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Harmony of seasonal abundance of Psammotermes hybostoma Desneux population (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) with some ambient environmental biotic and abiotic factors


, : Harmony of seasonal abundance of Psammotermes hybostoma Desneux population (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) with some ambient environmental biotic and abiotic factors. Journal of the Egyptian German Society of Zoology uary; 52(E): 93-115

The present work attempts to reveal the homogenous relationship between seasonal fluctuation of the sand termite Psammotermes hybostoma and some surrounding biotic factors represented by associated arthropods specially insects, in addition to abiotic meteorological factors as surface temperature, soil temperature, relative humidity and wind velocity in Dandara temple region of Qena, Egypt, during the period from June 2002 till May 2003. Two main methods were used, namely pitfall and carton traps. The present results show the highest number of individuals of P. hybostoma in winter, being, the lowest in spring. Besides, twelve insect orders were found associated with the present termite species; of them, the hymenopterans were the most dominant and abundant insect group in both pitfall and carton traps specially in winter. Therefore, there was association of seasonal occurrence of P. hybostoma and seasonal activity patterns of the associated hymenopterous insects. This work proved the probability of a spatial association between the termite P. hybostoma and the hymenopteran Monomorium and Cataglyphis bicolor. These associations may be due to pheromone communication between each other leading to coexistence relationship. On the other hand, the statistical analysis of the results indicated the probability of positive significant effect of air-shadow temperature, relative humidity, wind velocity during autumn on the seasonal population fluctuation of P. hybostoma, while no significant effect was due to soil temperature. This result may be interpreted by the occurrence of the most active termite individuals (workers and soldiers) above surface in autumn being active in subsurface in autumn being active in subsurface in winter probably for food collection, storage and consumption.

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