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Australian Wildlife

  Subterranean Termite (Coptotermes acinaciformis)





Subterranean Termite | Coptotermes acinaciformis photo
Soldier of the related Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus), which is not found in Australia

Image by United States Department of Agriculture - License: Public Domain.    (view image details)

Subterranean Termite | Coptotermes acinaciformis photo
Queen termite of the related Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus), which is not found in Australia

Image by United States Department of Agriculture - License: Public Domain.    (view image details)



INSECT FACTS

Identification
Coptotermes acinaciformis is a subterranean termite. These termites are very destructive. Soldier termites produce white milky liquid from their mandibles and are aggressive. They are found underground an avoid the light. They may travel underground up to 100m from the colony in search of food.

Size
Body size 4mm -6mm

Habitat
forest, urban areas with eucalypt gum trees

Food
cellulose from wood

Breeding
Coptotermes acinaciformis build their nest within the base of a tree or underground. A colony may have over a million termites. They also build subsidiary nests away from the main colony. In buildings, subsidiary nests may be built in wall cavities, provided there is access to moisture (e.g. from leaking water pipe).

Range
found throughout Australia except Tasmania

Notes
Coptotermes acinaciformis is highly destructive to buildings and timber structures. This is the most widespread termite pest in Australia, and is responsible for over seventy percent of serious termite damage to buildings. Australia. If you suspect that you have these termites, arrange a termite inspection with a reputable termite exterminator company.



Classification
Class:Insecta
Order:Isoptera
Family:Rhinotermitidae
Genus:Coptotermes
Species:acinaciformis
Common Name:Subterranean Termite

Relatives in same Genus
  Subterranean Termite (C. frenchi)