Termite colonies are like well-oiled machines. Made up of queens, workers, soldiers, and reproductives, termites work together to expand their underground nests, repopulate, and gather food. All of this is well and good until you realize that termites main source of food is cellulose, the main component found in wood. For those of us living in homes primarily made of wood, a termite's diet poses a major concern. Today we will dive deep into the nature of termites and share with you some practical ways you can stop them.
The most common termite here in Woodburn is the subterranean termite. Although there are a few different species of subterranean termite across the US, they all share the same basic traits and habits.
Typically, subterranean termites build their colonies outside, underground in moist soil. From these colonies, workers build tunnels outwards to search for potential food sources such as decaying plant matter and water-damaged wood. If they tunnel up to the walls of your home and find that the closest wood lies above a stone or concrete foundation, they will construct pencil-sized mud tubes as a way to stay moist and pass safely from the ground to the structural wood of your home. Once inside, termites are invisible as they eat deep into the structure of a home. Often it is not until several months or a year into their destruction that a homeowner will begin to notice any problems at all.
Known for their size, a fully mature subterranean colony can have 60,000 to 1 million termites. The more food sources the colony has access to, the larger it can become. Once fully mature, a colony's queen can lay 5,000-10,000 eggs per day.
Once a year during the springtime, subterranean termites do something called swarming. This is when a new caste of termites called swarmers (winged termites) are spawned from fully mature colonies. These termite flyers have one job, to search out and find new locations to set up new colonies. If you are seeing termite swarmers in or around your home, it could mean there is a colony close by.
At this point, you can see the looming threat termites pose. With the ability to reproduce rapidly and chew through wood undetected, termites pose a unique threat to homes here in Woodburn. Curious to find out how to stop termites? Consider the following tips.
Prevention Tips To Stop Termites
If termites have not already eaten their way into your Woodburn home, here are some practical ways you can deter them from doing so.
- Make sure no soil is directly touching the exterior wood of your home. This allows termites an easy way in.
- Keep your mulch at least 15 inches away from your home's foundation. This is one of a termite's favorite snacks.
- Store firewood at least 20 feet from your home’s exterior.
- Clear clutter from your yard.
- Remove water-damaged or rotting wood from your yard.
- Make sure your gutters are all in good working order.
- Trim back hedges and tree branches from the walls of your home to allow sunlight to dry around the base of your home.
- Install dehumidifiers in extra humid areas of your home.
- Repair water-damaged or wet wood in the structure of your home.
How Kanga Pest Can Help With Termites
Termites cost Americans 5 billion dollars each year. If you would like to keep your home termite-free, the professionals here at Kanga Pest Control would like to help. Our termite control programs are designed to fight back against home-destroying termites, stopping them before they ever get inside. With 13-14 termite colonies per acre in the country, this is a necessary precaution.
Reach out today with any questions regarding termites, or to schedule an appointment for your home and property.