Influence of different substrate moistures on wood consumption and movement patterns of Microcerotermes crassus and Coptotermes gestroi (Blattodea: Termitidae, Rhinotermitidae)

J Econ Entomol. 2010 Apr;103(2):437-42. doi: 10.1603/ec09259.


Moisture is an important physical factor for the survival of termites. The effects of different moisture levels (0, 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25%) of a sand substrate on the behavior of laboratory groups of Microcerotermes crassus Snyder and Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann) (Blattodea: Termitidae: Rhinotermitidae) were evaluated. Moisture content of sand affected wood consumption and influenced termite distribution across a moisture gradient for M. crassus. Changing the moisture parameters affected the location preference of C. gestroi, but the effect on wood consumption was not significant. Nonetheless, M. crassus and C. gestroi showed a similar distribution pattern of association with particular moisture levels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Feeding Behavior / physiology*
  • Isoptera / physiology*
  • Motor Activity / physiology*
  • Silicon Dioxide
  • Water*
  • Wood*


  • Water
  • Silicon Dioxide