This world is simply amazing. If you grab a handful of soil, you could find thousands of insects inside that small bit of soil. And if you go 5 miles down the road and pick up another handful of soil, you can find a completely separate ecosystem with brand-new insects that you didn’t see 5 miles ago. One of the many insects that we find underground are termites. These wood destroying insects are natures cleanup crew. When plants die and trees fall, termites are tasked with eliminating the leftover wood. This can be great in the woods but not in your home. In this article let’s explore termites, their lifecycle and what we can do to keep them from feeding upon our homes and businesses


Termites develop using an incomplete metamorphosis. This means that a termite starts as an egg. Once this egg hatches, a nymph will emerge. The nymph is a smaller version of the reproductive adult. As the nymph grows, it will outgrow its exoskeleton a total of five times. Each time it outgrows its exoskeleton, it will molt or shed that exoskeleton much like a snake does. Exoskeletons are made out of chitin. This material is very hard and brittle. It will stretch to a certain point, but not enough to survive through the entire growth of the insect. It’s for this reason that these insects must molt. Contact your local Broken Arrow pest control company for more information.  

Termite nymphs will molt a total of five times before they reach adulthood. During the process of growth, they’re going to need some things from their fellow termites in order to survive. Termites consume wood for the cellulose in the wood. Would contain cellulose and lignin. The lignin is unusable by the insects but the cellulose is what gives them energy. This is because of an enzyme found in their stomach that allows them to break down cellulose into energy. This important gut biome must be passed from adults to the young. The way that they do this, is the young will consume some of the droppings of the adult termites. This passes on the gut biome from adult to nymphs.


Once a termite becomes an adult, it will find itself in one of the castes. Termites are eusocial insects that live in colonies. Each member of the colony is tasked with some part of the daily routine. At the bottom of this cast system are the workers. They number the highest in populations. Many times colonies can develop populations up to the millions of individuals. Most of them are workers. Workers are tasked with foraging for food, building mud tubes, bringing food to the colony, feeding the young and other cast members and many more menial tasks. Your Tulsa exterminator will have more information.  

The next cast are the soldiers. These termites have much larger heads and mandibles than other termites. They lie dormant and are fed by the workers until an emergency arises. When the colony is attacked by a predator, these soldiers come to life. Often ants will attack termite colony‘s in order to take off termites and their young to feed their own colony. When this happens, the soldier termites will throw themselves directly into the fray fighting the ants tooth and nail. Their large heads and mandibles are not only formidable for fighting but also large enough to plug up the tunnels that make up the colony. The workers will fill in the tunnel behind them trapping them with no escape. Soldiers will give their life in order to protect the colony.


Lastly we have the reproductive‘s. These caste members are tasked with reproducing and filling the colony with new individuals. At the top we have the Queen. Her job is to lay eggs. In order to keep up the population of the colony, she must lay eggs day and night. The queen does not sleep. In addition to the queen we also have insects known as alates, commonly known as swarmers. These are flying termites that are tasked with creating new colonies. Every year about May or April these swarmers will leave the colony searching for a swarm of other flying termites. This swarm of termites will allow these termites to pair up male and female. They will mate in mid air and then go find a place to start a new colony. 

Once they find a place in land they will lose their wings and start to dig out what’s known as the royal chamber. This is an underground room that they will use to create a new colony. The queen will begin to lay eggs and the king will start to forage and gather food for the queen and tend to the eggs. Once those eggs hatch and come to adulthood, they will become workers. At this point the king is no longer needed and he will die. A new colony has been born. Eliminate termites with a reputable Broken Arrow exterminator.  


There are two ways to treat termites. Liquid treatments and termite bait stations are the two modern methods of dealing with termites. In the liquid treatment, a trench will be dug around the house and this trench will be treated with a pesticide and then refilled with dirt has been treated with pesticide. Anywhere where there is cement, they will drill near the building and inject pesticide under the slab in order to create a continuous barrier around the building. Termite bait stations, on the other hand, are bait stations that are buried all the way around the house in certain intervals. Forging termites will find these baits and take it back to their colony, slowly wiping out the next generation of termites.

If you have a problem with termites or any of the pests, then it’s time to call in a professional Tulsa pest control company. TermMax Pest Control is the best in the business when it comes to dealing with termites or any other pests that you may be dealing with. We service a greater Tulsa area including Coweta, Claremore, Catoosa, Broken Arrow, Bixby, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Prattville, Owasso, Turley and much more. Call today for a free estimate. We’re here to help!

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