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People often ask us if termites feed in the winter.  In Texas the answer is Yes!

Termites and ants survive the cold by moving into the deep areas of their underground colonies below the frost line.  They huddle together and eat food they have stored.  In Texas we don't ususally have a frost line.  If a termite colony has established a sheltered route to a food supply that is warm they will continue to harvest cellulose (wood).  This could be a fallen tree, a pile of wood or your home.  They will also continue to feed on our termite bait stations as long as the ground is not frozen and there is plenty of aspen wood and refined cellulose.

We have seen termites foraging in homes in winter where there had been previous water damage.  If the weather turns exceptionally cold, the termites will retreat to the depths of their colony.  They will not return to the surface until the cold snap has ended and the ground has warmed sufficiently.

Forage activity is also decreased because a mature colony will be preparing for the spring swarm.  As nymphs (immature termites) progress toward the adult stage (i.e.,alate) they molt several times.  They develop wings, eyes and functional reproductive organs.  Nymphs ultimately molt into sexually mature, fully winged adult male or female alates.  When triggered environmentally they will fly from the colony in swarms to reproduce and start new colonies.

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