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Titre du document / Document title

33 economically important termite species in India

Auteur(s) / Author(s)


Résumé / Abstract

In India termites are widely distributed in red, sandy loams, lateritic and red loam soils. They are known to damage major field crops such as wheat, maize, sugarcane, cotton, groundnut, pulses, and forest plantation trees such as Eucalyptus, Silver oak, Casuarina and all kinds of timber in buildings. Termites attack the roots of crops at all stages of plant development, seed sets, newly planted seedlings, tree trunks and also wooden logs. In natural ecosystems, termites feed an organic matter too. They are responsible for reducing soil fertility by removing both plant and animal debris and locking them in their underground nests thus making them unavailable for plant growth. They are also litter consumers in forest ecosystems and contribute to the break down of dead wood and decomposition of organic matter on the forest floor. Losses due to termites run to several millions of rupees in agricultural crops alone. About 10-25 per cent loss is estimated in most field and forest crops. Severe loss in different regions of India has been recorded on highly susceptible crops such as wheat and sugarcane in northern India, maize, groundnuts, sunflower and sugarcane in southern India, tea in north eastern India and cotton in western India. Out of 300 species of termites known so far from India, about 35 species have been reported as damaging agricultural crops and timber in buildings. The majority of the pest species are soil inhabiting, either as mound builders or as subterranean nest builders. The major mound building species are Odontotermes obesus, O. redemanni and O. wallonensis. The major subterranean species are Heterotermes indicola, Coptotermes ceylonicus, C. heimi, Odontotermes homi, Microtermes obesi, Trinervitermes biformis and Microcerotermes beesoni. Termite abundance, distribution, nesting, pest status etc., under Indian conditions is discussed.

Revue / Journal Title

Sociobiology    ISSN  0361-6525   CODEN SOCIDT 

Source / Source

2002, vol. 40, no1, pp. 33-46 [14 page(s) (article)]

Langue / Language


Editeur / Publisher

California State University, Chico, CA, ETATS-UNIS  (1975) (Revue)

Localisation / Location

INIST-CNRS, Cote INIST : 17377, 35400010801190.0050

Nº notice refdoc (ud4) : 13648715

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