|Formosan termites swarm around a streetlight in Metairie, |
LA on May 22, 2013. (Mark Schleifstein, NOLA.com | The
While I know of no Texas community that experiences Formosan termites to the same degree as New Orleans, these termites are established in many locations in Texas. So all Texas PMPs should be familiar with what to look for.
|Coptotermes alates (swarmers) are yellowish to orange in|
color and larger than Reticulitermes species.
- Look for termites that swarm at night rather than in the day. Our native subterranean termites, the Reticulitermes species, are daytime swarmers; Coptotermes and some of our native drywood termites (Incisitermes) swarm at night.
- Coptotermes termites are larger (body 6-8 mm) than Reticulitermes (body 3-5 mm) and are a pale yellow to orange color. Both Reticulitermes and Incisitermes can have dark (reddish brown to black) bodies.
- Coptotermes wings are distinctive. They have two strong veins along the leading edge of the forewing, similar to Reticulitermes. But where Reticulitermes wings are hairless, Coptotermes wings are covered with many hairs. Incisitermes have four major veins at the base of the forewing, and multiple branches between the leading veins in the forewing.
|Coptotermes wings have two very prominent veins along the|
leading edge of the forewing. The entire wing is covered with
very fine hairs visible under 12X to 25X magnification.
|Reticulitermes wings have two stronger veins along the|
leading edge of the forewing. Other wing veins, however, are
also prominent and there are no noticeable hairs on the wing
|Incisitermes forewings have four branching veins at the base.|
The forth vein has multiple branches along its length. Some
species have dark wings.