Termites are social insects that divide their colony into three different castes with particular responsibilities, these include termite workers, soldiers, and reproductives. Whereas the termite queens are known to be the primary reproductive of a termite colony, along with the king and alates.
Termite queens can be easily distinguished from other termite castes by their size and their role in a colony of termites. They are superior in size and responsible for reproducing eggs to ensure the growth and sustainability of the termite colony.
As the termite queens are known as the originators of termite infestation who can cause great damage to your property, it’s the right time for you to get to know more about the termite queen.
Find the information you’re looking for about the termite queen by clicking one of the commonly asked termite queen-related questions below.
Contact Rentokil if you would like a free quote, or continue below to find out more information about termite queen.
Picture of termite queen
During the early stages of their life, termite queens are flying termites so their appearance reflects those other termites in caste. However, once they have fulfilled their duty of breeding and begin to start a new colony their appearance starts to differ.
Due to the large number of eggs being produced, the termite queen’s abdomen starts to turn translucent and stretches until it reaches the size of a human index finger.
In general, the color of the termite queen will resemble the color of the worker termite caste for certain types of termites. Subterranean termite queens are mostly in light or white colour, yet drywood termite queens are typically yellowish-brown in colour.
The termite queen size can vary depending on the number of eggs they produce. The average length of the termite queen can reach 4 to 6 inches or slightly larger than the size of termite workers in general. The big size of the termite queen makes her unable to move freely and totally dependent on the worker termites assistance.
Termite queens are known to have a long lifespan in comparison to other insects. In general termite queen lifespan from various species can live between 15 - 20 years which makes it become the oldest termite in a colony.
However, one thing that affects the termite queen lifespan is where the termite queen lives. Termite queens who have built nests in relatively populated areas relatively have a shorter lifespan when compared to termite queens who build giant termite nests in the wild and are buried deep in mounds.
Termite queens who live in populated areas such as residential houses tend to get spotted by the homeowners and will be exterminated as soon as the termite control specialist uses the correct method to remove the queen from the colony's nest.
Termite queens is responsible for the survival of termite colony
Believe or not, but termite queens lay a lot of eggs. Termite queen laying eggs on interval basis. They will lay up to 25 eggs in a minute, 30,000 eggs in a single day and more than 11 million eggs that they can produce in a year!
To make matters worse, since a termite queen can live for more than decades, meaning it can end up producing somewhere in the neighborhood of 165 million eggs during her lifetime.
Where does the termite queen live? Termite queen lived down inside the soil and will not move away because their bodies are so distended. Hence to find a termite queen in a huge mound, you have to dig deep into the center to find it. This is the main reason why the termite queen is not visible and very difficult to detect in the outside world as same as the other termite castes, such as the termite workers or soldiers.
In every termite nest, there is a central room which consists of a distended queen termite laying their eggs with the king lives next to her. Together, the pair take care of their young until there are enough workers to take over. The king continues to tend the queen, and the pair can live together in the growing colony for up to 20 years.
Once the worker caste is established, now is the time for them to take over the main role of tending the eggs and ensure the termite queen is kept alive.
Termite worker cleaning the eggs to make sure it's free from bacteria and debris from the soil. They will also take the eggs away to another room or chamber for hatching and bring the foods to the queen and keep her alive and producing eggs.
On the other hand, the queen produces a liquid substance the workers lick off of her to maintain sustenance.
No matter how hard the workers try to maintain the queen’s body, yet she will eventually die as she ages. But that does not mean when one termite queen dies, a termite colony ends.
Some of the eggs laid by the queen can become queens, who can either take over the existing nest or become an alate and build a new nest somewhere else.
The best way to get rid of termite is by eliminating the colonies, including the termite queen.
Rentokil is the expert in termite control for over 50 years across Indonesia. Our extensive knowledge and technical expertise about termites will help you take action against termite infestation in the long term.
Contact Rentokil now for expert knowledge on the termite treatments available to your home or business.