Subterranean termites are the most common and economically important wood-destroying organisms in Arizona. Subterranean termites are closely associated with the soil habitat where they excavate a network of tunnels through the soil to reach water and food. These termites need moisture to survive. The most frequently seen subterranean termites are the workers, soldiers, and the reproductives.
Subterranean termites feed on materials that contain cellulose, primarily dead wood and wood by-products. Only the worker termite caste can digest timber by the use of symbiotic protozoa in their gut. Worker termites feed their partly digested semi-liquid food, regurgitated from their mouth or passing from their anus, to the other termites, a process known as trophallaxis.
Worker termites are white and soft bodied. Their responsibility is to find food for the rest of the colony. They form shelter tubes, or mud tubes, over the surface of foundation walls to travel back and forth from the nest to the infested wood. These tubes are also used to keep them moist, and as protection against ants.
Soldiers resemble worker termites, except that they have enlarged brownish heads and strong, well-developed jaws. Soldiers defend the colony from invaders, primarily ants.
Reproductive’s (also called swarmers) can be winged, primary reproductive’s called alates or swarmers or wingless, secondary reproductive’s. Winged reproductive’s have 1/4 to 3/8 inch long pale yellow-brown to black bodies and bear four wings of equal size that may be smokey gray to brown and have few wing veins. Reproductive termites are the ones most often confused with flying ants.
If you have and/or suspect termites…DON’T PANIC! The first step is to use our FREE termite inspection Phoenix service. Our experienced termite inspectors can determine if you have an infestation, properly identify the invading species and if necessary prepare a quote for treatment. Not all Arizona termites are the same. Not all subterranean termites are the same and some may not even be a threat to your home.
Bill’s Pest and Termite Control is your hometown exterminator providing safe, effective services for your home or business at affordable rates. Family owned and operated we are the experts that other exterminators call upon when they encounter an infestation beyond their resources. We know Arizona termites!