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Tag: environmental entomology

Closeup overhead view of a soldier Asian subterranean termite on a light gray background. Termite body is slightly tear-drop shaped and light yellowish brown in color. Its head is nearly as large as its body, also tear-drop shaped but darker honey brown in color with two long reddish brown mouthparts extending forward from its face.

Nitro-Nosh: Why Termites’ Molted Exoskeletons Never Go to Waste

Termites' wood-heavy diet offers little nitrogen, a critical nutrient for growth and reproduction. But their exoskeletons are nitrogen rich, and new research shows that eating shed exoskeletons after molting is a core strategy for recycling nitrogen throughout the termite colony and boosting the queen's egg-laying.

closeup view of two white wasp larvae in an opened tube nest; one larva is curled and feeding on the other larva

Why Larvae of One Wasp Species Often Eat Their Siblings

Sibling rivalry takes a grim turn in the parasitoid wasp species Isodontia harmandi, as larvae commonly cannibalize their nest mates. A new study suggests the stronger larvae eat their siblings both to grab an easy meal and to reduce competition for the food provided by their mother.