Are you concerned about termites? You have good reason to be concerned because termites are extremely common in North Carolina. Did you know that approximately 10-12 termite colonies can be found per acre? Having termites on your property is not a sign of poor maintenance because they are nearly everywhere, but seeing them should serve as a warning to you that they are nearby and can threaten your home.
In Raleigh and the surrounding areas of North Carolina, the primary type of termite is the subterranean termite. These termites live below ground and will invade woody structures from the ground up. According to the NC State Department of Entomology, “termites are the major wood-destroying structural pests in the southern United States.” They estimate that nearly $2 billion is spent per year in the U.S. to control termites.
It is important to know the warning signs of termite activity so you can be aware if they make an appearance on your property. Here are the most common signs:
- Swarms: Occasionally, subterranean termites will swarm, or fly around in a group, on a sunny day. Usually this is seen outdoors near a food source, such as a dead tree stump. If you see a swarm indoors, then your structure has an infestation.
- Mud tubes: Unlike most other common southern insects, termites do not travel around in the open air. When they travel above ground, termites will construct small, thin, hollow tubes that look like dried mud. When these tubes appear on a home’s foundation, in the crawl space, or around joints in the walls, this means termites were present. Old abandoned tubes can be re-used by termites in a new infestation, so it is best to scrape away old mud tubes.
- Wood that seems hollow and is easily penetrated with a hand tool.
- Spots of gritty material on walls, especially interior walls.
If you find any of the above warning signs, it’s important that you contact a professional pest control company right away to evaluate.
What are some things you can do to reduce your risk of termite infestation? The number one thing you can do is to hire a pest control company to do regular inspections and provide you with a termite warranty. An option we offer at ProForce Pest Control is a termite bait station system. We install unobtrusive stations every 10-12 feet around your home. Often, termites will attack the bait station long before making their way to your home. We return quarterly to evaluate if termites have attacked the bait station. If any termite activity is found, we immediately treat the area. Other important steps you can take to reduce your risk is to remove any obvious termite food sources from your yard and property. These include any type of dead wood, tree stumps, trash piles, and any fibrous materials such as unused wallpaper or drywall. Moisture problems are also a magnet for termites, so address these issues in your home promptly.
If you have questions or concerns about termites, we welcome your call to ProForce. In Raleigh and the Triangle area, call ProForce at 919-776-3672. We can evaluate your property and set up a termite defense plan that works for you!