Termites are among the most destructive pests that can invade a house. Once their presence becomes obvious, there is no other option but to look for ways to exterminate them. Termite inspections can provide great help in removing these pests and keeping them away from the home.
Eliminating termites from the home is not simple. It is possible that a huge percentage of the termite population is hidden from sight. Learning and knowing about their characteristics and their life cycle, however, will greatly help in formulating an effective treatment.
Termites are often referred to as “white ants” because of their appearance, but in fact, they are very different from ants in many ways. The only similarity termites have with ants is in how they gather food.
Termites and ants are divided into social groups to make food collection more efficient. Just like ants, termites live in colonies with a very organised and decentralised social structure.
A termite colony is divided into workers, soldiers, nymphs or semi-mature offspring, and the reproductive termites. Each social class keep to their roles. The workers are mainly responsible for gathering food and maintenance of the nest. The worker termites are the ones that are usually found in infested wood.
Soldier termites provide the strength to stand against enemies such as ants. Soldiers are born to guard a nest with all their might. They attack with a sticky substance that can paralyse a threat to the nest.
The reproductive caste includes the queen and the king, which mates with the queen for the entirety of his life. This is very different with the case of ants, where the male ants die after mating with the queen.
When the primary queen termite matures, she is able to produce more eggs, reaching to over 2,000 eggs per day. Because of their reproductive capacity, it is always important to identify the reproductive caste to make sure that this group is eradicated.
Termites in homes feed on cellulose. The most dangerous types of termites are the subterranean and drywood termites as they are the ones that usually attack homes and other man-made buildings.
They can feed on wooden structures such as posts, stumps, doors and window panels without being seen. The rapid growth in their population is sure to increase a food demand as well, so damage to wood-based areas of the house is very likely.
Understanding the ways of termites will help you get a better grasp of the challenges in providing treatment for infestation. Treatment should not only be targeted to the obvious signs of infestation, but the cause of the problem must also be addressed.