Signs of Drywood Termites
Unlike a lot of different types of damage, termite damage is usually not covered by homeowners’ insurance plans. For this reason, people in areas prone to infestation need to know what they are up against. Many people mistakenly believe there is nothing they can do to prevent infestations. But in reality, annual inspections and certain home maintenance items are helpful in preventing these creatures from bothering your home.
In the North American continent, there are two major families of termites: subterranean and drywood. Both tend to feed on the cellulose material found in wood, including items like plants, carpeting, and even books. But while the subterranean termite burrows under the ground, drywood termites actually live within wood. Once a colony has established an access point to a home, it is capable of quickly covering a lot of ground and getting into walls and floors throughout the house. Any signs of infestation need to be quickly addressed because the drywood termite is relentless in its single minded destruction.
Sightings of Winged Reproductives
Once a colony of drywood termites has matured, swarmers or winged reproductives both male and female are produced and begin exiting the colony to create new colonies after they have mated. Warm temperatures and humid weather conditions bring out swarms in droves. Wet, warm spring weather is the perfect climate for reproductive termites to take flight and establish a colony. If you come across these swarmers, there is a very good chance your home has been infested or a colony is in the process of being established. Don’t wait. Contact qualified termite control professionals for an inspection searching for these drywood termites, locating possible entry points, and designing eradication protocol.
Notes on the Drywood Termite
This particular family of termites is not nearly as common as the subterranean variety. Drywood termites are usually found along the coast in southern and southwestern states. Although their numbers are relatively small, they cause tremendous damage. Infestations can be identified by piles of fecal pellets. They might be noticed in certain locations around the house such as the sills of your windows. Finding fecal pellets is sufficient cause to contact an inspector. Qualified termite control inspectors can thoroughly inspect your home, including making recommendations for any necessary work that might need to be done to get at inaccessible areas where these termites may be gaining entry.
Areas Where Drywood Termites Reside
The drywood termite does not require contact with soil moisture. These termites build their colonies in structural wood, such as wooden fence posts, furniture, door, windows, and wall structures. They mostly live in the areas of the United States where freezing temperatures normally do not occur in the winter. They can, of course, end up in the north as well. Transported wood can bring drywood termites north, resulting in isolated pockets of the drywood family where they usually do not reside.
If you live in the southern and southwestern regions where these termites are common, you should probably always be on the lookout for signs of possible infestation. In particularly prone areas, annual inspections are always a good idea and money well spent. In the event of an infestation, catching it early enough to save the structural integrity of your home can be priceless.
Since they reside inside the structure of wood, detection can be difficult. Fecal pellets are usually the one clue providing the best hunch that these creatures may be present in your home. The fecal pellets of drywood termites are about the size of table salt, and they can often accumulate below the location of an infestation.