Each termite goes through metamorphosis, which is a change in form from one stage of their lifecycle to another. A termites’ metamorphosis consists of the egg, nymph, and adult.
Termites are social insects and live in colonies. A colony of subterranean termites consists of workers, soldiers, and reproductives. Workers build and maintain the nest, forage, and feed the colony. Two groups of workers are sterile workers and functional workers. Sterile workers will never reproduce while functional workers can molt and become soldiers, swarmers, and secondary reproductives based on the need of the colony. Soldiers are sterile and their sole purpose is to protect the colony from invaders. Reproductive termites are the king and queen that began as swarmers, mated, and started the colony. They mate periodically throughout the queen’s 30-year lifetime. When a colony matures and the primary king and queen need more reproductive termites, the functional workers molt and become secondary reproductives. If anything happens to the primary king and queen the secondary will replace them.