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Termite Lifecycle

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An insect that is often confused with ants consumes wood and lives in a nest or colony. These great survivors create by burrowing into the ground or into wooden structures to feed on cellulose. The lifecycle plays a crucial role in understanding these invading pests.

Termites include several species, prominently found in tropical rainforests and surviving for more than 120 million years.

Let us look at the life cycle of a termite to get a better understanding:

Life Cycle of a Termite:

The lifecycle of a termite has four stages:

The Egg- Stage 1:

The female termite lays her eggs after fertilization in a jelly-like liquid, holding the eggs together. It can lay around 30,000 eggs in a single day. The eggs are a small and white color noticed through a naked eye.

Before the eggs hatch into larvae, they are, incubated for several weeks.

The Nymph – Stage 2:

The Nymphs are pale, white with tiny exoskeletons which have antennae and six functional legs. During this stage, the nymph through instar stages and gets matured by molting. They shed their outer skin as they become very tight in molting.

Later these termites turn to be bigger and developed. Termites reach sexual maturity after they undergo several instars.

The Adult – Stage 3:

Termites form large colonies when segregated by class or caste at the adult stage. Termite colonies include workers, reproductive, and soldier termites.

  • Worker Termites:

The termite insects mostly develop into worker termites which is the largest termite colony. Worker termites are greater than nymphs with no eyes and legs. They are nearly yellowish to cream in color and feeds independently.

  • Soldier termites:

Soldier termites are the second largest colony that comes after worker termites. Soldier termites work towards guarding the nest and able to defend themselves. They have mouthparts specially designed for defense purposes. When encountered with an enemy, they release a toxic substance through their nozzle. These sterile and blind termites are active kinds of termites.

  • Reproductive Alate:

Reproductive Alates, also known as swarmers, appear to be golden to dark brown. The king and the queen termites can only reproduce in termite colonies. Alates are bigger than soldiers and, workers where the other species of alates appear to be reddish-brown.

  • King Termite:

A male alate just finished mating, who does not change its size after becoming the king of a colony is called the King termite.

  • Queen Termite:

The queen termites are the reproductive alates that become much larger than king termites. As she grows older, the ovaries of queen termites develop continuously. The abdomen gets swollen with time and lays a large number of eggs.

Wrapping Up

Homeowners are concerned with the damage caused by termite infestations. Worker termites may damage wooden structures. Some species may damage the standing trees and wooden furniture stored in the attic. Contact the pest control experts and request the termite protection plan that can lessen these concerns.


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