Zootermopsis is a genus of termites in the Dampwood termite family (Archotermopsidae). They are mostly found in western North America, ranging from Canada to Mexico, with the exception of Z. nevadensis, which has become established in Japan. They live in rotting wood, commonly inhabiting fallen or dead trees in North America's temperate rain forests, where they break down the wood's cellulose with the help of symbiotic protozoa and bacteria in their stomachs. The life and reproductive cycles of these termites are relatively normal compared to other members of its family. Species can be identified using the shape and position of the subsidiary tooth in all non-soldier castes, allowing a more certain identification than the previous method, which was based on the more ambiguous morphology of soldiers.
The genus has four species, one of which is extinct. Z. nevadensis is further subdivided into two subspecies, Z. n. nevadensis and Z. n. nuttingi.
These species are:
- Arnett, Ross H. (2000). American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico. CRC Press.
- Yashiro, Toshihisa; Mitaka, Yuki; Nozaki, Tomonari; Matsuura, Kenji (2018). "Chemical and molecular identification of the invasive termite Zootermopsis nevadensis (Isoptera: Archotermopsidae) in Japan". Applied Entomology and Zoology. 53 (2): 215–221. doi:10.1007/s13355-018-0545-0.
- Thorne, B.L.; Haverty, M.I. (1989). "Accurate identification of Zootermopsis species (Isoptera: Termopsidae) based on a mandible character of nonsoldier castes". Annals of the Entomological Society of America. 82: 262–266.
- Emerson, A.E. (1933). "A revision of the genera of fossil and Recent Termopsinae (Isoptera)". University of California Publications in Entomology. 6 (6): 165–195.