Termites And Termite Damage Can Eat A Hole Into Your Home And Your Wal…

In the United States termites cause more damage than fire, flood and wind combined. This insect is distributed throughout the country and is common already in states like Connecticut where winters can be harsh. Having a yearly termite inspection by a pest control specialized is the best defense against this very destructive insect.

The most common termite in the United States is the eastern subterranean termite. This insect feeds off the cellulose contained within wood and wood products. The colonies of this insect are located 3′-25′ below the soil, they have a caste system containing a king, queen, workers, soldiers and reproductive’s. The part of the life cycle responsible for damage is the worker stage. Workers satisfy and with the help of a protozoa in their gut break down the cellulose they have satisfy upon and regurgitate it to the remaining members of the colony. If it weren’t for the presence of workers a termite colony would cease to exist.

A defining characteristic of a termite colony is the presence of “shelter tubes”. These shelter tubes or mud tubes as they are called in the pest control industry are used to travel back and forth from the soil to at all event their source of food happens to be. Also, termites carry this mud with them into their food source so that they can stay moist for a longer period of time. Without moisture termites can’t live. The presence of mud tubes is confirmation that eastern subterranean termites are or were present in the home. If you have mud tubes on foundation walls, framing or any other area of your home you will need a pest control specialized to perform an inspection and possible treatment.

The first sign of trouble for a homeowner is the presence of reproductives. Many homeowners mistakenly call this stage of the life cycle ants with wings. While ants with wings do exist, the difference between an ant with wings and a termite is that termites have 2 body segments and 4 wings all of equal length. Ants have 3 body segments and 4 wings, of which 2 are long and 2 are short. Another meaningful difference is that when reproductive termites “swarm” they discarded their wings and discard them near the area that they are swarming from. A “good” swarm is upsetting and usually will prompt a call to a pest control specialized.

One of the more disturbing aspects of termite behavior is that damage can go unnoticed for years. Termites are cryptic by character and often the damage you see is not all there is. It should be assumed that if you have termites there is some kind of damage including hidden damage. A pest control specialized can often find the visible areas of activity, but it will take a carpenter to open walls to find the true extent of the injury.

Your home is the largest investment you will ever make. The best way to protect yourself and your home from this insect is to find out from a local specialized what species of termite is common in your portion of the country. A pest control company can provide you with a yearly termite inspection and treatment that in most situations will stop any future damage from occurring. The management and inspection of termites is best left to an experienced inspector as they know exactly what they are looking for. Over the years I have come upon too many homes that have had extensive damage that could have been stopped had the homeowner been proactive about exterminating this pest from their home. Don’t think it can’t happen to you because it can.

If you have termites or think you have termites don’t put off an inspection any longer. The inspection will likely be free, except for real estate transactions where a report will cost anywhere from $75-$250. I think that’s a small price to pay for piece of mind, wouldn’t you agree?

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