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What Are Subterranean Termites and How Do I Prevent Them In Portland, OR

October 15, 2021

Subterranean termites are the most common species of this wood-destroying insect in the country. This species gets their name because they live underground, building tunnels to food sources made of cellulose materials such as wood.

There are three distinct castes of subterranean termite colonies:

  1. Swarmers are winged reproductive members that are dark brown to black and are about ¼ to ½ of an inch long
  2. Workers are wingless members that are responsible for carrying for the queen and foraging for food. They are a cream color and are up to ¼ of an inch long.
  3. Soldiers are wingless members that are responsible for protecting the queen and colony. They are about the same size as workers but have large jaws and are creamy-white color with a darker head.

There is also the queen, a reproductive female that is usually larger than the workers. Queens are in charge of establishing the initial colony and can live up to fifty years.

Subterranean termite colonies can grow inside rapidly to hundreds of thousands of individual members, causing immense damage to the properties they infest. As a Portland, Oregon resident, you should be aware of the damage they can cause and what prevention tips you can implement around your home.

an up close image of a subterranean termite crawling in wood

Damage Caused By Termites

While termites are not known to spread diseases, they are still dangerous. Termites are silent destroyers because they can cause damage to residential and commercial properties for years without ever being noticed.

Subterranean termites can eat away at the inside of wood while leaving the outside intact and possibly weakening a home’s entire structure. They can also cause damage to fences, playsets, and any other object made of cellulose material.

Because of their need for moisture, subterranean termites can also be a sign of a much larger moisture problem on your property that can also damage and weaken a home’s structure. To keep this from happening to your home, you should know about the tips you can implement to prevent termites.

Termite Prevention Tips

When it comes to subterranean termites, there is one main factor when considering prevention, moisture. As previously stated, this species needs moisture to survive, unlike dry wood termites, which can survive without water.

Moisture Prevention:

  • Remove excess plants and leaf piles in your hard as they can retain moisture
  • Remove dead trees and tree stumps from your property
  • Keep your gutters maintained and ensure they are properly guiding water away from your home’s foundation
  • Address any leaking pipes, faucets, and roof leaks
  • Make sure your home has moisture barriers in place
  • Use de-humidifiers and proper ventilation
  • Limit soil-to-wood contact
  • Use a barrier of stone between any soil or mulch and the foundation of your home.

If you are worried about termites, you should consider the benefits of regular inspections performed by professionals that know the signs to look for and can help ensure your property is not a conducive environment for this pest.

Professional Termite Assistance

When it comes to termites, you won’t be able to get rid of them on your own, which is why the best way to protect your property from subterranean termites is with professional home pest control assistance. If you live in Portland, Oregon, you should contact Kanga Pest Control for expert care. From prevention to removal, our trained technicians only use the best products available on the market to ensure the entire infestation is taken care of and to keep them from coming back again.

Contact Kanga Pest Control today to learn more about our subterranean termite extermination service to protect your home and family. 

Tags: home pest control | termites in portland | preventing termites |