Journal of Oil Palm Research Vol. 30 (4) December 2018, p. 559-569 ANDI SAPUTRA*; DZULHELMI MUHAMMAD NASIR*; NUR-ATIQAH JALALUDIN*; MADIHAH HALIM*; ASRAF BAKRI*; MOHAMMAD FARIS MOHAMMAD ESA*; IZFA RIZA HAZMI* and FASZLY RAHIM**
Published Online: 5 December 2018
Termites are perceived as decomposers and as pests in an ecosystem. A study on the species composition of termites in different soil types (i.e. clay, sand and peat) in oil palm plantations was conducted between 6 April 2015 and 10 December 2015 in nine selected localities in Johor (Malaysia) and Riau (Indonesia). Sampling of termites was conducted using belt transects of 100 m in length and 4 m in width in the oil palm plantation. A total of three replicates for each soil types were done from the nine transects for each location. A total of 41 species from five subfamilies (i.e. Coptotermitinae, Rhinotermitinae, Termitinae, Macrotermitinae and Nasutitemitinae) and two families (i.e. Rhinotermitidae and Termitidae) of termite species were successfully sampled and recorded. Sand soil (81 colonies: 12 species; four subfamilies; two families) recorded the highest colonies, followed by peat soil (62 colonies; 12 species; five subfamilies; two families), and clay soil (47 colonies consisting; nine species, four subfamilies and two families). There was a significant difference (χ2 = 618 886 df = 328, p<0.005) between soil types and termite species composition that were found in the oil palm plantation. This study identified that the diversity and abundance of termites differed between soil types in different oil palm plantations.KEYWORDS:
* Centre for Insect Systematics, School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia.
** Centre of PERMATA Insan, Islamic Science University of Malaysia, Complex PERMATA Insan, Bandar Bahru Nilai, 71800 Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia.