Asian Subterranean Termites
Appearance and Size Facts
- Asian subterranean termite alates are caramel to brownish-yellow in color on the underside of the body, while the top side of the body is a dark brown to black coloration.
- They have tiny hairs covering the entire body and wings, which are kept after swarming for a longer period of time than most other termites.
- Look similar to their cousins, the Formosan subterranean termite; however, the Formosan subterranean termite alate has a distinct caramel coloration on the entire body that cannot be confused with a Asian subterranean termite alate.
- Size: Swarmers are about 1/2 inch in length, including the wings.
Behavior and Habitat of Asian Subterranean Termites
Asian termites have expansive underground colonies, surpassing the sizes of other subterranean termite species. They also build mud carton nests in the walls of a structure. These nests may contain tens of thousands of termites and can hold enough moisture for them during dry periods.
Signs of Infestation of Asian Subterranean Termites
Look out for swarms and broken off wings as signs of a mature colony. Earthen mud tubes may also be visible around baseboards, doors, windows, and other wooden items inside of the structure. On the exterior or inside of crawl spaces, look for earthen mud tubes coming up from the ground, attaching to wooden beams, concrete blocks, or pillars.
Tips for Prevention of Asian Subterranean Termites
Avoid water accumulation near your home’s foundation by reducing humidity in crawl spaces with proper ventilation and diverting water away with properly functioning downspouts, gutters, and splash blocks. Never bury wood scraps or waste lumber in the yard and make sure to eliminate wood contact with the soil. Maintain at least a 1 inch gap between the soil and wood portions of the building. Terminate stucco or siding at least 3-4 inches above grade for proper inspection of termite activity. Pull mulch and other debris away from the house at least 1-2 inches for proper inspection, as well as to reduce general household pests from harboring or entering the structure. Elimination of termites from structures is best left up to professional pest management companies, such as Hulett Environmental Services.