma guilliermondii, Sugiyamaella sp.1, Sugiyamaella sp. 2, and Sugiyamaella sp.3. Based on the phylogenetic and phenotypic characterization, the type strain of C. pseudorhagii sp. nov., which was originally designated strain SSA-1542T, was the most frequently occurred yeast from termite gut samples, showed the highly xylanolytic activity as well as D-xylose fermentation. The highest xylanase activity was recorded as 1.73 and 0.98 U/mL with xylan or D-xylose substrate, respectively, from SSA-1542T. Among xylanase-producing yeasts, four novel species were identified as D-xylose-fermenting yeasts, where the yeast, C. pseudorhagii SSA-1542T, showed the highest ethanol yield (0.31 g/g, ethanol productivity (0.31 g/L·h, and its fermentation efficiency (60.7% in 48 h. Clearly, the symbiotic yeasts isolated from termite guts have demonstrated a competitive capability to produce xylanase and ferment xylose, suggesting that the wood-feeding termite gut is a promising reservoir for novel

  17. Nitrate reduction, nitrous oxide formation, and anaerobic ammonia oxidation to nitrite in the gut of soil-feeding termites (Cubitermes and Ophiotermes spp.)

    KAUST Repository

    Ngugi, David; Brune, Andreas

    2011-01-01

    Soil-feeding termites play important roles in the dynamics of carbon and nitrogen in tropical soils. Through the mineralization of nitrogenous humus components, their intestinal tracts accumulate enormous amounts of ammonia, and nitrate and nitrite

  18. Mayaweckelia troglomorpha, a new subterranean amphipod species from Yucatán state, México (Amphipoda, Hadziidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angyal, Dorottya; Solís, Efraín Chávez; Magaña, Benjamín; Balázs, Gergely; Simoes, Nuno

    2018-01-01

    A detailed description of a new stygobiont species of the amphipod family Hadziidae, Mayaweckelia troglomorpha Angyal, sp. n. is given, based on material collected in four cenotes of Yucatán federal state, México. Morphology was studied under light microscopy and with scanning electron microscopy. Morphological description is complemented with mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) sequences as barcodes, with affinities to the related taxa and with notes on the species' ecology. Using COI Bayesian inference and genetic distance analyses, we show that the closest relative of the new species is M. cenoticola , forming a monophyletic group referring to the genus Mayaweckelia . Based on the available sequences, we also revealed that Mayaweckelia and Tuluweckelia are sister genera, standing close to the third Yucatán subterranean genus, Bahadzia . The data gathered on the habitat, distribution, abundance, and ecology will contribute to the conservation planning for M. troglomorpha Angyal, sp. n.

  19. Profiling the Succession of Bacterial Communities throughout the Life Stages of a Higher Termite Nasutitermes arborum (Termitidae, Nasutitermitinae) Using 16S rRNA Gene Pyrosequencing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diouf, Michel; Roy, Virginie; Mora, Philippe; Frechault, Sophie; Lefebvre, Thomas; Hervé, Vincent; Rouland-Lefèvre, Corinne; Miambi, Edouard

    2015-01-01

    Previous surveys of the gut microbiota of termites have been limited to the worker caste. Termite gut microbiota has been well documented over the last decades and consists mainly of lineages specific to the gut microbiome which are maintained across generations. Despite this intimate relationship, little is known of how symbionts are transmitted to each generation of the host, especially in higher termites where proctodeal feeding has never been reported. The bacterial succession across life stages of the wood-feeding higher termite Nasutitermes arborum was characterized by 16S rRNA gene deep sequencing. The microbial community in the eggs, mainly affiliated to Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria, was markedly different from the communities in the following developmental stages. In the first instar and last instar larvae and worker caste termites, Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria were less abundant than Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Spirochaetes, Fibrobacteres and the candidate phylum TG3 from the last instar larvae. Most of the representatives of these phyla (except Firmicutes) were identified as termite-gut specific lineages, although their relative abundances differed. The most salient difference between last instar larvae and worker caste termites was the very high proportion of Spirochaetes, most of which were affiliated to the Treponema Ic, Ia and If subclusters, in workers. The results suggest that termite symbionts are not transmitted from mother to offspring but become established by a gradual process allowing the offspring to have access to the bulk of the microbiota prior to the emergence of workers, and, therefore, presumably through social exchanges with nursing workers. PMID:26444989

  20. Rainfall and soil properties influence termite mound abundance and height: A case study with Odontotermes obesus (Macrotermitinae) mounds in the Indian Western Ghats forests

    OpenAIRE

    Kabbaj, Meyssoun; Sundararaj, Ramachandran; Jouquet, Pascal

    2017-01-01

    Several fungus-growing termite species build mounds, or termitaria, that are conspicuous features of African and Asian landscapes. Studies of the genus Macrotermes in Africa have established that their mounds provide an environment buffered against extremes of temperature and humidity, as well as protection from predators, and are correspondingly modified in composition. However, no studies are available in the specific context of the Asian continent where termite mounds are also abundant. He...

  1. The relationship between termite mound CH4/CO2 emissions and internal concentration ratios are species specific

    OpenAIRE

    B. Fest; S. K. Arndt; L. B. Hutley; S. J. Livesley; H. Jamali

    2012-01-01

    We investigated the relative importance of CH4 and CO2 fluxes from soil and termite mounds at four different sites in the tropical savannas of northern Australia near Darwin and assessed different methods to indirectly predict CH4 fluxes based on CO2 fluxes and internal gas concentrations. The annual flux from termite mounds and surrounding soil was dominated by CO2 with large variations among sites. On a carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2-e) basis, annual CH4 flux estimate...

  2. Rainfall and soil properties influence termite mound abundance and height : a case study with Odontotermes obesus (Macrotermitinae) mounds in the Indian Western Ghats forests

    OpenAIRE

    Shanbhag, R. R.; Kabbaj, M.; Sundararaj, R.; Jouquet, Pascal

    2017-01-01

    Several fungus-growing termite species build mounds, or termitaria, that are conspicuous features of African and Asian landscapes. Studies of the genus Macrotermes in Africa have established that their mounds provide an environment buffered against extremes of temperature and humidity, as well as protection from predators, and are correspondingly modified in composition. However, no studies are available in the specific context of the Asian continent where termite mounds are also abundant. He...

  3. Trail communication regulated by two trail pheromone components in the fungus-growing termite Odontotermes formosanus (Shiraki).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wen, Ping; Ji, Bao-Zhong; Sillam-Dussès, David

    2014-01-01

    The eusocial termites are well accomplished in chemical communication, but how they achieve the communication using trace amount of no more than two pheromone components is mostly unknown. In this study, the foraging process and trail pheromones of the fungus-growing termite Odontotermes formosanus (Shiraki) were systematically studied and monitored in real-time using a combination of techniques, including video analysis, solid-phase microextraction, gas chromatography coupled with either mass spectrometry or an electroantennographic detector, and bioassays. The trail pheromone components in foraging workers were (3Z)-dodec-3-en-1-ol and (3Z,6Z)-dodeca-3,6-dien-1-ol secreted by their sternal glands. Interestingly, ratio of the two components changed according to the behaviors that the termites were displaying. This situation only occurs in termites whereas ratios of pheromone components are fixed and species-specific for other insect cuticular glands. Moreover, in bioassays, the active thresholds of the two components ranged from 1 fg/cm to 10 pg/cm according to the behavioral contexts or the pheromonal exposure of tested workers. The two components did not act in synergy. (3Z)-Dodec-3-en-1-ol induced orientation behavior of termites that explore their environment, whereas (3Z,6Z)-dodeca-3,6-dien-1-ol had both an orientation effect and a recruitment effect when food was discovered. The trail pheromone of O. formosanus was regulated both quantitatively by the increasing number of workers involved in the early phases of foraging process, and qualitatively by the change in ratio of the two pheromone components on sternal glandular cuticle in the food-collecting workers. In bioassays, the responses of workers to the pheromone were also affected by the variation in pheromone concentration and component ratio in the microenvironment. Thus, this termite could exchange more information with nestmates using the traces of the two trail pheromone components that can be easily

