HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Termites get the vibe on what tastes good

Researchers from CSIRO and UNSW@ADFA have shown that termites can tell what sort of material their food is made of, without having to actually touch it. The findings may lead to improvements in the control of feeding termites.

By offering them a choice between normal wooden blocks and specially designed blocks made of wood and other materials, the researchers found that the termites always preferred the blocks containing the most wood even though they could not touch or see the other materials.

The results are published in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface ("Termites live in a material world: exploration of their ability to differentiate between food sources" by Mr RA Inta, Professor JCS Lai, Mr EW Fu and Dr T Evans (doi: 10.1098/rsif.2007.0223)).

Mr Ra Inta, from UNSW@ADFA and CSIRO Entomology, says the ability to differentiate between food sources is based on the vibrations of the food that the termites are eating, although the exact mechanism for this ability is yet to be explored.

"Scientists have known for some time that termites are receptive to vibrations," Mr Inta says. "But these results demonstrate that termites' methods of food assessment are much more sophisticated that previously thought.

"When offered a choice between blocks of their normal wooden food, and specially engineered blocks made of wood and other materials, they could tell when there was another material attached and always chose the blocks that contained the most wood."

The researchers are designing further experiments to test termites' assessment methods in an attempt to determine precisely what aspect of the vibrations termites are responding to in assessing food.

"If we understand how they use vibrations to assess their food, we might be able to exploit this to manipulate their feeding habits, and address the very significant problem of termite damage in buildings and other structures," Mr Inta says.


'"/>

Contact: Ra Inta
ra.inta@csiro.au
61-262-464-351
CSIRO Australia
19-Mar-2007


Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Termites feed through good vibrations
2. How sweet it isnt -- preference for alternatives to sugar based on sour, bitter tastes
3. Success tastes sweet for scientists
4. Dream home: Malaria parasite renovates to suit its tastes

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Termites get the vibe what tastes good

(Date:10/14/2014)... is how to produce enough food to feed the ... Agriculture Organization of the United Nations predicts that food ... to feed a growing global population, and plants are ... production. Plants—grains, cereals, fruits, vegetables, and more—feed humans ... must tap into our knowledge of how plants work ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... Montreal, October 14, 2014 – High doses of fish oil ... fibrillation, a common type of irregular heartbeat in which the ... The results of the AFFORD trial led by the Montreal ... American College of Cardiology on October 7th. , For ... antiarrhythmic therapy were randomly assigned to 4 grams of fish ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... – A team of scientists led by researchers ... and the University of Miami Miller School of ... key genetic pathway underlying bipolar (manic depressive) disorder, ... for treating bipolar affective disorder, as well as ... new findings, published online this week in Nature ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Building a bridge from basic botany to applied agriculture 2Building a bridge from basic botany to applied agriculture 3Rare genetic disease protects against bipolar disorder 2Rare genetic disease protects against bipolar disorder 3
(Date:10/22/2014)... 2014 The Americas Inorganic Refrigerants ... market in Americas with analysis and forecast of ... Americas Inorganic Refrigerants Market report, to get an ... provides a glimpse of the segmentation in the ... various tables and figures. , http://www.micromarketmonitor.com/market/americas-inorganic-refrigerants-4191654241.html ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... Arlington, Massachusetts (PRWEB) October 22, 2014 ... recently announced the release of a new infographic, ... was to create a beautifully designed, easy to follow ... Ebola's transmission, areas of outbreak, symptoms and prevention. , ... have discovered that the 2014 Ebola outbreak represents not ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... October 22, 2014 Grace Century, a ... healthcare projects, announces the addition of Dr. Yousef ... its advisory team. Dr. Siddiqui will provide further healthcare ... A graduate of University College Medical School ... in medicine in 2001. With further certification as a ...
(Date:10/22/2014)... Oct. 22, 2014   Synthetic Biologics, Inc. ... therapies for serious infections and diseases, announced today that ... Notice of Allowance for a composition of matter patent ... difficile program, SYN-004. This is Synthetic Biologics, first ... U.S. and adds to the Company,s extensive C. ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The Americas Inorganic Refrigerants Market is estimated to grow to $71.6 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Americas Inorganic Refrigerants Market is estimated to grow to $71.6 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3Involution Studios' Ebola Infographic Provides Key Disease Information and Statistics at a Glance 2Dr. Yousef Siddiqui joins the Grace Century Advisory Team 2Synthetic Biologics Announces Allowance of Key U.S. Composition of Matter Patent for C. difficile Program 2Synthetic Biologics Announces Allowance of Key U.S. Composition of Matter Patent for C. difficile Program 3Synthetic Biologics Announces Allowance of Key U.S. Composition of Matter Patent for C. difficile Program 4
Cached News: