Geographical Distribution of Subterranean Termites (Isoptera) in Economically Important Regions of Luzon, Philippines

Menandro N. Acda

Abstract


A belt transect survey was conducted to determine the geographical distribution of economically important subterranean termites in the island of Luzon, Philippines. Termite species Macrotermes gilvus Hagen, Nasutitermes spp., Microcerotermes losbanosensis Oshima and Coptotermes vastator Light (C. gestroi Wasmann) were found widely distributed in the National Capital Region (NCR), Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon (CALABARZON) and Central Luzon. Nasutitermes luzonicus and Microcerotermes losbanosensis were the most common species encountered in homes and wooden structures in both rural and urban environments. M. gilvus was the dominant species in the soil and open fields. Multiple colonies of species belonging to the genera Nasutitermes and Microcerotermes or Macrotermes were also observed to be tolerant of one another in the field with limited or no agonistic behavior toward one another. Effects of soil type, pH, elevation and habitat on subterranean termite distributions were discussed to help formulate effective control measures against these wood-boring structural pests.

Key Words: Coptotermes, geographical distribution, Macrotermes, Microcerotermes, Nasutitermes, subterranean termites

Abbreviations: GIS – Geographical Information System, GPS – Global Positioning System, UTM – Universal Transverse Mercaptor


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