Flying Termites or Flying Ants. 3 Ways to Know Your Need a Termite Inspection.

Nov 01, 2014

For most homeowners, a pest is a pest. But for proper termite treatment, knowing the difference between two similar looking pests is key to remediation. Especially when both have a very similar appearance, as is the case of flying ants and flying termites. Because knowing the difference, can mean your house.

In this blog, we’ll outline the key similarities and differences of these two similar (in appearance) pests with three keys to be aware of.



1. Antenna Shape

Any easy way of telling the difference between the two insects is to take a close look at their antenna. The difference is obvious once you know what to look for.

Carpenter (flying) ants have a bent, or kinked antenna.

Termites have straight, short antenna.

2. Body and Form

Every insect’s body can be broken into three parts, with the thorax in the back, the abdomen in the center, and the head at the front. So a good way of telling the difference between ants and termites is to look at their body, because an ant’s body is obviously segmented in three parts, a feature that is not apparent in termites.

3. Wings

Last, we’ll take a look at the wings. Both termites and ants have two pairs of wings. One in the front near the head, and one in the back by the thorax. When extended, a termite’s wings are the same length in both front and back. Whereas on ants, the back wings are much shorter than the front.

If you can’t get a glimpse of them with their wings open, another way to tell the difference is to note the color. Ants wings are a muddy brown, and a termite’s wings are white/translucent.

The key to fixing the problem is in the details. Happy identifying!

For help with your termite problem, please contact us for a free estimate. We have been providing our customers in the San Francisco Bay Area & Oakland area with the best, most professional termite solution services since 1991.

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