Termites, often referred to as “silent destroyers,” are notorious for their ability to wreak havoc on wooden structures. Termites are not just annoying pests; they are complex creatures with a wide range of behaviors and characteristics. And they can be very dangerous to your home. To truly understand these relentless pests, we need to take a closer look at the intricate world of termite colonies. Starting with Subterranean termites and Drywood termites (the most common in the Houston area of Texas), let’s find out more about some of the behaviors and habits of some of the most common termites in the United States.
Types of Termite Colonies
I. Subterranean Termite Colonies
Subterranean termites are among the most common termite species, with colonies that thrive underground. These colonies possess a sophisticated caste system, including workers, soldiers, and reproductives. They are known for their relentless foraging behavior, seeking cellulose-rich food sources, and constructing mud tubes for protection. Subterranean termite colonies rely on the continuous production of reproductives to expand their ranks.
II. Drywood Termite Colonies
Drywood termites are the architects of their destruction, residing within the very wood they consume. Unlike subterranean termites, they don’t require soil contact and build their colonies inside wooden structures. They have fewer caste divisions but display fascinating behaviors like “swarming” when reproductives take flight to establish new colonies. Drywood termite colonies are smaller but equally destructive.
III. Formosan Termite Colonies
Formosan termites are a highly invasive species known for their aggressive behavior. Their colonies can be enormous, housing millions of termites. These termites build massive nests both above and below ground, forming an intricate network. Their feeding habits include devouring not only wood but also paper and fabric, making them especially destructive. The reproductives of Formosan termites are responsible for establishing new colonies during swarmings.
IV. Dampwood Termite Colonies
Dampwood termites prefer moist wood, which often leads them to infest decaying trees or damp structural timbers. Their colonies are smaller in comparison to subterranean termites, and they have relatively simple caste systems. Dampwood termites play a crucial role in breaking down dead wood in forests, contributing to ecological balance.
The Life of a Termite Colony
Termite colonies undergo a remarkable life cycle that includes stages of growth and development. Factors such as environmental conditions and available resources influence colony size. Reproductives play a vital role in perpetuating the colony, often participating in swarming events to establish new colonies.
Why Not Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Termite Control?
Termites can cause very expensive damage to your home’s infrastructure. Though DIY termite treatments might seem appealing because of the idea that they might save you money, when it comes to termites, you will likely want to hire a professional termite control company and get the best recommendation for treatment strategy from them. There are several reasons why you don’t want to risk taking a chance with DIY termite control, one of the main ones being the fact that DIY solutions are for the short-term, at best.
How Often Should You Inspect Your Home for Termites?
A good rule of thumb for homeowners is to have their homes inspected for termites at least annually. Before buying a new home, you should also have it thoroughly inspected for termites by a professional termite control expert (many lenders require this before you can get approval for your loan).
Stuck with a termite problem?
Despite all the preventive measures you can take, termites and other pests can just become overwhelming. Not to mention the fact that termites can cause dangerous (and VERY costly) damage to your home’s infrastructure. Calling a professional termite control service is always much more cost-effective and a timesaver in the long run if you feel you are overwhelmed with termites and/or other pests in your home or yard.
Call our North Houston area (e.g., (primarily Cleveland, Kingwood, Atascosita, New Caney, Humble, Porter, Conroe, Splendora, and other communities in the North Houston area) FullScope termite and pest control experts today at 832-898-0190 for a consultation. Or email us at [email protected]. We can quickly help you get your termite problems under control, as well as other expensive pest problems in your home, yard, or business. We use Sentricon Termite Baiting Stations as a long-term solution to help home and business owners like you get rid of their termite problems fast.