Termite, Beetle and Fungus Identification:
- Subterranean termites:
- If you’re a homeowner, subterranean termites are not welcome guests. The creamy-colored, 1/8” long subterranean termite, if left un-checked, can do major damage to the wood in your home, threatening its structural integrity. Found in all 50 states, subterranean termites live underground or in moist secluded areas above ground; however, they need moisture to survive, and their colonies can contain up to two million termites. You can pinpoint a subterranean termite infestation by the characteristic mud tubes the termites construct to gain access to wood and protect themselves from the open air. Subterranean termites can build these mud tunnels through cracks in concrete. The primary goal of subterranean termites is to find dead wood which they want to help decompose. Like all termite species, subterranean termites feed on substances containing cellulose, which is everything made of wood and some wood byproducts such as paper and cardboard.
- Drywood termites:
- Unlike subterranean termites, Drywood termites prefer to feast on and live in dry wood. They are similar to subterranean termites in size and color. Drywood termites form colonies of about 500 to 2,500 termites and they infest dry wood areas commonly inside walls, siding, trim, beams and door frames. Drywood termites can still cause significant damage to wooden structures. Control of these termites requires tenting and fumigating with Sulfuryl Fluoride or Heat Treatment. After control of the termite colony is achieved, monitoring the areas periodically is necessary.
- Dampwood termites:
- Dampwood termites love wood with a high moisture content. For this reason, dampwood termites are not often found in structures. However, when they find a moist wooden structure to inhabit, dampwood termites can still do significant damage, so dampwood termite control is important.
- Wood Boring Beetles:
- Not a termite however it can cause significant damage to your home! Wood boring beetles are commonly detected a few years after new construction. The lumber supply may have contained wood infected with beetle eggs or larvae, and since beetle life cycles can be one or more years, several years may pass before the presence of beetles becomes noticeable. Infestations are far more likely in areas with high humidity, such as poorly-ventilated crawl spaces. Housing with central heating/air-conditioning tends to cut the humidity of wood in the living areas to less than half of natural humidity, thus strongly reducing the likelihood of an infestation. Infested furniture should be removed from the house before the infestation spreads.
- Dry rot: (Fungus)
- Not a termite however it can cause significant damage to your home! Dry rot is wood decay caused by certain species of fungi that digest parts of the wood which give the wood strength and stiffness. It was previously used to describe any decay of cured wood in ships and buildings by a fungus which resulted in a darkly colored deteriorated and cracked condition.
ALL TERMITES ARE IMPORTANT FOR THE DECOMPOSITION OF DEAD WOOD.
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