International Member of National Pest Management Association, USA
TERMITES
Termites are social insects living in colonies comprised of a king and a queen (wingless adults or nymphs, depending on the species), and soldiers . The king and queen perform the reproductive functions of the colony, while the workers carry on all aspects of colony maintenance. The soldiers defend the colony. These individuals, separated by divisions of labour, are referred to as castes Termites feed on wood or wood products, and their digestive tracts contain microorganisms which enable them to convert the cellulose in wood into usable food.

TERMITES VS ANTS

  • Termites are often confused with ants
  • The termite has straight beadlike antennae, while those of ants are elbowed
  • The abdomen of the termite is broadly joined to the thorax (no waist), while the antís thorax and abdomen are joined by a narrow pedicel (wasp waist)
  • Termite wings, both the front and the hindwings, are of equal size. The anterior wings of the ant are considerably larger than the posterior wings

COMMON TERMITE PEST SPECIES


Drywood Termites

  • Drywood termites are social insects that live in colonies in sound, dry wood
  • In comparison to other termites, drywood colonies are rather small (a few thousand individuals), and the colony develops slowly
  • They neither live in the ground nor maintain contact with the soil, and they do not build mud tubes
  • Drywood termites produce dry fecal pellets compared to subterranean termites that produce liquid feces
  • Drywood termites tend to feed across wood grain impacting both the soft spring wood and the harder summer growth
  • Dead trees, branches, brush and firewood from residential areas are the primary habitat of drywood termites

Dampwood Termites

  • Dampwood termites are found only in wood with high moisture content
  • Dampwood termites do not usually infest structures because of the low moisture content of wood in structures
  • Dampwoods are considered a minor structural pest, but they can do substantial damage if left unchecked
  • Dampwood termites produce distinctive fecal pellets that are rounded at both ends, elongate, and lack the clear longitudinal ridges common to drywood termite pellets
  • Dampwood fecal pellets are often stuck together along the bottom or sides of the tunnels or may dissolve into a muddy paste
  • Infested wood usually shows no external damage because openings in the wood are plugged with fecal material
  • They nest in wood buried in the ground, although contact with the ground is not necessary when infested wood is high in moisture

Subterranean and mound-building termites


1. Coptotermes spp.

  • Coptotermes species is one of the most destructive termites in Asia
  • Coptotermes spesies alone is responsible for at least 80-90% of damage to human built structures, based on past statistics, and it is the most common termite species in all urban areas
  • They have a voracious appetite for anything wood or paper, and may even attack fabric
  • Their nests are located deep underground
  • They have a large and conspicuous fontanella
  • They secrete a white, sticky liquid upon biting, through the fontanelle

2. Macrotermes spp.

  • The Macrotermes genus are the largest termite species of all
  • Most species of Macrotermes build mounds, although there are a few subterranean species
  • Macrotermes species are noted for having two sizes of workers and two sizes of solders (major and minor workers and soldiers).
  • The unique thing about Macrotermes termites is their fungus cultivation habit
  • They have a large and conspicuous fontanella
  • They secrete a white, sticky liquid upon biting, through the fontanelle

3. Globitermes sulphureus

  • Globitermes sulphureus is a species of termite that is very common in present in other areas of South East Asia
  • They live in nests made of earth that can be up to 1.5m tall and can contain tens of thousands of individuals
  • Between 5% and 10% of the population are soldier termites which can be recognised by their yellow abdomen and two large, curved mandibles
  • When the nest is damaged, the soldier termites defend the nest and workers rapidly repair any damage to the nest walls
  • In some cases, the contractions are so violent that the termites rupture themselves. This form of suicidal altruism is known as autothysis

4. Microcerotermes spp.

  • This species is 3.15-7.75mm long
  • They have long rectangular heads and long fine mandibles that are finely serrated when viewed with a microscope
  • Some species may build small mounds nest underground and some may make arboreal nests and nest on top of posts
  • Their nesting habits (mounds, arboreal nests) often betray their presence and facilitate their control

5. Schedorhinotermes spp.

  • The average length of this species of termite is 3-7mm long
  • The major soldiers have bulbous heads
  • The minor soldiers are usually about two-thirds of the length of the major soldiers
  • They have narrower heads and more slender mandibles with their labrums extend and almost to the tip of the mandibles
  • This species of termite nest in root crown and lower trunk of living and dead trees

Signs of infestation

Mub Tubes

Mub Tubes

Termite Swarmers

Wood Damage

Termites Frass

Termite Mound