Comparison of the chemical composition of Trinervitermes geminatus (Wasmann) with that of its feed

AJAKAIYE, C.O. and BAWO, A.

ABSTRACT: Samples of Trinervitermes geminatus (Wasmann) and its feed material (grass) were
collected and analysed for percentage ash content, organic matter, biomolecules, macro- and micronutrients, using dry and wet ashing, Kjeldahl and Soxhlet extraction methods as appropriate.
The highest percentage of ash was recorded in the feed, but the highest mineral concentration occurred in the insects, particularly the workers. The mineral element
values, therefore, did not present a proportionality trend with reference to the ash content. The abundance of mineral elements in descending order in the feed was K, Ca, Mg, P, Fe, Zn whereas it was K, P, Ca, Mg, Fe, Zn, in the insects except in the reproductives, where phosphorus was the most abundant. Generally, zinc was more abundant in all insect castes than in the feed.
The feed showed the lowest concentrations of organic matter and the biomolecule lipids, with the highest values of these (organic matter and lipids) occurring in the minor .soldiers with those of the reproductives and major soldiers following in that sequence.
Crude protein was least in the feed and highest in the reproductives, workers and major soldiers in that order. Conversely, carbohydrate level was highest in the feed,
while the sequence in the insects was, minor soldiers, major soldiers, workers and reproductives.
Correlation coefficients between the metabolities in the feed (grasses) and in the different castes show that the strongest relationship occurred in the reproductives
While the weakest were in the workers.

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