  4. Parallel metatranscriptome analyses of host and symbiont gene expression in the gut of the termite Reticulitermes flavipes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhou Xuguo

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Termite lignocellulose digestion is achieved through a collaboration of host plus prokaryotic and eukaryotic symbionts. In the present work, we took a combined host and symbiont metatranscriptomic approach for investigating the digestive contributions of host and symbiont in the lower termite Reticulitermes flavipes. Our approach consisted of parallel high-throughput sequencing from (i a host gut cDNA library and (ii a hindgut symbiont cDNA library. Subsequently, we undertook functional analyses of newly identified phenoloxidases with potential importance as pretreatment enzymes in industrial lignocellulose processing. Results Over 10,000 expressed sequence tags (ESTs were sequenced from the 2 libraries that aligned into 6,555 putative transcripts, including 171 putative lignocellulase genes. Sequence analyses provided insights in two areas. First, a non-overlapping complement of host and symbiont (prokaryotic plus protist glycohydrolase gene families known to participate in cellulose, hemicellulose, alpha carbohydrate, and chitin degradation were identified. Of these, cellulases are contributed by host plus symbiont genomes, whereas hemicellulases are contributed exclusively by symbiont genomes. Second, a diverse complement of previously unknown genes that encode proteins with homology to lignase, antioxidant, and detoxification enzymes were identified exclusively from the host library (laccase, catalase, peroxidase, superoxide dismutase, carboxylesterase, cytochrome P450. Subsequently, functional analyses of phenoloxidase activity provided results that were strongly consistent with patterns of laccase gene expression. In particular, phenoloxidase activity and laccase gene expression are mostly restricted to symbiont-free foregut plus salivary gland tissues, and phenoloxidase activity is inducible by lignin feeding. Conclusion To our knowledge, this is the first time that a dual host-symbiont transcriptome sequencing effort

  5. Draft genome sequence of Bacillus oleronius DSM 9356 isolated from the termite Reticulitermes santonensis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rodney Owusu-Darko

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Bacillus oleronius strain DSM 9356 isolated from the termite Reticulitermes santonensis was sequenced to gain insights in relation to its closest phylogenetic neighbor Bacillus sporothermodurans. The draft genome of strain DSM 9356 contains 5,083,966 bp with an estimated G + C content of 35%, 4899 protein-coding genes, 116 tRNAs and 18 rRNAs. The RAST annotation assigned these genes into 462 subsystems, with the maximum number of genes associated with amino acids and derivatives metabolism (14.84%, followed by carbohydrates (13.89% and protein metabolism subsystems (9.10%. The draft genome sequence and annotation has been deposited at NCBI under the accession number MTLA00000000.

  6. Detection of termites and other insects consumed by African great apes using molecular fecal analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamad, Ibrahim; Delaporte, Eric; Raoult, Didier; Bittar, Fadi

    2014-03-27

    The consumption of insects by apes has previously been reported based on direct observations and/or trail signs in feces. However, DNA-based diet analyses may have the potential to reveal trophic links for these wild species. Herein, we analyzed the insect-diet diversity of 9 feces obtained from three species of African great apes, gorilla (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) and bonobo (Pan paniscus), using two mitochondrial amplifications for arthropods. A total of 1056 clones were sequenced for Cyt-b and COI gene libraries, which contained 50 and 56 operational taxonomic units (OTUs), respectively. BLAST research revealed that the OTUs belonged to 32 families from 5 orders (Diptera, Isoptera, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, and Orthoptera). While ants were not detected by this method, the consumption of flies, beetles, moths, mosquitoes and termites was evident in these samples. Our findings indicate that molecular techniques can be used to analyze insect food items in wild animals.

  7. Designing collective behavior in a termite-inspired robot construction team.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Werfel, Justin; Petersen, Kirstin; Nagpal, Radhika

    2014-02-14

    Complex systems are characterized by many independent components whose low-level actions produce collective high-level results. Predicting high-level results given low-level rules is a key open challenge; the inverse problem, finding low-level rules that give specific outcomes, is in general still less understood. We present a multi-agent construction system inspired by mound-building termites, solving such an inverse problem. A user specifies a desired structure, and the system automatically generates low-level rules for independent climbing robots that guarantee production of that structure. Robots use only local sensing and coordinate their activity via the shared environment. We demonstrate the approach via a physical realization with three autonomous climbing robots limited to onboard sensing. This work advances the aim of engineering complex systems that achieve specific human-designed goals.

  8. Optimal reproduction strategies in two species of mound-building termites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cameron, David A; Ivers, David J; Evans, Theodore A; Myerscough, Mary R

    2008-01-01

    We formulate a mathematical model for food collection and production of workers and nymphs in 2 species of mound building termites. We maximise the number of nymphs (reproductives) produced by each colony over its lifetime with respect to the proportion of eggs that hatch as nymphs as opposed to workers. The results predict that food storage has a very important influence on the pattern of nymph and worker production. Food storage affects the part of the year that nymph production dominates, whether nymphs and workers are produced at the same time or not, and the existence of a final phase in the colony's life when a very large number of nymphs but no workers are produced.

  9. "Magnetic" termite mound surfaces are oriented to suit wind and shade conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jacklyn, Peter M

    1992-09-01

    The termites Amitermes meridionalis and A. laurensis construct remarkable meridional or "magnetic" mounds in northern Australia. These mounds vary geographically in mean orientation in a manner that suggests such variation is an adaptive response to local environmental conditions. Theoretical modelling of solar irradiance and mound rotation experiments show that maintenance of an eastern face temperature plateau during the dry season is the most likely physical basis for the mound orientation response. Subsequent heat transfer analysis shows that habitat wind speed and shading conditions also affect face temperature gradients such as the rate of eastern face temperature change. It is then demonstrated that the geographic variation in mean mound orientation follows the geographic variation in long-term wind speed and shading conditions across northern Australia such that an eastern face temperature plateau is maintained in all locations.

  10. Nutrient composition of four species of winged termites consumed in western Kenya

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kinyuru, J N; Konyole, S O; Roos, Nanna

    2013-01-01

    in order to ascertain their potential in food-based strategies to improve nutritional health. The fat content was 44.82-47.31. g/100. g, protein 33.51-39.74. g/100. g, available carbohydrate 0.72-8.73. g/100. g, iron 53.33-115.97. mg/100. g and zinc 7.10-12.86. mg/100. g. The level of unsaturated fatty...... acids was 50.54-67.83%, while n-6:n-3 ratio ranged between 5.80:1.00 and 57.70:1.00, thus signifying potential nutritional and public health significance. The termites may be exploited in provision of high-quality diets especially in the developing countries, which have been plagued by iron and zinc...

