The Arizona Desert subterranean termite is one of the most common subterranean termites in Arizona. The Desert subterranean termite lives in desert plants including dead cactus, but can severely damage structural timbers in buildings, utility poles and other timber structures. The Desert subterranean termite swarmers are about 3/8″ long including their wings. Their body is a pale yellowish brown and a fontanelle (front gland pore) is indistinct or absent. Central Arizona Desert subterranean termites prefer to eat the springwood in timbers, generally avoiding the lignin in summerwood. Damaged timber appears honeycombed, with soil in the galleries. The Desert subterranean termite can penetrate cracks in concrete and masonry that are too narrow for foragers of other subterranean termite species to enter. Phoenix Desert subterranean termites often build their mud-shelter tubes as free standing tubes that “drop down” from rafters, ceilings and subfloor areas under buildings.
AREAS OF HIGH RISK IN ARIZONA include Apache Junction, Avondale, Bullhead, Casa Grande, Chandler, Cottonwood, Douglas AZ, El Mirage, Eloy, Flagstaff, Florence-AZ, Fountain Hills, Gilbert, Glendale AZ, Goodyear, Kingman, Lake Havasu, Marana, Mesa, Nogales, Oro Valley, Paradise Valley, Payson-AZ, Peoria-AZ, Phoenix, Prescott, Prescott Valley, San Luis, Scottsdale, Sedona, Sierra Vista, Surprise, Tempe, Tucson, and Yuma.