Subterranean Soldiers

Soldiers resemble workers, being wingless. They also have mandibles (jaws) on large and rectangular brown and yellowish heads. They are similar to the workers; they are blind, wingless and soft-bodied. Since their mandibles are made for defense and not chewing wood, they are fed liquid foods by nestmates.

The sole purpose of the soldier is to defend the colony against enemies such as ants. They position themselves near open ends of tunnels, mud tubes and inside openings for swarmers to emerge.

If alarmed, they may hit their hard heads against gallery walls to signal others. You can sometimes detect these vibrating sounds by tapping on the infested wood.

They are a small percentage of the termite population, in most cases, less than 5%.



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