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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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2010 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
1. Develop and test educational tools, including curricula, equipment and materials to establish sustainable extension and education programs promoting termite management in communities throughout Hawaii. 2. Develop tools and assessment methods for use in educational programs supporting area-wide termite management research in Louisiana and Mississippi. 3. Test assessment methods for evaluating impact of educational programs in Hawaii and the southern USA on community-wide termite management. 4. Establish field sites and laboratory procedures for comparative evaluation of biology, behavior, and management of Coptotermes gestroi (Asian Subterranean Termite) and Coptotermes formosanus (Formosan Subterranean Termite) in Hawaii; and detection of new invasive termite species.

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Objective 1: Refine curriculum and instructional tools and methods addressing termite management that have been implemented in 191 classrooms in Hawaii. Emphasis will be on (a) recruitment and establishment of additional sustainable classrooms; (b) defining characteristics of such teachers and classrooms to permit use of this approach in other termite-threatened regions; and (c) assessment of student outcomes and influence on parental/community awareness of termite management options and implementation. Objective 2: Develop a generalized curriculum, and implementation and assessment techniques from experience in Hawaii to support community-wide termite management trials in Louisiana and Mississippi. Objective 3: Develop a method of using light traps or other termite sampling techniques to monitor reductions in termite populations following implementation of educational programs, and improved survey tools for assessing changes in implementation and/or efficacy of control measures by homeowners and the pest control industry, as a result of program implementation. We will collaborate with educational specialists and economists, as necessary to develop and test assessment techniques. Objective 4: Coptotermes gestroi has been identified by ARS researchers and University cooperators as the principle new invasive termite species threatening Hawaii and the continental USA. We will establish a field site for collection and research on C. gestroi in Hawaii and perform systematic surveys of termite occurrence in Hawaii, in order to locate and identify new termite introductions and monitor the spread of invasive termites.

3. Progress Report
During the 2009-2010 reporting year, a termite management curriculum was presented in public school classrooms on Oahu, Maui, and Hawaii islands, with an emphasis on sustainability; 95% of the curriculum is delivered by teachers without direct assistance. A survey was developed, with assistance from the University of Hawaii College of Education, to identify sustainable educational practices. A field site was identified for research on the newly invasive Asian subterranean termite (Coptotermes gestroi), and the Asian and Formosan subterranean termites were found to have different tunneling patterns. Neither the Asian nor the Formosan subterranean termite were able to exclude the other species from available wood, but the Asian termite generally suffered greater mortality when the two species encountered each other. Identifying differences and similarities between these two species is essential to fine-tuning termite control efforts in Hawaii. Progress in this project is monitored through Annual FST Technical Committee Meetings, reports, regular meetings with cooperators, routine phone calls, and e-mail correspondence.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 06/25/2017
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