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Monday, October 19, 2009


Odontotermes is one of the more commonly found fungus growing termite species in this location. It is even more common than Macrotermes gilvus. There are several species in this genus. Some documentations have this number at fifty four but others have it at a far larger number. Many species of Odontotermes are characterize by a an unpleasant odor.

The first species here is one of the most common of this genus. The soldier is almost as long as the major soldier of Macrotermes gilvus which is another common fungus growing termite found throughout this location.

The soldier at 8mm long compared with the common Macrotermes gilvus species at 9 mm but it is not as broad. The workers at 5mm too is almost as large as that of M. gilvus (5.5mm). This first species recorded here is what I reference as 'type 1' which is typify by a head that is quite rectangular in shape with minimal or no tapering from the back (at the neck) to the front (where the mandibles start).

Odontotermes sp4 is a small species that without close observation might be easily mistaken for Microtermes pakistanicus as they are the approximate same size (both soldiers and workers). This species typically build the fungus chambers of any raised mound of  earth that is fairly compact. This chambers are distributed over a fairly wide area of a few square meters. This species is of 'type 2' head shape.
This species is quite small at 4 mm but the alates are about the same size as the common Odontotermes species.


A delated reproductive.

Odontotermes sp2 looks similar to the first species recorded in this post page (of 'type 1' head shape) but is slightly smaller (and shorter), the soldiers measuring at 6 millimeters. 
The soldier of this species measure at 6mm.

Odontotermes sp3 is a second 'type' of the Odontotermes genus with a shorter (thus broader and also slightly less rectangular) head.

To the untrain eye this might appear to be M. gilvus.  

This is one the largest Odontotermes species in this location and belongs (from appearance) to the second Odontotermes type of the shorter and less rectangular head expression. In 'type 2' the shape of the head is usually relatively shorter in overall proportion with little or some slight tapering (narrowing anteriorly) from the back towards the front.

This small 6 millimeters (length of soldiers) Odontotermes species has a more tear shape head (the soldiers) than the typical Odontotermes species. This species (sp6 collected by me) is of 'type 3' head shape. This species has the most tapering of all the three head type. It also has the most tapering (narrowing anteriorly) of those species with 'type 3' head shape with the front of the head ending almost at point where the mandibles protrude from the head.

Here we see two sample of Odontotermes termites fungus comb. The fungus of sp4 is one of the most developed among Odontotermes and that of sp9 one of those that are least developed.

The fungus comb of an Odontotermes species (sp4).

[New] Fungus comb of Odontotermes termite (sp9). 
Fungus comb of Odontotermes termite

See also:

Domain: Eukaryota
Subkingdom: Bilateria
Branch: Protostomia
Superphylum: Panarthropoda
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Mandibulata
Epiclass: Hexapoda
Class: Insecta
Subclass: Dicondylia
Infraclass: Pterygota
Infraclass: Neoptera
Superorder: Dictyoptera
Order: Isoptera
Family: Termitidae
SubFamily: Macrotermitinae
Genus: Odontotermes

Species List:
001. adampurensis
002. agilis
003. akengeensis
004. amanicus
005. anamallensis
006. anceps
007. angustatus
008. angustignathus
009. angustipennis
010. annulicornis
011. apollo
012. aquaticus
013. assmuthi
014. aurora
015. badius
016. bellahunisensis
017. bequaerti
018. bhagwatii
019. billitoni
020. boetonensis
021. bomaensis
022. boranicus
023. borgoriensis
024. bottegoanus
025. boveni
026. brunneus
027. buchholzi
028. butteli
029. caffrariae
030. capensis
031. celebensis
032. ceylonicus
033. classicus
034. conignathus
035. culturarum
036. denticulatus
037. diana
038. dimorphus
039. distans
040. dives
041. djampeensis
042. domesticus
043. ebeni
044. egregius
045. elgonensis
046. erodens
047. escherichi
048. fallax
049. feae
050. feaeoides
051. fidens
052. flammifrons
053. fockianus
054. fontanellus
055. formosanus
056. foveafrons
057. fulleri
058. fuyangensis
059. ganpati
060. garambae
061. giriensis
062. globicola
063. grandiceps
064. grassei
065. gravelyi
066. guptai
067. gurdaspurensis
068. hageni
069. hainanensis
070. holmgreni
071. horai
072. horni
073. incisus
074. indicus
075. indrapurensis
076. interveniens
077. iratus
078. javanicus
079. kapuri
080. karawajevi
081. karnyi
082. kibarensis
083. koenigi
084. kulkarnii
085. lacustris
086. latericius
087. latialatus
088. latigula
089. latiguloides
090. latissimus
091. lautus
092. lobintactus
093. longignathus
094. longigula
095. longzhouensis
096. luoyangensis
097. maesodensis
098. magadalenae
099. makassarensis
100. malaccensis
101. maladictus
102. malelaensis
103. maliki
104. mathuri
105. maximus
106. mediocris
107. meridionalis
108. microdentatus
109. microps
110. minutus
111. mirganjensis
112. mohandi
113. monodon
114. montanus
115. mukimbunginis
116. neodenticulatus
117. nilensis
118. nolaensis
119. obesus
120. oblongatus
121. okahandjae
122. ostentans
123. palmquisti
124. paradenticulatus
125. paralatigula
126. parallelus
127. paraoblongatus
128. parvidens
129. patruus
130. pauperans
131. peshawarensis
132. planiceps
133. praevalens
134. preliminaris
135. pretoriensis
136. prodives
137. profeae
138. proformosanus
139. prolatigula
140. proximus
141. pujiangensis
142. pyriceps
143. qianyangensis
144. ramulosus
145. rectanguloides
146. redemanni
147. rehobothensis
148. robustus
149. rothschildianus
150. salebrifrons
151. sarawakensis
152. schmitzi
153. scrutor
154. sellathorax
155. shanglinensis
156. sikkimensis
157. silamensis
158. silvaticus
159. silvestrii
160. silvicolus
161. simalurensis
162. simplicidens
163. sinabangensis
164. singsiti
165. sjostedti
166. smeathmani
167. snyderi
168. somaliensis
169. stanleyvillensis
170. stercorivorus
171. sudanensis
172. sundaicus
173. takensis
174. tanganicus
175. taprobanes
176. terricola
177. tragardhi
178. transvaalensis
179. vaishno
180. vulgaris
181. wallonensis
182. wuzhishanensis
183. yadevi
184. yaoi
185. yarangensis
186. yunnanensis
187. zambesiensis
188. zulunatalensis
189. zunyiensis

Last Updated: 2012 05 18
First Posted: 2009 10 19
© 2009 - 2012 Quah. All rights reserved.


  1. okay this is insightful, so is there any difference in the type of termitaria built by these various species

    1. Some may find this interesting, others informative but insightful?

      Anyway about difference in type of termitaria, look out for a future post (still under development), General Information On Termites which discusses the relationship between morphology, habitat, defensive strategies and diet types.

  2. Hello Quah! I have caught 5 alates of Macrotermitinae termites, but I don't know what species. I also do not know if I have a pair. Can you tell me how I can tell if I have a male-female pair? All five have dealated and hang out together in their new setup. They are just preening one another. Your help is appreciated.

    1. Normally placed in any area (or container with room for them to run around) they will form tandem pairing with one or two males following after a female.
      But placing all in a container with enough soil for them to dig into to start a nest they might all nest together. That is ok except that after the nest produced workers, in many cases only one reproductive is retained.


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