Termites are nature’s best centralized and self-organized scavengers. They feed on dead wood, dried leaves, dung, and other dead material. They come in colonies that care for the young and is well known for brood care as a manifestation of Eusociality, a common characteristic of insects under the order Isoptera. But, whatever they are, what we are all aware of is their expertise in crumbling appliances, closets, and even houses down.
The reason why we suffer from damaged wooden materials is that most of us do not have any idea of what do termites look like. We must have seen them crawling on our fences already, but we just shrug our shoulders and say, ‘ah, harmless white ants!’. So, what we should all do is to read this 5 easy steps to know if it’s worth your pest-control spray.
What do termites look like: Squishy body and broad waist
Termites are known for their soft and squishy body and rounded waist. Ants and termites are almost alike, but termites can easily be distinguished by this. They are also devoid of body armor which makes them more resilient and could easily maneuver themselves into the inner parts of the wood.
Color of the Wings
The white, translucent pigment on the worker termites’ wings is one of the termites’ unique distinction. Most of us might think that white wings is a sign of cleanliness and the dark brown colors signifies cockroach filth, but this is not true.
Long and Straight Antennae
Unlike ants which have elbowed, bent and short antennae, these insects have long, almost ruler-straight antennae.
4 Equal Wings
If the insect’s wings are four and symmetrical, you can now conclude that it is a termite indeed. All of its four wings are equal in size, while ants’ forewings are longer than its hindwings.
Measure the Size
If the size of the insect falls on approximately 3/8 an inch (1/4 of your thumb), you can say that it is a termite. However, their sizes are subjective for it differs depending on the roles of the termite in a colony.
Magnify the Patterns
2-3 major veins can be identified on a termite’s wing under a magnifying glass. You will see, if it’s a termite, that the veins are milky-colored.
There you go! Now you know the basic answer to the question “what do termites look like?” If ever you are bothered by insects swarming around your house and you are contemplating if it is a termite or not, you can now determine them correctly and apply an immediate solution to your termite problem.