Although most of us only think of termites as pests, they are actually very fascinating insects. Termites have been around for millions of years, and they are a very important part of Earth’s ecological system. There are over 2,300 different species of termites located throughout the world, and the U.S. is home to 41 of those species. Whether they live colonies buried deep underground or nestled in timber, termites exhibit many extraordinary behaviors. The following are some interesting termite facts you may not know.
The Hive Mind
Termites are highly social insects that all work together for the greater good of the colony. While the lifespan of the average termite is only a few years, termite queens can live for 15 years or more, and termite colonies can exist for decades. Each termite serves a specific function within the colony – as a soldier, worker or reproductive. Soldiers protect the colony from invaders, while workers gather food for the colony and reproductives lay eggs to produce more termites that will ensure the colony’s survival.
Among the most interesting termite facts is that these incredible insects actually communicate with each other by means of a highly advanced system of chemical cues. Termites leave special chemical scents called “pheromones” to communicate within the colony. Pheromone trails are left throughout the colony to guide other workers, leading them to food sources and other reserves necessary for the colony’s survival. These pheromones are distinct to each individual colony. In addition, soldiers alert other termites to potential danger by banging their heads against the walls of the colony. This sends vibrations throughout the colony that serve as a warning to other termites that a threat is looming.
The fact is that termites are highly intelligent insects – which is why they pose such a threat when it comes to your home. Call (877) 556-4131 today to learn some more interesting termite facts or to receive information regarding the professional termite treatment available at ACTION Termite Control.