Along with drywood termites, subterranean termites are the main insect responsible for damage to structures. If left undetected, subterranean termites can tunnel up from the soil along the foundation and damage the wood structure of your home. Thrasher Termite & Pest Control is expert in subterranean termite identification, treatment, and damage repairs. We consistently receive the highest ratings in customer satisfaction and are the #1 termite company recommended by real estate professionals. Make Thrasher Termite & Pest Control your first call when you suspect subterranean termites.
Subterranean Termite Identification
Subterranean termite colonies live live underground in a network of chambers and tunnels used for storing food and raising their young (larvae). Since these colonies are underground, they are often impossible to locate. However, mud shelter tubes are a telltale sign that subterranean termites have invaded your home.
In order to protect themselves from desiccation and predation from ants while foraging above ground, termites build long tubes out of mud and fecal material. Termite workers travel back and forth inside these tubes between the soil and the structure above ground. These mud tubes are called exploratory tubes. Termite exploratory tubes are very easy to see and are one of the best ways to identify a potential termite infestation. Once a source of wood has been located, the termites establish larger, more permanent utility or working tubes. The utility tubes are highways running from the underground termite galleries directly to the food source. –Virginia Tech Cooperative Extension
Controlling Subterranean Termites
Thrasher Termite & Pest Control has found the most success in controlling subterranean termites by applying a perimeter soil treatment. Unlike drywood termites, subterranean termites cannot survive without contact to the colony in the soil. The perimeter soil treatment is like an underground chemical moat around a house that prevents subterranean termites from the colony from accessing the house. Any termites left behind in the wood or the mud tubes can’t reach the colony and perish.
Subterranean Termites in Fences
Don’t rely on pressure treatment to protect your fence from termites. The best way to ensure your fence is not destroyed by subterranean termites is to eliminate wood to soil contact. Subterranean termite colonies live in the ground. Worker termites cannot last long outside of their soil or wood tunnels. Keep wood away from the soil to thwart subterranean termites. Attach fence posts to concrete piers set above the soil surface. Keep soil, leaves, and mulch away from fence posts and the base of the fence.
This advice will keep subterranean termites away from your house: keep soil, leaves, and mulch below the concrete footer of your house, and definitely away from any wood siding. Do not attach wood fences or gates to your house. Every three years, order a complete termite inspection of your home from a licensed pest control company such as Thrasher Termite & Pest Control. For more information about subterranean termites in fences (and photos!) read this.