Flying Ants Vs. Termites

Are the creatures you're seeing in and around your home fly ants vs. termites? It can be hard to tell. After all, these two species of insects can look pretty similar. You don't want to use the wrong treatment on your bug, so it's important to be sure of what you're dealing with before you try to get rid of it. Let's take a look at each of these bugs to help you figure out what you've been seeing.

Identifying Flying Ants Vs. Termites

The first thing you'll want to look at is the antennae on these insects. Termite antennae are straight, while ant antennae are bent and segmented. However, to see this, you'll probably have to catch some bugs and look at them under a magnifying glass. That can be difficult, so here are a few other things you can use to identify whether you have an ant or a termite.

Termites have fairly long wings that are the same length, while flying ants have front wings that are longer than the back wings. Flying ants will appear to have three distinct body segments with very small connections - the head, thorax and abdomen. Termites don't have the identifiable "waist" that ants do, and look like they have just a head and a body. You can see these differences without really getting close to the insects - a handy fact if they tend to take off when you approach.

Remember that either flying ants or termites in the yard, far from your home, don't necessarily indicate an infestation in the house itself. If they're close to the house, though, it might be time to worry. Ants and termites can both infest homes, though termites are more likely to cause structural damage. Some species of ants may also damage homes while creating their colonies, but they are less likely to produce problems on the level that a thriving termite colony can create.

Termite damage can cost thousands of dollars and be difficult to repair, so taking care of a colony of these creatures quickly is extremely important. You'll need to get into contact with a qualified exterminator who can help you with your problems and offer the kind of advice you need. Termite treatment may not be cheap, but it's not something you can put off. Once you've looked at flying ants vs. termites and determined which you have, your next step should be finding out which species of these insects you're dealing with.

There are lots of different kinds of termites and ants in the world. The flying type of each insect is an adult searching for a mate and looking to found a new colony, but the resemblances end there. Termites will be treated differently, depending on which species you're dealing with and where it lives. Some kinds of ants, such as carpenter ants, will also be a real worry. Different chemicals and different strategies are rquired for each of these kinds of insects. That's why comparing flying ants vs termites is so important.

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By Frank Reece. Page last modified Nov. 10, 2008.

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