For Home Termite Protection & Ant Control
Termites—a concern in 49 out of 50 states
There are about 2,000 known species of termites throughout the world. In the U.S., Subterranean termites, including Eastern, Western, Desert and Formosans, which build underground nests, are a concern in every state except Alaska. Subterranean termites are extremely destructive because they tunnel their way to wooden structures (like your home), into which they burrow to obtain food. Termites all share a virtually insatiable appetite for wood and other cellulose-containing materials. Given enough time, they will feed on the wood until nothing is left but a shell.
A caste of hundreds of thousands
Termites are highly social insects that live in large colonies where populations can reach more than one million. A colony consists of several structurally differentiated forms living together as castes (including reproductives, soldiers, and workers) with different functions in community life.
In the spring, winged reproductives leave the parental nest in swarms to create a new colony. The swarming lasts less than an hour, so it's very likely you'll never even see it. The winged reproductives themselves look quite a bit like flying ants, for which they are often mistaken.
Those "ants" might be termites
Both ants and termites have two pairs of wings, but ants' wings are different sizes, while termites' wings are all the same size. Also, ants have narrowed waists and elbowed antennae, while termites have thick waists and short, straight antennae that resemble strings of beads. Don't be fooled by color or size. Ants can vary in size and winged termites can be brown or black like ants.
Look for signs
You're more likely to discover you have a termite problem by discovering the evidence they leave behind, rather than the actual termites themselves. If you encounter any of these telltale signs, there's a good chance termites are busy snacking on your home:
• Piles of small, delicate wings shed by reproductives
• Small piles of sawdust
• Mud tubes built by termites for aboveground travel
• Damaged or hollow sounding wood
• Pinholes in drywall or wallpaper
Of course, it's quite possible to have a hidden termite problem even if you never notice any of these signs. The best way to be sure is to contact a licensed pest control professional to conduct a complete inspection of your home.
Who's coming to dinner in your neck of the woods?
Formosan Subterranean termites are one of several termite species that threaten homes and other structures in Hawaii and the southern half of the continental United States.
The Eastern Subterranean termite is a problem for homeowners from southern Ontario in Canada, south throughout the Eastern United States and as far west as Montana.
Drywood termites threaten homes in southern California, Arizona, Utah, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Florida, Louisiana, New Mexico, Texas, Puerto Rico and Hawaii.