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Identifying What a Termite Looks Like

Updated on April 24, 2009

Identifying Termites and Possible Termite Problems

Whether it is a carpenter ant or a worker termite, both can damage your home and furniture. However, it is very important to be able to identify one from the other for one very obvious reason, and that is to be able to obtain proper assistance and treatment.

Experts would know how to determine what a termite looks like and the corresponding treatments to solve the problem. But to carry out immediate and appropriate action, your being able to detect their presence in your own home would be essential.

Subterranean Termites

Termites belong to numerous species and this may become an additional confusion on your being able to know how a termite looks like. Among them, the subterranean termites would be the most frequent to be found in many homes.

Not everyone is familiar with what termites look like. But being able to correctly identify them is critical, for this would mean you would be able to save your home from considerable damage. These termites survive on paper products and wood and for those who are not in the know, all termites could harm their library and furniture. What should be your utmost concern though are the so-called worker termites.

The termite colony consists of several groups: the soldiers, the swarmers, otherwise known as reproductives, and the workers. Most of them look like grains of rice. The soldier termites have mandibles and the reproductive termites posses wings. Worker termites are close to the appearance of the reproductives, although they are smaller and without wings. These termites have the biggest number in the colony and they are identified as the wood eaters.

More Termite Identification Information

You can quickly see what termites look like by looking at some good termite pictures. That seems to be the quickest way to identify termites.

The Differences Between a Flying Ant and a Termite Swarmer

When you see termite swarmers, it is a sign that there is already an ongoing termite infestation of your home. They, the swarmer termites, are responsible in propagating termite colonies. There are some people who suppose the swarmer termite and the flying ant look the same. Actually, they are not.

While the ant appears to have a head, thin abdomen, and thorax, the termite appears to have only a head and a straight body. They both have four wings; however, the flying ant has longer front wings compared to the rear wings with very obvious vein marks. All the four wings of the swarmer termite, on the contrary, are of the same length and are much longer than its body and without any vein marks.

A flying ant's antennae are somewhat bent that end in a somewhat small-club while that of a swarmer termite has beaded antennae, which do not curb with no club-like ends, pointing away from its body.

Where You Can Find Termite Swarmers

If you see swarmers outside the house, they could have possibly been blown by the wind. They are not even the type to eat your wood. But when you find them fly away from the house, like cracks, windows, or even woodworks, then that becomes a cause for concern.

Getting Professional Termite Help

It is hard to remove termites, especially if the damage is widespread. What you need to do is seek the help of experts. They use proven methods to solve a serious problem like termite infestation.

Their methods may include the use of chemical treatment to avert termite attack on the structure of your house. Another is the baiting method where wooden baits are applied with chemicals, which will ultimately kill the termites.


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