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Winged termites on a rock.

Swarmers in Miami: What to Know About Winged Termites

In Miami's warm climate, winged termites are a big problem, especially in spring. These pests, often confused with flying ants, can damage wood in your home.

Seeing them means they're looking to start new colonies, which could lead to expensive repairs. It's critical for Miami folks to spot these termites early to avoid damage.

Read on to learn more about how to identify these pests, the risks they bring, and the best methods for protecting your home from their destructive presence.

Key Takeaways

  • In Miami, identifying winged termites is crucial for preventing infestations, with some key features including equal-length wings and straight antennae.
  • Winged termites differ from flying ants by having four wings of equal size, straight antennae, and a straight body line.
  • Signs of winged termite infestations, such as swarms of termites, mud tubes, and hollow wood, indicate the need for prompt action.
  • Effective termite treatment in Miami involves professional services, including inspections, fumigation, and ongoing control to prevent future problems.

Identifying Winged Termites in Miami

In Miami, winged termites are swarmers looking to start new colonies. Recognizing this type of termites is crucial for you to prevent potential infestations.

Characteristics of Winged Termites (Swarmers)

  • Body Shape: Termites have a fairly straight body without a noticeable waist.
  • Wing Size: Both pairs of wings are of equal length, much longer than their body.
  • Antennae: They have straight antennae.
  • Color: Generally, they exhibit a dark brown to black color.

These features are typical in flying species of termites in South Florida, including:

  1. West Indian drywood termites
  2. Formosan subterranean termites
  3. Asian subterranean termites

Swarmers vs. Flying Ants

Winged Termite vs Flying Ant Info Graphic.

Winged termites, termite swarmers, or alates are often mistaken for flying ants. It's essential to distinguish between the two, as they can indicate different infestations.


Winged Termites

Flying Ants


Four wings of equal size

Four wings of different sizes





Straight body line

Pinched waist


Fly in a swarm, often around lights

Less swarming behavior, seen alone or in small numbers

Using these identifiers, you can correctly identify one flying insect from another and take the appropriate steps to manage any potential infestation.

Winged Termite Infestation

In Miami, you may often face the threat of winged termite infestations, which can lead to significant structural damage if not addressed promptly.

Signs of Termite Infestation

During a particular time of year in Miami, the appearance of winged termites can signal the beginning of their swarming season.

It’s a crucial period for homeowners like you to arm yourself with the signs to look for.

  • Winged Termites: Often mistaken for flying ants, these are typically seen when termite colonies spread to create new nests.
  • Mud Tubes: These pencil-sized tunnels are found near the home's foundation, serving as protected paths for termites.
  • Wood Damage: Hollowed-out wood that sounds empty when tapped can indicate the presence of termite feeding.
  • Droppings: Known as frass, these wood-colored droppings can be found near wooden structures.
  • Discarded Wings: Flying termites shed their wings after swarming, often found near windowsills or other light sources.

What Does Termite Damage Look Like?

The extent of property damage emphasizes the importance of termite inspections. Swift action at early signs of termites prevents such costly outcomes.




Slight damage to wooden structures such as door frames or furniture


Significant mud tube networks and extensive damage to wooden structures, including walls


Structural damage requiring significant repairs, potentially involving beams or foundation reconstruction

Winged Termite Treatment Solutions

Getting rid of winged termites in Miami requires effective treatment solutions.

You can explore DIY termite treatment options or seek help from professional exterminators who offer comprehensive treatment plans.

DIY Termite Options

For those looking to tackle termite control themselves, here are some DIY pest control methods:

DIY Method




Liquid Termiticides

Applied around the perimeter of a home to create a barrier.



Bait Stations

Small stations filled with bait; placed around the home to lure termites.



Boric Acid

An eco-friendly option that can be applied directly to termite-infested wood.



What Does Professional Treatment Look Like?

Professional exterminators offer various advanced termite treatment methods for your Florida home, such as:

  • Termite Inspection: Technicians thoroughly inspect the extent of infestation and recommend a tailored treatment plan.
  • Termite Fumigation: Often referred to as tent fumigation, this involves covering the home with a tent and introducing fumigants to eradicate termites.
  • Termite Control Services: Pest control companies provide ongoing services to prevent termites, utilizing various treatment methods to keep homes termite-free.

Preventing Future Termite Problems

To guard against the threat of termites (and swarmers) in Miami, focus on two primary preventative measures—regular inspections and home remediation.

Regular Inspections and Maintenance

Early detection through regular inspections and maintenance is vital to safeguarding your home against the stealthy approach of termites.

Here's how you can stay one step ahead:

  • Schedule Yearly Inspections: Have a professional examine your home for any signs of termite activity.
  • Inspect Wood: Regularly check wooden structures for hollow sounds or visible damage.
  • Check Foundation: Ensure the foundation is cracks-free to avoid termite entry.
  • Maintain Proper Ventilation: Crawl spaces and attics should be well-ventilated to reduce moisture buildup.
  • Manage Moisture: Fix leaky faucets and ensure gutters and downspouts are directing water away from the home.
  • Seal Entry Points: Fill and seal gaps around utility lines and pipes to prevent termite access.

Home Remediation Techniques

As homeowners, you must also understand that tackling termite prevention starts in your backyard.

Here's a detailed breakdown of the steps you can take to fortify your home against these persistent pests:

  • Trim Vegetation: Keep bushes and trees trimmed away from the house to reduce termite food sources.
  • Remove Dead Wood: Clear out dead trees or stumps from the property.
  • Correct Standing Water Issues: Eliminate any standing water near the foundation.
  • Grade Soil Properly: Ensure the soil around the home slopes away to prevent water accumulation.
  • Use Termite-Resistant Mulch: Opt for mulch that does not attract termites like cedar.

When to Seek Professional Help

In Miami, winged termites signal it's time for action. If termites are uninvited guests in your home, you might need guidance on when to call in the pros.

Here's a breakdown:

  • If termites swarm in your home, especially during the termite swarming season.
  • If you discover mud tubes or hollowed-out wood year-round.
  • If you notice discarded wings everywhere in your home.

Still trying to figure out what to look for? Many professional pest control companies (like us here at Native Pest Management) offer a free inspection.