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TERMITES
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TERMITES



Termites are detritivores, so they live off dead or decaying plant matter, which includes cellulose-based materials such as wooden door frames, flooring, furniture and even books. There are a number of different species in Myanmar, but one of the most common and destructive is the Subterranean termite (Coptotermes spp).

Coptotermes spp. pose a significant threat to any property, because they live and thrive inside wooden structures, showing very few signs of damage on the surface. Termites feed for 24 hours a day without sleeping and have been found to forage as far as 100 metres away from their colony. Their small size, large numbers and eating power make early detection and preventative measures an important part of protecting your home or business.

SUBTERRANEAN TERMITES (Coptotermes, Macrotermes)

APPEARANCE:

The worker termites measure about 5mm in length, and are a whitish colour, while the soldiers are a similar size but with brown heads and larger mandibles. The winged males and females are larger, measuring about 12-15mm in length, with 4 large veined wings. This species is commonly referred to as ‘white ants’.

BIOLOGY AND BEHAVIOUR:

Subterranean termites create and live in nests, which are, as their name suggests, usually underground. Occasionally, however, they may build nests within buildings. Inside the nests are many workers (that fetch food, feed the immature stages, and construct the nest), but also soldiers (which defend the nest), queens (which lay eggs), and males (which mate with the queen). At the start of the monsoon season, each nest commonly produces many winged males and queens, called Alates, which swarm out of the nest to mate and search for new nesting sites.

The queen lays up to several thousand eggs every day, and can live for 5 years or more. The eggs hatch into termite nymphs, and large nests can eventually contain up to a million termites.

Termites feed only on wood and other cellulose related materials such as dead leaves, paper and cardboard.




SIGNS IMPACT PREVENTION
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MUD TUBES – Check the external footings of the building regularly for mud tubes running along the surface of brickwork or concrete plinths, and check structural timber work for signs of damage or hollowing. The underground nests of these termites are not usually visible at the surface.

For more signs of termites, see our termite control page.

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The feeding of termites on timber parts of buildings can cause serious structural damage. At the very least, this may require replacement of window or door frames, and at worst, this could lead to the collapse of timber buildings.

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If subterranean termite activity is detected. Call a professional pest control service to inspect and treat as soon as possible, before the infestation spreads to other areas.

For more information about termite prevention and treatment, please see our termite control page.

DRYWOOD TERMITES (Cryptotermes spp. and Incisitermes spp.)

APPEARANCE:

Drywood worker termites are almost identical to subterranean termites in length and appearance. The differences lie with the soldiers and alates (reproductives). Dry wood soldiers are larger than their subterranean counterparts, with greater mandibles and and wider pronotum (protective plate of thorax). The alates have two pairs of scaled wings with a distinctive pattern of pigmented veins on the front wing.

BIOLOGY AND BEHAVIOIR

Drywood termites live entirely within dry wood and don’t require any connection to soil. Drywood termites are far less dependent of external moisture sources than subterranean termites. In fact, large amounts of moisture can wipe out colonies. They live entirely on wood and other cellulose-based materials and can be easily identified by faecal pellets.

 

 

 




SIGNS IMPACT PREVENTION
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FAECAL PELLETS – The easiest way to identify Drywood termites is the presence of small mounds of faecal pellets by the side of wooden materials. Drywood termites extract as much moisture as possible from their droppings to conserve water, producing distinctive hexagonal pellets. Termites remove the pellets from their tunnels producing small mounds outside of their colonies. These are often seen on window sills.

For more signs of termites, please see our termite control page.

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Like subterranean termites, drywood termites can cause considerable damage to wooden structures. If not treated, termites can eat their way through timber buildings, resulting in building collapse and damaged furniture.

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If drywood termite activity is detected. Call a professional pest control service to inspect and treat as soon as possible, before the infestation spreads to other areas.

For more information about termite prevention and treatment, please see our termite control page.

DAMPWOOD TERMITES (Zootermopsis spp. and Neotermes spp.)

APPEARANCE:

Dampwood termites are larger than both drywood and subterranean termites. The soldiers have large multi-toothed mandibles and can grow up to 20mm in length. The alates can grow up to 25mm in length.

BIOLOGY AND BEHAVIOUR:

Dampwood termites as the name suggests, prefer to live in damp, decaying timber. There are no worker termites in dampwood colonies, immature soldier termites carry out the tasks usually performed by worker termites in other colonies. Colonies are small and concentrated and are very rarely found in the soil.




SIGNS IMPACT PREVENTION
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FAECAL PELLETS – Dampwood termites use their faecal pellets to block air gaps in their galleries. If the colony is in dryer wood, then they may push out their faecal pellets, which can then be seen outside of the nest.

For more signs of termites, please see our termite control page.

Javelin Services Limited

The feeding of termites on timber parts of buildings can cause serious structural damage. At the very least, this may require replacement of window or door frames, and at worst, this could lead to the collapse of timber buildings.

Javelin Services Limited

Dampwood termites heavily rely on moisture. Leaky plumbing, decaying wood, poor rainwater drainage or leaking roofs are all factors that could encourage an infestation and therefore should be addressed as soon as possible.

If dampwood termite activity is detected. Call a professional pest control service to inspect and treat as soon as possible, before the infestation spreads to other areas.

For more information about termite prevention and treatment, please see our termite control page.

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