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How do you keep termites?


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#1 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 7:24 AM

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You can keep termites?



#2 Offline Nare - Posted May 22 2020 - 8:46 AM

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You can, and it's actually not super difficult. You can find more information here, including links to guides and such. Considering you're in New England, there'll be only one species in your area, Reticulitermes flavipes, which is pretty easy to keep. As you go farther south, termite diversity explodes, as does (potentially) keeping difficulty. Problem is, there aren't many people in Central / South America, Africa and South / Southeast Asia that keep termites that I can actually contact, so lots of the species there and their care is still a mystery to me.


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#3 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 9:25 AM

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You can, and it's actually not super difficult. You can find more information here, including links to guides and such. Considering you're in New England, there'll be only one species in your area, Reticulitermes flavipes, which is pretty easy to keep. As you go farther south, termite diversity explodes, as does (potentially) keeping difficulty. Problem is, there aren't many people in Central / South America, Africa and South / Southeast Asia that keep termites that I can actually contact, so lots of the species there and their care is still a mystery to me.

Wow cool! I've already found huge colonies of termites under rocks in my yard. Are these the type of termites that will eat through wood?


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#4 Online AntsDakota - Posted May 22 2020 - 9:43 AM

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You can, and it's actually not super difficult. You can find more information here, including links to guides and such. Considering you're in New England, there'll be only one species in your area, Reticulitermes flavipes, which is pretty easy to keep. As you go farther south, termite diversity explodes, as does (potentially) keeping difficulty. Problem is, there aren't many people in Central / South America, Africa and South / Southeast Asia that keep termites that I can actually contact, so lots of the species there and their care is still a mystery to me.

Wow cool! I've already found huge colonies of termites under rocks in my yard. Are these the type of termites that will eat through wood?

 

I believe most termites eat wood. They digest it via symbiotic microbes which live in their guts (Which is why ants can't eat wood, as they don't have these microbes).


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#5 Offline TheMicroPlanet - Posted May 22 2020 - 10:09 AM

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You can, and it's actually not super difficult. You can find more information here, including links to guides and such. Considering you're in New England, there'll be only one species in your area, Reticulitermes flavipes, which is pretty easy to keep. As you go farther south, termite diversity explodes, as does (potentially) keeping difficulty. Problem is, there aren't many people in Central / South America, Africa and South / Southeast Asia that keep termites that I can actually contact, so lots of the species there and their care is still a mystery to me.

Wow cool! I've already found huge colonies of termites under rocks in my yard. Are these the type of termites that will eat through wood?

 

I believe most termites eat wood. They digest it via symbiotic microbes which live in their guts (Which is why ants can't eat wood, as they don't have these microbes).

 

Coming from a microbiological perspective, the termite hindgut is a veritable goldmine for all kinds of anaerobic protists and bacteria.


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#6 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 10:25 AM

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Theoretically, lets say I start keeping termites. Some how they  escape. Is it a possibility that they could damage the house? I know it is probably unlikely. The people I live with(my family) are not super enthusiastic about termites. 



#7 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 10:29 AM

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They cause more than 5 billion dollars of property damage each year in the US alone.

:/ 


Edited by MinigunL5, May 22 2020 - 10:30 AM.


#8 Online AntsDakota - Posted May 22 2020 - 10:29 AM

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Theoretically, lets say I start keeping termites. Some how they  escape. Is it a possibility that they could damage the house? I know it is probably unlikely. The people I live with(my family) are not super enthusiastic about termites.

Nope. They need constant moisture, and they will die if they escape. And unless your house is made up of very wet, rotting wood (which in and of itself is a safety hazard), the termites wouldn’t be able to nest in it.
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#9 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 10:50 AM

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Theoretically, lets say I start keeping termites. Some how they  escape. Is it a possibility that they could damage the house? I know it is probably unlikely. The people I live with(my family) are not super enthusiastic about termites.

Nope. They need constant moisture, and they will die if they escape. And unless your house is made up of very wet, rotting wood (which in and of itself is a safety hazard), the termites wouldn’t be able to nest in it.

 

Ok cool  (y)



#10 Offline TheMicroPlanet - Posted May 22 2020 - 11:14 AM

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Besides, a few workers escaping probably wouldn't be a problem. They'd die without the colony.


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#11 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 11:18 AM

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Besides, a few workers escaping probably wouldn't be a problem. They'd die without the colony.

Ok cool. I probably won't be able to keep them tho. :(



#12 Offline Temperateants - Posted May 22 2020 - 3:54 PM

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THey are good livestock. 


When the apocalypse comes we can eat termites and mealworms.


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#13 Offline MinigunL5 - Posted May 22 2020 - 4:44 PM

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THey are good livestock. 


When the apocalypse comes we can eat termites and mealworms.

I heard ants are also pretty nutritious. 

;)



#14 Offline Nare - Posted May 22 2020 - 5:21 PM

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Theoretically, lets say I start keeping termites. Some how they  escape. Is it a possibility that they could damage the house? I know it is probably unlikely. The people I live with(my family) are not super enthusiastic about termites. 

Yeah these guys do a lot of damage, however this always happens from the outside. Termites living in wood outside will make their way into houses through the soil, and often eat insulation / rotting wood in the foundation. If you spill these termites all over your floor, they will dry out and die. They can't really do damage from inside, only from the outside. Plus, termites aren't like ants - they'd rather hide than escape.


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#15 Offline Temperateants - Posted Yesterday, 6:00 AM

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THey are good livestock. 


When the apocalypse comes we can eat termites and mealworms.

I heard ants are also pretty nutritious. 

;)

 

Not really, the best farm animals convert stuff we can't eat and turn it into food. Termites eat cellulose and Mealworms eat leaf litter. Ants have to eat these insects, so they are a lot less efficient to farm.


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#16 Online AntsDakota - Posted Yesterday, 6:10 AM

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True. Although we could as breed cockroaches.
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"God made..... all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. (including ants) And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:25 NIV version

 

Currently Keeping:  Aphaenogaster picea, Aphaenogaster rudis, Formica subsericea, Lasius americanus, Lasius aphidicola, Myrmica sp., Pogonomyrmex occidentalis, Ponera pennsylvanica 

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________                            ___________________________My Journal__________________________________________________________________________________________

Attention South Dakotans! Join us on The SoDAK (Society of Dakotan Ant Keepers)





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