As the name suggests, drywood termites are found in dry wood where the moisture level is below 12%. Even these termites feed on wood. They hold the potential to destroy property worth thousands of dollars every year.


Drywood termite has pale brown body color. But, it can vary between the different shades of brown and pale yellow, as well. The swarmers or alates have smokey gray colored wings. The sizes of drywood termites range according to their caste. The biggest is the reproductives that form new colonies.

Drywood termites infestation

Where Are Drywood Termites Found?

Drywood termites create colonies under cellulose material, especially wood. In their case, the settlement may not be connected to the ground at all. One of the familiar places that may be infested are the dry attics, as they do not need much moisture to thrive.

Types Of Drywood Termites

Desert Drywood Termite

desert western drywood termites

These are also known as light western drywood termite. This group of termites usually feed on trees that grow alongside canyons or desert cacti. But, they can also infest homes and damage a lot of wooden structures. Houses in rural places have more chances of being overrun by these pests. They are identified by the damages that they make, which appears very smooth without any soil.

Places found: They can be located in the arid portions of Arizona and Southeastern California.

Southeastern Drywood Termite

southeastern drywood termites infestation

Even these termites are identified by the damages they make. They live in scorched wood and consume wood that has not decayed at all. Their colonies are not very big and consist of only a few thousand members.

Places found: They can be located in South Carolina, Florida, and west to eastern Texas.

Western Drywood Termite

western drywood termites infestation

These are the most common types of drywood termites. You would not find these termites on the ground, as they thrive inside non-decaying wood. Their colonies comprise of around 3000 termite members. Amongst these types, there are very less worker class termites, as the nymphs do most of the task.

Places found: They can be located in Arizona and California.

Signs Of Drywood Termites

signs of drywood termites infestation

Clicking Sound

Like any other termites, drywood termites also make a quiet clicking noise. These noises will come from the walls and are caused by the soldier termites that bang their heads on the wood. They do this when they need to alert the colony about some rising threat. Moreover, the worker termites are loud eaters. They make such clicking sound when they are feeding on the wood.


Sometimes you may notice the swarmers flying. These are the winged termites that leave their existing colony to mate and form a new colony. They are also known as the reproductives. Drywood termites swarm mostly after the rain and can be seen after the sunset or at night.

Broken Wings

After finding a mate and a suitable site for their new colony, the swarmers discard their wings. These broken or discarded wings are another sign of infestation.

Hollow Wood

All termites eat their way through the timber. It leaves back only the outer layer or the paint on the wood surface. If you knock on such wood, you will get a hollow sound from inside. It indicates that the wood inside has been damaged and hints termite infestation. Drywood termites devour the wood completely. Thus, you would be able to detect the damage quickly.

Wood Tunnels

It may not be visible from the outside. To notice them, you need to do a little pest inspection of the wood or wooden furniture in your house. The wood tunnels made by drywood termites are smooth and do not have mud and dirt.

Termite Droppings

Drywood termites do not build their colony using frass, unlike other termites. They discard their feces through small holes near the entrance of their territory. If you notice dark powdery substance inside your house, you need to check for infestation. The frass of these termites looks like sawdust.

Drywood Termite Threats

threats of drywood termites infestation
  • Drywood termites are difficult to detect. They live deep within the wood. So, may go unnoticed till any visible destruction.

  • They feed on wood and will destroy wooden construction from inside.

  • They are mostly found in attics. If you do not visit your attic often, you may not know about the infestation.

  • Drywood termites make the entire wood hollow. So, damage caused by drywood termites is the most expensive.

Getting Rid Of Drywood Termites

how to get rid of drywood termites infestation

Get Rid Of The Infested Woods

If the infestation is limited to a specific area, remove the part. You may replace the piece with new treated wood.

Treat The Wood With Bora-Care

Bora-Care contains borate and glycol (alcohol) base. On application, it penetrates the wood. The termites that try to eat this treated wood would die. You need to read the instruction before applying.

Drill And Fill Method

Here you need to drill holes along the infested wood. Fill the gaps with an insecticide product. Finally, seal the holes with a putty or wood patch. Make sure to read the instruction of the insecticide before using.

Call Professionals

If the infestation is out of your hands, you need to call experts. Professionals will examine the entire area and bring you the most effective solution.

Do Not Delay

If you find any signs of termite, you need to act as soon as possible. Termite infestation is not just destructive, but also expensive. Thus, getting rid of them at the initial stage would be beneficial for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there any specific termite season?

You may notice drywood termite swarmers during April and July, after the rain. However, the infestation does not have any season. Termite may infest at any time of the year.

What is the difference between Drywood and Subterranean termites?

Drywood termites do not need much moisture or ground contact. Their colonies have lesser members than subterranean termites. Drywood termites are big in size. They swarm after the sunset. Subterranean termites need moisture. They usually swarm during the daytime.

What is the difference between flying ants and flying termites?

Flying ants have a pinched waist, unlike termites. The wings of flying termites are all equal, but not of ants.

Are Drywood termites dangerous for the health?

Termites are not dangerous for the health. They only feed on wood. They are a danger to your property and wooden constructions.

How to know if your house is infested with Drywood termites?

Always keep an eye for signs. Drywood termites are mostly found in the attic. Some of the hints are broken wings, termite dropping, and the swarmers.