Drywood Termite

Drywood TermitesDrywood termite goes under the Latin name cryptotermes spp or incisitermes ssp.

The appearance

Termites are divided into three very distinct groups. There is the damp wood, Drywood and subterranean. The worker termites in the groups are very identical in their appearance, and so the appearance of alates or the reproductive caste and the soldiers is important.

The swarmers or alates have got 2 wings set. The very front wings have got a pattern of heavy pigmented veins within the outer parts of the wing. The veins can be three or more. Swarmers get to shed the wings quite quickly after they swarm and this means that many of the swarmer bodies after death do not have wings attached to them. This is one of the ways in which you can distinguish the subterranean swarms from the Drywood termites. The subterranean termite swarmers have some of the dead swarmers without wings and others with wings. The swarmers may be 12 mm long.

The soldiers of the Drywood termites have got very large mandibles or the mouthparts and these have teeth and a wide pronotum that is the same size as the head and at times wider. The termite soldiers and the workers are larger than those found in the colonies of the subterranean termite colonies.

Habits

The Drywood termites create their colonies within the wood without necessarily having a connection to the ground. They can be found within the attic wood and they don’t require too much moisture.

Diet

Drywood termites usually feed on wood. Also, they can feed on cellulose materials occasionally.

Reproduction

Before they get to adulthood, the nymphs actually pass through 4 to 7 instars. The sexual forms then swarm so as to create their own colonies.

 

Signs of their infestation

Swarms

When the Drywood termite colony becomes mature, the swarms that include winged females and male insects that are reproductive arise. The termites will then fly out so as to create their own colonies after they mate. The heavy rains and warm temperatures usually instigate the swarms.

Frass

These termites also try to extract water from the feces so as to be able to conserve it. This means that the resulting fecal pellets are so distinct and they are referred to as frass. Usually, they will have a hexagonal appearance and can be around 1mm long. The termites usually kick the frass out of tunnels. When you see the moulds of the pellets, then you can be sure there is Drywood termite activity. Pellets can remain even after a colony dies out and this can make a homeowner think there is some activity currently. This is why a termite control professional should be called in so as to confirm whether or not there is any activity currently.

In the USA alone, termites usually cause more than a billion dollar damages in the homes every year. Unlike the tornadoes, hurricanes and fires, termite damage is almost never covered under the homeowner insurance policies. There is also the under publication of the infestation of termites and this makes many of the home owners oblivious of the fact that preventive measures are quite necessary.

Annual inspections can be really helpful in dealing with the problem. 

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