Different Species of Termites
Termites are an insect who’s a member of the Arthropoda Phylum. Notorious for destroying wood, termites are always something you want as far away from your home as possible.
They extract out the last remaining and dead nutrients from the wood making it hollow, weak, and vulnerable. It is estimated that every year all types of termites cause $5 billion in property damage.
Termites live in the form of colonies. One single colony can contain millions of termites. Like many other members of Arthropods family, termites also have different subspecies. An estimated 45 different kinds of termites exist in the US while there are about 2000 termite species in the world. The major types of termites we know are Subterranean Termites, Dampwood Termites, Drywood Termites, and Formosan Termites. These termite types also break down into more subgroups of termites.
Types of Termites
- Subterranean termites
Subterranean Termites belongs to the Rhinotermitidae Family. This termite lives underground which is where they set up their nests. One condition which is essential to ensure their survival is the moist environment surrounding their nest. They prefer to nest underground because of these moist conditions and because it’s sufficient for them to build large colonies, up to 2 million termites.
Subterranean Termites, over time, have evolved themselves to develop a well-maintained tube system to reach their source of food. That’s why whenever you see a colony of Subterranean Termites you will see a tube-like system above the ground as well as under the surface. They build these tubes to ensure the security of their food and life.
In America, they exist in almost every state except Alaska. Subterranean Termites are considered to be the most catastrophic of all the other species of the termites. Furthermore, they are responsible for much of the damage to the wood and furniture in the country.
Types of Subterranean Termites Around America:
- Air Land Subterranean Termites: Rocky Mountain States, Southwest, West Coast, Midwest and South.
- Dessert Subterranean Termites: Southern Arizona and Southeastern California.
- Western Subterranean Termites: Washington, Nevada, and California.
- Eastern Subterranean Termites: Throughout the East Coast.
- Dark Southeastern Subterranean Termites: North and South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Jersey and few other states of America.
- Dampwood Termites
Dampwood Termites belongs to the family Kalotermitidae and Hodotermitidae. As it’s evident from their name, these termites used to live in those areas where they can find wood with high water content. They are not usually found underground because it is not easy to find high water containing wood there. In an area where there’s a lot of rain, we can find these termites near the woody material.
Dampwood Termites are slightly different from other types of termites. They differ on the basis of the size and possess the biggest size among all termite species. They are not much destructive to our home or wooden furniture because they are not attracted to man-made woody materials since they lack the water content. Still, it’s better to adopt preventive measures to ensure that your furniture is protected.
Types of Dampwood Termites Around America:
- Desert Dampwood Termites: New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, and California
- Florida Dampwood Termites: South Florida and the Florida Keys.
- Nevada Dampwood Termites: Idaho, Montana, and Nevada
- Pacific Dampwood Termites: Washington, California, and Oregon.
- Drywood Termites
Drywood Termite belongs to the family Kalotermitidae and they resemble Dampwood Termites to a certain extent. They have many differences as compared to the above mentioned two types.
Drywood termites, unlike the above-mentioned species, don’t require water or moisture. They are not usually found underground and don’t need contact with soil to prosper like Subterranean Termites. This is because Drywood Termites feed on dry wood, as their name indicates.
Drywood Termites are more catastrophic for our homes because they are attracted to dry wood. Considering the wood in our homes is normally dry, this makes it more vulnerable for a Drywood Termite infestations.
If you’re experiencing a termite infestation, there’s a good chance they are Drywoods. Along with Subterranean Termites, they are responsible for much of the damage. Still, they are much slower in the damaging process as compared to Subterranean because of a smaller colony size.
Types of Drywood Termites Around America:
- Western Drywood Termites: Arizona and California
- Southeastern Dry-Wood Termites: South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas.
- Desert Dry-Wood Termites: Arizona and Southeastern California.
- Conehead Termites
Another type of termite species is the Conehead Termite. As their name suggests their head looks like a cone and it is pointed as well. In 2001, they were introduced to the world with the name “Tree Termites” but later on, in order to study them properly and to give them a distinction from other tree pests, they were given their current name.
The Conehead Termite was pronounced extinct in 2003, but later on, the American Agricultural Department confirmed their reemergence.
Conehead Termites are different from other underground termites. They do not go for underground tunneling in order to survive. They stay above the ground and feed on almost every kind of wood, no matter the moisture. Their colony size is medium but they are extremely aggressive. They tend to damage wood quicker than any other type of termites. They are found in Florida and in The Caribbean.
- Formosan Termites
Formosan Termites are probably the most violent, vicious and aggressive termite species. They form colonies that are smaller than the Subterranean Termites but larger than colonies of other species. They form these colonies under the ground and make tunnels and nests inside the walls as well.
If you are facing a termite infestation, the first step you should take is identifying the type of termites they are. If you find an Exterminator Near Me, they are more than trained to inspect for termites and understand which species they are dealing with. The appropriate measures will be taken to eliminate the termite problem and save your home.***