Have you suddenly heard a strange buzzing sound somewhere or noises in the attic? In the spring, we often get bored with termites in attic that we have safely forgotten about during the winter. For many private homeowners in the South, especially if you live in North Carolina, one type of insect is the most unwelcome addition to a home.
When termites attack homes closer to April and May, residents of this state come to the conclusion that it’s time to secure their homes against these unwanted guests. In this article, we will tell you all the information about dry wood termite swarmers to give you a weapon in your hands against these pests and protect your home from their invasion.
How do you get rid of the termite swarm in the house? Whoever is interested in this question obviously cannot envy it. The fact is that termites are not the safest insects, and getting rid of them is not easy.
These groups of insects are relatives of the cockroach family. In common parlance, they are used to be called “white ants”. They cause considerable damage to humans. They are considered the most dangerous insects in the world. Termite swarms can cause damage to wooden structures, furniture, and prints in a short period of time.
In their natural habitat, flying termite’s swarm feed on dead worms and rotting parts of wood trunks. Individuals may eat dried shoots of cereal crops or fallen leaves and humus.
Owners of their own wooden houses need to be wary of this enemy and know how to counter it. Termites are rather primitive insects that feed on plant foods. But most of all, they love cellulose. Everyone in the house has items that contain this substance.
Therefore, when termites are found, you should be wary of home furniture, books, houseplants and decor elements.
It takes a while to detect a termite-infested wooden structure. The fact is that these insects are very secretive, they know how to disguise themselves for a long time. The owners of the house may not even suspect that their home is in serious danger until the secret becomes apparent.
Termites start to eat wood from the inside. Gradually moving toward, the outside, they make passages that are not immediately obvious. If “white ants” have penetrated the house, these insects are no longer limited to pieces of furniture and doorways, they can also destroy the family library.
To keep the house in pristine condition and prevent the invasion of “uninvited guests”, you need to know what types of swarming termites pictures exist in nature. This knowledge will help deal with the insects as effectively as possible. You can find out what species of these pests exist in the next section of this article.
What Types Of Termites There Are: Subterranean Termites VS Drywood Termites
Termites are a menace to wooden buildings and a real threat to human life. Mighty trees affected by these insects crumble before our eyes at the slightest push. The same can be said about wooden buildings. Many films and scientific television programs have been made about these insects.
Termites, like ants, are social insects. They are also called “white ants”, but in fact, they are not related. Termites are descended from cockroaches.
The number of termite colonies can reach several tens or even hundreds of millions of individuals. And all of them need a home, which is a nest – a termite nest. Its approximate location is determined by a pair of sexually mature individuals that left their “parental home”. After the necessary number of working individuals are born, they begin to create a reliable shelter for the entire future colony.
Termites eat plant food. Only the workers eat on their own. The soldiers cannot eat on their own because of their exorbitantly huge chews. The mother and the male are fed by secretions of the workers’ salivary glands or larvae. The smallest larvae are also fed by the workers.
Special services are created to combat them. They are poisoned with the most powerful poisons. But the results of these measures are hardly noticeable. Termites have brought and continue to bring great problems to mankind. But is it possible that there is only harm and no benefit from them? We are about to find out.
Let’s start with the basic concepts about termites. There are quite a huge number of varieties of these insects in the world, but conventionally they can be divided into two: subterranean termites and dry wood termites. These two types are quite similar to each other, but there are some differences in their behavior, habits and swarming. So, drywood vs subterranean termites.
The subterranean termite, according to its nickname, lives mostly underground. Unlike the second type, they dig mud pipes to gain constant access to moisture and to protect themselves from those who might harm them as they move from place to place.
You can see them in the sides of buildings, on trees, in barns and barns, where the insects have already brooded in sufficient numbers. You can usually see them during the day all spring.
Subterranean termites are subspecies that have a long life cycle. These subterranean termites swarmers can live in huge colonies and reach out to places with a large accumulation of metal and wood, which are primarily our homes.
Through their actions, termites cause wood and metal support structures to age, which in the worst possible circumstances can lead to the destruction of your home. Subterranean termites are the most damaging insects and cause more damage than all the fires and hurricanes combined. Their presence can be quite difficult to detect, but if you find them in your home, you should act immediately.
The second type of termites do not live in the ground, but in the wood itself, in which they safely reside. They can appear out of nowhere and are hard to spot because at first they are stealthy and leave no visible traces, as subterranean termites do. They can be found only in the evening, and they are not much interested in moisture for sustenance and residence.
To get rid of house termites as effectively as possible, you need to understand what kinds of insects there are and study their strengths and weaknesses.
Like many other individuals in the insect family, termites can be divided into 3 types:
Working individuals. The body of these termites is white and quite soft. Their size does not exceed 10 mm. The eyes of working specimens may be poorly developed or absent at all. The sexual organs of such individuals do not have any.
Insect soldiers. Their main task is to protect the entire colony from attacks by predator ants, which are their main enemies. Soldier insects have a variety of defensive weapons. They have a large head and powerful gnawing mandibles. Some species have an outgrowth on their head that contains a kind of secret used as a weapon against the enemy. In case of danger, they spray a liquid from their outgrowth on the enemy. Their eyes and sexual organs are very poorly developed or completely absent.
