The role of termites in our environment serves numerous purposes in nature. These include cleaning extra wood from forest floors when there is an abundance of dead trees, replenishing the soil, and breaking down fallen trees in forests. Termite mounds are also beneficial in a variety of habitats throughout Africa, Australia, and South America. Providing cheetahs with a vantage over flat savannahs, elephants with a way to get food on higher branches by stepping on them, and so on.
When abandoned, these mounds provide food for some species and habitat for other termites. When termites invade your house or business, your appreciation for termites' role in nature comes to a halt, and there is an instant need for termite management.
Termites are particularly dangerous because they frequently enter homes through microscopic gaps in the foundation or anywhere moist wood or wood-to-ground contact occurs. Because some termites live in the wood in your home and others in the dirt outside your home, you may not detect their existence until they cause substantial damage to your home. The fact that termites cause up to $5 billion in damage each year and are expected to infest half of the structures in Waxhaw, NC by 2040 should give homeowners in North Carolina pause, as termite damage can be costly and negatively affect the structural integrity of your home, lowering the resale value of your home.
While these factors are distressing for homeowners, the most insidious aspect of termite damage is that most homeowners' insurance companies do not cover termite damage. In North Carolina, several species of destructive termites are common. The following species are the most harmful to structures:
Drywood termites, which are widespread in Waxhaw, North Carolina, enter your home through the wood and carve out the existing wood to create galleries where they can live while consuming the wood in your home's floors, walls, windows, door frames, attics, and wooden architectural components of your roof, such as ceiling rafters, roof beams, eaves, and soffits. Drywood termites can even colonize beneath wooden shingles. When termites swarm, they find a mate and then a spot to rear a brood and build their own termite colonies, such as a small crack in a piece of wood, maybe in your home.
When the newly formed pair selects a spot to nest, the swarming termites lose their wings near their new nest sites. Observing winged termites or lost wings indoors on windowsills, near doors, and in spiderwebs is a good indicator that termites are active in your home.
The more dangerous subterranean termites have populations of 5,000 to 10,000 members. However, colonies of subterranean termites, particularly invasive and aggressive Formosan and Asian subterranean termites with several queens and large nests, can number in the millions. Because all subterranean termites require a lot of moisture to exist and are not warm-blooded, they prefer to make their nests in the earth outside your home, with tunnels built of mud and fecal matter connecting them to the food supply in your home.
Subterranean termites, with many more mouths to feed, will devour anything containing cellulose, including live trees and utility poles. If necessary, these hungry parasites will munch through plastic to reach wood sources. While drywood termites consume the wood in your home over time, subterranean termites can cause structural damage in homes in as little as six months, devouring the regions they infest.
Termite infestations are not to be trifled with. If you see evidence of termite activity in or near your home, making an important step is your greatest line of protection. Using a trustworthy local specialist, such as Pete's Pest Control Services, will save you a lot of time, effort, and money over trying to exterminate termites on your own.
At Pete's Pest Control, we have the experience and knowledge to rid your home of termites and help you prevent future infestations. We offer a free, no-obligation estimate so that you can make an informed decision about how to protect your home from these destructive pests. Contact us today to schedule your complimentary consultation.