Pound for pound, the weight of all termites in the world is greater than that of all human-beings put together. Termites cannot digest their own food. Instead, within their gut they have colonies of microscopic bacteria and protozoa, and it is these tiny creatures that digest the wood and then excrete carbohydrate, which the termite is able to convert to its own energy. More than 100 species of bacteria and protozoa live in the gut of termites. Termites in the rainforest are the recyclers of matter. They help decompose fallen tree branches to quickly re-fertilize the forest floor. Without these little creatures there would be no Amazon.
Scripted and presented by Romina Castagnino
Produced by Leo Plunkett at Relevant Films (relevantfilms.co.uk) in association with Fauna Forever Volunteer Programs (faunaforever.org).
Music: Dexter Britain - Losing Love
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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 licence (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0)