Termite Infestation in West Palm Beach
Termites are unique creatures. They build structures at night when they are less likely to dry out. In most cases, the structures are clayey in texture, brown, or dark brown in color. Some species of termites swarm at night, while others prefer daylight. But all dry wood termites tend to swarm after rain at certain times of the year.
Because they come in large numbers, they can cause immense damage to wood or carvings. It is vital to look for signs of termites in these tubes to avoid damage and loss. Note the tunnels formed along the small diameter copper tubes. These tunnels are important to protect the termites from predators. They maintain a dark and moist environment for termite food storage and development. Underground species do not make shelter tubes. They build underground tunnels where they search for and transport their food.
Types of Termites
Termites are small, primitive insects. They are very social as they live in organized colonies, like bees, ants, or wasps. Those colonies are often very large. Each individual plays a very specific role in them, depending on the social group to which it belongs.
Around the world, almost 2000 species of termites are now known. The vast majority of them live in tropical and equatorial regions. There, the damage caused is considerable. Florida is one of the most affected areas in the United States. Here are the main ones:
1) Subterranean Termites
Subterranean termites live in the ground and move up the wood they feed on. They need wood or other cellulose-based materials to survive.
Subterranean termites can travel up to 300 feet from the termite nest to find food. They also need a constant source of moisture. They can find this through:
- Leaking roofs
- Leaking plumbing
- Leaking showers
- And others
Once the termite locates a source of food or water, it leaves a trace of pheromone behind. This enables other termites in the colony can locate the food.
A colony can establish itself in the soil before infesting your home. Subterranean termites can enter your home through wooden structures. Especially those in contact with the infested soil. Subterranean termites do not grow their excrement and wood particles outside the gallery. Instead, they use these materials and other debris to form a plaster. They use it for the construction of the tunnel.
2) Dry-wood Termites
These termites are well-known as one of the most destructive dry wood termites in the world. They come from the Caribbean, but today they have spread all over Florida. They are particularly adapted to urban areas and dwellings.
Wood termites are social insects that live in colonies. They organize themselves around different castes. Breeders perform the functions of underground termite workers and soldiers. They live inside rooms of wood where they rely on atmospheric water for their water needs.
They are very tolerant of living in a dry atmosphere and can thus stay for many years in small wooden rooms. Their size is about twice the size of subterranean termites. The nest is in the wooden room with no connection to the ground and spreads by swarming. The colonies are not very populous. But they are capable, in the long run, of doing very great damage by digging large cavities as they move around.
Signs of Termites’ Presence
You may be wondering what termites look like? Here are the most common signs of an infestation by these small insects.
One of the signs of termites is the presence of quiet clicking noises coming from your walls. Soldier termites bang their heads against the wood. They shake their bodies to signal danger to other termites. Worker termites, which are the ones that like to eat your woodwork, are noisy eaters. If you place your ear near termite-infested wood, you can hear them nibbling.
Another common sign of termites is their discarded wings. Flying termites lose their wings soon after finding a mate. Male and female termites mate and then crawl to a suitable nesting site. They lock themselves, reproduce, and start the new colony. The king and queen begin by caring for their young until there are enough workers to take over. The king continues to look after the queen. The couple can live together in the growing colony for more than 10 years. In some species of termites, the males die soon after mating, but the queen can live up to 20 years or more.
Termite droppings are tiny granules found at or near the entrance of termites. When you find an accumulation of deposits outside or inside your home, it is a clear sign of termites.
4) Eaten Wood
This monkey is the most common. Since termites usually consume wood from the inside out, they leave a thin veneer of wood or only paint. When you knock or tap on an area damaged by termites, you will hear a hollow or paper noise. This is because some or all the wood inside has been all eaten away.
5) Doors and Windows Difficult to Open
Deformed windows and doors can also signal the presence of termites. They are often linked to signs of humidity and heat. When they eat and tunnel through the door and window frames they cause the wood to warp. The moisture they produce makes it difficult to open doors and windows.
Removing a Termite Infestation
Termites cause millions of euros in property damage to homes every year. Protecting your home before termites appear is one of the best ways to save money.
It is a must for a landowner to be wary of termite infestation as early as possible. It will avoid losses in the future. They can take preventive measures or use pesticides to kill termites.
Spotting a termite infestation is easier when the level of infestation is high. That is why having your home inspected on a regular basis will help you prevent invasions. Termite control professionals will protect your home from the ravages termites can cause.
Termite treatments exist in different forms. Each treatment acts in a different way on termites. This also depends on the species of termites targeted. Calling on a professional service is the best solution. Experts will be able to identify the problem fats and remedy it with an effective solution. Protect your family from these destructive insects.