Termites, capable of breeding and bearing offspring. These individuals have a dark-colored bodies. The eyes of this species of insects are well developed, and the body has 2 pairs of wings. After the realization of reproductive function, the wings die off and are discarded, after which the individuals can no longer fly.
At first, the insect transforms from a larva into a pupa and then grows into an adult. An important feature that distinguishes termites from other ants is that they do not tolerate sunlight. Therefore, they always find places where there is almost no sunlight.
To get rid of house termites on your own, you must first find out where they have settled, and then start fighting them.
Why Do Termites Swarm: How Long Do Termites Swarm
Do swarming termites mean infestation? The purpose of swarming is to increase the termite population and build fresh colonies close to available food sources. In this, termites are very similar to their fellow ants – they are socialized and only exist effectively within a colony.
How long do termite swarms last? Young termites grow wings in the spring to leave their home colony as part of the swarm. They move through mud tubes, in the case of the subterranean species, or they fly away by air. They can’t fly far enough and usually move on a tailwind until they land somewhere.
Once on land, they establish new colonies. When do termites swarm? Colonies swarm mostly once a year, although some species may swarm several times a year. If the termite swarming season occurs more than once, each subsequent swarm produces fewer offspring than the previous one.
How to Identify a Termite Swarm: Do Termites Come Out During The Day
A termite swarmers in the house is almost instantaneous, so you should learn to find a termite swarm as quickly and accurately as possible. The swarming stage is the time in which most termites prepare to form a new colony and continually reproduce to make it complete.
Swarming termites have many similarities to flying ants, and they never come one at a time to your house. Termite colonies start appearing as soon as the swarmers find a suitable spot in the ground, and termites can form their colonies almost anywhere, especially if there is an inexhaustible source of pulp and plenty of water nearby – your house fits these parameters perfectly.
Here are a few differences between termite swarms and ants:
Termites have straight tendrils, while ants’ tendrils look like an arc.
Termites’ wings are always symmetrical, while ants’ are not.
Termites are straighter in build than their counterparts.
So What Does This Mean for My Home?
If you find out that there is a termite infestation on your property, it is important to react quickly. Swarming termites will begin establishing their colony as soon as they arrive in the right place, and the infestation will happen so quickly that you may find out about it quite late.
First, you need to find out what type of termites you are currently dealing with in your home. The most logical way to do this is to see what kind of damage has been done to your home by the intruders.
Subterranean termites live underground, and that’s where their actions begin. If your home has been affected by subterranean termites, you need to carefully inspect all areas of the home that are close to the ground, especially where they would easily crawl through.
Pay attention to damaged wood, and also look for mud pipes with your eyes. And it’s worth examining not only the house itself but also the yard structures next to it.
Drywood termites are significantly damaging to all the wood they can get their hands on. To recognize these termites, you should climb up into your attic or roof and carefully inspect all corners of it, especially paying attention to small holes in wooden structures.
Pay particular attention to the wood on the street side of your home, which is where these little pests are most likely to settle.
Getting Rid Of Insects In The House
To get rid of pests in the house as effectively as possible, you must first find out where they are located. To do this, it is necessary to thoroughly inspect all possible places where termites can live.
As previously mentioned, these insects are very fond of eating wooden structures and decor elements. Even musical instruments made of wood, books, window sills, wooden stairwells, and plants that have wood in them are to their liking. This is by no means the entire list of favorite treats of these insect pests.
Determine that termites have invaded your home this way:
Carefully inspect all wood floors, furniture, doors, or existing wood building material. If termites have appeared in the house, you may find very small holes in wooden structures.
In certain areas (usually wooden doors and floors), fine dust particles of wood can be found on the floor. These indicate that termites are sharpening the product from the inside, gradually moving outward and leaving behind passages from which the chaff is crumbling.
Examine the house carefully to see if you can see any tiny light brown, brown or dark brown insect activity.
Knock with the back of a screwdriver on a wooden floor or door. Listen to the sound. If your ears detect cavities, it means that insects are living in the structure and gnawing at it from the inside.
If you have a thermal imaging camera in the house, you can use it. It will help to identify the source of heat inside the wooden product, which is radiated by termite gatherings.
Inspect the foundation and walls on the exterior and interior for passages. Some species of earth termites may live in the ground, close to water. Water is vital to them. But as a daily diet, termites will look for food inside the dwelling, so they will make a special underground passage to get into the house.
Inspect the wooden floors of the dwelling on the first floor. Examine the foundation and wall connection in more detail, not forgetting the front door. You can use a flashlight for this purpose. Termite-infested areas may not be visible from the outside. Take a screwdriver and tap the backside of the wood. You need to locate the cavities in which the termites have “inhabited”.
If you cannot find the pests yourself, you can invite professionals in the field to find and destroy the insects.
If you are able to withstand a “regiment” of insect pests without help, you can kill them with chemicals or with folk methods.
The Chemical Method
If you do not want to ask for help from specialists in the field of disinfestation, it would be good to know how you can get rid of termites chemically.