  11. Lignin-solubilizing ability of actinomycetes isolated from termite (Termitidae) gut.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasti, M B; Pometto, A L; Nuti, M P; Crawford, D L

    1990-01-01

    The lignocellulose-degrading abilities of 11 novel actinomycete strains isolated from termite gut were determined and compared with that of the well-characterized actinomycete, Streptomyces viridosporus T7A. Lignocellulose bioconversion was followed by (i) monitoring the degradation of [14C]lignin- and [14C]cellulose-labeled phloem of Abies concolor to 14CO2 and 14C-labeled water-soluble products, (ii) determining lignocellulose, lignin, and carbohydrate losses resulting from growth on a lignocellulose substrate prepared from corn stalks (Zea mays), and (iii) quantifying production of a water-soluble lignin degradation intermediate (acid-precipitable polymeric lignin). The actinomycetes were all Streptomyces strains and could be placed into three groups, including a group of five strains that appear superior to S. viridosporus T7A in lignocellulose-degrading ability, three strains of approximately equal ability, and three strains of lesser ability. Strain A2 was clearly the superior and most effective lignocellulose decomposer of those tested. Of the assays used, total lignocellulose weight loss was most useful in determining overall bioconversion ability but not in identifying the best lignin-solubilizing strains. A screening procedure based on 14CO2 evolution from [14C-lignin]lignocellulose combined with measurement of acid-precipitable polymeric lignin yield was the most effective in identifying lignin-solubilizing strains. For the termite gut strains, the pH of the medium showed no increase after 3 weeks of growth on lignocellulose. This is markedly different from the pattern observed with S. viridosporus T7A, which raises the medium pH considerably. Production of extracellular peroxidases by the 11 strains and S. viridosporus T7A was followed for 5 days in liquid cultures.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:2167628

  12. Lignin-solubilizing ability of actinomycetes isolated from termite (Termitidae) gut

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pasti, M.B.; Crawford, D.L.; Pometto, A.L. III; Nuti, M.P.

    1990-01-01

    The lignocellulose-degrading abilities of 11 novel actinomycete strains isolated from termite gut were determined and compared with that of the well-characterized actinomycete, Streptomyces viridosporus T7A. Lignocellulose bioconversion was followed by (i) monitoring the degradation of [ 14 C]lignin- and [ 14 C]cellulose-labeled phloem of Abies concolor to 14 CO 2 and 14 C-labeled water-soluble products, (ii) determining lignocellulose, lignin, and carbohydrate losses resulting from growth on a lignocellulose substrate prepared from corn stalks (Zea mays), and (iii) quantifying production of a water-soluble lignin degradation intermediate (acid-precipitable polymeric lignin). Of the assays used, total lignocellulose weight loss was most useful in determining overall bioconversion ability but not in identifying the best lignin-solubilizing strains. A screening procedure based on 14 CO 2 evolution from [ 14 C-lignin]lignocellulose combined with measurement of acid-precipitable polymeric lignin yield was the most effective in identifying lignin-solubilizing strains. For the termite gut strains, the pH of the medium showed no increase after 3 weeks of growth on lignocellulose. This is markedly different from the pattern observed with S. viridosporus T7A, which raises the medium pH considerably. Production of extracellular peroxidases by the 11 strains and S. viridosporus T7A was followed for 5 days in liquid cultures. On the basis of an increase of specific peroxidase activity in the presence of lignocellulose in the medium, the actinomycetes could be placed into the same three groups

  13. Time optimized path-choice in the termite hunting ant Megaponera analis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Erik T; Hönle, Philipp O; Linsenmair, K Eduard

    2018-05-10

    Trail network systems among ants have received a lot of scientific attention due to their various applications in problem solving of networks. Recent studies have shown that ants select the fastest available path when facing different velocities on different substrates, rather than the shortest distance. The progress of decision-making by these ants is determined by pheromone-based maintenance of paths, which is a collective decision. However, path optimization through individual decision-making remains mostly unexplored. Here we present the first study of time-optimized path selection via individual decision-making by scout ants. Megaponera analis scouts search for termite foraging sites and lead highly organized raid columns to them. The path of the scout determines the path of the column. Through installation of artificial roads around M. analis nests we were able to influence the pathway choice of the raids. After road installation 59% of all recorded raids took place completely or partly on the road, instead of the direct, i.e. distance-optimized, path through grass from the nest to the termites. The raid velocity on the road was more than double the grass velocity, the detour thus saved 34.77±23.01% of the travel time compared to a hypothetical direct path. The pathway choice of the ants was similar to a mathematical model of least time allowing us to hypothesize the underlying mechanisms regulating the behavior. Our results highlight the importance of individual decision-making in the foraging behavior of ants and show a new procedure of pathway optimization. © 2018. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

  14. Complex coevolutionary history of symbiotic Bacteroidales bacteria of various protists in the gut of termites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noda, Satoko; Hongoh, Yuichi; Sato, Tomoyuki; Ohkuma, Moriya

    2009-01-01

    Background The microbial community in the gut of termites is responsible for the efficient decomposition of recalcitrant lignocellulose. Prominent features of this community are its complexity and the associations of prokaryotes with the cells of cellulolytic flagellated protists. Bacteria in the order Bacteroidales are involved in associations with a wide variety of gut protist species as either intracellular endosymbionts or surface-attached ectosymbionts. In particular, ectosymbionts exhibit distinct morphological patterns of the associations. Therefore, these Bacteroidales symbionts provide an opportunity to investigate not only the coevolutionary relationships with the host protists and their morphological evolution but also how symbiotic associations between prokaryotes and eukaryotes occur and evolve within a complex symbiotic community. Results Molecular phylogeny of 31 taxa of Bacteroidales symbionts from 17 protist genera in 10 families was examined based on 16S rRNA gene sequences. Their localization, morphology, and specificity were also examined by fluorescent in situ hybridizations. Although a monophyletic grouping of the ectosymbionts occurred in three related protist families, the symbionts of different protist genera were usually dispersed among several phylogenetic clusters unique to termite-gut bacteria. Similar morphologies of the associations occurred in multiple lineages of the symbionts. Nevertheless, the symbionts of congeneric protist species were closely related to one another, and in most cases, each host species harbored a unique Bacteroidales species. The endosymbionts were distantly related to the ectosymbionts examined so far. Conclusion The coevolutionary history of gut protists and their associated Bacteroidales symbionts is complex. We suggest multiple independent acquisitions of the Bacteroidales symbionts by different protist genera from a pool of diverse bacteria in the gut community. In this sense, the gut could serve as a

  15. Dynamics of foraging trails in the Neotropical termite Velocitermes heteropterus (Isoptera: Termitidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haifig, Ives; Jost, Christian; Fourcassié, Vincent; Zana, Yossi; Costa-Leonardo, Ana Maria

    2015-09-01

    Foraging behavior in termites varies with the feeding habits of each species but often occurs through the formation of well-defined trails that connect the nest to food sources in species that build structured nests. We studied the formation of foraging trails and the change in caste ratio during foraging in the termite Velocitermes heteropterus. This species is widespread in Cerrado vegetation where it builds epigeal nests and forages in open-air at night. Our aim was to understand the processes involved in the formation of foraging trails, from the exploration of new unmarked areas to the recruitment of individuals to food and the stabilization of traffic on the trails, as well as the participation of the different castes during these processes. Foraging trails were videotaped in the laboratory and the videos were then analyzed both manually and automatically to assess the flow of individuals and the caste ratio on the trails as well as to examine the spatial organization of traffic over time. Foraging trails were composed of minor workers, major workers, and soldiers. The flow of individuals on the trails gradually increased from the beginning of the exploration of new areas up to the discovery of the food. The caste ratio remained constant throughout the foraging excursion: major workers, minor workers and soldiers forage in a ratio of 8:1:1, respectively. The speed of individuals was significantly different among castes, with major workers and soldiers being significantly faster than minor workers. Overall, our results show that foraging excursions in V. heteropterus may be divided in three different phases, characterized by individual speeds, differential flows and lane segregation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Origin and alteration of organic matter in termite mounds from different feeding guilds of the Amazon rainforests.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nina Siebers

