TERMITES

#Termites mostly feed on dead plant material, generally in the form of leaf litter, wood, soil, or animal dung. These pests that can cause serious structural damage to buildings, crops or orchards. Termites live in colonies that number from several hundred to several million individuals. Termite colonies contain young, workers, soldiers, and reproductive individuals of both genders, sometimes containing several egg-laying queens. Worker termites undertake the labors of foraging, food storage, brood, and nest maintenance. In Southern California, the worker termites are the ones most likely to be found in infested wood. The worker termites feed the other members of the colony with substances derived from the digestion of plant material.

Termites are grouped according to their feeding behavior. Commonly used general groupings are: Subterranean, Soil-feeding, Dry wood, Damp wood, and Grass-eating. Subterranean termites and dry wood termites are primarily responsible for damage to human-made structures and the most common termites in California.

Because of their wood-eating habits, termites can do great damage to buildings and other wooden structures in Southern California. Their habit of remaining concealed often results in their presence being undetected until the timbers are severely damaged and exhibit surface changes. Once termites have entered a building they do not limit themselves just to wood, they also eat paper, cloth, carpets and other cellulose based materials. Termites usually avoid exposure to unfavorable environmental conditions. They tend to remain hidden in tunnels in earth and wood. Shelter tubes are created when this isn't possible. These shelter tubes will extend for many feet, such as up the outside of a tree reaching from the soil to dead branches