Survey of Termites along Sagbama-Ekeremor Axis of Bayelsa State, Southern Nigeria

Richard Uzakah, and Timothy Epidi

Accepted on: March 11, 2023



Termites perform beneficial roles in ecosystems as good scavengers and decomposers; helping with recycling of nutrients, soil fertility improvements etc., However, their notoriety around the globe for destruction of wooden products of homes and buildings, household furniture and fabrics, trees and crops amongst others, overshadow and far surpasses all their positive attributes. This survey, is the first of its kind in this Sagbama-Ekeremor axis of Bayelsa State, in the Niger Delta terrain of Nigeria; and it was aimed at identifying the different genera, their distribution and prevalence; a fundamental requirement for their effective control. The results revealed six main termite genera as being the most abundant and widespread in this study area, namely Globitermes Holmgren, Dicuspiditermes Krishna, Mirocapritermes Holgren, Macrotermes Holmgren, Nasutitermes Dudley and Hypotermes Holmgren; their relative abundance and prevalence ranking being 74%, 11.8%, 5.9%, 2.9%, 2.9% and 2.9% respectively. The first four are subterranean termites, while the last two are arboreal. The Simpson’s diversity index of the termites in this terrain was 0.44; inferring a somewhat moderate abundance and distribution. The wanton destruction of termite structures and abodes, as a result of land clearing and bush burning for farming activities and increasing infrastructural developments are accountable for this finding. Termite genera seemed to have characteristic mounds and nests, but the actual relationship between them have yet to be fully established. This survey would be a useful baseline information for future works, and shall also serve as a vital guide when planning strategic options for effective termite control/management in Bayelsa State, and for the Niger Delta as a whole.

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