One of the largest group of insects that exist on Earth are termites, who are thought to have been in existence for over 250 million years. Termites are found on nearly any content. The only exception is polar regions due to the low temperatures. With over 2,600 known termites, most know about termites. Though any climate is inhabitable for these tiny insects, they do best in tropic and sub-tropic areas. Termites are considered beneficial insects ecologically because they will consume a huge amount of decaying plant material. There presence can be devastating, however, when they infest homes or business or developed properties because they destroy billions of dollars of year in the wooden structures and furniture including residential and commercial businesses, wooden fences, sheds, and nearly anything made from wood. Though termites are frustrating, they can be interesting and we at A Five Star Termite and Pest Control would like to share some more of the interesting facts concerning termites.
Termite Colony Caste System
In a termite colony, generally, there are workers, swarmers (the reproductive females and males), and soldiers in addition to the nymphs, which are the young termites. In order to perform their specific functions, each caste has different coloring, sizes, and characteristics. Termites are actually closely related to the cockroaches though they have different coloring, sizes, and characteristics. Digested wood, soil, mud, saliva, as well as feces the mounds and tubes are used to live in are built by the workers. In addition to building the nest, the workers will do the maintenance and make any repairs. On record, the largest mound on record was 42 feet tall (which is about the height of a two-story house). The soldiers will protect the mounds, royalty, and colony. When there are dangers, the soldiers will alert the other termites by kicking the mound’s walls. Termites are almost fully blind because the soldiers and workers spend the majority of life in the dark. Because the kings and queens mate and swarm to make new colonies, they can see well. Living between 15 and 25 years, the females lays about one egg every 15 seconds, leading to up to 30,000 eggs a day. The large mounds can accommodate and be built to shelter millions of termites. There is a 1,00 pounds of termites (about the weight of an adult cow), for every human on the planet according to the scientists’ estimation.
Termite Diet & What Animals Eats Termites
Living and decaying wood in addition to some fungus that frequently develops on dying trees is typically the diet of termites. To digest cellulose from the wood, termites require the assistance of intestinal microorganisms. Living the termite’s gut, there are more than 100 different species of bacteria and protozoa. However, termites are not born with these helpful microorganisms in their guts. Termite younglings eat the adult fecal matter for their nutrition and to get the bacteria and protozoa they require. With the tight interaction and the beneficial gain, they have with one another, this is known as symbiosis. Larger bugs, aardvark, aardwolf, birds, pangolin, anteaters, pangolin, and echidna along aardwolf, and echidna are among the top predators for termites. Termites are a special treat to people who enjoy eating termites in some parts of the world also.