Termites each year in the United States cause more than $5 billion in property damage. The biggest problem here is that most homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover termite damage.
Now that spring has come termites are even more prevalent than in any other time of year. Termite populations emerge in spring in search of new structures and homes to establish a colony. The termites emerge starting in the most southern populations, with the most northern populations coming out of hibernation last. The termites are looking for new areas to establish a new colony, and many times homes that have sustained damage from the winter are perfect for termites. Once a termite colony has chosen your property to colonize it’s very hard to stop the termites from establishing themselves, and having a full blown termite infestation.
One of the biggest tips when protecting your property from termites is understanding what termites look like, along with the signs of a termite infestation. One of the most common species mistaken for termites are flying ants. Flying ants look similar to flying termites but they will have waist that are slim and pinched in the middle while termites do not. Termites will only swarm during the spring while flying ants can swarm many different seasons throughout the year.
There are 4 main species of termites found in the United States each with distinguishing morphological features to help you identify them. The first is Subterranean Termites which are creamy white in color to dark brown or black. This termite species are about 1/8 inch long and live in underground colonies in moist areas. The subterranean termite also build mud tubes to move from food source to the colony which can a direct indication of a termite infestation.
Formosan termites are the next most common termite species in the United States. The color is similar to that of subterranean termites but they are larger with an average of about ½ inch in size. The Formosan Termite is the most veracious eater of all termites with capabilities for them to consume one foot of a 2 x 4 in less than 25 days.
Damp wood termites are the third species of termites found in the United States. The Damp wood termites as their name suggest prefer damp wood climates. The termites on average are the size of ½ to 5/8 of an inch making them one of the larger termites.
The fourth and final species of termite in the United States is the Dry wood Termite. These termites do not need contact with soil to survive. The average size of one is about 3/8 to 1 inch. Dry wood termites are found more commonly in southern states but can be found in California. Dry wood termites have large wings and look different than the other species of termites.
Even with all of this information it can be very difficult to determine exactly what species of termites you have or even if they are termites. Contact a professional like The Termite Boys and let us handle your termite problem for you. We have been serving the greater Boston area for over 30 years all while being family owned and operated. Contact The Termite Boys to eliminate your termites today, and don’t your family or you become a victim!
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