Termite Habitats

picture of a queen termite

Preferred Habitat

The Mid-Atlantic’s most common termite species, the Eastern Subterranean Termite, lives in dark, damp areas like dead trees and soil. These insects need a source of moisture to survive as well as plenty of wood cellulose to eat. In proper conditions, colonies can grow to hundreds of thousands of members.

Where Do Termites Live in Yards?

Location
Where termites live on a property depends on their species. The subterranean variety mostly forages and have their nests underground. On occasion, moist wood can provide a suitable termite habitat for a surface colony.

Nest Appearance
Nests in soil sit about 4 to 18 inches below the ground and feature many chambers connected by tunnels. Unlike an ant colony, no visible mound marks the entrance to this type of termite nest.

Range
While termite queens and soldiers rarely leave the nest, workers and alates expand the colony’s reach. Workers may move out in all directions for over 300 feet, creating mud tubes to connect the nest to food sources. Alates mate and begin new colonies elsewhere on the property.

Do Termites Live Indoors?

When termite workers locate a home, they feed on wood inside beams and boards. Warm, humid areas near hot water pipes or condensation attracts them, though the insects may target any timber in the house from floor joists to window frames.

While they spend a great deal of time in homes, generally, subterranean termites do not live in structural wood. Instead, they gather food and bring it back to their outdoor colonies.

Problems and Control

Because the termites that infest homes don’t actually live there, control can be a challenge. Getting rid of pests inside the house does not target the nest or stop termites from coming back. As a result, spot treating infested lumber is not enough.

Addressing these insects requires a pest professional to locate termite habitats and treat the true source of the problem. The specialists at Western Pest Services have the training to deal with termites where they live.