If a termite infestation goes unnoticed, homeowners will experience costly damage to their beautiful homes. Adult termites are easier to spot than baby termites or larvae. Baby termites may not be able to damage structures, but they will become adults and damage your property. According to the National Association of Pest Management, termites cause more than $5 billion in damage annually. So if you’ve spotted some strange insects around your house and you’re asking yourself, “what do baby termites look like?”, then we can help.
Below you can find out how to identify baby termites and how to spot different types of termites.
The Termite Life Cycle
The termite life cycle includes three different stages: termite eggs, termite nymphs, and adult termites. At each life stage, termites perform different duties for the colony.
All termites begin when the queen lays eggs. Termite eggs are small, white, translucent, and jelly-bean shaped. Once the eggs hatch, small, colorless baby termites will either grow into a soldier, worker, or reproductive termites.
Worker termites make up most of the termite colony, and they do most of the work. They build tunnels, care for and clean other termites, and search for food. Worker termites are white with soft bodies, but they have no eyes or wings. Their job is to digest cellulose, a major component found in wood and grass.
Soldier termites defend the colony. They are easily identified by their large brownish heads with pale bodies and long black mandibles, or mouthparts.
Sometimes called swarmers, the male or female reproductive termite is responsible for starting a new colony. Reproductive termites have large eyes and black or brown bodies with double wings. These termites are often confused with flying ants.
Termite Swarming Season
When a colony has grown too big, reproductive termites leave their original colony to start their own. This typically happens in the Spring or early Summer. These termites swarm near areas they wish to colonize, and there are often 200 to 1,000 termites in the pack.
The swarmers that survive shed their wings, mate, and become king and queen of a new colony.
Common Types of Termites
A termite nest will differ based on species and location:
- Subterranean Termites: Large colonies with up to two million members can be found in moist soil underground. These termites make mud tubes—tunnels made from mud and other materials—to lead from wood to their underground nest.
- Dampwood Termites: Dampwood termites love making nests in wet, moist wood. These termites are usually larger than other termite species.
- Drywood Termites: Drywood termites make their nests in roof materials and wall supports. They infest dead and dry wood.
Ants vs Termites
Both ants and termites have small black bodies and wings. Termites have wings that are equal in size, but ant wings are disparate. Ant antennae are bent, whereas termites have straight antennae. Because their differences can be challenging to spot, it is best to call our experienced termite control professionals for proper identification.
How to Get Rid of Termites
To get rid of a termite infestation, eliminate attractants and try the below tips:
- Use treated wood for decks, fences, or other wood structures.
- Use metal shielding when building new structures.
- Store outdoor piles of wood and other wooden structures away from your home.
If the termites persist after trying the tips above, Stampede Pest Control can help.
Stampede Pest Control: Your Expert Termite Exterminator
Signs of a termite infestation are not easy to spot. But destructive termites can not be ignored. Check for these common signs:
- If you have seen termite droppings or frass in the house, there is a 99% chance that you have termites in your home.
- Discarded wings in windows or doorways
- Hollow wood sound when knocked
If you suspect an infestation, call for professional help. We also offer organic pest control and always use pet-and-family safe solutions. Call our expert exterminators to schedule a professional termite inspection and service today!