Mound-building termites live in Africa, Australia and South America.
Termite mounds usually out live the colonies themselves. If the inner tunnels of the nest are exposed it is usually dead, however, sometimes other colonies occupy a mound after the death of the original builders. The new colonizers may be of the same or a different species.
The structure of the mounds can be very complicated. Inside the mound is an extensive system of tunnels and conduits that serves as a ventilation system for the underground nest. In order to get good ventilation, the termites will construct several shafts leading down to the cellar located beneath the nest. The mound is built above the subterranean nest. The nest itself is a spheroidal structure consisting of numerous gallery chambers. They come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes.