Termites

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Termites are one of the biggest problems facing homeowners in America, causing over 2 billion in damages each year. Subterranean Termites cause 95% of all termite damage in North America, while Drywood Termites can also pose a threat to your home.



Subterranean Termite: Order Isoptera
Appearance: Four "castes" of a termite colony:
Worker: approximately one-forth of an inch long, light colored, wingless; 
Soldier: elongated head with mandibles; 
Supplementary Reproductives: wingless or very short, non-functional wings; light colored;
Primary Reproductives: winged, and darker than other members; caste most often seen by homeowners.
Habits: Live in colonies underground, from which they build tunnels in search of food; able to reach food above the level of the ground by building mud tubes; dependent on moisture for survival.
Diet: Wood and other cellulose material.
Reproduction: Different rates of growth from egg stage to adult depend on individual species; one queen per colony, which can lay tens of thousands of eggs in her lifetime, but most eggs are laid by supplementary reproductives in an established colony.
Other Information: Cause more damage to homes in U.S. than storms and fire combined; colonies can contain up to 1,000,000 members.



Drywood Termite: Genera Kalotermes & Incisitermes
Appearance: Larger than subterranean termites, up to one-half inch long; no worker caste in the colony.
Habits: Create colonies in wood, with no connection to the ground necessary; often found in attic wood; need very little moisture.
Diet: Wood and occasionally other cellulose material.
Reproduction: Nymphs pass through seven instars before reaching adulthood; sexual forms eventually swarm to form new colony.
Other Information: Cause serious damage to structures, often long before they are discovered; piles of sawdust-like pellets are a distinct sign of infestation; not as widespread as subterranean termite; colonies may contain up to 2,700 members.

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