|Title||Subterranean termites and long-term productivity of desert rangelands|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||1991|
|Keywords||article, articles, decomposition, termites, hydrology, infiltration, termites, journal, journals, pesticide, Chlordane, rangeland,productivity,termites, termite, soil organic matter, termite,decomposition, termite,productivity, termites, infiltration|
Studies of soil properties, growth and species composition of vegetation, hydrology and patterns of organic matter removal were made on plots where termites had been eliminated and on plots with subterranean termites present. Subterranean termites affected all of the parameters measured. There was a negative correlation between termite abundance/activity and soil organic matter. Soils of termite free plots have lower infiltration and water storage but higher soil nitrogen. These soil properties have an effect on the species composition and productivity vegetation. The importance of subterranean termites as effectors of soil properties and vegetation suggests that these animals are key consumers in desert rangelands.