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The Dangers Termites Pose To Your Home

The Dangers Termites Pose To Your Home

The first sighting of termites in your home is a challenging one and often can leave you feeling overwhelmed. Termites in Fort Lauderdale are insects known to degrade the home and attack its structure and support. While the eradication of these insects is a process that requires proper knowledge, it is also important to understand the termite species to determine exactly what you are up against.  

With over 2,700 species of termites around the world, knowing which type you are facing helps to know what measures to take to prevent and get rid of the unwanted invaders. Termites are categorized into two types of species:

  • Subterranean termites are known to live in deserts. They consists of wester, Formosans, and Eastern species.  Most cases of termite infestations in the United States often involve subterranean species. These termites make their nests underground. Above ground, they make protective covers on wooden surfaces and begin eating away at the timber.
  • Drywood termites are a species that live above ground. They often makes their nests and colonies in dry, undecayed wood. Drywood termites tunnel into the wood, excavating and churning out wood pellets to create numerous chambers.

Both Subterranean and Drywood termites tend to weaken the integrity of wooden structures as they either make a home within the timber or use it as a food source.

Irrespective of the species, however, termites generally make their nests close to their source of food. Termites rarely source food from the structures that contain their nests. Therefore, if you find termites in your home, the nest is most likely located a few meters away at the base of or in a tree. Termites have varied food sources that contain cellulose but have a voracious appetite for wood. If given enough time, termites can turn the wooden structures of a home as their food source causing extensive damages while feeding until what is left is a shell of a home – as they virtually eat the wood from the inside out. 

Here are a few interesting facts about termites to consider as you work to prevent and identify infestations: 

  • Termites play an important role in nature. They feed on wood and cellulose materials in the environment thus helping to break down things such as dead trees and vegetation. But, this action is only beneficial in places such as forests where there are no human activities. Their conflict with man starts when they invade living spaces.
  • Termites prefer warmer climates therefore places in the south of the United States are more prone to termite infestation with subterranean species being the common invaders. Termites establish their colonies underground forming numerous tunnels as their secret paths into your home as they forage for food.
  • Termites are social, which is evidenced by their tendency to form colonies made of thousands of termites grouped in several specialized forms. The forms are categorized using a caste system and each member of the caste playing a detailed role. Among the different forms are “swarmers;” these are unique male and female termites specially bred to fly away from the nest during late spring. The swarmers will mate, and each pair of male and female sheds off the wings and settles down to start a new colony.
  • While they rarely cause any physical damage to humans, termites can destroy property. These damages can be very expensive to restore. The damage does not simply stop at home structures but also other things and structures such as farm products or sheds.  Termites find their way into your home through cracks and crevices in the foundation of the home. Also, if the foundation is made from untreated wood, it is very prone to a termite infestation.

By understanding the nature of termites you can properly prevent them. It is recommended that you consult a termite specialist in Fort Lauderdale to help you prevent and protect your home from termites as well as treat them should you have an infestation. While some measures may work for both termite species, each has distinctive traits that call for an unique approach for handling that species of termites.

Here are the most common forms of eradicating termites from your home. Prior to treating any possible termite infestation it is highly recommended that you consult a termite specialist. 

Insecticides. These are effective and are in several forms from applied liquids, foams, and gasses. The application of insecticides differ based on the method used. For instance, tenting and fumigation will need a unique approach that differs from a standard fumigation method.

Baiting. This is one of the common low cost methods homeowners prefer using. They place wood baits coated with boric acid at bait stations. The technique does help to deal with a festering termite population though it is not a fast solution and may take too long to become truly effective. Prior to baiting it is recommended that you consult a pest control expert. 

Flooding. This approach works best when dealing with subterranean termites because they live underground. Flooding can be done using hot water or water mixed with insecticides. 

Dusting. This is an effective method when dealing with Drywood termites but it does not have a significant impact on subterranean termites.

If you find your home in danger of a termite infestation it is recommended that you consult a pest control specialist in Fort Lauderdale as soon as possible. Being proactive is the best way to protect your home.

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