TERMITES are small-sized pests different from ants but the problems they cause don’t necessarily equivalent to a small-sized. They are a royal suffering to the people. They are notorious for their qualities of causing huge destruction; there are chances that if we see one termite at any place, it may not be one but hundreds or thousands. They can consume over 1000 pounds of wood each year. We can say, a huge damage to furniture and building structures. Every state of US (except Alaska) have tremendous types of termites either they are found in ground or any type of wood like timber they can get to. Many other regions of the world are badly affected by these pests.
Occurrence of Termites
We can take steps for the prevention of termites only when we get to know about the presence of termites in our surroundings. They emerge from mud tubes, sometimes from soil or those sources of food through which they are being channeled. Most of the time, people don’t get to know about the presence of termites till they observe a swarm or damage caused by termites during construction of buildings. In United States, the most commonly occurring termite is native subterranean termite. Some less commonly occurring types of termites are dry wood termite and Formosan termite. In Katy area of US, an extensive variety of pests exists and are continuously infesting businesses and homes.
Damage Caused By Termites
Due to warm weather and humidity of atmosphere, they can cause infestation at any time of the year. Thousands of species of termites are found worldwide, among them hundreds exist in United States. In Katy, all three notorious species ;dry wood, subterranean and Formosan termite are found abundantly. People living there are most likely to be affected by one of them. They cause huge damage to furniture and properties of people so they are scared of termites as once they get started to damage property or wood, they can consume it 24 hours a day for longer periods of time. They stay hidden most of the time and very difficult to spot. According to reports, they are causing damage of five billion dollars per year.Termites love to reside on wood and eat it, moist soil is also their favorite habitat. Most common type i.e. subterranean termites live in soil and then consume wood by attacking on it through the ground. In our homes, all wooden furniture possess great threat of its deterioration in 3-5 years period. Any house having such deteriorating infestation from termites gets unfit for living of humans. They also affect human health .so they must be eliminated from homes and work places immediately.
Three primary factors cause the abundance of termites: food, sources of water and their capability to get shelter. Termites remain active throughout the year, they are not seasonal at all. But as the weather cools down, they get very much prone to infestations. Dry weather, low sunshine and freezing temperature lead termites to find shelter inside house. If there are water logged woods inside house, they may attract termites towards them. Any leaks in pipes also cause infestation of termites.
Health Issues Caused by Termites
Termites can cause wounds due to biting and sting, but they are non-toxic. Their sting is non-toxic but causes intense itching and in some cases swelling of tissues. People living in termites’ infested homes can go through allergic reactions and asthma attacks. People already allergic and asthma patients can be suffered from fatal outcome like pulmonary edema.
Sometimes low ventilation like heating also contributes to dust and particles from termites’ spread in surroundings. Taking all necessary precautions can only lower the risk of these health problems. Myiosis can be caused by termites, and they transfer the infectious agents and cause parasitism in humans. Some cases are reported where these cases triggered earache. They can also attack on intestine which in return causes abdominal pain, sometimes they are found in fecal matter too. Termites can be harmful for pets too, their sting can cause dermatitis to pets which causes swelling, pain and itching.
Prevention Steps for Elimination of Termites
- Try to purchase weatherproofing for windows and doors. Whether install them yourself or seek professional help for installation
- During house cleaning, make sure to clean all surfaces of house by vacuum cleaner and its bag must be replaced regularly. Closely observe the cleanliness of window frames and sills, ceilings, furniture and wall surfaces. All of them must be cleaned perfectly all time. Chlorine based chemical disinfectants can be used for disinfection. Such thorough cleaning will eliminate whole frass of termites and also spores and molds of termites get away.
- Wood in your house must be pretreated against any activity of termites. In already built homes, team like Modern Pest Control must be called for help.
- There must be at least space of six inches between ground and porches or wooden furniture. Otherwise, get replaced soil around your house with sand as termites cannot channel through it.
- Any mulching in the backyard must be removed immediately as they attract termites by locking moisture in them. Dense material like gravel, peat stone etc. must be considered for landscaping.
- Any type of firewood cords must be stacked atleast 25 feet away from home.
- Backyard maintenance must be done frequently, trimming grass and management of overgrowth of vegetation is necessary.
- The soil around buildings must be kept dry by proper drainage and grading after construction of buildings.
- Minimize the openings that usually give access to termites to the structures like cracks in cement foundations must be filled on time. Immediately all the leaks must be filled to prevent termites’ attack.
- Heaps of wood debris or firewood must not be next to the house.
- There is periodic inspection needed to make sure that colonies of termites do not get established in nearby areas.
Dealing with termites is not an easy task but the situation can be made under control by having an expert team of pest control on board to cater to any sort of termites’ issue.