Monday, June 6, 2016

A new termite: Uncitermes almeriae

Termites live in colonies and divide labor among castes, produce overlapping generations, and take care of their young collectively. Although this way of live is very similar to some species of hymenoptera, termites are at best distant cousins, closer related to roaches. There are more than 2,900 living termite species worldwide.

In Ecuador, researchers found a new species of a genus that so far had only one species.The new species was named in honour of Almeri Fernandes Sousa, the senior author's mother.

For the experts: The Neotropical termite genus Uncitermes Rocha & Cancello, 2012 was known from a single species, U. teevani (Emerson, 1925). In this paper a new species, Uncitermes almeriae sp. n., is described and illustrated from worker and soldier castes, along with observations on the Uncitermes nest. A distribution map with the occurrences of both species is presented. The new species is distinguished from its congener by the presence of short bristles covering the head capsule and frontal tube.

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