How Do You Identify Termites?


Quick Answer

Termites have long, pale bodies; straight, beaded antennae; and rounded hind ends. Their antennae are roughly the same size as their heads. Worker and soldier termites don't have eyes, but reproductive termites do. Reproductive termites have four equal-sized wings, which they lose after mating.

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Full Answer

Termites are sometimes called white ants. Unlike ants, termites do not have a pronounced mid-section. Some species of termites have rectangular-shaped heads and mandibles protruding from their heads. Other species have oval-shaped heads with a slightly darker color than the rest of the pale body. Reproductive termites have much darker bodies than workers and soldiers. Queen termites look significantly different from other termites. Queens lay hundreds or thousands of eggs every day, and they have large, white, expanded stomachs that carry the eggs.

Drywood termites are problematic for homeowners because they live in and feed on dry wood. It's important for homeowners who live in termite-prone areas to check their homes for damage. Termite damage can be both expensive and dangerous. One way to identify a possible termite infestation is to look at the waste. Drywood termites produce dry pellets, as opposed to subterranean termites that expel liquid. Over time, the dry pellets accrue and become readily visible.

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