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A Queen Termite can produce 20,000 eggs a day. Don’t wait till the infestation get worse.

Learn More About Termite

Termite

Termite (Isoptera) are highly social insects living in colonies. There are about 2,500 species, mainly found in tropical regions. About 3 species occur in Singapore. Termites have “castes” such as queens, worker and soldiers and these do different job in the colony.

Only the reproductive are winged and their wings are shed soon after they have flown away to mate and found a new colony. They are small flying ant looking insects. Although they are sometimes mistaken for ants, they are different because they feed off the cellulose in wood. Their activities are rarely seen on the surface.

They carefully tunnel through the wooden structural in a buildings and completely destroy. Wood that comes in contact with the soil, such as the exterior trim or cladding on your home, provides a perfect point of entry for them.

They can cause damages and impact a huge loss on your property hence signs of termite infestations should not be taken lightly or remedied with do-it-yourself methods to rid termites.

For a successful Professional Termite Control, Termite Specialist, Termite Pest Control Services, Termite Baiting Treatment, we must first understand their behaviour which varies depending on the species.

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URGENT RESPONSE
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Lifecycle, Diet & All

Termite Characteristic

Termite's Lifecycle

When Queens mate, they can lay 6 to 12 eggs after a few days or weeks. Over time, they can lay more eggs with as many as a thousand in just a day.

During the egg stage, they are small, white in colour and oval. Although, they might not be visible to many as they are hidden in the deeper area of a nest. The nymph can take 1 to 2 weeks for the egg. It is still white in colour and almost translucent and undergo a molting process.

Most nymph will fully develop into an adult and become workers. Those who turn into reproductive will eventually develop wings and eyes. Their exterior will also be darker. The overall termite lifecycle takes at least a year to finish.

Termite's Diet

Depending on the kind, each termite have their own preferences when it comes to food sources. For example, drywood termites like wooden structures that are dry. While dampwood and subterranean termites are attracted to wood that is rotting and moist.

In average, one termite colony can finish eating one foot of a 2×4 beam in just six months! Nevertheless, termite damages can be serious no matter how much they eat.

Termite Anatomy

Subterranean is the most common type of termite found in Singapore. Unfortunately, they are also the most destructive. The two most common termite species of subterranean are the Eastern Subterranean, Reticulitermes Flavipes, which can found in the United States, and the Asian Subterranean, Coptotermes Gestroi, which can be found in Southeast Asia.

Drywood from its name require less moisture to survive. They can be found in furniture, door, door frame or even kitchen cabinet. During their swarming season, termite swarms in, looking for a new nest. These flying termite will look for wooden area and will bore a small hole to penetrate the wood.

Although the termite damage is not as extreme compared to the subterranean, it is very difficult to eliminate them. The drywood termite treatments, unfortunately, can only control the drywood termite infestation.

Dampwood only lives in dry wood and they do not need soil and from their name itself, you can understand that they need excessive moisture in the wood to live in. They will find woods or areas that might have any water intrusion to start a colony.

Some of the areas that might be conducive for them are leaking roofs and woods that is touching the ground. Dampwood get inside these holes or cracks and start the infestation.

Dampwood uses their faecal pellets to protect their colony from the air. A wet wood gives them more protection as the faecal pellets will tend to stick together to the side of their gallery. A wood that is dry will not allow this to happen as the faecal pellets will fall off.

Commonly Found Termites In Singapore

Types Of Termites

SUBTERRANEAN TERMITES

Termite Singapore

Length 1-10mm. Creamy white to dark brown/black: Long, narrow and oval body, seldom seen as they live mostly below ground.

DRYWOOD TERMITES

How drywood swarmers look like

Length 1-12mm. Straight antennae, beige white to darker brown/black: Shed veiny wings during swarming. Long, narrow and oval body, often seen wings shed as indication of the search to form a new colony.

DAMPWOOD TERMITES

Dampwood termite In Singapore

Length 1-15mm. Tiny to small, pale, often white insects: head relatively large and round on soft, narrow body. Sometimes called white ants for superficial resemblance to ants, but they are unrelated.

Know The Difference

Termite colony

Dampwood Termite Colony

In a Dampwood colony, there are the reproductive (a king and a queen), soldier and alate (swarmers). They do not have any workers although immature termite will assume the roles of a worker.

The reproductive (king and queen) copulation only in the nest and it will take up to a year before the queen lays its first egg. The number is normally small compared to the others.

The soldiers, with large head and mandibles, protect the colony from any predators such as ants.

The alate (swarmer) has reproductive function and are the only one with a pair of wings. During the mating season, the alate will fly out of their nest to form their own colony. Their mating season is usually during the wet season as this allow them to create a good living condition.

The alate will shed their wings after they land on a suitable location and will start looking for a partner. It will take a few years for the colony to grow before new alate (swarmers) start looking for their new nest.

Drywood Termite Colony

The queen will lay the first eggs. These nymphs include both soldier and reproductive an they do not have a distinct worker caste. They will start feeding across the grain of the infested wood and from tunnel and chambers.

The tunnel is used to push the faecal pellets out of their colony. Due to their nature of keeping the tunnel and chamber clean, you can always find their faecal pellets (dropping) outside their colony.

They are often mistaken for ants during the swarming season. Drywood wings are of the same size for all four while the ants are two on the same size.

There is usually only one pair of primary reproductive which are the king and the queen tasked to grow the size of the colony. Another pair of reproductive, swarmers, will develop and leave the colony after about 3-5 years to start one on their own.

Subterranean species lives in moist, dark and cool places, apart from the king and queen, they are blind and move in mud shelter tubes or mud trails. They are often subtle and can go undetected during the initial infestation.

Subterranean Termite Colony

There are three types of Termite in Singapore in a subterranean termite caste and all the three groups differ in colour. Workers are of cream or milky colour, whereby the Soldiers are of the same body colour but with a brown head. The reproductive, the queen and king, are usually darker in colour than the rest of the colony.

Just like in any well-run underground colony, every group has its own task and responsibility.

Worker’s main job is to feed the colony as the soldiers, king and queen are unable to feed themselves. They rely solely on the worker termite foraging on cellulose found in wood, trees and paper products. They do not have eyes and move around using scents and moisture trails. The reason why you would locate their mud trails/ mud tube when encountering them.

The soldiers are tasked at protecting the colony from any pest intrusion which will mainly be ants or any other termites from another colony. They are equipped with large mandible to ensure that they are able to defend and fight off anything that might harm the colony. The soldiers also are able to discharge white toxic fluid while defending their colony.

Learn To Know When You Need Termite Control

Signs of Termite Infestation

Understand the signs and don’t take them lightly as the damages can cost you a bomb and might even compromise safety. Hiring a pest control company to do a regular termite inspection for your property.

Signs of Subterranean Termite

Signs of Drywood Termite

Frequent Asked Questions About Termite

There are various methods available for getting rid of termite. What is important is to identify the type of termite before using the correct treatment.

For subterranean termite, using termite baiting is the best way to kill them. Read more here.

No they don't. Flying termite main job is to mate and find a new colony to form.

A lot of us will assume that the sound is that of termites eating the wood, however, this is not true. The soldier termites are warning the workers termite by making the sound. This is to alert them that they are under threat.

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