Termites are insects that any homeowner fears. These social creatures, like ants, are divided into groups of workers, warriors, and those responsible for reproduction. Insects are usually white, growing no more than a centimeter in length. A distinctive feature of termites is their love of cellulose. Insects eat it in one form or another. Although it is not easy to digest food, it is rich in energy. As a result, termites become pests, a real horror for humans.
The annual losses from the activity of termites worldwide are up to $ 20 billion. Some myths about them will be debunked.
Termites are relatives of ants. Ants belong to the order Hymenoptera; wasps, bees, wasps, and sawflies can be considered their relatives. But termites are a separate group of insects. She separated from cockroaches in the Triassic period. Some cockroaches have a termitic microflora in their intestines. They also have a primitive look, similar to cockroaches. Despite the fact that termites are called "white ants" in Australia, it is absolutely pointless to fight against them by the same means as against the ants themselves. Insects are actually completely different. Some scientists prefer to classify termites as cockroaches.
Termites die out if wood disappears in the area. When termites are unable to stay in the same place due to lack of food, they simply begin to move to a new place in search of a food source. Food can also be found in the soil, which then becomes the basis for the home. So when moving to a dwelling built on land cleared of trees, it is still worth checking the area for termites.
Termites can gnaw through concrete. Termites can indeed be strong, but not that strong. It's just that these insects are trying to find loopholes through cracks in concrete. And after one termite has passed, numerous brothers will follow. It will be difficult for an ordinary person to notice small cracks; the help of a professional inspector will be needed.
A brick house on a concrete slab protected from termites. Usually all houses have a timber frame. A brick house planted on a concrete slab is not safe in itself. Regardless of how the tree is separated from the soil, termites can find their way up from the ground. Cracks usually help get to the coveted wood.
Termites can be pushed aside to neighbors. Some reproach neighbors for defeating termites and driving them to another site. In fact, the colonies of these insects are huge. Several houses in a neighborhood can be located within the same family. Infection with termites in one house may indicate that they will also be present in another, neighboring one. But termites do not gather in a group to cross the toxic chemical barrier and move to the nearest area. Neighbors have absolutely nothing to complain about.
Termites are absolutely useless. They are just pests. Insects are natural processors, destroying dry forest and converting it into nutrient soil. This helps new trees grow. So termites actively participate in the ecosystem.
Pre-construction termite protection measures will permanently protect the home. Termites are not guaranteed for 20 years. Most methods provide protection for only one year, with some additional options. Some environmental factors, materials used in the house and the quality of the protective work performed affect the warranty period for termite protection.
Termites do not eat wood in homes if rotting wood is nearby. The fact that rotting wood is easier to chew does not mean that there are no termites in a structured wood home. Insects are constantly looking for new food sources, including as a potential pantry for their colony, as a means of defense.
Termites can be killed by spraying poison on the ground or other surfaces outside the home. Termites live in huge colonies. To get rid of them, you need to destroy the entire family, including the queen, as the main womb. In the fight against termites, you cannot fight only with individual individuals, spraying poisons on the ground.
Termites can be defeated on their own. Initiative is good, but not on such a difficult issue. Doing yourself with poisons can affect the health of family members or pets. To treat termites at home, you will need specialized equipment. Some devices help identify insects, while others actually eliminate them. In countries where termites are a problem, specialist firms suggest that they start fighting them before construction begins. And in an already finished home, you can professionally resist them.
Termites are polygamous creatures. Termites stand out for their cutting edge family organization. Despite the fact that millions of individuals live in the colonies, the insect creates one pair for itself for life. And unlike ants and bees, this is really a marriage union - some couples interbred for years. True, there are some types in which family life is poor. In Zootermopsis nevadensis, about half of the couples go through a “divorce”. Most often, the female seduces someone else's partner, then the rejected halves often converge with each other.
All termites eat wood. Workers are engaged in wood grinding. Already processed porridge goes through the mouth or back to feed the rest of the colony. Such creatures are "cows" whose multi-chambered stomachs are just adapted for processing food. And dozens of varieties of microbes help in this.
Termites are not edible. It turns out that in the cooking of many peoples, termites are a popular product. Indeed, insects contain a lot of protein, 75% more than rump steak. The Amazonian Indians make barbecues from insects, roast them with their own juice, and pound them for seasoning. And in Nigeria, even termites bouillon cubes are sold.
There are few termites in nature. The excellent social structure allowed termites to become successful in the animal kingdom, just like ants. If representatives of all 2600 species of termites are brought together, then they will make up a tenth of the entire biomass of the Earth. This is even more than the weight of all people. A diet based on wood fibers causes termites to release massive amounts of methane, 11% of the total on the planet. Even cows and sheep were left behind by this indicator.
Termites build their dwellings in height. Termite mounds are the aboveground part of the colony's dwelling. It is created from clay, sand, wood chips and other natural materials. All this is held together by the saliva of workers. Termites are constantly building up their home. It can grow up to five meters in height, but the most famous specimen generally reaches 12.8 meters. Nevertheless, the underground part is even more impressive. Deep mines are being built under the tower, they can go up to 30 meters deep, although scientists believe that 70 meters is not the limit for termites.