Before battling the termites in your home, it’s very important that you get to know your wood-eating enemy. Learning everything you can about termites will help you understand these creatures so it is possible to formulate better strategies to eradicate them completely from your premises.
1. The termites do not sleep. They eat all day long, each and every day. This 24/7 operation makes them very effective in getting rid of decaying wood in the woods, but this action is deemed very destructive once the food they are foraging on will be the wooden parts of the house.
2. The lifespan of the termites may fluctuate. The termite queen can survive anywhere from 20-50 years. The non-reproductive members can endure for only a few years. The individual termite colonies are known to exist for up to one century.
3. There’s 1 king and queen at the termite colony. This group secretes pheromones that inhibit the reproductive development of their other termite members. The queen lays eggs every 15 minutes.
4. Worker and soldier termites are equally female and male. They are usually wingless and vast majority of them are blind. They are also sterile due to the inhibitory pheromones released by the king and queen termites. There are particular soldiers and workers whose function is to care for the eggs and the young.
5. They are also tasked as groomers of other tribe members.
6. Soldier termites are primarily the defenders of the colony. The use their large mandibles to decapitate intruders such as rodents. For some termite species without a soldier termites, the nymphs and employees act as the defenders of the colony.
7. There are approximately 2,300 termite species worldwide. If all the termites on the planet are weighed, their combined total weight will be far greater than the combined weight of all humans on Earth.
8. Termites have a trophallaxis behaviour wherein they feed other colony members through anus-to-mouth (proctodeal) feeding.
9. Termites digest wood throughout the bacteria and protozoans present in their intestinal tracts. The young termites were able to acquire these digestive microorganisms during feeding period from worker termites.
10. The termites are found on all countries, except in the state of Alaska.