Articles | Volume 15, issue 12
Biogeosciences, 15, 3731–3742, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-15-3731-2018
Biogeosciences, 15, 3731–3742, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/bg-15-3731-2018

Technical note 20 Jun 2018

Technical note | 20 Jun 2018

Technical note: Rapid image-based field methods improve the quantification of termite mound structures and greenhouse-gas fluxes

Philipp A. Nauer et al.

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Cited articles

Abensperg-Traun, M. and Perry, D. H.: Distribution and characteristics of mound-building termites (Isoptera), J. R. Soc. West. Aust., 81, 191–200, 1998.
Backes, A. R., Eler, D. M., Minghim, R., and Bruno, O. M.: Characterizing 3D Shapes Using Fractal Dimension, in: Progress in Pattern Recognition, Image Analysis, Computer Vision, and Applications, edited by: Bloch, I. and Cesar, R. M., 14–21, Springer Berlin Heidelberg, Berlin Heidelberg, 2010.
Bauwens, S., Fayolle, A., Gourlet-Fleury, S., Ndjele, L. M., Mengal, C., and Lejeune, P.: Terrestrial photogrammetry: a non-destructive method for modelling irregularly shaped tropical tree trunks, Methods Ecol. Evol., 8, 460–471, https://doi.org/10.1111/2041-210X.12670, 2017.
Bristow, K. L. and Holt, J. A.: Can termites create local energy sinks to regulate mound temperature?, J. Therm. Biol., 12, 19–21, https://doi.org/10.1016/0306-4565(87)90018-0, 1987.
Brümmer, C., Papen, H., Wassmann, R., and Brüggemann, N.: Fluxes of CH4 and CO2 from soil and termite mounds in south Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso (West Africa), Global Biogeochem. Cy., 23, 1–13, https://doi.org/10.1029/2008GB003237, 2009.
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Short summary
Termites perform important biogeochemical processes in tropical ecosystems, but the complex structure of their mounds impede an accurate quantitative description. We present two novel low-cost field methods, based on photogrammetry and image analysis, to quantify the volume, surface area and porosities of termite mounds. The methods are accurate, rapid to apply and superior to traditional methods, and thus improve biogeochemical rate estimates such as greenhouse-gas fluxes from termite mounds.
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