Distance of the repellency of dead Reticulitermes flavipes (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) nestmates

Monday, March 3, 2014: 1:52 PM
Spartanburg (Embassy Suites Greenville Golf & Conference Center)
Thomas Shelton , Insects, Diseases, and Invasive Plants, USDA, Forest Service, Starkville, MS
Small arenas were constructed to test the distance at which the repellency of dead subterranean termite nestmates [Reticulitermes flavipes (Kollar)] could affect termite feeding on wooden blocks.  The study used groups of 20 dead nestmates placed 1 cm distant from the wood blocks (5, placed in a series) in the treatment, and no dead nestmates in the controls.  Data for each of 3 colonies were combined for analysis and the interaction of treatment*distance was a significant fixed effect.  On average, in control arenas termite feeding decreased with distance, while in treatment arenas termite feeding increased with distance.  These results indicate that while there is some feeding repellency associated with dead nestmates, this repellency has a short distance of influence.