Saturday, April 22, 2017

Flying Termites!!!

We were enjoying a quiet evening at home when suddenly, a huge insect flew into the room.  Where had it come from?  The open windows had screens.  The doors were closed.  LeRon grabbed the flyswatter (thanks for bringing us one from Chicago, Heather) and swatted it.  Four wings fell off and the bug lay kicking on the floor.  I was on the phone to Michelle and she immediately googled for it.  We wondered if it was a flying ant.  But no, Michelle told us all the differences between flying ants and flying termites . . . and it was a flying termite!  Then another one flew into the room.  And another.  And another.  We were going crazy swatting and cleaning up kicking bugs.

We looked out our kitchen window and hundreds of them were swarming outside.  They were being attracted by the kitchen light.  Thank goodness turning off the light stopped the bugs, which were crawling in under the door.  I could hardly sleep that night.  I had visions of all the wood in our house being eaten by ferocious termites.  I have quite an imagination at night.

The next morning, the bugs were gone but thousands of wings were everywhere.  They were also outside our mission office and on the ground at The Hub.  We learned that flying termites often come out after a rain and we had had quite a heavy downpour.  And they don't cause a lot of damage because their wings fall off and they die.  So much for my sleepless night!

But . . . we learned that Kenyans love to EAT flying termites.  They are a delicacy!!  They eat them raw or fry them.  Apparently they are high in protein and taste kind of nutty.  Do you think I should try them the next time they're around?  I'll have to think about that one.

Termite wings everywhere outside the next morning.

One wing is 3 cm long.

Each termite has four wings.

Two of the wings are gone on this one.  We swatted it and they fell off.  When they're flying, they look absolutely huge.  I wonder if they pull off the legs before they eat them.  For sure they pull off the wings.  At least I hope so.  (I later learned that they eat the wings too!)


  1. I think I will pass on a serving of termites, but thanks!

  2. Come on, Colleen, you can't let Beth beat you out! She ate a fried grasshopper in primary not very long ago. Someone brought it back from Israel to let the kids try what John the Baptist ate. She said she didn't like it, but hey, she ate it! You can do it!!

  3. Wow! Those things are massive. No wonder you were in a panic.

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  5. They live in difficult to-achieve territories, to be specific behind dividers, that are hard to get to without particular hardware and they don't react to numerous "over-the-counter" pesticides.