I am interested in termites as pests and important decomposers in natural systems. Specifically, I am curious how subterranean termite colonies partition space while foraging and interact to maintain territories.
I am investigating inter- and intraspecific subterranean termite colony interactions. Specifically, my objectives include examining the process of how termite colonies detect nearby colonies, how they distinguish same from unique colonies, and their reactions to opposing colonies. This will include both field and laboratory studies to tease apart these interactions. This project will help to better understand the general biology of subterranean termites and also has the potential application to pest control by potentially manipulating these mechanisms of termite recognition and avoidance.