Comparative study of foraging behavior of coptotermes formosanus shiraki and coptotermes gestroi (wasmann) (blattodea : rhinotermitidae) on Oahu, Hawaiʻi

Hapukotuwa, Nirmala
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [December 2011]
The Formosan subterranean termite Coptotermes formosanus and the Asian subterranean termite Coptotermes gestroi are two important subterranean termite species in Hawaii. Coptotermes formosanus is the most devastating and widely distributed subterranean termite and C. gestroi has a very limited distribution on the Island of Oahu. There has been a limited number of comparative behavioral studies carried out on C. formosanus and C. gestroi. The main objectives of my studies were to quantitatively compare tunneling patterns of C. gestroi and C. formosanus using foraging arenas, to compare the tunneling networks of C. formosanus and C. gestroi in foraging arenas where food (wood) is presented as separated, clumped resources, mimicking field conditions in the subtropical and temperate regions where C. formosanus naturally occurs, to compare wood preferences of C. gestroi and C. formosanus using three types of woods used commercially in regions where both termite species occur and to determine resistance of six bamboo species grown in Hawaii to C. formosanus and C. gestroi. In addition I did two basic field surveys to observe environmental properties of two field sites of C. formosanus and C. gestroi in order to obtain a basic idea of their habitats and the very limited distribution of C. gestroi and to document any seasonal variation in C. formosanus and C. gestroi foraging activity by checking field traps every month.
M.S. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2011.
Includes bibliographical references.
Coptotermes formosanus
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