What Does a Termite Colony Do in the Fall?

Do termites hibernate in the fall? Don’t bet your pumpkin-flavored latte on it.

termites

Like bears or groundhogs, several insects hibernate, or overwinter, once trees start dropping their colorful fall leaves. What about a termite colony? Do termites hibernate?

Unfortunately for home and business owners, termites do not settle down for a long sleep when Mother Nature starts showing off her autumn hues.

So what does a termite colony do during the fall? And do you have to worry about swarming termites this autumn?

Termite behavior in the fall

There’s no rest for the weary when it comes to a termite colony. All species of termites are active in the fall and winter. However, they may be less visible in your home or office building. Why? Well, termites prefer warmer temperatures and nest in the soil. In fact, they’ll nest about 25 to 30 feet deep where the soil temperature is typically a consistent 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

If your home or office offers a termite colony all it needs in terms of temperature, water and wood, workers will happily go about their jobs inside throughout the cooler fall and winter months. It’s not likely that you will see the worker termites of the colony that may be busily working year-round inside the wood in your home. During cooler weather however, the swarming termites that are usually seen in the spring are still getting ready for their big day.

Should you expect swarming termites in fall?

Termite swarmers typically begin swarming in spring or summer. However, the exact timing of swarming termites depends on the weather and the maturity of the termite colony.

In order for termite swarming to occur, there has to be a combination of conditions. It’s possible for swarming to occur any time of the year, and there are even some species of termites that routinely swarm in the fall. It also depends on what part of the country you’re in, as well as the species of termites and the environmental conditions that exist in your area.

During swarming, mature termites — appropriately called “swarmers” — will fly off to mate and form new termite colonies. And there’s no set age at which termites mature, nor do they only mature in spring or summer. So can termite swarming occur in fall? Absolutely. Additionally, large colonies may split up into multiple new colonies. This is called “budding.”

This autumn, remember that falling leaves don’t necessarily mean you can decrease your vigilance when it comes to termites. Lessen your chances of unpleasant surprises by maintaining termite control methods and setting up a free termite inspection.

In addition, keep an eye out for indicators of an infestation, such as dropped wings and termite mud tubes. If you see any of these warning signs, contact a termite control specialist to set up a pest control plan that can take care of immediate problems and protect your home or office in the future.

 

 

Sources:

North Carolina State University

What Happens to Termites in the Winter 

 

 

 

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