We Respond Like EVERY Call Is An Emergency

How Are Termites Able to Eat Wood?

Posted on March 12th, 2018 by Knockout Pest

termites eat wood because of what's in their stomach

We all know how terrible termite infestations can be.

They cause nothing but damage and could cost you thousands of dollars in repairs. Not too mention how difficult they can be to remove from your home or business without the help of a local pest control company.

But there’s one thing a lot of people wonder when they see or hear about termites — how are they able to eat and digest wood?

The Termite Gut

The reason termites are able to eat and digest wood is because of their gut. The microorganisms found in the gut of a termite have not been seen in any other animal, which means it is completely unique to the termite.

There are over 5,000 different species of microbe (AKA the microorganisms) in the gut, each with thousands of copies. These many species of microbe work to digest the wood they eat and the air they breathe, turning the final product into sugar and protein.

Why So Many Microbes?

You may be wondering why each termite has so many different species of microbe in their gut if they all work to digest their food?

It’s still unknown what each microbe’s job is, so this is something that has left many scientists scratching their heads.

It is known that termites eat many different types of wood, which means they need many different microbes to help break down each one. On top of that, they aren’t limited to eating just wood — they also consume soil, grass, leaf litter, and soil.

Termites Eat Each Other

Termites work together when they’re in the same colony. On the other hand, when termites of two different colonies meet each other near a piece of wood, they will fight each other till death!

Soldier termites (and sometimes workers) will fight each other, with the loser being cut open and having its guts ingested by the winner. The winning termite will now have new microbes introduced into its gut.

Learning more about termites is important. Because in order to defeat your enemy, you must know your enemy.

And if you need help defeating your enemy, we can help you — because we know them better than anyone!

Knockout is a proud member of the following trade organizations

IFMA

Founded in 1980, IFMA is the world's largest and most widely recognized international association for facility management professionals, supporting 24,000 members in 104 countries.

This diverse membership participates in focused component groups equipped to address their unique situations by region (133 chapters), industry (15 councils) and areas of interest (six communities). Together they manage more than 78 billion square feet of property and annually purchase more than US$526 billion in products and services.

BOMA

The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International is a federation of 91 BOMA U.S. associations and 18 international affiliates. Founded in 1907, BOMA represents the owners and managers of all commercial property types including nearly 10.5 billion square feet of U.S. office space that supports 1.7 million jobs and contributes $234.9 billion to the U.S. GDP.

NPMA

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA), a non-profit organization with more than 7,000 members from around the world, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property. This commitment is reflected both in the continuing education of pest management professionals and the dissemination of timely information to homeowners and businesses.

NYPMA

The NYPMA is The Voice for pest management companies all throughout New York State. Becoming a member could be one of the best possible investments you’ll ever make for your business. Not only will you have the backing of the New York Pest Management Association behind your company, but you’ll also get listed locally within our directory. This is a big plus for consumers or businesses looking for a legitimate pest management provider they can trust.

CAI

CAI provides information, education and resources to the homeowner volunteers who govern communities and the professionals who support them. CAI members include association board members and other homeowner leaders, community managers, association management firms and other professionals who provide products and services to associations.

GreenPro

GreenPro, the world’s largest and most credible green certification program for pest management professionals, recognizes companies within our industry that are committed to providing commercial and residential customers with reduced risk, comprehensive, and effective pest control services.

Customer Reviews

The final icon, in blue and white, closely similar to the original version but with the body foregrounded, and wheel cutouts to suggest motion.