101 Facts About Termites

  1. There scientific name is Isoptera
  2. The southern coast is home to drywood termites
  3. They are commonly called the silent killers
  4. There are four things that termites need to survive: food, moisture, shelter, and optimal temperature
  5. They are detrivores, which feed on dead plants
  6. The winged termites are attracted to light and are active in the spring
  7. The queen termite can live decades but workers can only live for a few years (1-2)
  8. Worker termites are white
  9. Colonies are governed by a caste system
  10. Soldier termites are pale yellow-brown
  11. Termites are referred to as white ants but are not closely related
  12. There are over 2,750 species known
  13. Termites help convert plant cellulose into recycled substances
  14. Only 10% of the termite species are reported as pests
  15. They mostly feed on cellulose
  16. They are related to cockroaches and in some studies, scientists have hypothesized that they are an evolved species of cockroaches
  17. The reproductive termites are black and have wings
  18. Drywood termites swarm in the summer
  19. Termites differ from ants because they have four equal sized wings and straight antennae
  20. Termite swarms are provoked by heavy rainfall and warm temperature
  21. Termites are most abundant in tropical and subtropical territories
  22. There are three major termite family groups: Rhinotermitidae-(subterranean) have contact with wood on ground, Hodotermitidae-(rottenwood) live in moist wood, Kalotermitidae-(drywood/dampwood) nest in wood, and Termitidae-largest group
  23. They are most dominant in tropical rain forest
  24. Some termite nests have up to 2000-4000 sq. ft. of area
  25. Termites cannot digest wood fibers
  26. The queen can lay up to 30,000 eggs a day
  27. The adult reproductive termites are not usually to blame for damage
  28. Termite larvae hatch in a few weeks
  29. Termites molt 5 times before adulthood
  30. Termites shed their wings after they find a good place to nest, then they mate
  31. Termites cause $2 billion in damages each year
  32. Termites are social insects , meaning they raise their young in groups
  33. Both sexes of termite can reproduce
  34. Termites are non-monogamous, there are multiple reproducing termites other than the queen
  35. Only winged termites develop eyes and eyesight, the others are blind
  36. Termites are poor fliers
  37. The workers are in charge of digesting cellulose and feeding the colony
  38. Termitidae account for 60% of all species
  39. Termites use trophallax, which is the process of feeding of one colony member by another
  40. Soldier termites have enlarged jaws and are incapable of feeding themselves
  41. Soldiers exude noxious gases to ward off predators
  42. Soldiers use their heads to block the entrance to the colony
  43. Soldiers have been known to commit suicide to protect the colony
  44. Dimorphic soldiers have been found to protect the inside tunnels
  45. Some colonies maintain a fungal garden in their nest
  46. Their nests are always air-conditioned and temperature is controlled
  47. Termites need moisture to survive
  48. Termites cover their tracks with feces, plant matter, saliva, and soil
  49. Termites have been known to eat paper, cloth, and carpeting
  50. Most cultures eat termites for their nutrition
  51. Termites are high in oil and fat proteins
  52. Termites have a nutty taste
  53. The US is looking in to using termites as a renewable resource
  54. Termites produce 2 liters of hydrogen from one piece of paper
  55. One of the planets most efficient bioreactors is the termite
  56. Termites clear away plant litter and reduce wild fire hazards
  57. Termites produce high levels of methane
  58. Plant growth has developed a balance between feeding termites
  59. Some termites have dated back to the Cretaceous period
  60. Traces of termites have been found in dinosaur bones
  61. Larvae is feed poop so it can develop important bacteria to break down food
  62. Soldier termites bang their heads together to signify a threat
  63. Termites use pheromones to communicate
  64. Termites build the largest nests out of all insects
  65. Ants are the termites main predator
  66. Termites cannot cause injury to people
  67. Most termite nests are not visible
  68. Plant have been known to develop termite repellent
  69. Termites repel Eremophila species
  70. Termites never stop eating
  71. They have been known to eat pool filtration and liners
  72. Termites build mud tubes to connect their nest to wood
  73. Tree stumps are a perfect candidates for termites
  74. Most home kits are not effective in killing termites
  75. For every human there is 1000 lbs. of termites
  76. Termites never sleep
  77. Mounds have been found in Africa that reached 30 ft. tall
  78. Termites only have an abdomen and a head
  79. Alaska does not contain termites
  80. Termites cannot spread disease
  81. Some zoos have termites on exhibit
  82. 10% of the worlds biomass is termites
  83. Damage from termites can take 3-8 years to show
  84. Termites speed up natural deterioration
  85. Some queens can grow up to 5in. long
  86. Workers can find food up to 250 ft away from the colony
  87. There are 40 species of termites in the US
  88. Termites release 150 million tons of methane per year
  89. Dampwood termites are typically larger than other species
  90. Dampwood colonies don’t have worker termites
  91. Dampwood termites don’t cause harm to housing
  92. Drywood termites don’t require moisture or contact with soil
  93. Subterranean termites harbor up to 2 million members
  94. Subterranean termites need contact with soil to survive
  95. Termites WILL enter pressure treated wood
  96. Termites don’t like light (unless they are winged)
  97. Termites have been used to produce didgeridoos
  98. Alates are future queens/ kings
  99. Some termites eat animal carcasses
  100. Termidor has shown to work excellent against termite attack
  101. Bugs do not like the Sage plant… Bugs Hate Sage!

What should you do if you think you have Termites?

When the time is right Sage Exterminators trained and licensed Inspectors can do a Wood Destroying Organism’s report (WDO report or WDI ) to let you know exactly what you are looking at for free!  Contact us today!