These little creatures called termites defy the odds to find their way into the most unusual places and all in the quest for food. Ways on how to get rid of termites abound of course, but some of them seem to be having more effect than others.
Anyone who sees any signs of these creatures invading homes or other buildings should never ignore the problem.
If they do, they are surely going to have some rather huge repair bills in the future, that is, if the damage can be corrected. Indeed, these creatures do not know the difference between a beam holding up the roof or a priceless antique that was handed down through the family so any signs should be acted on immediately.
Signs include sawdust type material around the foot of desks or chairs, hollow-sounding wood when it is tapped or brown tube-like growths that traverse inedible areas like concrete.
The dust is the creature burrowing its way into the wood to eat the cellulose. The hollow sound in wood is because these creatures eat from the inside out of anything that they find tasty.
They will even eat right up to the paint so just do some careful checking around door and window frames to ensure that nothing untoward is happening.
The brown tube-like growths are the act of these creatures making tunnels for themselves to move through. Their bodies are rather soft and moist and they cannot be allowed to dry out.
Therefore, when they are migrating from door surrounds to ceilings, for example, they will make tunnels to take them there.
Since this is where the new food supply will be, they also lay down scent trails so that other members of their colony can find their way easily without too much foraging. This is why when the pest is in residence, more will follow.
The usual method of clearing up these creatures is to dig a deep trench in one complete circle around the house.
Then, operatives pour in many gallons of some rather toxic materials to try to make a barrier to stop them coming in. Although this does delay them a bit, the chemical will eventually break down and they will come again.
There are new systems available which are a little more high-tech than this method. Feeding stations, deep inside tubes, are sunk into the garden at regular intervals.
Then, these are baited with poison after which they are monitored to see where the colony is situated. Since they can be even one kilometer away, it is important that the foragers take back some food to the queen.
As she is the only one who will lay eggs, once she is killed off, the whole colony will die eventually.
The wonderful thing about this system is that not only do the tubes stay unobtrusively in place for many years they can be monitored every few months to look for signs of feeding.