    Full Text Available The impact of termites on nutrient cycling and tropical soil formation depends on their feeding habits and related material transformation. The identification of food sources, however, is difficult, because they are variable and changed by termite activity and nest construction. Here, we related the sources and alteration of organic matter in nests from seven different termite genera and feeding habits in the Terra Firme rainforests to the properties of potential food sources soil, wood, and microepiphytes. Chemical analyses comprised isotopic composition of C and N, cellulosic (CPS, non-cellulosic (NCPS, and N-containing saccharides, and molecular composition screening using pyrolysis-field ionization mass spectrometry (Py-FIMS. The isotopic analysis revealed higher soil δ13C (-27.4‰ and δ15N (6.6‰ values in nests of wood feeding Nasutitermes and Cornitermes than in wood samples (δ13C = -29.1‰, δ15N = 3.4‰, reflecting stable-isotope enrichment with organic matter alterations during or after nest construction. This result was confirmed by elevated NCPS:CPS ratios, indicating a preferential cellulose decomposition in the nests. High portions of muramic acid (MurAc pointed to the participation of bacteria in the transformation processes. Non-metric multidimensional scaling (MDS revealed increasing geophagy in the sequence Termes < Embiratermes < Anoplotermes and increasing xylophagy for Cornitermes < Nasutitermes., and that the nest material of Constrictotermes was similar to the microepiphytes sample, confirming the report that Constrictotermes belongs to the microepiphyte-feeders. We therewith document that nest chemistry of rainforest termites shows variations and evidence of modification by microbial processes, but nevertheless it primarily reflects the trophic niches of the constructors.

  17. Metagenomic insights into metabolic capacities of the gut microbiota in a fungus-cultivating termite (Odontotermes yunnanensis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ning Liu

    Full Text Available Macrotermitinae (fungus-cultivating termites are major decomposers in tropical and subtropical areas of Asia and Africa. They have specifically evolved mutualistic associations with both a Termitomyces fungi on the nest and a gut microbiota, providing a model system for probing host-microbe interactions. Yet the symbiotic roles of gut microbes residing in its major feeding caste remain largely undefined. Here, by pyrosequencing the whole gut metagenome of adult workers of a fungus-cultivating termite (Odontotermes yunnanensis, we showed that it did harbor a broad set of genes or gene modules encoding carbohydrate-active enzymes (CAZymes relevant to plant fiber degradation, particularly debranching enzymes and oligosaccharide-processing enzymes. Besides, it also contained a considerable number of genes encoding chitinases and glycoprotein oligosaccharide-processing enzymes for fungal cell wall degradation. To investigate the metabolic divergence of higher termites of different feeding guilds, a SEED subsystem-based gene-centric comparative analysis of the data with that of a previously sequenced wood-feeding Nasutitermes hindgut microbiome was also attempted, revealing that SEED classifications of nitrogen metabolism, and motility and chemotaxis were significantly overrepresented in the wood-feeder hindgut metagenome, while Bacteroidales conjugative transposons and subsystems related to central aromatic compounds metabolism were apparently overrepresented here. This work fills up our gaps in understanding the functional capacities of fungus-cultivating termite gut microbiota, especially their roles in the symbiotic digestion of lignocelluloses and utilization of fungal biomass, both of which greatly add to existing understandings of this peculiar symbiosis.

  18. Not Only Soldiers Have Weapons: Evolution of the Frontal Gland in Imagoes of the Termite Families Rhinotermitidae and Serritermitidae

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Šobotník, Jan; Bourguignon, T.; Hanus, Robert; Sillam-Dusses, David; Pflegerová, Jitka; Weyda, František; Kutalová, Kateřina; Vytisková, B.; Roisin, Y.

    2010-01-01

    Roč. 5, č. 12 (2010), e15761/1-e15761/7 E-ISSN 1932-6203 R&D Projects: GA ČR GAP506/10/1570 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z40550506; CEZ:AV0Z50070508 Keywords : termites * imagoes * soldiers * Rhinotermitidae * Serritermitidae * frontal gland Subject RIV: CC - Organic Chemistry Impact factor: 4.411, year: 2010 www.plosone.org

  19. Possible trace fossils of putative termite origin in the Lower Jurassic (Karoo Supergroup of South Africa and Lesotho

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    O. Catuneanu

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Complex structures in the sandstones of the Lower Jurassic aeolian Clarens Formation (Karoo Supergroup are found at numerous localities throughout southern Africa, and can be assigned to five distinct architectural groups: (1 up to 3.3-m high, free-standing, slab-shaped forms of bioturbated sandstones with elliptical bases, orientated buttresses and an interconnecting large burrow system; (2 up to 1.2-m high, free-standing, irregular forms of bioturbated sandstones with 2-cm to 4-cm thick, massive walls, empty chambers and vertical shafts; (3 about 0.15-m to 0.25-m high, mainly bulbous, multiple forms with thin walls (larger than 2 cm, hollow chambers with internal pillars and bridges; (4 about 0.15-m to 0.2-m (maximum 1-m high, free-standing forms of aggregated solitary spheres associated with massive horizontal, orientated capsules or tubes, and meniscate tubes; and (5 about 5 cmin diameter, ovoid forms with weak internal shelving in a close-fitting cavity. Based on size, wall thickness, orientation and the presence of internal chambers, these complex structures are tentatively interpreted as ichnofossils of an Early Jurassic social organism; the different architectures are reflective of the different behaviours of more than one species, the history of structural change in architectural forms (ontogenetic series or an architectural adaptation to local palaeoclimatic variability. While exact modern equivalents are unknown, some of these ichnofossils are comparable to nests (or parts of nests constructed by extant termites, and thus these Jurassic structures are very tentatively interpreted here as having been made by a soil-dwelling social organism, probably of termite origin. This southern African discovery, along with reported Triassic and Jurassic termite ichnofossils from North America, supports previous hypotheses that sociality in insects, particularity in termites, likely evolved prior to the Pangea breakup in the Early Mesozoic.

  20. Diversity of Termitomyces associated with fungus-farming termites assessed by cultural and culture-independent methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Makonde, Huxley M; Boga, Hamadi I; Osiemo, Zipporah; Mwirichia, Romano; Stielow, J Benjamin; Göker, Markus; Klenk, Hans-Peter

    2013-01-01

    Fungus-cultivating termites make use of an obligate mutualism with fungi from the genus Termitomyces, which are acquired through either vertical transmission via reproductive alates or horizontally transmitted during the formation of new mounds. Termitomyces taxonomy, and thus estimating diversity and host specificity of these fungi, is challenging because fruiting bodies are rarely found. Molecular techniques can be applied but need not necessarily yield the same outcome than morphological identification. Culture-dependent and culture-independent methods were used to comprehensively assess host specificity and gut fungal diversity. Termites were identified using mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase II (COII) genes. Twenty-three Termitomyces cultures were isolated from fungal combs. Internal transcribed spacer (ITS) clone libraries were constructed from termite guts. Presence of Termitomyces was confirmed using specific and universal primers. Termitomyces species boundaries were estimated by cross-comparison of macromorphological and sequence features, and ITS clustering parameters accordingly optimized. The overall trends in coverage of Termitomyces diversity and host associations were estimated using Genbank data. Results indicate a monoculture of Termitomyces in the guts as well as the isolation sources (fungal combs). However, cases of more than one Termitomyces strains per mound were observed since mounds can contain different termite colonies. The newly found cultures, as well as the clustering analysis of GenBank data indicate that there are on average between one and two host genera per Termitomyces species. Saturation does not appear to have been reached, neither for the total number of known Termitomyces species nor for the number of Termitomyces species per host taxon, nor for the number of known hosts per Termitomyces species. Considering the rarity of Termitomyces fruiting bodies, it is suggested to base the future taxonomy of the group mainly on well

