Eastern Subterranean Termite (worker)
Scientific Name: Reticulitermes flapites/ Eastern subterranean termite
Eastern subterranean termites are social insects that live in large colonies. There are three castes: reproductives, workers, and soldiers. Termite antennae have bead-like segments. The winged reproductives or “swarmers”, have a pair of long, equally sized wings attached to the last two thoracic segments. The wings fall off after swarming. The abdomen is broadly jointed at the thorax, unlike the narrow abdominal segment found on ants. The winged reproductives are dark brown to almost black and about 3/8” long. The soldier and worker termites are wingless cream-colored insects that avoid daylight and are often identified in wood or soil. Soldier termites can easily be distinguished from worker termites by their rectangular yellow-brown heads which are twice as long as their width, and have has large toothless mandibles.