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Insects 2019, 10(2), 38;

Niche Differentiation between Two Sympatric Cubitermes Species (Isoptera, Termitidae, Cubitermitinae) Revealed by Stable C and N Isotopes

Département de Biologie des Organismes, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Lab. Écologie Végétale et Biogéochimie, 50 av. Roosevelt, cp 244, B-1050 Brussels, Belgium
Département des Sciences de la vie, Faculté des Sciences, Université de Bangui, Bangui BP 908, Central African Republic
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 December 2018 / Revised: 1 January 2019 / Accepted: 12 January 2019 / Published: 1 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ecology of Termites)
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Many African termite species are true soil-feeders: how can they coexist, sometimes with high densities? How do they separate their trophic niches? Preliminary results suggest that two coexisting Cubitermes species forage in different soil layers, and stable C and N isotopes show that they feed on different organic material. Cubitermes aff. ugandensis forages near the soil surface whereas C. aff. sankurensis forages in deeper layers; however, unexpectedly, the former shows a higher δ15N than the latter, highlighting, for the first time, a trophic niche differentiation between two sympatric true soil feeders bearing different enteric valve patterns. View Full-Text
Keywords: termite; humification; soil-feeding; trophic niche termite; humification; soil-feeding; trophic niche

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Josens, G.; Makatia Wango, S.P. Niche Differentiation between Two Sympatric Cubitermes Species (Isoptera, Termitidae, Cubitermitinae) Revealed by Stable C and N Isotopes. Insects 2019, 10, 38.

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