You can use the following products:
“Fipronil”, “Chlorphenapil”, “Chlorpyrifos”, “Imidacloprid”. These preparations are strong poisons and very toxic, so they must be handled carefully. You can either spray them or treat the places where termites have been detected with them. It is imperative that you wear gloves on your hands and a mask on your face. After such treatment, people and pets should not be in the room for several hours.
Boric acid. A very popular and effective way to destroy termites in a private homemade of wood. Boric acid can lead to dehydration of the termites and disruption of the insects’ nervous system functions. You can use a single powder, or you can add it to a special trap. After using this substance, the pests are slowly paralyzed and then they will die. The dry or liquid substance is added to the bait or habitat of the “tenants”.
Before using any of the proposed remedies, it is necessary to remember that all of these substances are very toxic and dangerous to human and animal life. It is desirable to settle the latter with acquaintances or relatives for the period of disinfestation so that they wouldn’t accidentally taste the chemical component and wouldn’t be poisoned by the vapors of poison.
Folk remedies are not as powerful as chemicals, but they are not capable of harming humans or animals. If small children, the elderly or people with allergies live in the house, it is undesirable to use chemical components. You can use less dangerous ways to control the pests.
To cope with termites in the home will help the following means:
Method 1Trap made of cardboard
To do the following:
Soak 2 sheets of cardboard in water.
Place them on top of each other.
Place the cardboard in the place where the termites have “settled”. Since the cardboard is made of cellulose, it will attract insects in every way. Eventually, they will leave their “apartment” to feed.
Once the termites have crawled out of their holes and settled on the cardboard, they should be moved to a suitable place to be burned later.
If necessary, the eradication process should be repeated several times.
Method 2Nematode worms
To get rid of termites at home, you can buy such worms at the market or in a seedling store. These worms are small in size. They serve to kill garden tree pests, which are primarily termites. There are about 5 species of these worms.
To use nematodes immediately, you need to deepen them into the soil, the temperature of which does not exceed 15 ° C. If you will use them as sanitizers a little later, it is better to place the worms in a refrigerator in a hermetically sealed container. Place them in the soil either early in the morning or after sunset, because bright sunlight is harmful to these helpers.
Method 3Ultraviolet rays
If you find that the insects are densely “settled” in the furniture set or other pieces of furniture, then they should be taken outside under the scorching sun. Under the influence of ultraviolet light, which insects fear like fire, they will die. If the procedure will take place on hot summer days, then the furniture can be left outside for 2-3 days.
If you are not lucky enough to live in the south, and there are constant rains and cold outside, then you can take advantage of this circumstance. To combat household interior pests, you can apply extreme measures – freezing the furniture and furniture sets. If possible, the cabinets should be disassembled and placed in a large freezer or freeze for two to three days.
To completely rid the house of pests, it is necessary to perform not only local removal of termites from furniture items and wooden structures. To completely destroy the pests, you need to exterminate absolutely all insects, down to the larvae. Therefore, comprehensive measures should be applied. This is best done in late spring or early summer.
VIDEO THAT WILL HELP YOU: Termites In Attic
In this video, you get an answer to the question if you should get protected wood in your house.
Preventive measures are necessary in order to prevent dangerous pests from entering the house.
Try to follow these recommendations of experts:
The foundation of the new house should be built as high off the ground as possible;
A good drain around the perimeter of the home should be built so that the soil is not too wet and does not attract termites;
Ask experts what types of wood are not favored by insects in order to take advantage of them in your home;
Use a special protective film when masonry walls to keep insects out of your home;
To reduce high humidity in the house, you need to dig a trench around it no more than 1 meter and fill the top with sand treated with insecticidal agents;
Do not allow sewer and water pipes to leak, as dripping water attracts termites;
Clean your gutters often so they do not harbor insect pests;
Make sure the house is well ventilated so that excess moisture can escape without difficulty;
Place a wooden fence around your yard on a cement foundation so that the wood does not come into contact with the ground;
Treat all wooden exterior structures around the house with special coatings to prevent termites from entering the home;
Caulk all cracks and crevices in the walls that have formed on the outside of the house with sealant in a timely manner;
Add 0.1% permethrin (1 big spoonful of permethrin per bucket of water) to your facade paint or cement to keep termites out of your home;
Don’t store firewood or wood products near your home; it’s better to store them in a shed or pack them tightly so they don’t get wet in the rain or snow;
During hot periods place mosquito nets on windows and balconies to prevent insects from entering the house;
Bushes and trees too close to the house should be replanted further away;
When watering your garden try not to hose down the walls and foundations of your house so they don’t absorb the moisture that attracts termites;
Special baits will not be able to eliminate the “huge army” of insects for 100%, but they can reduce their number by 100-200 specimens;
For best results, combine several methods of disinfestation, if the number of termites does not decrease, but rather the opposite;
As a preventative measure, treat wood regularly with antiseptic pest repellants.
The battle against the termite squad requires decisive action. If you don’t win, the insects will win. And then the saying “my house is my fortress” will make no sense to you. If you value your home, then make sure that, except for family members, no one else “lives” in it. Try all available methods, combine different techniques – and you will succeed.