All the information about drywood termites you need.
WHAT DO drywood termites LOOK LIKE
The size of drywood termites, Incisitermes minor (Blattodea: Kalotermitidae) varies, depending on their age, from 1/4 inch to 1 inch long. Adult drywood termites have a thicker, oval-shaped waist, short legs and straight antennae that appear like a string of pearls. Like all termites, their hind wings and fore wings are equal in length. They are usually cream-white to light brown in color, unless swarming in which case they are a bronzing reddish color. Unlike the more common Subterranean termite in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern US, the drywood termite is able to infest wood without having to be linked to soil or a source of moisture. They can infest free-standing furniture just fine!
Drywood termites form colonies of up to 2,500 members. Unlike subterranean termite species, drywood termite colonies do not have a worker caste, as the work is done by immature termites before they reach adulthood. You may see drywood termite swarmers (fliers) on sunny, warm days after a sudden rise in temperature. However, they are often noticed by the unique droppings, called “frass”, that fall out of colony holes in the wood they infest. Each frass pellet has six flattened or concavely depressed sides. Also, unlike subterranean termites, drywood termites can infest wood materials like furniture that is not in contact with the soil as they do not require a source of moisture like other termites get from soil.
How Did I get drywood termites
Drywood termites are a termite species known for thriving in hard, dry wood found inside a home. This includes structural timbers as well as furniture, picture frames and banisters. They do not make colonies under the soil – instead, they make their way into the wood and are able to extract necessary water from the wood they ingest. They are not common in the Mid-Atlantic and the northeastern US, so it is most likely you got drywood termites from wood you’ve brought into the house, such as antique furniture that was already infested or construction done on the house using wood from tropical areas. They can be transported to new locations via an infested piece of furniture, a picture frame, etc. Because they live in the wood they excavate, it can be difficult to identify when drywood termite treatment is necessary. Drywood termite frass is a telltale sign. Drywood termite swarmers can also extend infestations to new locations.
What Problems Do drywood termites Cause
Drywood termites can chew through almost anything made of cellulose, including support wooden beams, floors, and walls, causing expensive home repairs. In fact, drywood termites and other termite species cause a collective $5 billion in property damage each year – a cost typically not covered by homeowners’ insurance because it’s preventable. But drywood termites are not treatable with conventional pest control methods. Fumigation is often necessary to eliminate these pests.
HOW do I get rid of drywood termites
Drywood termites are often brought into a house in the northeastern or mid-Atlantic US on wooden materials from other areas. To prevent needing a drywood termite treatment, you should carefully inspect wooden materials used in construction or brought into a home for signs of damage and the easily identifiable frass pellets. Early detection can also save you a lot of headaches, so be sure to look out for evidence of drywood termites. Because this pest can quickly overtake your home or business, it’s important to act fast if an infestation is suspected. Remember, drywood termites are not treatable with conventional pest control methods. Fumigation is necessary to get rid of drywood termites.