There are nearly 2,000 termite species in the world, but only 40 or so in the United States. Even though there are so many different species, they all fall into one of these main types:
1. Drywood termites
2. Dampwood termites
3. Subterranean termites
Just as their name suggests, dampwood termites are attracted to wood that has a high moisture content. They are much larger than other termites and prefer to infest stumps, fallen logs, tree branches, and other sources of damp wood that are often in decay. If they’ve infested a property, they most likely entered into the building where the wood is touching the soil or where a leaky pipe has created moisture. Dampwood termites cover up their entry holes with their fecal matter rather than building mud tubes as other termites do.
Unlike all other types of termites, drywood termites do not need contact with soil and only infest dry wood. Since they do not require moisture from the ground, they prefer to nest in dryer wood above the ground, such as roof materials, wooden wall supports, or dead wood around a home. When they infest a home, they likely entered through exposed wood or infested wood that was brought indoors. One reliable way to differentiate them from other types is noticing piles of discarded wings, because the drywood swarmers shed their wings after swarming.
Subterranean termites are the most common type of termite throughout the nation and are infamous for causing extensive structural damage in thousands of homes each year. This type of termite, including Western and Eastern types, nests in the ground and constructs tunnels of mud tubes that allow them to travel within a home. Although they are fervent feeders, they tend to be picky and prefer to chew on soft wood found between the wood grains. Subterranean swarmers are often mistaken for flying ants but have four distinct wings that make them stand out.
Termites may nest in your home for years before you even notice them, causing damage the entire time. However, having a termite protection plan and knowing the signs of termites and how to spot them will help save your house and money.
Here are 5 signs of termites to look for:
1. Blisters in wood flooring
2. Hollowed or damaged wood
3. Evidence of swarms
4. Mud tubes
5. Drywood termite droppings
1. Termites vary in size from one-eighth of an inch to one inch long depending on species and caste.
2. Color can vary in shades of white, brown and black, depending on species and caste.
3. Termites can often be confused with flying ants due to their wings and antennae.
In addition to wood inside the home, termites are drawn inside by moisture, wood in contact with house foundations, and cracks in building exteriors. Different combinations of these factors attract different species. Additionally, geographic location plays a role in how likely homeowners are to deal with infestations.
Termites will not go away on their own… Termites diet consists of wood. They will feed for years and years if they are allowed to. Workers and soldiers live approximately one to two years. However, queen termites may survive for over a decade under optimal conditions.
Termites take a short time to spread. Within a few days they can multiply to what is considered an infestation. The new queen lays her first batch of six to 12 eggs within a few days or weeks of mating, establishing a new termite colony. A mature queen can lay thousands of eggs each year.
1. Remove Dead Wood and Other Debris.
2. Keep Plants and Vegetation Away From Your Home.
3. Avoid the Use of Mulch Near Your Property.
4. Keep Your Trees and Shrubs Trimmed.
5. Eliminate Moisture Around Your Property.
6. Keep Your Ponds and Fountains Clean.
7. Keep Wooden Structures Away From Your Home.
Keep your home dry and seal up any cracks. If you notice any sign of damage or a termite, give Pest Solutions a call.