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Intraspecific antagonism in Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt) (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae)

  • C. D Howick (a1) and J. W Creffield (a1)

Abstract

Coptotermes acinaciformis (Frogg.) was collected from three different mound colonies and placed in holding jars in a matrix of mound material from an alien colony. After transportation and maintenance in a controlled insectary for 28 days, they were separated from the holding jars and pooled according to colony origin. They were then used in mixed groups of various combinations in a bioassay test of their feeding capacity and survival. Termites from a fourth colony were used to determine whether pooling of individuals originating from the same colony but maintained in different holding jars had any effect on their feeding and survival in the laboratory. It was shown that, although termites from the same original colony can be re-united without detriment after transportation and maintenance, those from different colonies cannot be mixed to form reproducible bioassay groups. Although chilling before mixing produced a slight improvement, the resulting groups were still unsuitable for use in bioassays. It is noteworthy that when brought together after maintenance in the holding jars under identical conditions in an identical matrix, the termites were able to recognise and accept fellows from their own colony and to detect and reject those from other sources.

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Intraspecific antagonism in Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt) (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae)

  • C. D Howick (a1) and J. W Creffield (a1)

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