Overview of the Morphology of Neotropical Termite Workers: History and Practice


  • Mauricio M Rocha Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
  • Carolina Cuezzo Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3125-6335
  • Joice Paulo Constantini Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil http://orcid.org/0000-0002-1813-9276
  • Danilo Elias Oliveira Instituto de Estudos em Saúde e Biológicas, Universidade Federal do Sul e Sudeste do Pará, Marabá, PA, Brazil
  • Rafaella Gregório Santos Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil
  • Tiago Fernandes Carrijo Centro de Ciências Naturais e Humanas, Universidade Federal do ABC, São Bernardo do Campo, SP, Brazil
  • Eliana Marques Cancello Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil http://orcid.org/0000-0003-3125-6335




Key, worker, pseudergate, identification, Neotropics


This contribution deals with the worker caste of the Neotropical termite fauna. It is a compilation of present knowledge about the morphology of pseudergates and workers, including the literature discussing the origin and evolution of this caste, the terminology used in the different taxonomic groups, and the techniques used to study these individuals, especially examination of the gut, mandibles, legs, and nota. In order to assist in identifying workers, it includes a key for the families that occur in the Neotropical Region and a characterization of workers of all families, especially the subfamilies of Termitidae, with descriptions and illustrations of diagnostic morphological features of genera. We point out advances and gaps in knowledge, as well as directions for future research.


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Author Biography

Mauricio M Rocha, Museu de Zoologia da Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo, SP, Brazil



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How to Cite

Rocha, M. M., Cuezzo, C., Constantini, J. P., Oliveira, D. E., Santos, R. G., Carrijo, T. F., & Cancello, E. M. (2019). Overview of the Morphology of Neotropical Termite Workers: History and Practice. Sociobiology, 66(1), 1–32. https://doi.org/10.13102/sociobiology.v66i1.2067




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