Subterranean Termites and Different Kinds of Termites – How to Identify Them

Subterranean Termites and Different Kinds of Termites – How to Identify Them

The main purpose of all termites is to find a place where they can find food and water. After finding these necessities they start building their colony. Normally, they start mobbing about mid to the end of January and at the end of September cause a great damage to your house.

There are different species of termites but here you go with four most important types of termites:

  • Subterranean termites
  • Formosan termites
  • Dampwood termites
  • Drywood termite

Subterranean Termites

subterranean termitesSubterranean termites abide inside the soil. They are able to build their nests deep underground the soil and build colonies. Hence we cannot see them or detect their presence. As they live underground and have pale or white color, they are often referred as white aunts.

Since they live underground, they are able to cause a great damage. In order to get rid of them we have to destroy the whole colony first. Humans are unable to get hold of these insects because of their ability to radiate through their underground nests. But now with the help of new technologies and termites bating system, professional pest control companies are able to control these insects without having to desolate the whole area.

Formosan Termites

formosan termitesFormosan Termites are the most incisive specie of termites. They are relatively large in size. Usually the colony of termites contains 2 million members whereas the colony of Formosan termites contains as much as 10 million termites. They have the ability to destroy the house in a very short span of time since they are huge in number.

A single member of this termite colony is capable of consuming 400 grams of wood per day. Moreover, these termites can forage as much as 100 meter of the soil. These termites have social class which consists of king, queen, soldier, worker and reproductive termites. The worker termites have the responsibility to provide food to everyone whereas soldier termites are responsible for protecting the society.

Once these termites build their colony somewhere, their eradication from the particular place becomes very difficult. They cause severe damage to property consequently huge losses. These termites do not just damage wood and property but also damage books.

Dampwood Termites

dampwood termitesDampwood Termites are not as destructive as Formosan termites. They are mostly attracted by damp wood, rotting wood or any other wood that is moist. Unlike others, the social class of these termites contains king, queen, worker, soldier and reproductive termites.

These termites are larger in size than the other termites, usually half inch long. The worker termites are smaller than the soldier termites and have reddish-brown head with big mandibles whereas soldier termites are an inch long and have long wings.

Drywood Termite

drywood termiteDrywood Termite is the class of termite that lives in drywood. This insect flies from place to place in search of a suitable area to attack. The colony of these termites grows slowly because it dependent upon the original pair of king and queen. Smaller in number yet causes as much damage as other termites do.

Their presence is not easily detectable as they grown horizontally deep down into the wood. They form small consistently shaped pallets which apparently look like miniature capsules. They have reddish-brown head and have long wings.

Detection of the presence of drywood termites can be done. Immediate action is required after the detection of the presence of these termites to minimize loss.

Termite Identification

Most people think that termite identification is very difficult but it can be easily done. A typical termite family consists of a huge number of members with a social class. They can only be seen when something is open.

Soldier termites have long head and powerful jaws and are responsible for protecting the colony. Whereas worker termites are about 2/5 inch long and can be recognized by their soft and light colored body. Reproductive termites are same as worker termites but have wings.

Termite Larvae and Termite Life Cycle

Termite is quite notorious social insect and no one of us wants to have it for sure. Main issue of termites is that they act silently and use to damage wood and no one even gets an idea of it. Termites have a life cycle quite similar to other insects after hatching from the egg at this stage is known as termite larvae. We all are familiar with the fact that termite use to eat wood though it plays a significant role in recycling wood. But it can harm useful trees, furniture, house hold wooden articles and buildings.

termite larvaeLarvae after hatching, is developed into these three categories. Because of their functional requirements members of these casts may have a difference in their physical structures. As their name suggest, workers are intended to do work while soldiers to protect the community. As far as nymphs are concerned there are further of two types. They are kings and queen; as they are responsible for reproductive purposes. Members of these categories are interchangeable as required.

Termites complete their life cycle in different steps some significant developmental steps of termites’ life cycle are given below:

Eggs take 30days to hatch. After hatching termite larvae are feed by kings through their salivary glands. Larvae change into nymphs and winged reproductive developed from nymphs are called alates. It is a fact that 100 – 1000 alates are found in every colony. Alates have fragile wings they live in a colony for a predefined time. After that they leave their colonies in groups and fly towards light source and fall on the ground. This process is recognized as “swarming”.

After this, there is a very important segment of termite life cycle where particular nymph changes into queen and king. Queen lays eggs and the cycle continues. Queen is fed by the worker termites and can live up to 25 years.

Interesting Termite Facts

Here you go with some very interesting termite facts:

  • Termite’s Queen on average lives for 15 – 25 years
  • It can lay eggs right in every 15 second
  • Termites release excess of methane in the atmosphere.
  • Termites can eat 1000 pounds of wood every year.
  • Termites workers intended to be very hardworking as they search their food up to 250 feet away from their colony.

Do Termites Bite?

The majority of the home owners ask do termites bite. The answer is yes. Termites can bite woods, furniture and even soil under the floor. So you need to inspect the garden, backyard or car porch area to find if there are termite colonies inside or outside the soil. As soon as you find the termite colonies then you could be able to eliminate them completely. But termites never bite people.

Do Termites Fly?

There are different types of termites, some can fly and some cannot. Therefore, a homeowner should block all the possible ways to enter the termite into the home. Whether it is flying or crawling termite, sufficient precautions should be taken to get rid of them permanently.

how to prevent termitesHow to Prevent Termites

  • The use of termite control sprays can help to get rid of termites from the infected areas and can possibly restrict their movement to the rest of the home.
  • Apply the wood repellent liquids to all of your furniture and wooden accessories that work as a repellent to keep termites away from the wood.
  • The use of termite bait traps is quite effective to get rid of the nurseries and the nests of the termites and is the best way to prevent termites in the home.

Termites have very unique enzyme cellulase to digest wood. Termites do not need water resources. They can survive without water or one can say that by getting water through digesting cellulose. In different areas of the world people really like to eat winged termites. Termites have been living on this planet for last 250 million years. Termites are important wood recycling agents of the planet. Termites love to live away from light.

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Anastasia  •  Monday, 08 February 2016 11:11
Carole, yes, it's possible, termites can move to you from your neighbors. You need to get rid of these pests right now if you have not already done this
carole  •  Sunday, 17 January 2016 14:00
our neighbor had termites and had them treated. now we are seeing these black looking ants crawling and falling from our ceiling. is it possible that they left there and came here? live in florida.