Termites are among the most common household pests. They damage to wood and other materials with their tunnels, which can lead to costly repairs or replacements. To help prevent a termite infestation, knowing what type of termite may be in your home and how they interact with other species is essential.
The importance of knowing the types of termites
Understanding the types of termites and their signs will help you identify and treat them more effectively.
Termites are tiny insects that eat wood, causing structural damage to buildings. They can also be a nuisance by creating messy nests in your home or workplace. Knowing what type of termite is infesting your property can help you determine how best to treat it so that it doesn’t return later in its life cycle (or worse).
Signs of termite damage
You can tell if you have termites in your home by looking for these signs:
- Termites are attracted to the smell of food. If you notice that your kitchen cabinets or drawers have been left open for a long time, termites have found their way inside.
- The sound of dripping water will attract them too! This is because many species of subterranean termite colonies are found near water sources and prefer damp areas such as sewage pipes and wells—so make sure you watch for any leaks around yours!
Small piles of dirt in your home mean termites have eaten away at your foundation. You can find these little mounds near doors, windows, and other openings where they can access their food source (your house).
Subterranean termites are the most common type of termite. They are usually present in the United States, Canada, and Central and South America. Subterranean termites are attracted to wood that is moist and damp. You can find subterranean termites in homes, commercial buildings, parks, forests, and around outdoor structures such as outdoor furniture or trash cans.
Subterranean termites swarm in the spring or summer. They leave their nests and form a new colony by mating. This is why you often see swarms of flying termites around your home or yard.
Drywood termites are the most common type of termite. They are usually present in the eastern and central United States but also occur throughout much of the world. Drywood termites typically attack wood species that are not susceptible to decay caused by fungus or bacteria (such as redwood, cedar, and spruce). Unlike subterranean species, which feed on dead organic matter, dry wood termites prefer to feed on living parts of plants, such as leaves or flowers, for food sources.
Drywood termites are usually transparent to light brown. They have darker brown heads that can vary in size, depending on the species. A thin layer of chitin that they produce themselves covers their bodies. This makes them appear smooth when viewed with magnification.
Dampwood termites are the most common type of termite in the United States. You can find them in the Southeast, Midwest, and Northeast. You can also find damp wood termites in Africa, Australia, and New Zealand.
This kind of termite has an average life span of six years, with some individuals living as long as ten years or more!
Dampwood termites stay in moist environments, such as wood or mud. They feed on wood and leave behind fecal pellets and saliva. Dampwood termite colonies can consist of thousands of workers, soldiers, and reproductives.
How to eliminate termites
If you suspect termites are in your home, contacting a professional pest control company is best. They will inspect your property and identify the problem areas so that you can fix it yourself or hire the services of a trained exterminator. Professional advice would be great too. A trained termite exterminator in York, PA, can give you helpful tips.
Termite-baiting products effectively repel termites from an area by creating an insecticide-rich environment that discourages them from entering. Place the baits directly under or near where termites chew wood, such as on walls, floors, and roofs; however, they only work on some species of subterranean termites (subterranean is what we’ll focus on here).
Termite bait stations allow users to place bait inside the unit without direct contact with pests; thus, they’re safe around pets and children who may accidentally eat them if they come in contact with their bodies while playing outside! Particular specialized types are available that contain insecticides mixed into the food. Hence, as not only attract but kill any unwanted bugs once inside. These types may require higher doses depending on how often per week/month treatment needs occur before effectiveness decreases. This method becomes ineffective over time due to a lack of availability.
Don’t Let Termites Eat Everything
The first thing to know about termites is that they’re a significant threat to your home. They can chew through wood and make it unusable, so you may need to replace some of the wood in your home.
If this sounds like something that would drive you crazy, don’t worry! There are several ways to eliminate termites without calling an exterminator—and they’re all easier than you think.
If you suspect that you have a problem with termites, the first thing to do is contact a professional. They can advise you on what to do next and help with the necessary treatment.