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Top-view illustration of a termite.
Side-view illustration of a termite.
A piece of wood destroyed by termites.
Several termites crawling along a piece of wood.

General Information

Termites eat wood and can cause significant and expensive damage to your home. That’s why it’s important to contact a termite control specialist right away to help protect your home if you suspect an infestation. Find out what termites look like, where they live, and how to help get rid of termites.

  • Termites are social creatures that live in colonies. A termite colony may have hundreds, thousands, or even millions of these wood-eating pests.

  • Large colonies of subterranean termites working together can build impressive nest mounds that may reach 20 feet (six meters) high.


  • Termites are often confused with swarming ants, but termites have wings that are light in color and much longer than their bodies.

  • Termites also have a thick waist, whereas ants have more of a thread-like waist.

  • Subterranean termites nest in the soil for moisture and come above ground for wood. They will often traverse open areas using “mud tubes” to protect themselves from dehydration.

  • Drywood termites live in the wood they eat and can nest in house foundations, rafters, furniture, and even books without going back to the soil for moisture.

  • Termites enter your home looking for wood to eat and nest in.

  • By feeding on the wood in your home, termites can cause very expensive damage and destroy structural and decorative wood.

  • Keep firewood, lumber, and stumps away from the foundation of your home.

  • Routinely check sheds, decks, porches, and wooden fencing for damage. You may have termites if the wood sounds hollow when tapped.

  • A common warning sign of an active termite infestation is small mud tubes on the exterior of wooden beams, walls, and cinder blocks.

  • If you suspect you have an infestation, call a reputable termite control expert for an inspection and quote.

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