This article is in process.
- Phylum Arthropoda; invertebrates with exoskeletons, a segmented bodies, and jointed appendages; from the combination of the Greek words ἄρθρον, “AHR-thron” = joint, and ποδός “poh-DOSE” = foot, thus the phylum name is intended to embrace (invertebrate) animals with jointed feet.
- Class Insecta; from the Latin root insectum, with origins in the Greek word ἔντομον “INN-toh-mohn” = to cut into sections, a reference to the division of the insect body into three distinct parts; insects are arthropods with chitinous exoskeletons divided into a distinct head, thorax, and abdomen; these arthropods are also distinguished by the possession of three pairs of jointed legs (and are thus referred to as hexapods), compound eyes, and two antennae.
- Order Isoptera; from the Greek words ισος “EYE-sos” = equal + πτερον “TARE-on” = wing, thus a reference to insects with equal wings, and more specifically to termites, which — in winged alate reproductives — exhibit two pairs of wings, each approximately (though not exactly) the same length. Note: it is now widely accepted within the scientific community that termites do not comprise a separate order of insects (the Isoptera), but are more properly placed under the order Blattodea, previously embracing only the cockroaches, where they form the epifamily Termitoidae. Similar upheavals are taking place throughout zoology, as genomic analyses resolve new linkages and disprove old ones.
- Family Rhinotermitidae — Froggatt, 1897. First described by the Australian economic entomologist Walter Wilson Froggatt (13 June 1858 – 18 March 1937), who combined the Greek word ρινος “RYE-nos” = skin or hide + the Latin word termes = a wood-worm (but see the note under Reticulitermes, below), to refer to a wood-destructive organism whose colonies reside within a tough outer skin-like structure of their own making.
- Genus Reticulitermes — Holmgren, 1913. First described by the Swedish Entomologist Nils Holmgren (1877-1954) in 1913. He combined two Latin words, reticulum = a small net (evidently a reference to the net-like appearance of the wings exhibited by alate reproductives) + termes (a Latin word which refers to the end of life, or goal, which according to Victor Wolfgang von Hagen [Maeterlinck, 1939] was applied first by Linnaeus, who confused the termite with the deathwatch beetle, then afterward by others who propagated that error) = a wood-worm, to form the generic name Reticulitermes.
- Species: Six phenotypes have been identified from some 21 phylogenetic species and subspecies on three continents, five of which represent, in North America, tbe major cause of termite damage (Austin, et al., 2002). One of these, Reticulitermes flavipes, known as the eastern subterranean termite, is the most common of the five most destructive termite species found in North America (ibid).
Anatomy: in process
Behavior: in process
Common Names: in process
Distinguishing Characteristics: in process
Distribution: in process
Physiology: in process
Mythology: in process
Similar Families: in process
- Austin, James W., et al. 2002. A Comparative Genetic Analysis of the Subterranean Termite Genus Reticulitermes (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae). Ann. Entomol. Soc. Am. 95(6): 753-760.
- Austin, James W., et al. 2004. Mitochondrial DNA Vaariation and Distribution of the Subterranean Termite Genus Reticulitermes (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) in Arkansas and Louisiana. Florida Entomologist 87(4).
- Cho, Moon-Jung, et al. 2010. Symbiotic adaptation of bacteria in the gut of Reticulitermes speratus: Low endo-b-1,4-glucanase activity. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 395 (2010) 432–435.
- Cleveland, L. R. 1923. Symbiosis Between Termites; and their Intestinal Protozoa. Dept. Med. Zoology, Johns Hopkins University.
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- Lenz, Michael. 2005. Biological Control in Termite Management: The Potential of Nematodes and Fungal Pathogens. Proceedings, Fifth International Conference on Urban Pests.
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- Maeterlinck, Maurice. 1939. The Life of the White Ant. Dodd, Mead & Company, New York.
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