Termites are small insects measuring one – fourth to one -half inches long. They have soft bodies and straight antennae. Their colors range from white to light brown. There are around 2,000 species of them, and over 40 can be found in the United States. Even though each species have their own characteristics, they all look similar.
Termites are pests
Termites may be small, but these small, seemingly harmless insects have caused billions of dollars in damages each year in the United States alone. Mostly, they feed on wood for food. But they have learned to adapt to their environment and eat what is available to them. They also eat papers, boxes, your important documents, your favorite books, and insulation. All termites consume cellulose-based plant materials, which is the reason why all our homes and buildings are a rich source of food for termites; all homes can provide cellulose food for them. It is also important to note that termites are a big consideration when buying or selling a home. A buyer would normally have your house inspected for termites. If found to be infested, a sale will not be closed.
Three most common types of termites
In the United States, there are three major types of termites: subterranean, dry wood, and damp wood termites.
Termites are detritivores, they eat dead wood and plants. They also eat mulch, stumps, and roots. There are times that they also eat living trees. Other things they eat are carpets, cardboard, fabric, and animal feces. Termites have mouths that are capable of tearing wood. This is how they get to destroy our houses.
How did I get these termites?
Termites enter our homes through cracks and openings around pipes and wires. They usually have already formed colonies within your perimeter and crawl across your yards to get to your house.
Termite warning signs
Be always on the lookout for these termites to avoid damages to your home. Signs to look out for are:
- Wood that sounds hollow when tapped
- Mud tubes on walls or wood beams
- Visible termite droppings
- Seeing an actual termite, it means many more are hidden
- Discarded termite wings can be seen around
When reproductive males and females fly off from their colonies and leave, they begin to procreate. After fertilization, they land and shed their wings. They then form new colonies of their own. Each colony have a king and s queen and they are responsible for reproduction.
Termite prevention and control
To control termite infestation, remove their food source. Remove wood piles and keep them away from your immediate vicinity; do not allow the wood to soil contact; do not build wooden structures near the foundation or crawl space; get rid of debris near the house.
Termites like moisture. Repair leaking faucets, water pipes, and air conditioning units. Keep gutters clean and get rid of stagnant water on the roof.
However, once infested, keep in mind that there is nothing much you can do. It is advisable that you seek the help of experts, as it will be counterproductive to do it yourself. This is when professionals should come in.
Go-Forth Pest Control Company is here to solve your termite problems. Just dial 336-841-6111, and let us talk about it.