Magnetic Termite Mounds - Litchfield NP - NT

  Point of Interest

Position

DEG: -13.102063 130.844025
DMS: 13º 06' 7.43" S 130º 50' 38.49" E
UTM: 52 L 8550848mN 699918mE
Altitude: 63.31m

Description

Address & Contact

Litchfield National Park
Northern Territory 0822
Phone: N/A
Email: N/A
Web: N/A

Information

There are many grey, wedge-shaped mounds with some rising several metres high in this area. These mounds are built by termites and are a mysterious natural phenomenon because they all seem to have the broad sides with a North-South orientation. Termites (Amitermes) are light pale-skinned creatures that are blind and cannot survive well in direct sunlight. In these super structures there are worker termites that are born small, soldier termites that have unusually shaped heads with large jaws and the reproductive termites which are also called 'winged alates'. Reproductives fly out of the colony looking for a mate and end up being the king and queen of the new colony, although few survive the task.
These amazing creatures don't like too much heat and even though they build these structures in some of the most extreme weather conditions in Australia, the North-South positioning seems to protect them from the sun's overhead heat and the height enables the insects to crawl up above flood level.
Scientists wondered how these termite cities could be built so they experimented with magnets near a broken section of the mound to overpower the Earth's natural magnetic field. Soon the termites started changing the direction of their construction and it was concluded that they are influenced by magnetic fields.
Cathedral mounds are taller and more rounded than the planar magnetic mounds. Both types eat the roots of grasses.
PlaceID78307
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Wildflowers

Weather

Closest Weather Station

Batchelor at 22/04:30pm CST
Distance from Magnetic Termite Mounds - Litchfield NP 20.31km E
TemperatureFeels LikeRel. HumidityDew PointPressureRainfallWind DirectionWind SpeedGusts
34.6°C38.3°C57%25.1°C1004.3hPa0.0mmNW15km/hr
8knots
22km/hr
12knots

Closest Climatic Station

Batchelor Aero
Distance from Magnetic Termite Mounds - Litchfield NP 20.31km E
 JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Mean Max. °C32.732.232.833.732.731.231.833.336.036.835.333.8
Mean Min. °C24.023.823.421.618.816.516.317.020.623.023.924.1
Mean Rain mm306.7360.7258.9101.824.60.50.22.86.668.5133.9268.0

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