There are several types of termites all over the world. There are only three here in California that are considered pest which are dampwood, drywood, and the most seen are the Subterranean termites. These groups of termites play an important role in California forests, woodlands and deserts.
They help break down woody organic matter which helps return nutrients to the soil. Subterranean termites are the most common in California. With these social insects they don’t fight with other members of their species. They can be found infesting wood that is in contact with the soil, including structural lumber in homes and landscapes, as well as fallen trees, tree stumps, or other dead wood.
Some animals transfer good bacteria from mother to newborn through nursing or kisses. Termites do it a little less charmingly: by feeding each other their poop. And each time a termite molts, it loses its gut microbiome and must chow down on another delicious meal of doo-doo. They have been around a long time and they are not likely to go away any time soon. These termites are not your housemates, make sure you get a home inspection before they take over your house.