DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Western drywood termite (Incisitermes minor). It is the most common structure-infesting drywood termite in the southwestern United States (originally described as Kalotermes minor). Drywood termites lack true workers (a terminal caste which is reproductively sterile and found only in the Termitidae). Instead, drywood termite workers are called pseudergates (literally false workers) if they lack wing pads or nymphs if wing pads are present. The workers develop from earlier instars that are often referred to as larvae, even though termites go through simple metamorphosis. Pseudergates are not sterile or a terminal caste, therefore they maintain the capability of moulting into a soldier, a supplementary reproductive, or an alate. Magnification: x5 when shortest axis printed at 25 millimetres.
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