Termites range in species from the Subterranean termite to the Formosan termite but they all have a few common characteristics. Termites are very social and tend to operate using their own caste system: reproductive, workers and soldiers. Reproductive termites or “swarmers” have two pairs of wings and have eyes. Swarmers are black or brown. When sighted, they are usually the first indication of termite presence and require immediate attention. As their name suggests, reproductive termites leave their initial nests in order to form new colonies elsewhere and the soldiers’ main function is to defend the colony. The larger part of the termite colony consists of workers that are 3/16-inch long, have soft bodies and have a whitish appearance. Termites tend to differ from almost all other insects because they utilize the cellulose of the wood that they inhibit. Termites have a single-celled organism that is embedded in their digestive tracts that facilitates the conversion of cellulose to sugars that they use as food. Termites are known to be one of the most destructive insects, but they are valuable decomposers. Termites convert rotted wood and other cellulose materials into humus. To eliminate termites, it is best to contact a trained exterminator who can conduct an inspection to determine the best course of action.