What are termites?
Termites are wood-destroying insects. They live and work together in large colonies, dividing themselves into different castes, or groups. The three castes within a termite colony are workers, soldiers, and reproductives. Subterranean termites are termites that nest under the ground, emerging from the soil to invade wooden structures, including homes and businesses. The most common species of termite found living in our area is the eastern subterranean termite. When living outside, termites are extremely beneficial and help to eliminate decaying plant materials. However, when they invade homes or businesses to feed on structural wood, they quickly turn from helpful to harmful.
Are termites dangerous?
Yes, termites are dangerous pests, not because they pose any real danger to people, but due to the extensive and costly structural damage they cause. Termites have the unparalleled ability to enter into homes undetected from the ground, where they work silently for months or even years eating away at the structural wood of the home. It is very common for a termite infestation to be discovered only once the extensive damages that they've caused have been realized. It is also important to note that termite damage is not something that is covered by most homeowners insurance as it is viewed as preventable, adding to the expense of repairing their damage.
Why do I have a termite problem?
Termites are attracted to moist soil and wood that has been damaged by water. Termites often become a problem on properties that have moisture issues. Factors like leaky pipes, fixtures, and clogged gutters all allow water to seep inside and damage structural wood, making your home more attractive to these wood-destroying pests. Subterranean termites most often find their way into homes and other structures through soil that comes in contact with door frames, deck posts, wood shingles, and porch steps.
Where will I find termites?
Subterranean termites are typically found in three spots: in their underground nests, inside of structural wood they are feeding on, or inside mud tubes. Termites create mud tubes to travel above the ground to their food sources. Mud tubes help them to maintain their high moisture needs and keep them away from predators. Inside of a home or other structure, termites are found tunneling through and feeding on structural wood located behind walls, below floors, above ceilings, or behind wooden trim. Termites are most often only seen by people during a swarm. A termite swarm occurs when reproductive members swarm from a mature colony to mate and create new nests and colonies.
When are termites most active?
In McKinney, Texas, eastern subterranean termites remain active year-round while traveling daily from their nests to search for food to feed their expansive colonies. Worker termites gather food for their colonies around the clock. In order to start new colonies of termites, winged reproductive swarmers emerge in large numbers from their mature colonies to search for a mate from a neighboring colony between the months of March and April, usually following a rainstorm. It is important to mention, however, that termite swarms in Texas can occur all throughout the year. Eastern subterranean termites in our area usually swarm during the daytime hours.
Interesting facts about termites
1. Subterranean termites are the most widespread and destructive species of termite living in the United States. They are known to be living in every state but Alaska.
2. Termite kings and queens have the potential to live 10-15 years, or even longer.
3. Termites are one of the few species of animals that can use wood as a source of food. They have specialized protozoa and other microbes in their guts that allow them to convert cellulose found in wood into energy.
How do I get rid of termites?
To eliminate and/or prevent termites, partner with Around The Block Pest Control. Our friendly and highly trained professionals deliver modern and effective pest control solutions. We will work closely with you to eliminate termites and stop future termite populations from making themselves at home in your Texas home or business.
Around The Block Pest Control offers a variety of residential and commercial pest control services: general pest coverage, organic services, bed bugs control, fire ant control, mosquito control, rodent control, and more. To learn more about the termite control services we offer throughout northeastern Texas, call Around The Block Pest Control!
How can I prevent termites in the future?
In addition to our professional services, the following tips can help to prevent problems with termite infestations in your northeastern Texas home or business:
Remove any structural wood from in or one your home that has been damaged by water.
Leave at least an 18-20 inch a barrier between the foundation and any mulch or soil.
Limit wood to soil contact on your property and around your home.
Reduce moisture levels in your home by using dehumidifiers.
Fix leaky pipes or fixtures in or around your home.
Seal entry points in the foundation, exterior walls, and roofline of your home.
Store firewood and scrap wood a distance away from the exterior of your home.
Remove fallen trees, tree limbs, leaf piles, and other organic debris from your property.
Prevent wooden structures from becoming water damaged by staining, painting, or otherwise treating it.