Pesticides expert witness Allan Snyder; ACGIH, AIHA, SPCI, writes that there are more than 2,500 different types of termites in the world with the most common species being Drywood, Dampwood and Subterranean. Dampwood Termites:
They live and breed in soil, sometimes many feet deep.
Subterranean termites require moist environments.
They usually nest in or near the soil and maintain some connection with the soil through tunnels in wood or through shelter tubes they construct.
These shelter tubes are made of soil with bits of wood or even plasterboard (drywall).
Much of the damage they cause occurs in foundation and structural support wood.
Because of the moisture requirements of subterranean termites, they are often found in wood that has wood rot.
The western subterranean termite, Reticulitermes hesperus, is the most destructive termite found in California.
Reproductive winged forms of subterranean termites are dark brown to brownish black, with brownish gray wings.
Swarming often occurs on sunny days following fall or sometimes spring rains.
Soldiers are wingless with white bodies and pale yellow heads. Their long, narrow heads have no eyes.
Workers are slightly smaller than reproductives, wingless, and have a shorter head than soldiers; their color is similar to that of soldiers.