Internal Armature of the Hindgut of Pericapritermes nitobei (Shiraki)


  • Natsumi Kanzaki Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute
  • Wakako Ohmura Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute



enteric valve, diagnosis, morphology, soil-feeding termite


The internal armature of the hindgut of Pericapritermes nitobei was examined under a light microscope. Termites were obtained from Iriomote Island, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan, identified based on the typological characters of soldiers and 12S (mitochondrial) ribosomal RNA sequencing, and dissected to examine hindgut morphology. The hindgut of P. nitobei could be separated into four parts, P1-P4, and P1-P3 had cuticular spines on the inner surface. P1 bore small triangular spines. P2 formed an enteric valve, composed of six finger-shaped enteric pads with triangular spines, and six marginal regions with small dot-like spines. P3 bore three different types of spines: relatively large star-shaped spines; thorn-like small spines, and long curved spines with brush-like tips.  


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Natsumi Kanzaki, Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute

Senior Researcher in the Department of Forest Microbiology



Bourguignon, T., Leponce, M. & Roisin, Y. (2008). Revision of the Termitinae with snapping soldiers (Isoptera: Termitidae). Zootaxa, 1769: 1-34.

Bignell, D.E., Oskarsson, H. & Anderson, J.M. (1980). Specialization of the hindgut wall for the attachment of symbiotic microorganisms in a termite Procubitermes aburiensis (Isoptera, Termitidae, Termitinae). Zoomorphologie, 96: 103-112.

Bignell, D.E., Oskarsson, H., Anderson, J.M., Ineson, P. & Wood, T.G. (1983). Structure, microbial associations and functions of the so-called “mixed segment” of the gut in tow soil feeding termites Procubitermes aburiensis Sjöstedt and Cubitrmes severus Silvestri (Termitidae, Termitinas). J. Zool., 201: 445-480.

Donovan, S.E. (2002). A morphological study of the enteric valves of the Afrotropical Apicotermitinae (Isoptera: Termitidae). J. Nat. Hist., 36: 1823-1840.

Fontes, L.R. (1992). Key to the genera of new world Apicotermitinae (Isoptera: Termitidae). In D. Quintero & A. Aiello (Eds.), Insects of Panama and Mesoamerica. Selected Studies (pp. 242-248). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Grassé, P-.P. & Noirot, C. (1954) Apicotermes arquieri n. sp.: ses constructions et sa biologie. Considérations sur la sousfamille des Apicotermitinae. Ann. Sci. Nat., Zool., 16: 345-388.

Ikehara, S. (1957). The termite fauna of the Ryukyu Islands and its economic significance (I). Bull. Arts Sci. Division, Univ. Ryukyus Math. & Nat. Sci., 1: 44-61.

Inward, D.J., Vogler, A.P. & Eggleton, P. (2007). A comprehensive phylogenetic analysis of termites (Isoptera) illuminates key aspects of their evolutionary biology. Mol. Phylogenet. Evol., 44: 953-967. (

Noirot, C. (2001). The gut of termites (Isoptera). Comparative anatomy, systematics, phylogeny. II. Higher termites (Termitidae). Ann. Soc. Entomol. France, 37: 431-471.

Noirot, C. & Noirot-Timothée, C. (1969). The digestive system. Chapter 3. In K. Krishna & F. M. Weesner (Eds.), Biology of termites, Vol. 1 (pp. 49-88). New York: Academic Press.

Sands, W.A. (1972). The soldierless termites of Africa (Isoptera: Termitidae. Bull. British Museum (Natural History) Entomol., 18: 1-244.

Sands, W.A. (1998). The identification of worker castes of termite genera from soils of Africa and the Middle East. Wallingford: CAB International, 512 pp.

Scheffrahn, R.H. (2013). Compositermes vindai (Isoptera: Termitidae: Apicotermitinae), a new genus and species of soldierless termite from the Neotropics. Zootaxa, 3652: 381-391. (

Takematsu, Y. (1994). First record of Sinocapritermes mushae (Oshima and Maki) (Isoptera, Termitidae, Termitinae) from Japan, with redescription of soldier and worker castes. Jpn. J. Entomol., 62: 709-712. (available online at

Yasuda, I., Nakasone, Y., Kinjo, K. and Yaga, S. (2000). Morphology and distribution of termites in Ryukyu Islands and North and South Daito Islands. Jpn. J. Entomol. (N. S.), 3: 139-156. (available online at




How to Cite

Kanzaki, N., & Ohmura, W. (2016). Internal Armature of the Hindgut of Pericapritermes nitobei (Shiraki). Sociobiology, 63(2), 841–844.



Research Article - Termites