  1. Diversity of Termitomyces associated with fungus-farming termites assessed by cultural and culture-independent methods.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huxley M Makonde

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Fungus-cultivating termites make use of an obligate mutualism with fungi from the genus Termitomyces, which are acquired through either vertical transmission via reproductive alates or horizontally transmitted during the formation of new mounds. Termitomyces taxonomy, and thus estimating diversity and host specificity of these fungi, is challenging because fruiting bodies are rarely found. Molecular techniques can be applied but need not necessarily yield the same outcome than morphological identification. METHODOLOGY: Culture-dependent and culture-independent methods were used to comprehensively assess host specificity and gut fungal diversity. Termites were identified using mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase II (COII genes. Twenty-three Termitomyces cultures were isolated from fungal combs. Internal transcribed spacer (ITS clone libraries were constructed from termite guts. Presence of Termitomyces was confirmed using specific and universal primers. Termitomyces species boundaries were estimated by cross-comparison of macromorphological and sequence features, and ITS clustering parameters accordingly optimized. The overall trends in coverage of Termitomyces diversity and host associations were estimated using Genbank data. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Results indicate a monoculture of Termitomyces in the guts as well as the isolation sources (fungal combs. However, cases of more than one Termitomyces strains per mound were observed since mounds can contain different termite colonies. The newly found cultures, as well as the clustering analysis of GenBank data indicate that there are on average between one and two host genera per Termitomyces species. Saturation does not appear to have been reached, neither for the total number of known Termitomyces species nor for the number of Termitomyces species per host taxon, nor for the number of known hosts per Termitomyces species. Considering the rarity of Termitomyces fruiting bodies, it is

  2. The inadequacy of morphology for species and genus delineation in microbial eukaryotes: an example from the parabasalian termite symbiont coronympha.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James T Harper

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: For the majority of microbial eukaryotes (protists, algae, there is no clearly superior species concept that is consistently applied. In the absence of a practical biological species concept, most species and genus level delineations have historically been based on morphology, which may lead to an underestimate of the diversity of microbial eukaryotes. Indeed, a growing body of molecular evidence, such as barcoding surveys, is beginning to support the conclusion that significant cryptic species diversity exists. This underestimate of diversity appears to be due to a combination of using morphology as the sole basis for assessing diversity and our inability to culture the vast majority of microbial life. Here we have used molecular markers to assess the species delineations in two related but morphologically distinct genera of uncultivated symbionts found in the hindgut of termites. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Using single-cell isolation and environmental PCR, we have used a barcoding approach to characterize the diversity of Coronympha and Metacoronympha symbionts in four species of Incisitermes termites, which were also examined using scanning electron microscopy and light microcopy. Despite the fact that these genera are significantly different in morphological complexity and structural organisation, we find they are two life history stages of the same species. At the same time, we show that the symbionts from different termite hosts show an equal or greater level of sequence diversity than do the hosts, despite the fact that the symbionts are all classified as one species. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The morphological information used to describe the diversity of these microbial symbionts is misleading at both the genus and species levels, and led to an underestimate of species level diversity as well as an overestimate of genus level diversity. The genus 'Metacoronympha' is invalid and appears to be a life history stage of

  3. Elimination of field colonies of a mound-building termite Globitermes sulphureus (Isoptera: Termitidae) by bistrifluron bait.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neoh, Kok-Boon; Jalaludin, Nur Atiqah; Lee, Chow-Yang

    2011-04-01

    The efficacy of Xterm, which contains 1% bistrifluron, in the form of cellulose bait pellets was evaluated for its efficacy in eradicating field colonies of the mound-building termite Globitermes sulphureus (Haviland) (Isoptera: Termitidae). The termite mounds were dissected at the end of the experiment to determine whether the colonies were eliminated. By approximately 2 mo postbaiting, the body of termite workers appeared marble white, and mites were present on the body. The soldier-worker ratio increased drastically in the colonies, and the wall surface of the mounds started to erode. Colony elimination required at least a 4-mo baiting period. Mound dissection revealed wet carton materials (food store) that were greatly consumed and overgrown by fast-growing fungi. Decaying cadavers were scattered all over the nests. On average, 84.1 +/- 16.4 g of bait matrix (68.9 +/- 13.4%, an equivalent of 841 +/- 164 mg of bistrifluron) was consumed in each colony. Moreover, we found that a mere 143 mg of bistrifluron was sufficient to eliminate a colony of C. sulphureus.

  4. Molecular characterization and phylogeny of four new species of the genus Trichonympha (Parabasalia, Trichonymphea) from lower termite hindguts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boscaro, Vittorio; James, Erick R; Fiorito, Rebecca; Hehenberger, Elisabeth; Karnkowska, Anna; Del Campo, Javier; Kolisko, Martin; Irwin, Nicholas A T; Mathur, Varsha; Scheffrahn, Rudolf H; Keeling, Patrick J

    2017-09-01

    Members of the genus Trichonympha are among the most well-known, recognizable and widely distributed parabasalian symbionts of lower termites and the wood-eating cockroach species of the genus Cryptocercus. Nevertheless, the species diversity of this genus is largely unknown. Molecular data have shown that the superficial morphological similarities traditionally used to identify species are inadequate, and have challenged the view that the same species of the genus Trichonympha can occur in many different host species. Ambiguities in the literature, uncertainty in identification of both symbiont and host, and incomplete samplings are limiting our understanding of the systematics, ecology and evolution of this taxon. Here we describe four closely related novel species of the genus Trichonympha collected from South American and Australian lower termites: Trichonympha hueyi sp. nov. from Rugitermes laticollis, Trichonympha deweyi sp. nov. from Glyptotermes brevicornis, Trichonympha louiei sp. nov. from Calcaritermes temnocephalus and Trichonympha webbyae sp. nov. from Rugitermes bicolor. We provide molecular barcodes to identify both the symbionts and their hosts, and infer the phylogeny of the genus Trichonympha based on small subunit rRNA gene sequences. The analysis confirms the considerable divergence of symbionts of members of the genus Cryptocercus, and shows that the two clades of the genus Trichonympha harboured by termites reflect only in part the phylogeny of their hosts.

  5. Termite enzymes and uses thereof for in vitro conversion of lignin-containing materials to fermentable products

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharf, Michael E; Boucias, Drion G; Tartar, Aurelien; Coy, Monique R; Zhou, Xuguo; Salem, Tamer Ibrahim Zaki; Jadhao, Sanjay B; Wheeler, Marsha M

    2013-05-21

    The disclosure provides isolated nucleic acid molecules derived from the gut of the termite R flavipes, recombinant nucleic acid molecules comprising a vector and an isolated heterologous nucleic acid molecule operably inserted therein, whereby, when transformed into an appropriate host cell system, the heterologous nucleic acid sequence is expressed as a polypeptide having an activity similar to that when expressed in the gut of the termite R. flavipes. The recombinant nucleic acid molecules can comprise more than one heterologous nucleic acid molecule such that more than one polypeptide may be expressed by the host system. The expressed polypeptides may be substantially purified, or used in a substantially unpurified form, to be admixed with a lignocellulose source to be converted to a fermentable product such as a sugar or a mixture of sugars. One aspect of the present disclosure, therefore, encompasses methods of converting a lignified plant material to a fermentable product, the method comprising obtaining a series of isolated polypeptides of a termite, wherein the series of polypeptides cooperate to convert a plant lignocellulose to a fermentable product; and incubating the series of polypeptides with a source of lignified plant material, under conditions allowing the polypeptides to cooperatively produce a fermentable product from the lignified plant material.

