Termites have a terrible reputation that strikes fear into the hearts of the owners of residential and commercial property owners almost everywhere. While it can be tough to look beyond their destructive appetites, these insects are actually intriguing creatures. How much do you really know about termites? Here are a few fun facts to spark your curiosity.
A Global Phenomenon
With more than 2,500 species of termites in the world, it's not surprising that these industrious insects are found on almost every continent. While different species prefer different conditions, termites are not fond of low temperatures, so there are no termites in Antarctica. Roughly 40 species are found in the United States. In fact, subterranean termites are found in every state except Alaska.
In for a Penny
Termites are often called silent invaders because they slip into buildings and feast on wood and other similar materials unnoticed. How do they manage it? Their ability to squeeze through even tiny gaps in a structure's building envelope helps. Some termites can gain entry through cracks that are roughly the width of a penny.
Termites may be best-known for their taste for wood, but there are several species that turn the tables on these insects and use them for a food source. Anteaters, pangolins, aardvarks, echidnas, aardwolves, birds, other bugs and people all munch on termites. In Singapore, termite queens are regarded as a delicious treat. They're often served up either live or preserved in rice wine.
Medicine From the Amazon
In some regions of the Amazon, termites are thought to have medicinal properties. Some prescribe a hot, sugar-sweetened serving of boiled termite soup to cure whooping cough. For those fighting the flu, a prescription to inhale the smoke from a burning termite nest might be the healer's recommendation.
Nearly as Quick as a Blink
Termite colonies can be incredibly large with populations numbering in the millions thanks to their speedy reproduction capabilities. Consider this. On average, people tend to blink every five seconds or so. Termite queens lay one egg every 15 seconds. That's one egg for every three blinks, and it adds up to some 30,000 eggs a day. A queen's lifespan can stretch up to 25 years, so it's easy to see why the sight of even one termite should worry homeowners.
Are termites a concern for you? If you suspect termites are threatening your residential or commercial property, don't wait, and contact Flexible Pest Services. Serving the owners of homes and businesses in and around Atlanta, Georgia, we take pride in delivering top-notch professional pest control with personal service. Our highly trained team is ready to rid your property of termites and other troublesome pests. To learn more about our services or request a free estimate, call us today.