Insectes Sociaux

, Volume 56, Issue 2, pp 111–118

Sexual communication in the termite Prorhinotermes simplex (Isoptera, Rhinotermitidae) mediated by a pheromone from female tergal glands

Authors

  • R. Hanus
    • Infochemicals Research TeamInstitute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, v.v.i.
  • A. Luxová
    • Infochemicals Research TeamInstitute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, v.v.i.
    • Infochemicals Research TeamInstitute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, v.v.i.
  • B. Kalinová
    • Infochemicals Research TeamInstitute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, v.v.i.
  • P. Jiroš
    • Infochemicals Research TeamInstitute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry, v.v.i.
  • J. Křeček
    • Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Fort Lauderdale Research and Education CenterUniversity of Florida
  • T. Bourguignon
    • Service d’Eco-éthologie EvolutiveUniversité Libre de Bruxelles
  • C. Bordereau
    • CNRS-UMR 5548, Communication chimique et Développement chez les InsectesUniversité de Bourgogne
Research Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00040-009-0005-5

Cite this article as:
Hanus, R., Luxová, A., Šobotník, J. et al. Insect. Soc. (2009) 56: 111. doi:10.1007/s00040-009-0005-5

Abstract

We studied the post-flight behavior and sex attraction in imagoes of the termite Prorhinotermes simplex (Rhinotermitidae, Prorhinotermitinae). Pairing is mediated by the secretion from tergal glands, exposed by females in a calling posture and highly attractive to males. Analysis of extracts of these glands by means of gas chromatography with electroantennographic detection indicated a chromatographic area corresponding to an intense physiological response of males. The retention characteristics of this area proved to be identical with those of (3Z,6Z,8E)-dodeca-3,6,8-trien-1-ol. Electroantennographic and behavioral assays revealed that units of picograms of the compound represent a stimulus qualitatively and quantitatively equivalent to one female tergal gland. Thus, we hypothesize that (3Z,6Z,8E)-dodeca-3,6,8-trien-1-ol is a major component of the female sex pheromone in P. simplex.

Keywords

Sex pheromoneProrhinotermesGC-EADTergal glandsDodecatrienol

Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel/Switzerland 2009