Assessing efficacy of Termatrac (TM); a new microwave based technology for non-destructive detection of termites (Isoptera)

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27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Termites are difficult to detect reliably and many detection methods are destructive to property or disturbing to the termites (which may interfere with remedial treatment). The reliability of Termatrac(TM) a new device designed to detect termites in a nondestructive and nondisturbing manner, based on novel microwave technology, was tested in the field by assessing termite presence as indicated by the device in 119 aggregation stations. There were 90% correct assessments: 56.5% of aggregation stations were correctly assessed as having termites and 33.5% were correctly assessed as not having termites. The incorrect assessments were: 1.5% assessed as having termites when there were none (due to the presence of other insects) and 8.5% as not having termites when they were present (due to high moisture levels in aggregation stations, i.e. absorption of the microwaves). Ants could be distinguished from termites as they produced significantly different signals (as displayed on. the LCD screen) from termites. With appropriate training and experience in interpreting termite (vs. other insect) signals, Termatrac(TM) should increase termite detection with decreased effort and disturbance in many situations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-583
Number of pages9
JournalSociobiology
Volume40
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

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