At an annual cost of almost $5 billion, termites are the bug that harms American property the most. We want to provide you with some information on what to check for in your home if you suspect termites so that you may help prevent your property from becoming one of that alarming number.
How Do Termites Appear?
Naturally, spotting the termite is the best approach to determine whether there is a termite infestation. Despite the fact that everyone has heard about termites, many individuals might not be familiar with their exact appearance. While attempting to self-diagnose a termite issue, there are a few major differences that you should be aware of, including:
- Termites often range in color from creamy white to brownish, as opposed to the darker browns and blacks that are typical of ants.
- Dimensions – Termites are typically 1/8 to 1 inch long. Of course, the queen of a colony is much larger, growing up to 6 inches in size with her enormous tummy. This is just the size of the most common termite caste.
- The main difference can be observed in body shape. Ants have constricted waists, while termites have thick waists. In addition, they differ from ants in having straight antennae rather than curved ones and shorter legs.
- As you’ll see, termites rarely have wings, but when they do, they have two pairs that are each the same length. The lengths of the wing pairs of ants vary.
What Kinds Of Termites Are There?
Although there are over 45 different species of termites in the US, they typically fall into one of three groups. Its classification is primarily determined by its behavior, nesting place, and appearance. The following are the top three species of termites:
Subterranean termites, the most prevalent type of termite, build their nests in soils all throughout the U.S. continent. As the largest nest builders of all termite species, they also cause the most harm to homes and other property. To get their food source—the delicious wood of your home—these termites will dig mud tubes beneath your yard.
Termites in dry wood
Drywood termites, as the name implies, adore dead or dying dry wood, such as dead trees, structural beams, or solid hardwood flooring, to construct their homes there. You should be on the lookout for them in and around your property as they will make every effort to avoid dirt. However, although typically bigger than their underground cousins, they typically have smaller colonies, which means that damage is generally done at a slower rate. Naturally, this does not imply that they are not still a serious threat to your house.
The most dangerous termites are without a doubt Formosan termites. Because to the extensive paths between their nest and their food source, once they are embedded, they are very challenging to dislodge. They can even temporarily establish themselves in high-food locations, like your home, however, even if you remove any nests from your house, the main nest will still be there.
Are Termites Wingless?
Termites do have wings, to put it simply. It’s crucial to remember that only some castes of termites in the colony have wings, and even then, they only fly at certain periods, before you start picturing swarms of flying termites destroying your house. The alate nymphs sometimes referred to as termite swarmers, are the only caste of termites that have wings in a colony.
Termite infestation indicators
Fortunately, given how much damage termites can do, it is rather simple to identify indicators of a serious termite infestation as long as you know what to look for. The following are the primary indications of a termite infestation:
- You might be able to hear hollowed-out wood as you cross it.
- Wooden floor blisters resemble small air bubbles on your floor.
- Pellets or droppings—These will resemble coffee grounds in appearance.
- Its bodies or wings are around the size of ants.
- Tubes that you could find outside or in your crawlspace are called mud tubes.
Are termites harmful to people?
While termites may be a serious hazard to your house, they are unlikely to endanger you or your loved ones personally unless they bring the structure down on top of you. They do not exhibit any desire to bite or sting people unless provoked, and they are not known to contain any dangerous diseases that could be transferred.
Why Do Termites Come to My House?
The main thing termites are searching for, like many other insects, is a food supply. From their perspective, dwellings appear to be very appetizing because their main food source is wood. Moisture is also a termite favorite. Look for moisture in wood, wet areas inside the house, and any exterior cracks. The spring, early summer, and fall seasons are when you are most at risk for termites since they love warm weather. It is simple to understand why the south is the U.S.’s termite hotspot when you combine heat and humidity.
Prevention of Termites
Termite prevention is almost usually more cost-effective in the long run than termite extermination. Top termite prevention advice includes:
- Keep outdoor plants and tree branch growth away from your house. Subterranean termites can’t easily enter your home from your yard if any shrubbery or foliage is in close proximity to it.
- Keep your foundations dry. Whether you have a wood, crawl space, basement, or another type of foundation, it’s important to keep them dry. You should search for any persistently damp areas following any periods of severe rain or flash flooding to find any potential moisture problems.
- Remove any yard waste on a regular basis – Be sure to keep mulch and fallen leaves away from the house. Ensure that your gutters are periodically cleaned as part of this.
- During swarming season, keep an eye out for flying termites. As they are the breeders, it is important to keep flying termites away from your property. Keep your windows closed, turn off the lights at night, and check your home for any gaps if you start to see them flying.
Methods for Termite Elimination
If you’ve read thus far, it’s probable that you already know much of this and are only interested in learning how to get the bothersome termites out of your house. There are some things you can do on your own, though we would obviously advise seeking professional assistance, particularly since the house may already have significant termite damage.
- Products for termite removal are widely available, and while their levels of efficacy vary, they all contribute to the extermination of termites. There are two major types of products available: spot treatments and bait treatments.
- Beneficial nematodes are tiny roundworms that are parasites of termites and can destroy them in a couple of days. They are a more organic way to combat termites.
- Essential oils – Certain essential oils, such as orange oil and neem oil, can assist in killing termites in a number of ways, including by interfering with their shedding cycle or egg-laying.
- Boric acid is a well-known strategy for getting rid of termites because it completely shuts down their system.
Hopefully, you now know how to spot termites and prevent a termite infestation in your home. As always, we advise you to contact the experts at Santee-pest-control.com for all of your termite removal requirements.