  6. Host-Symbiont Cospeciation of Termite-Gut Cellulolytic Protists of the Genera Teranympha and Eucomonympha and their Treponema Endosymbionts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noda, Satoko; Shimizu, Daichi; Yuki, Masahiro; Kitade, Osamu; Ohkuma, Moriya

    2018-03-29

    Cellulolytic flagellated protists inhabit the hindgut of termites. They are unique and essential to termites and related wood-feeding cockroaches, enabling host feeding on cellulosic matter. Protists of two genera in the family Teranymphidae (phylum Parabasalia), Eucomonympha and Teranympha, are phylogenetically closely related and harbor intracellular endosymbiotic bacteria from the genus Treponema. In order to obtain a clearer understanding of the evolutionary history of this triplex symbiotic relationship, the molecular phylogenies of the three symbiotic partners, the Teranymphidae protists, their Treponema endosymbionts, and their host termites, were inferred and compared. Strong congruence was observed in the tree topologies of all interacting partners, implying their cospeciating relationships. In contrast, the coevolutionary relationship between the Eucomonympha protists and their endosymbionts was more complex, and evidence of incongruence against cospeciating relationships suggested frequent host switches of the endosymbionts, possibly because multiple Eucomonympha species are present in the same gut community. Similarities in the 16S rRNA and gyrB gene sequences of the endosymbionts were higher among Teranympha spp. (>99.25% and >97.2%, respectively), whereas those between Teranympha and Eucomonympha were lower (<97.1% and <91.9%, respectively). In addition, the endosymbionts of Teranympha spp. formed a phylogenetic clade distinct from those of Eucomonympha spp. Therefore, the endosymbiont species of Teranympha spp., designated here as "Candidatus Treponema teratonymphae", needs to be classified as a species distinct from the endosymbiont species of Eucomonympha spp.

  7. Termite Communities in Sugarcane Plantations in Southeastern Brazil: an Ecological Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Termites are key components of soil fauna, playing an essential role in organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling. However, they can cause significant economic losses in commercial plantations, such as sugar cane. Therefore, the correct identification of termite species is critical for pest control. Here, we evaluated the species richness, abundance and functional groups of termites in sugarcane plantations in 53 cities throughout the state of São Paulo, southeastern Brazil. We also analyzed the influence of macroclimatic variables on termite species distribution and functional groups. We found 22 taxa of two families, of which the most frequent species were Termitidae (96.51%. Within this family, Apicotermitinae had the highest frequency of occurrence (37.12%, followed by Termitinae (30.57%, Syntermitinae (27.95%, and Nasutitermitinae (0.8 %. The other family, Rhinotermitidae, had the lowest frequency (3.5%, being represented only by Heterotermes sulcatus Mathews. We classified Neocapritermes opacus Hagen (29.26%, Apicotermitinae sp.2 (24.89%, Cornitermes cumulans Kollar (13.10%, and Apicotermitinae sp.1 (6.99% as common taxa. The remaining 18 species were classified as rare. The most common functional group was humus-feeders (37%, followed by wood-feeders (34%, grass-litter feeders (25%, and intermediate feeders (4%. Climate influenced the distribution of common species, humus-feeders and grass-litter feeders. Regarding the pest status of termites in sugar cane plantations, we suggest that the exasperated use of pesticide in the last decades has reduced the abundance of species considered pests (e.g. Heterotermes and reinforce the importance of ecological approaches for determining the best pest control methods. Comunidades de Cupins em Cultivos de Cana-de-Açúcar no Estado de São Paulo: Uma Abordagem Ecológica Resumo. Os cupins são importantes componentes da fauna de solo, atuando na decomposição da mat

  8. The distribution, abundance, and the effects of fire on mound building termites (Trinervitermes and Cubitermes spp., Isoptera: Termitidae) in northern guinea savanna West Africa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benzie, John A H

    1986-11-01

    Termite mound densities in typical guinea savanna, Detarium, and grassland (boval) habitats in northern guinea savanna were determined by random quadratting of 2-3 sites in each habitat (100, 10x10 m quadrats per habitat). Dominant species in guinea savanna were T. geminatus (46 mounds ha -1 ) and T. oeconomus (21 mounds ha -1 ), in Detarium T. geminatus (59 mounds ha -1 ) and C. curtatus (45 mounds ha -1 ) and in boval C. curtatus (72 mounds ha -1 ) and T. geminatus (22 mounds ha -1 ). Only C. curtatus densities and total densities differed significantly between sites within habitats, but all species differed significantly in abundance between habitats. The composition of each community was related to general environment but no particular environmental variable was shown to be a major determinant of termite distribution. Evidence for the limitation of termite populations was obtained from indirect evidence of competition between colonies in Detarium, and by experimental manipulation of fire regimes in the typical guinea savanna habitat. Harvester termites increased four-five fold over two years in fire-protected plots as a result of increased food supplies. Total termite densities in the fire-protected community equilibrated to the new population density (100 mounds ha -1 ) after only two-three years.

  9. Fumigant toxicity and acetylcholinesterase inhibitory activity of 4 Asteraceae plant essential oils and their constituents against Japanese termite (Reticulitermes speratus Kolbe).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Seon-Mi; Kim, Junheon; Kang, Jaesoon; Koh, Sang-Hyun; Ahn, Young-Joon; Kang, Kyu-Suk; Park, Il-Kwon

    2014-07-01

    This study investigated the fumigant toxicity of 4 Asteraceae plant essential oils and their constituents against the Japanese termite Reticulitermes speratus Kolbe. Fumigant toxicity varied with plant essential oils or constituents, exposure time, and concentration. Among the tested essential oils, those from Chamaemelum nobile exhibited the strongest fumigant toxicity, followed by those from Santolina chamaecyparissus, Ormenis multicaulis, and Eriocephalus punctulatus at 2 days after treatment. In all, 15, 24, 19, and 9 compounds were identified in the essential oils from C. nobile, E. punctulatus, O. multicaulis, and S. chamaecyparissus, respectively, by using gas chromatography, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, or open-column chromatography. The identified compounds were tested individually for their fumigant toxicity against Japanese termites. Among the test compounds, trans-pinocarveol, caryophyllene oxide, sabinene hydrate, and santolina alcohol showed strong fumigant toxicity against Japanese termites. Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibition activity of the identified compounds from C. nobile, E. punctulatus, O. multicaulis, and S. chamaecyparissus essential oils were tested to determine the mode of their action. The IC50 values of (+)-α-pinene, (-)-limonene, (-)-α-pinene, β-pinene, and β-phellandrene against Japanese termite AChE were 0.03, 0.13, 0.41, 0.42, and 0.67mg/mL, respectively. Further studies are warranted to determine the potential of these essential oils and their constituents as fumigants for termite control. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Digestive beta-glucosidases from the wood-feeding higher termite, Nasutitermes takasagoensis: intestinal distribution, molecular characterization, and alteration in sites of expression.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tokuda, Gaku; Miyagi, Mio; Makiya, Hiromi; Watanabe, Hirofumi; Arakawa, Gaku

    2009-12-01

    beta-Glucosidase [EC 3.2.1.21] hydrolyzes cellobiose or cello-oligosaccharides into glucose during cellulose digestion in termites. SDS-PAGE and zymogram analyses of the digestive system in the higher termite Nasutitermes takasagoensis revealed that beta-glucosidase activity is localized in the salivary glands and midgut as dimeric glycoproteins. Degenerate PCR using primers based on the N-terminal amino acid sequences of the salivary beta-glucosidase resulted in cDNA fragments of 1.7 kb, encoding 489 amino acids with a sequence similar to glycosyl hydrolase family 1. Moreover, these primers amplified cDNA fragments from the midgut, and the deduced amino acid sequences are 87-91% identical to those of the salivary beta-glucosidases. Successful expression of the cDNAs in Escherichia coli implies that these sequences also encode functional beta-glucosidases. These results indicate that beta-glucosidases that primarily contribute to the digestive process of N. takasagoensis are produced in the midgut. Reverse transcription-PCR analysis indicated the site-specific expression of beta-glucosidase mRNAs in the salivary glands and midgut. These results suggest that termites have developed the ability to produce beta-glucosidases in the midgut, as is the case for endo-beta-1,4-glucanase, in which the site of expression has shifted from the salivary glands of lower termites to the midgut of higher termites. Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Tracing the origin of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in subterranean estuaries using colored DOM and amino acids

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, T.; Kwon, E.; Kim, G.

    2011-12-01

    In order to determine the origin of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in the subterranean estuary (STE), the mixing zone of fresh terrestrial groundwater and recirculating seawater in a coastal permeable aquifer, we conducted water sampling from two STEs with different geological settings: (1) Jeju Island beaches (Hwasun and Samyang), which are composed of volcanic rocks and sandy sediments, and (2) Hampyeong beach, which is located in a large intertidal, sandy flat zone. The distributions of salinity, total hydrolysable amino acids (THAA), dissolved organic carbon (DOC), and colored DOM (CDOM) were measured for groundwater samples in these STEs. In the Hwasun STE, the humic-like peak decreases with increasing salinity, whereas the protein-like peak does not show a clear relationship with salinity. In contrast, in the Samyang STE, both humic-like peak and protein-like peak increase with increasing salinity. These contrasting results indicate that DOM in the Hwasun STE originates mainly from terrestrial inputs, while that in the Samyang STE originates mainly from biological and/or microbial activities. In the Hampyeong STE, we observed good correlations among the biodegradation index, alanine D/L ratios, THAA concentrations, DOC, and CDOM index (both humic-like and protein-like). Together with their geographical distribution patterns, these correlations indicate that DOM in the Hampyeong STE is mainly derived from marine sediments in the course of seawater recirculation. Our study shows that CDOM and amino acids are excellent tracers of DOM in the STE where DOM is derived from diverse sources.

  12. Transcriptome sequencing of the blind subterranean mole rat, Spalax galili: Utility and potential for the discovery of novel evolutionary patterns

    KAUST Repository

    Malik, Assaf

    2011-08-12

    The blind subterranean mole rat (Spalax ehrenbergi superspecies) is a model animal for survival under extreme environments due to its ability to live in underground habitats under severe hypoxic stress and darkness. Here we report the transcriptome sequencing of Spalax galili, a chromosomal type of S. ehrenbergi. cDNA pools from muscle and brain tissues isolated from animals exposed to hypoxic and normoxic conditions were sequenced using Sanger, GS FLX, and GS FLX Titanium technologies. Assembly of the sequences yielded over 51,000 isotigs with homology to ~12,000 mouse, rat or human genes. Based on these results, it was possible to detect large numbers of splice variants, SNPs, and novel transcribed regions. In addition, multiple differential expression patterns were detected between tissues and treatments. The results presented here will serve as a valuable resource for future studies aimed at identifying genes and gene regions evolved during the adaptive radiation associated with underground life of the blind mole rat. 2011 Malik et al.

  13. Elevated concentrations of dissolved Ba, Fe and Mn in a mangrove subterranean estuary: Consequence of sea level rise?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanders, Christian J.; Santos, Isaac R.; Barcellos, Renato; Silva Filho, Emmanoel V.

    2012-07-01

    Groundwater underlying a mangrove habitat was studied to determine the geochemical nature of Ba, Fe and Mn as related to dissolved organic carbon (DOC), SO4 and salinity (Sepetiba Bay, Brazil). Wells were placed across geobotanic facies and sampled monthly for a year. We observed non-conservative behavior and elevated concentrations of dissolved metals relative to local end-members (i.e., fresh river water and seawater). Average Ba concentrations were near 2000 nM in an area with low salinity (˜5.3). Dissolved Fe (up to 654 μM) was two orders of magnitude greater in fresh groundwater than in the seaward sampling stations. Manganese concentrations were greatest (112 μM) in the high salinity (˜65) zone, being directly influenced by salinity. Groundwater Ba, Fe and Mn showed differing site specific concentrations, likely related to ion exchange processes and redox-controlled cycling along distinct mangrove facies. The results of this work show that metal concentrations are altered relative to conservative mixing between terrestrial and marine endmembers, illustrating the importance of mangrove subterranean estuaries as biogeochemical reactors. Roughly-estimated submarine groundwater discharge-derived dissolved Ba, Fe and Mn fluxes were at least one order of magnitude greater than river-derived fluxes into Sepetiba Bay.

  14. Variation of some chemical and functional properties of Bambara groundnut (Voandzeia Subterranean L. Thouars during sort time storage

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Augustin GOUDOUM

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The storage susceptibility of Bambara groundnut (B. G. (Voandzeia Subterranean (L. Thouars to Callosobruchus maculatus and chemical and functional properties of 11 varieties form Far-North of Cameroon were investigate using standard analytical methods. Storage susceptibility shown that, after five months within treatment, C. maculatus destroy 10 to 50% of grains. The chemical characteristics of none attack grains of 11 varieties were range to 18.64 at 21.08%, 6.85 at 7.44%, 49.75 at 52.68% and to 6.05 at 7.55% respectively for protein, fat, starch and free carbohydrate. These chemical characteristics significantly (p < 0.05 decreases form attacks varieties. For the functional parameters, the none attacks grains was range of 130 at 135%, 19.15 at 20.91%, 18.20 at 21.13%, 2.76 at 3.21% and of 8.54 at 10.14% respectively for water capacity absorption, solubility index, gel length, ash and humidity. The results of this study indicated that storage susceptibility, chemical and functional properties of B. G. be dependant to the varieties.

