Termites are commonly found in our area. However, they are often confused with or misidentified as ants. Termites and ants have distinct differences and knowing these differences can help determine which insect may be infesting a home. Although termites and winged or flying ants may appear to look alike, there are definitely differences between the two, particularly concerning their antennae, wings, and body. The antennae of swarming termites are straight and beaded while swarming ants have antennae that are elbowed or bent. Both termites and winged ants have two pairs of wings. Termites have four wings that are all equal in size and length. Ants have front wings that are noticeably larger in size than their hind wings. The easiest way to distinguish between the two is to examine the body of the insect. Termites have a broad waistline and a body that is made up of a head and lower section. Winged or flying ants have a pinched waistline and three distinctive body parts, including a head, abdomen and thorax.
To the right is a photo that visually depicts the differences we have just described.