Journal of
Entomology and Nematology

  • Abbreviation: J. Entomol. Nematol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2006-9855
  • DOI: 10.5897/JEN
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 135

Full Length Research Paper

Faunal survey of the termites of the genus Macrotermes (Isoptera: Termitidae) of Ethiopia

Daniel Getahun Debelo
  • Daniel Getahun Debelo
  • Department of Applied Biology, Adama Science and Technology University, P. O. Box 1888, Adama, Ethiopia.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Received: 28 August 2018
  •  Accepted: 22 October 2018
  •  Published: 31 October 2018


To date Macrotermes subhyalinus and Macrotermes herus are the only two species of termites of the genus Macrotermes recorded in Ethiopia. The description given to them in terms of distribution and their mound morphology is contrary to the literature and the species checklist is not exhaustive. This paper compares mound distribution and dimensions in Western, Central, and Southern Ethiopia and provides species checklist based on external mound morphology. Four termite hotspot districts were selected from each region as replicates and an area of 100 x 100 m was delineated. All mounds in the area were counted to determine their density. Five mounds were randomly selected and their dimensions measured. External morphology of mounds was studied to determine the species. There were significant differences (P < 0.05) in density and height among the mounds of the three regions in the order Southern > Central > Western. In Southern and western region, mound density was 16.7 ± 1.53 (mean ± standard error) and 5.3 ± 4.16, while mound height was 2.9 ± 1.69 and 0.3 ± 0.24 m, respectively. The checklist included seven species: M. herus from Western; M. subhyalinus, M. natalensis and M. herus from Central; M. michaelseni, M. jeanneli, M. natalensis, M. falciger, and Macrotermes SpA (an unidentified sp.) from Southern Ethiopia. Except M. subhyalinus and M. herus, the other species were recorded for the first time in Ethiopia to our knowledge.


Key words: Closed mounds, low mounds, Macrotermes termites, mound morphology, open chimney mounds.