Termites go through several life cycles, much like many other insects. The first of these life cycles begins with the fertilized termite laying eggs. Termite eggs are small, although they are large enough to be visible to the naked eye. They are white in color, translucent and ovular in shape. A queen’s first clutch will include about two dozen of these eggs, and she will not stop being able to reproduce throughout the span of her long life.
Eggs Not Primary Infestation Indicators
Although an egg is visible to the naked eye, it is not very often actually seen by humans because of where it is usually laid. The queen’s preferred location is in more sheltered locations such as the interior of walls or in deep underground nests impervious to outside detection. It is true enough that termite eggs alone can indicate a problem with these creatures in a home, and that their eradication is critical to the extermination of the colony as a whole. However, even with this being the case, experts do not look at the presence of termite eggs as a primary indicator of an active infestation.
Key things to look for to denote infestation are winged adult termites and the presence of mud tunnels or sawdust (although even the presence of sawdust can be misunderstood and can also indicate the presence of other creatures). A careful inspector will not come to hasty conclusions and will work to discover definitive evidence of an active infestation. But even with this being said, any signs of pest activity in and around your home warrant a call to your local termite control authority. Do not wait until damage has become severe to act. Respond early and get a professional out to evaluate the situation for you and work toward a solution.
Queen’s Job to Reproduce
In a colony, the queen’s focus is on reproduction. Depending on the specific location of the colony and the species involved, membership can number well into the millions. When a colony becomes mature, winged reproductives in warm humid weather begin to exit the nest to find locations for a new colony. Once a new colony is established, the whole process begins all over again. The termite eggs play an indirect role in the destruction colonies do to a home. Once they become larvae, they are fed continuously by workers bringing back food. This pattern of feeding causes tremendous and rapid damage to wood structures in and around the home.
Workers Care for Termite Eggs
The termite life cycle begins when a queen hatches a clutch of eggs. These eggs are completely cared for by the workers in the colony. This pattern continues into their larvae stage until they become adults themselves. Once termite eggs hatch, the resultant larvae soon develop into one of three distinct groups as adults: reproductives, workers, or soldiers.
Hundreds of termite eggs can be laid every day by the queen, meaning the perpetuation of the colony proceeds in clockwork fashion. Each caste of the colony has a job and does it tirelessly. The workers take care of the termite young, build the nests, and also feed soldiers and reproductives as well as the newly hatched larvae. The soldiers defend the colony against outside threats, while the reproductives eventually set out to form new colonies.
The life cycle of the termite is really quite remarkable. To think that all of the different creatures were at one time just an egg hatched by a queen and cared for by a worker is very interesting indeed. Life cycles ensure a colony’s perpetuation.