Fipronil is a widely used insecticide for termite control. Although transfer of fipronil among termite cohorts has been investigated in previous studies, no study has yet focused on the influence of termite group size (density) on horizontal transfer. In this study, the mortality of donor and recipient Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki (Isoptera: Rhinotermitidae) was compared among groups of 10, 25, and 50 workers. Most donor termites were dead within 20 h. There was a significantly higher mortality of recipient termites starting at 44 h when in bigger groups. LT50 and LT90 of recipient termites decreased with increase in group size, being significantly shorter in groups of 50 termites compared with groups of 10 termites. Moreover, the variance (within-group difference) of recipient mortality and lethal time estimations was lowest in the groups of 50 termites, indicating a more uniform horizontal transfer of fipronil by termites in bigger groups. Our findings suggest that group size has an influence on fipronil transfer among C. formosanus workers and should be considered as a variable of importance.
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