Print version ISSN 0103-9016On-line version ISSN 1678-992X
ALMEIDA, José Eduardo Marcondes; ALVES, Sérgio Batista and WALDER, Júlio Marcos Melges. FORAGING AREA OF THE UNDERGROUND TERMITE Heterotermes tenuis (ISOPTERA; RHINOTERMITIDAE) IN SUGARCANE . Sci. agric. [online]. 1999, vol.56, n.2, pp.313-316. ISSN 0103-9016. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0103-90161999000200009.
The area of foraging of the termite species Heterotermes tenuis was evaluated using the Termitrap® bait marked with the radioisotope 32P. The experiment was conducted in an area with sugarcane, in Piracicaba,SP Brazil. Twenty infestion foci of H. tenuis were identified with baits. Each focus recieved baits labeled with 18.5 MBb (500 mCi) 32P in the form of sodium phosphate diluted in 15 ml of distilled water. Surrounding the marked baits were installed baits without marker in four points: North, South, East and West, halfway of 1, 5, 10 and 20 meters. Each treatment was represented previously by a focus settled and marked and one of the distances specified for the monitoring bait, being repeated of 4 to 6 times. After 15 days of the demarcation, the evaluation was proceeded by collecting 15 individuals of H. tenuis from each infested monitoring bait. These insects were transferred to glass flasks with distilled water, and analyzed in a liquid cintilador, by the test of Cerenkov. It was verified that in only 20% of the monitoring baits termites were collected and 11.3% were marked with the radioisotope, and that several colonies may by foraging in a same area. The foraging area for a colony of H. tenuis in sugarcane can vary from 3 to 1,250 m2.
Keywords : baits; Heterotermes tenuis; radioisotope; forraging .