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Isoptera - Termites



 Kingdom: Animalia
 Phylum: Arthropoda
 Subphylum: Hexapoda
 Class: Insecta
 Order: Isoptera

TermitesThere are over 2,000 species in this order. In North America, there are 44 species. Most termite species are found in tropical and subtropical climates.

Termites, like all insects, have six legs, segmented bodies, and antennae. Termites have biting mouthparts. Mature termites have two pairs of wings. Some termites stay underground and never develop wings.

The species in this order eat wood and plant matter rich in cellulose. Some species in this order have symbiotic bacteria or protozoans that help them digest wood!

Termites live in large communal groups or colonies. Each colony has at least one reproducing male and female called the king and queen as well as workers and soldiers. A queen can lay thousands of eggs a day! Workers are responsible for gathering food, raising the young, and maintaining the nest. Soldiers are responsible for protecting the nest.