Are Your Trees Hiding Termites?
Everyone knows termites love basements, crawlspaces, and foundations, but did you know termites actually prefer to feast on dead trees if possible? Termite swarms will land on anything they think can serve as a hospitable home, and that includes your trees.
This time of year, heavy rains and lightning cause thousands of trees to fall across the U.S….in fact, over 5,000 people are killed worldwide when trees fall on their homes. But falling trees can also expose another danger to property and people alike: termites. All around the country you’ll find news reports concerning homeowners who only became aware they had a termite problem once a tree uprooted and fell into their home. Don’t be a victim like these people – educate yourself about what to look for when spotting termites in your trees:
Dead Trees are a Hazard:
Termites don’t feed on live wood nearly as readily as they feed on dead wood. Additionally, dead trees are much more like to fall in a storm. The cellulose contained in rotting wood is much more easily processed by termites, so keep an eye on your yard for trees that are past their prime. If you have any concerns that a tree might be dead, consult an arborist to see if it needs to be taken down.
Check for Signs:
Termites are relatively easy to spot if you know what to look for. Subterranean termites burrow up through the soil but they’ll leave small holes and wood shavings where they enter the wood. Look for these signs around the base of any large, older trees. Formosan termites leave similar signs and nest by the tens of thousands, often leaving wings and carcasses behind.
Don’t Discount Wet, Rotting Wood:
Dampwood termites, most common in cooler, rainy parts of the country like the Pacific Northwest, love nothing more than rotten wood. They’re not often found in homes but are frequently spotted in stumps and fallen branches. Keep your yard clear of this kind of debris to avoid attracting any termite species that may eventually find a suitable place to feed in your home.
It’s always a good idea to keep your yard and the sides of your home clear of any wood or refuse. The more crevices your home has for bugs, the more bugs you’ll have. If you suspect you have a termite issue in one of your trees or even in your home, call a Terminix professional immediately to stop the problem sooner.