Termite Control in Eastern Idaho
Subterranean termites are the single greatest economic pest in the United States. These termites cause billions of dollars in damage each year to homes, historical structures, and commercial buildings. Subterranean termites are social insects. This means that they live in family groups called colonies. Once a colony reaches a certain size, adult males and females will leave the colony and swarm. These are the reproductive termites of the colony. You may see these swarms during the daylight hours of the spring months. Homeowners may see winged termites emerge in large numbers inside their home or from the soil outside. The swarmer’s are new termite kings and queens that must leave their parent colony in order to mate and establish new colonies of their own.
Once a new colony is formed, subterranean termites build distinctive tunnels, often referred to as "mud tubes", to reach food sources and protect themselves from open air. They use their scissor-like jaws to eat wood 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Like other termite species, subterranean termites also feed on products containing cellulose.
Subterranean termites are constantly at risk of drying out; this is why they must live in the soil. Soil has the capacity to hold water for a long period of time and keep the colony moist. When termites forage above ground, they must maintain their connection to the soil so that the workers and soldiers can return periodically to replenish their body moisture. The mud tubes provide the termites with this soil connection. If a tube becomes damaged, the worker termites will labor desperately to repair it. If the tube is beyond repair, the termites located above ground will often die of dehydration. However, on some occasions subterranean termite colonies do become established above ground. These above ground infestations are almost exclusively found in structures with chronic moisture problems. Chronic moisture problems are usually the result of leaves and moisture accumulation on a flat roof, pipes leaking within the structure, or poor ventilation in crawl spaces. In such cases, the colony can survive above ground indefinitely.
Properly identifying termites compared to other insects and other termite species is crucial for effective control. The first step to identify termites is to recognize a termite as a termite. Many homeowners may fail to make this distinction. To the untrained eye, termites may look like ants.
A swarming termite has straight antennae and two sets of equal-length wings. Termite swarmer’s appear to have two body segments with straight abdomens. A termite’s wings are approximately twice the length of its body.
Flying ants have antennae that are bent in the middle, a pair of long wings and a pair of short wings. A flying ant’s wings are approximately the same length as its body. A flying ant also has three distinct body segments that narrow at the waist.
Subterranean Termite Prevention
The best method of subterranean termite control is to avoid water accumulation near your home's foundation. Divert water away with properly functioning downspouts, gutters, and splash blocks. Reduce humidity in crawl spaces with proper ventilation. Never bury wood scraps or waste lumber in the yard. Most importantly, eliminate wood contact with the soil. Maintain a one-inch gap between the soil and wood portions of the building.
Termite Inspection and Treatments
Pest Control Services, Inc provides conventional and V.A/F.H.A. termite inspections for real estate transactions. Whether you’re building a new home or commercial building or have an existing building, we provide termite inspection to full service treatment control options. Our service options include pre-slab applications and conventional sub-slab injections. We also offer bait treatments where conventional treatments are not possible.
Many people mistake termites for ants and mis-identify the pest they’re dealing with, or think that it is too cold in Idaho for termites. Proper identification is critical. So if you suspect that you have termites, give us a call for positive identification. Whether termites or ants, we can provide a control solution. If it turns out that you do have subterranean termites, we are a licensed Termidor product user. Termidor leads the industry in subterranean termite control and most treatments carry a 5-year warranty on the area treated.