Termites in the Winter
Dec 28, 2017 Comments Off on Termites in the Winter
When it comes to insects and pests, many homeowners let their guard down during the winter months. It’s cooler, so those bugs must be in hibernation right? Actually, no. Certain classes of termites are known to swarm during the fall months and reproduce in homes until February.
Termite season does not have an actual beginning and end. These pests are active year round. They are more visible through swarms and droppings March through November. December through February they are less visible, but they are still busy. Texas, having a warmer climate, enables the termites to have a longer active season.
A Common Texas Pest
Subterranean termites, a common Texas termite, can create a nest up to 18” below the ground allowing them to be away from cooler temperatures. An environment like a storage shed provides the perfect shelter from wind and cold. Inspect your susceptible spaces from time to time, just to be sure that little bugs are not spending winter in your home.
When inspecting for these bugs, there are three signs to look for: discarded wings, mud tubes, and wood damage. When termites leave their nest to start a new colony, they fly one at a time for a short distance. After they land, the termites twist their wings off because they will not use them again. The wings can usually be found near closed windows, doors and other home access points. When inspecting, you could find mud tubes.
Mud tubes are usually pencil sized and can be found where the ground meets your house. Those tunnels block out cool, dry air. This helps the termites to flourish in your home. If you find a mud tube intact, remove a small section in the center of the tube. If that tube is rebuilt in a few days or termites crawl out, you know you have active termites in your home. The third sign of termites is wood damage. Wood damage is usually found below and behind surfaces like floors and walls. The termites leave behind long grooves that eventually weaken the wood. Sometimes a homeowner will notice these wood grooves, but usually, it is best to have a professional inspect your home. An expert has the tools necessary to look into hidden spaces without doing damage to ceilings or walls.
Defeating These Pests in the Winter
During the winter months of nesting, termite colonies can grow to incredible sizes. A queen can often lay over 1,000 eggs per day. Winter is a great time to be pro-active in fighting the subterranean and drywood termites.
There are a few things you can do to lessen your chances of a termite infestation. Identify and fix all water leaks in your home and avoid water accumulation near the foundation. Be sure all water is diverted away from your home with downspouts and gutters. Make sure all firewood is stored away from the foundation; remove any brush or building materials that are near your home. Lastly, make sure your home’s attic and crawl spaces are well ventilated.
Got Termites? Call the Professionals!
Termites can cause extensive damage before you realize that they are there. Because they eat wood from the inside out, their presence is difficult to detect. It is a great idea to have your home inspected for termites. BuzzKill pest control is the expert you need for termite inspection and treatment. Call us today to find out how we can put an end to your pest problem.