BBC Home Making: Termites

Termites build one of the most sophisticated homes in all animals and insects. Jeez, they have a better cooling system than i do or at least a more environment friendly one. hehe. Extra info on Termites : As eusocial insects, termites live in colonies that, at maturity, number from several hundred to several million individuals. They are a prime example of decentralised, self-organised systems using swarm intelligence and use this cooperation to exploit food sources and environments that could not be available to any single insect acting alone. A typical colony contains nymphs (semi-mature young), workers, soldiers, and reproductive individuals of both genders, sometimes containing several egg-laying queens. Termites has one of the most complex of house making techniques. It is called a Mound. In tropical savannas the mounds may be very large, with an extreme of 9 metres (30 ft) high in the case of large conical mounds constructed by some Macrotermes species in well-wooded areas in Africa. The sculptured mounds sometimes have elaborate and distinctive forms, such as those of the compass termite (Amitermes meridionalis & A. laurensis) which build tall wedge-shaped mounds with the long axis oriented approximately north-south. This orientation has been experimentally shown to help in thermoregulation. The column of hot air rising in the above ground mounds helps drive air circulation currents inside the subterranean network. The structure of these mounds can be quite complex

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