How to Identify Termites

How to Identify Termites

Termites are tiny, yet they’re completely different from one another. They might be hiding or having their barracks. Although all you want to do is exterminate them from your house, their individual characteristics may be able to help as you do your inspection rounds. Here’s how to identify termites.

Termite Queen

termite queen

Source: gettyimages.com

First up is the queen. The termite queen is the largest in the family, making her easy to identify. Her length can grow to nearly four inches and she can lay up to four eggs – a minute. Annihilate her first and you practically disarmed one colony. However, other reproductive females can take her place. But at least, you’ll know “who” to initially target if in case you do your pest control on your own.

Reproductive Termites

reproductive termites

Source: Jim McCulloch


The reproductive females are usually the winged ones. However, they are weak flyers, so you won’t see them hovering over you as bees. They only fly when needed, when the air is at a standstill or the level of humidity is high. These winged ones are usually darker than the rest.

One easily identifiable group of termites is their “reproductive swarm” or the “swarming termites.” Recognizing this swarm means having the chance to eliminate a huge number of them, because they comprise the reproductive population, and that is also the part that you eliminate – the numbers that breed.

Soldier Termites

soldier termite

Source: myrmecos.net


And then, the soldiers or the defenders. They may be usually found where they have something to guard or be in defense mode, perhaps in close proximity to their queen or their food mounds.

Worker Termites

worker termites

Source: dpughphoto.com


The majority of termites are classified as their workers. As opposed to the soldiers that only comprise a fraction of their population, the workers comprise majority of it. They are about 2/5 of an inch and have soft bodies and lighter in shade as opposed to the winged females. They look similar to rice grains – and they move, by the way.

As with ants, you won’t be probably seeing them moving about alone. They are out in pursuit of food and they move in groups. The minute you see them doesn’t mean that, if you eliminate them immediately, you’re done. In fact, you might have just gotten rid of one in ten million more of them.

You’d normally see termites in the dark cracks in your wood and you won’t see them on smooth surfaces out in the open because they thrive in the dark. For as long as there’s wood, the likelihood that there’s a colony immediately underneath it is very high. Little holes with soil trails can point you to their direction, and you can start your pest control from there.

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