Anacanthotermes

These are harvester termites, and they are distributed in the arid zone of desert and steppe that extends from the Atlantic coast ofMorocco eastto themountainsofnortheasternAfghanistan. In natural habitats, the food of these termites is plant material, such as dry grass and straw from grain crops, debris from date palms, and animal dung. In urban habitats, they damage rural buildings constructed with mud bricks. They forage for the straw used in the bricks. Infestations also include the leaves and trunks of date palms used in building construction, and railroad ties. Workers forage at night for plant material that is deposited around the openings of nests; they also forage for buried animal droppings, and gnaw at plant material during the night. Nest sites may be mounds that are 20-30 cm high and 50 cm diameter at the base. Swarming occurs during the day following a period of rainfall. The major pest species include A. ochraceus in North Africa and the Arabian peninsula to the Persian Gulf; A. ubachi in southern Israel, Jordan,

Figure 10.1 Isoptera. (a) Amitermes sp.; (b) Coptotermes sp.; (c) Cryptotermes breuis; (d) Hodotermes sp.; (e) Incisitermes snyderi; (f) Kaloter-mes approximatus; (g) Marginitermes hubbardi; (h) Microcerotermes biori; (i) Nasutitermes sp.

and northern Iraq; A. vagans in southern Iraq and nearly all of Iran; and A. septentrionalis in northeastern Iran and Afghanistan. Species from Turkmenistan include A. turkestanicus and A. ahngerianus, which is a pest of pastures with dense grass cover.

Anacanthotermes ochraceus Nests may have external openings about i cm high made ofloose sand or conical mounds 20-30 cm high. The nestis composed of an irregular assembly of 15-20-cm-diameter chambers at different levels and joined by galleries. The nest is about 30 cm from the surface and it may extend 1.5 m below ground. Upper chambers in the nest are used for storing small pieces of plant material; the colony usually occupies the chambers at intermediate depths. Swarming flights occur in the afternoon (15:30-17:30 h) at 12-16 °C, from small exit holes attended by workers and nymphs. Alates fly about 100 m before landing to shed their wings and form pairs. Within 8 months, the colony may have 146-182 individuals.

occurs along the northwestern coast of North America, from British Columbia south to Baja California.

Zootermopsis laticeps Alates are about 22-24 mm long with the wings, and the abdomen and legs are yellowish brown. Wings are pale gray and with the costal area yellowish brown. The anterior corners of the pronotum are distinctly pointed. The antennae are longer than the head, with 23 or more segments in both alate and soldier. The soldier is 16-22 mm long, the abdomen and legs are yellowish brown, the head is brown, and the mandibles are blackish brown. The anterior margin of the pronotum is straight. Swarming occurs atnightand during June and July. Although flights usually occur during the rainy season, they may not be directly associated with rainfall. This species inhabits dead wood. It occurs in tree stumps and large logs in southwestern USA, including New Mexico and Arizona.

Zootermopsis nevadensis (Fig. 10.4c) Alates are about 20 mm long with the wings. The body color is dark brown to brownish black. The wings are 20 mm long or less, and dark gray. The body has short, fine setae, with a few on the head. Soldiers are 15-20 mm long, and the sides of the head are nearly parallel; the head is not narrowed in front. Swarming occurs at dusk and flights have been reported for January, July, August, and September. Winged adults are attracted to lights atnight. Alates fly around trees to land in a crack, loose bark, or a decayed site in a tree. Then they shed their wings and burrow into the wood. The wingless adults are very active and able to jump. Colonies may contain the founding pair and secondary reproductives. This species occurs along the northern Pacific coastal area into Monterey county, California; and inland into the mountainous regions of the Sierra Nevada, Idaho, Montana, and northern Nevada.

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