Subterranean Termites and Their Appetite for destruction

Subterranean termites– Sometimes mistakenly referred to as white ants, are small insects that live in underground colonies. Termites are social insects whose colonies are organized into casts with large reproductive termites and smaller workers and soldiers. Workers feed the colony and tend to the needs of the queen while soldiers defend the colony from invaders like ants. These highly organized colonies allow termites to be efficient and very destructive when they attack Homes and other structures.

Termites eat wood and convert wood fiber, or cellulose, into sugar. A large termite colony can do extensive damage to structures made of wood. Since termites often consume wood from the inside out internally damaged wood can appear perfectly normal. They use their scissor-like jaws to eat wood 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Subterranean termites swarm in the spring when groups of reproductive termites go off to start new colonies. Subterranean termites build distinctive tunnels, often referred to as “mud tubes,” to reach food sources and protect themselves from open air.

Subterranean termites are by far the most destructive termite species and very prominent in Southern Arizona. The hard, saw-toothed jaws of termites work like shears and are able to bite off extremely small fragments of wood, one piece at a time. Over time, they can collapse an entire building, meaning possible financial ruin for a homeowner. If you suspect a termite infestation, contact Essential Pest Control about the proper subterranean termite treatment.

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