  15. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi can decrease the uptake of uranium by subterranean clover grown at high levels of uranium in soil

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rufyikiri, Gervais; Huysmans, Lien; Wannijn, Jean; Hees, May van; Leyval, Corinne; Jakobsen, Iver

    2004-01-01

    Subterranean clover inoculated or not with the arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungus Glomus intraradices was grown on soil containing six levels of 238 U in the range 0-87 mg kg -1 . Increasing U concentration in soil enhanced the U concentration in roots and shoots of both mycorrhizal and nonmycorrhizal plants but had no significant effects on plant dry matter production or root AM colonization. Mycorrhizas increased the shoot dry matter and P concentration in roots and shoots, while in most cases, it decreased the Ca, Mg and K concentrations in plants. The AM fungus influenced U concentration in plants only in the treatment receiving 87 mg U kg -1 soil. In this case, U concentration in shoots of nonmycorrhizal plants was 1.7 times that of shoots of mycorrhizal plants. These results suggested that mycorrhizal fungi can limit U accumulation by plants exposed to high levels of U in soil. - Plant mycorrhization may decrease U concentration in shoots of plants grown at high level of U in soil

  16. Landscape genetics in the subterranean rodent Ctenomys "chasiquensis" associated with highly disturbed habitats from the southeastern Pampas region, Argentina.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mora, Matías Sebastián; Mapelli, Fernando J; López, Aldana; Gómez Fernández, María Jimena; Mirol, Patricia M; Kittlein, Marcelo J

    2017-12-01

    Studies of genetic differentiation in fragmented environments help us to identify those landscape features that most affect gene flow and dispersal patterns. Particularly, the assessment of the relative significance of intrinsic biological and environmental factors affecting the genetic structure of populations becomes crucial. In this work, we assess the current dispersal patterns and population structure of Ctenomys "chasiquensis", a vulnerable and endemic subterranean rodent distributed on a small area in Central Argentina, using 9 polymorphic microsatellite loci. We use landscape genetics approaches to assess the relationship between genetic connectivity among populations and environmental attributes. Our analyses show that populations of C. "chasiquensis" are moderately to highly structured at a regional level. This pattern is most likely the outcome of substantial gene flow on the more homogeneous sand dune habitat of the Northwest of its distributional range, in conjunction with an important degree of isolation of eastern and southwestern populations, where the optimal habitat is surrounded by a highly fragmented landscape. Landscape genetics analysis suggests that habitat quality and longitude were the environmental factors most strongly associated with genetic differentiation/uniqueness of populations. In conclusion, our results indicate an important genetic structure in this species, even at a small spatial scale, suggesting that contemporary habitat fragmentation increases population differentiation.

  17. Ação dos térmitas no solo Termites action on the soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eric Victor de Oliveira Ferreira

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available A ordem Isoptera é bastante conhecida pelo seu potencial como praga, apesar dos cupins-praga constituírem a minoria dentro do grupo. Os cupins (térmitas são invertebrados dominantes em ambientes terrestres tropicais e estão espalhados desde as florestas úmidas até as savanas, sendo encontrados até mesmo em regiões áridas, nos mais variados habitats. Esses insetos têm um papel destacado e ainda pouco estudado nos ecossistemas tropicais. Ciclagem de nutrientes, aeração, infiltração de água do solo, bioturbação, formação de agregados e decomposição de material orgânico, são processos influenciados pela ação dos térmitas, que vão, direta ou indiretamente, influenciar a formação dos solos e da paisagem onde se encontram. Sugerimos que uma maior abordagem deva ser dirigida em futuras pesquisas para a influência desses insetos no solo sob condições específicas de uso e manejo, na produção sustentável de alimentos e nas mudanças climáticas.The order Isoptera is well known by its potential as a plague, although the number of species that are plagues is small within the group. Termites are the dominant invertebrates in tropical terrestrial environments and are spread from tropical rainforests to the savannahs, being found even in arid regions, in various habitats. These insects have a major role and are still little studied in tropical ecosystems. Nutrient cycling, aeration, water infiltration of soil, bioturbation, aggregates formation and organic material decomposition, are processes influenced by the action of termites, which , directly or indirectly, affect soil and landscape formation wherever they are. We suggest that a better approach must be addressed in future researches about these insects influence in the soil under specified conditions of use and management, in sustainable food production and climate changes.

  18. Fluxes of CH4 and CO2 from soil and termite mounds in south Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso (West Africa)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brümmer, Christian; Papen, Hans; Wassmann, Reiner; Brüggemann, Nicolas

    2009-03-01

    The contribution of West African savanna ecosystems to global greenhouse gas budgets is highly uncertain. In this study we quantified soil-atmosphere CH4 and CO2 fluxes in the southwest of Burkina Faso from June to September 2005 and from April to September 2006 at four different agricultural fields planted with sorghum (n = 2), cotton, and peanut and at a natural savanna site with termite (Cubitermes fungifaber) mounds. During the rainy season both CH4 uptake and CH4 emission were observed in the savanna, which was on average a CH4 source of 2.79 and 2.28 kg CH4-C ha-1 a-1 in 2005 and 2006, respectively. The crop sites were an average CH4 sink of -0.67 and -0.70 kg CH4-C ha-1 a-1 in the 2 years, without significant seasonal variation. Mean annual soil respiration ranged between 3.86 and 5.82 t CO2-C ha-1 a-1 in the savanna and between 2.50 and 4.51 t CO2-C ha-1 a-1 at the crop sites. CH4 emission from termite mounds was 2 orders of magnitude higher than soil CH4 emissions, whereas termite CO2 emissions were of the same order of magnitude as soil CO2 emissions. Termite CH4 and CO2 release in the savanna contributed 8.8% and 0.4% to the total soil CH4 and CO2 emissions, respectively. At the crop sites, where termite mounds had been almost completely removed because of land use change, termite fluxes were insignificant. Mound density-based upscaling of termite CH4 fluxes resulted in a global termite CH4 source of 0.9 Tg a-1, which corresponds to 0.15% of the total global CH4 budget of 582 Tg a-1, hence significantly lower than those obtained previously by biomass-based calculations. This study emphasizes that land use change, which is of high relevance in this region, has particularly affected soil CH4 fluxes in the past and might still do so in the future.

  19. Termite hindguts and the ecology of microbial communities in the sequencing age.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tai, Vera; Keeling, Patrick J

    2013-01-01

    Advances in high-throughput nucleic acid sequencing have improved our understanding of microbial communities in a number of ways. Deeper sequence coverage provides the means to assess diversity at the resolution necessary to recover ecological and biogeographic patterns, and at the same time single-cell genomics provides detailed information about the interactions between members of a microbial community. Given the vastness and complexity of microbial ecosystems, such analyses remain challenging for most environments, so greater insight can also be drawn from analysing less dynamic ecosystems. Here, we outline the advantages of one such environment, the wood-digesting hindgut communities of termites and cockroaches, and how it is a model to examine and compare both protist and bacterial communities. Beyond the analysis of diversity, our understanding of protist community ecology will depend on using statistically sound sampling regimes at biologically relevant scales, transitioning from discovery-based to experimental ecology, incorporating single-cell microbiology and other data sources, and continued development of analytical tools. © 2013 The Author(s) Journal of Eukaryotic Microbiology © 2013 International Society of Protistologists.

  20. Isolated in an ocean of grass: low levels of gene flow between termite subpopulations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Anna M; Jacklyn, Peter; Korb, Judith

    2013-04-01

    Habitat fragmentation is one of the most important causes of biodiversity loss, but many species are distributed in naturally patchy habitats. Such species are often organized in highly dynamic metapopulations or in patchy populations with high gene flow between subpopulations. Yet, there are also species that exist in stable patchy habitats with small subpopulations and presumably low dispersal rates. Here, we present population genetic data for the 'magnetic' termite Amitermes meridionalis, which show that short distances between subpopulations do not hinder exceptionally strong genetic differentiation (FST : 0.339; RST : 0.636). Despite the strong genetic differentiation between subpopulations, we did not find evidence for genetic impoverishment. We propose that loss of genetic diversity might be counteracted by a long colony life with low colony turnover. Indeed, we found evidence for the inheritance of colonies by so-called 'replacement reproductives'. Inhabiting a mound for several generations might result in loss of gene diversity within a colony but maintenance of gene diversity at the subpopulation level. © 2013 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.