Believe it or not, the term White-ant is a common name for Termites (Group: Isoptera) in Sydney Australia. These insects are in fact more like social cockroaches, rather than ants which work in societies similar to bees and wasps.
Termites have been identified in around 2500 + Sub-Species, which are a fundamental part of our ecosystem, and in most cases are hidden to the human eye as a lot of their workings go unnoticed (mainly underground or within walls). These insects aid in the digestion of wood which in turn help clean up our forests and make way for new plants and insects to thrive on.
Many termite species in Australia have, passed on, special gut organisms that help these insects to break down cellulose from wood consumption into sugars that can be further digested.
Termites have generally only one king/queen which generally are the only ones to reproduce within the colony. However, these insects can multiply rapidly with up to a thousands of eggs laid daily. Furthermore some species of Termites have been known for their Queens to live around 20 years, and have other Queens take over their role if they die.
The life cycle phase of a Termite undergoes and incomplete metamorphosis with three phases:
Not all Termites are considered to be wood eaters, with some consuming grass and other dead/rotting foliage. It is however concerning for Termites which do consume wood that have potentially invaded homes.
It is understood that world wide, around US$50 billion dollars are spent annually on damage which termites have caused. These include fallen roofs, damaged walls and timbers throughout the structure of domestic households.
If you feel like your home has been invaded by Termites of see any noticeable suspicion of damage. Contact the friendly team here at Quality Pest Management & Solutions to help resolve your problem with a free quote: www.qpms.com.au or 0423 698 894.
It is strongly recommended that you conduct yearly Termite inspections on your home to help prevent and identify and potential damage before it becomes too late. By doing this you prevent and save more on your investment by having replace and repair structural damaged timbers in your home once it is too late.
1. Korb, J. (2007). Termites. Current Biology, 17(23), pp.R995-R999.