Where Do Termites Come From?

Termites are tiny, soft-bodied creatures that live everywhere in the world. If you go out searching, you’ll find them on every continent except Antarctica. Because they are everywhere, they also play an essential role in many ecosystems. While they may not seem like much, these little critters can cause a lot of damage if they’re left unchecked. Termites are fascinating creatures, and there are tens of thousands of different species.

This blog post will explore interesting facts about termites, where they come from, and what they eat. We’ll also look at the life cycle of a termite and, more importantly, how do you get rid of them if they become a problem. Read on to learn more about these pesky pests!

What Are Termites and Their Characteristics?

Termites are a type of social insect that are classified under the family Termitidae. The order is Isoptera. There are about 2,600 different species of termites. The termite has an elongated body and has two wings. The hind pair of wings are larger than the front pair. Termites are pale-colored and have a small head constricted behind the eyes. They have nocturnal eyes, and they are sensitive to light.

Termites are social insects that live closely with one another in colonies. They have a mutualistic relationship where they work together for the benefit of all members. This behavior benefits other creatures, such as birds and mammals, because termites play an important part in the food chain. Termites usually make a shelter out of wood or ground soil.

The following are interesting facts about termites:

Termites have large colonies

Colonies of termites usually consist of millions of individuals who work together to survive.

Termites in Dallas are blind... Kinda

Termites are blind since they do not possess eyelids or clear corneas. Instead, the eyes of the termite are made up of tiny dots that form images at the front of its head. This helps them know if there is an object before them, so they don't bump into anything.

Worker termites eat your home

The worker termites are the ones that forage and build tunnels and nests inside the wood to provide food and shelter to other members of the colony. They also care for the younglings.

Termite's jaws are super strong

Termites use their strong jaws to break down wood into tiny pieces before they ingest it.

Termites have wings & a complete towing package

The front pair of wings on termites is made up of tiny hairs and can be seen from a distance. They use their wings to help them fly from one place to another. The hind pair of wings are not used for flight but instead, have hooks that allow other members in a colony to attach a leaf or branch and assist in flight.

Termites can detect water from 100 feet.

A termite can detect water from a distance of about 100 feet away. This helps them find their way back home after foraging for food during the night.

Termites Build Nests

The worker termites help build shelters called nests that are made out of the soil. They are usually circular and have multiple chambers within them. Termites will use the nest to store food, shelter younglings, and keep the queen termite's chamber safe from intruders.

Males cannot care for termite larvae

The male termites cannot care for larvae because they do not have mouth parts that can chew wood or ground soil.

Termites live for 30+ years

The life span of a termite is around 30 years. A queen termite can live for up to 50 years without reproducing more young termites. Most worker termites usually die after building and looking after their nests. However, some will survive for up to 10 years if they are lucky enough not to get killed by a predator.

Termite's have an exoskeleton

The termite's exoskeleton is strong, but it can easily be broken down by acids and other enzymes. When a termite dies, the enzymes will slowly decompose its body which usually takes about 1 to 2 years. The hard exoskeleton gets scattered away from its nest until they get broken down into non-existence.

Where do Termites Come From?

Termites typically live in warm, moist environments, so they can be found in tropical areas, as well as more temperate climates such as Dallas Texas.

They are found in forests, deserts, backyards, and even enjoy spending time inside your home. Most homeowners are terrified of termites invading their homes because they will eat the wood foundation right out from under them. A homeowner typically notices a termite infestation after significant damage has been done. 

There are two main types of termites: dry wood and subterranean. Drywood termites are more common in the tropics, while subterranean termites are more common in temperate areas.

Drywood Termites

Drywood termites are not dependent on the soil to survive. They live in trees, logs, wooden homes, and any other wooden structure that they can find. Only ten percent of their body consists of the actual “body.” The rest is their intestines filled with bacteria that digest cellulose. Drywood termites are usually dark brown and have a relatively large flathead. They also have long and cylindrical bodies that fit into narrow crevices. The name “dry wood” comes from the fact these termites do not require contact with soil, unlike subterranean termites.

Subterranean Termites

Subterranean termites live in colonies underground or inside wood structures. They are usually sensitive to light and moisture, so they do not like open spaces. A mature colony of subterranean termites can include more than 200,000 individual termites! Subterranean termites form a social system where only 2 reproduce male and female (the queen and king). The rest of the colony consists of sterile male and female workers, soldiers, and immature termites. They are usually cream to light brown.

How to Get Rid of Termites?

There are many different ways to get rid of termites, but the most effective methods involve using a combination of treatments.  However, the best way to get rid of these little critters is to make sure that they don’t enter your home in the first place. You can do this with a regular termite inspection from a trusted, local pest control company. 

You can get rid of termites by using both chemical and non-chemical treatments.

Chemical treatments are often combined with physical barriers, so homeowners have to decide whether they’d rather get rid of termites more quickly by using chemicals or protect their homes from future damage by implementing physical barriers.

Physical barriers help keep termites away because there is no food source for them to find.

Insecticide barriers also work well and can be used with physical barriers. Also, fumigation is another effective method of getting rid of termites. If any of these treatments are not effective, better ask the help of the professional. Hiring a professional pest control company can provide homeowners with peace of mind and help ensure that the job is done effectively. 

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