Rhinotermitinae is a sub–family of subterranean termites in the family Rhinotermitidae. There are several genera in this sub–family, including Acorhinotermes, Dolichorhinotermes, Parrhinotermes, Rhinotermes, and Schedorhinotermes.

The word subterranean comes from two Latin words that mean "under the ground". Subterranean termites make nests under the ground. They tunnel through the soil to attack tree roots and other buried wood. The subterranean termites in this sub–family are found in many parts of the world.

Schedorhinotermes intermedius is found in Australia. In colonies of these termites, there are soldiers of two sizes. The major soldiers are about 6 mm in length. The minor soldiers are 4 mm or less in length. Local experts say that the soldiers can provide a clue regarding the colony’s behavior.

These termites are considered to be highly destructive to buildings and other structures. Colonies that contain mostly major soldiers are likely to cause serious damage in a fairly short time. Scientists are still studying to find the reason for this phenomenon.

The Amazon region of South America is home to other members of this sub–family, including Rhinotermes hispidus (Emerson) and R. marginalis (Emerson). These termites are found in the rain forests and in the foothills of the Andes. They are also found on several islands of the West Indies.

Subterranean termites often nest in the roots of trees. They attack dead or weakened trees. They can also nest under homes and other buildings.

If there is wood touching the ground, the termites can use it to enter the building. Subterranean termites can also enter buildings through tiny cracks in the foundation and along plumbing pipes.

Most experts believe that the best defense against subterranean termites is to have periodic termite inspections. Termite control professionals can recognize the signs of termite activity. During the inspection, they can point out landscaping or structural issues that might let termites have easy access to the home.
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