The Tips for Termite Control
Learn the best tips for termite protection and why termite inspection is a necessity.
One of the main dangers of termites is that they can be very stealthy enemies. They may be nearby – and simultaneously, no traces of life can even be observed. They bite into your house, for example, from under the foundation and devastate all the insides of the house's wooden floors. In the truest sense of the word, the worst is that only 2-3 years will be enough for them to collapse your house.
Who are termites? Are they dangerous?
Termites are small insects, vaguely resembling ants, with white bodies and wings. In the process of evolution, they evolved from cockroaches, and ants are their enemies. Like other such colonial insects, the termites have a clearly defined hierarchy. Having seen the once live or at least in pictures on the internet, you are unlikely to confuse them with someone else. Unfortunately, termites in Australia are widespread. Of course, you can always use DIY termite bait stations – on envirobug.com.au – but let us finish this story.
Why do termites destroy houses?
Termite food is cellulose. The central storage of this material, as we know, is wood, and only then all its derivatives: paper, cardboard, etc. In the context of nature, termites cannot even be called pests since they only feed on dead wood. In sporadic cases, they can be found in a living tree. But since houses are already being built from recycled wood, this is a great delicacy for these insects. And the fact that they are not interested in the tree itself but only in cellulose is evidenced by the dust left at the crime scene.
What termites are dangerous?
There are two major types of termites: subterranean and arboreal. The first type lives both in the earth and in the tree, the second, respectively, only in structures made of wood. Subterranean individuals also live in various sheds, garden houses, and dunghills. However, they do much more damage to your property. Suppose you manage to determine that it was these termites that attacked you. Dealing with them will not be easy at all. Most likely, you will need to turn to professionals.
How can you tell if a house is infested with termites?
If you have at least one of these signs, immediately begin to take action or contact a specialist:
Small round holes
Termites chew through wood, thereby creating holes and tunnels simultaneously used for food and to pave their route.
If you find cracks or damaged places on your property's wooden pieces, try to "pick" all of them and see if they are just damaged or have a termite mark.
Tiny heaps of dust next to the holes described above is another sure sign of termite infestation.
While termites do hide their existence relatively well, they do not care about their excrements in the slightest. Thus, you can track insects with it.
Getting rid of termites by yourself
Some advice on what you can do to fight termites on your own.
Dust and powder
One option is to dry the insects with special dust, such as diatomaceous earth or silica aerogel. They cut into the chitinous cover of insects and penetrate inside, drawing fluid from the body. The dust is harmless to humans if not inhaled. Use a mask and goggles to avoid irritation of the mucous membranes.
Sometimes it is not necessary to deal with termites yourself. For example, it is possible to hack their passages made from the colony to the feeding grounds, after which natural enemies of termites, such as ants, can get into them.
Another enemy is Nematodes. The idea is to attack the enemy with his own weapon. Nematodes parasitize insects. They must penetrate the host's body and therefore destroy it. The termite lives 48 hours after infection. The disadvantage is that the nematodes themselves soon die. You should purchase Nematodes separately, however.
Turning to the specialists
While there are options to try to fight the termites on your own, it will not always be successful. You may simply not have enough experience, won't use the solutions correctly, won't completely cover the area, make other mistakes, etc. Do not hesitate in this case – you need to turn to a professional exterminator. Though his help will cost a lot of money, there are substantial benefits:
- The exterminator gives a warranty for the results of his work;
- He is an expert in his field;
- Professional exterminators use substances that might not be freely available.
Still, be very careful in regard that scammers being everywhere, and, in addition to wasted money, you may as well lose your home due to poor-quality surface treatment or harmful potent poisons. Thus, the best way is to explore a few offers on the pest control market in your area. Try to find out as much as possible about the company you like.
If their site has no reviews, or better yet, only positive comments, exercise respective caution and diligence. A written warranty for the quality and durability of the work performed must be issued, and repeated checks and visits to maintain the quality of the work performed must be free of charge.
Preventive measures: what to do if there are no termites yet?
If you have not yet encountered termites in your yard or have already successfully defeated them, you need to employ preventive actions from now on. Here are the precautions experts recommend:
- After construction is completed, keep the soil around the foundation dry;
- Reduce holes that termites can use for their enemy purposes (fill cracks in the cement base, etc.);
- Keep vents free from blockage, including by plants;
- Make sure that trees or shrubs are not planted too close to the walls of the house, and do not let them break through the wooden surfaces;
- Do not store firewood or wood waste near your home;
- Inspect wood storage areas periodically to make sure termites have not settled there.
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