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Termites: 6 Facts You Need to Know

It’s not uncommon to drive down old Florida highways and see disheveled old wooden homes falling apart at the seams. There can be a lot of reasons that an old wooden house might fall apart, but more often than not, termites have had something to do with it. Termites are tiny pests powerful enough to do a tremendous amount of damage to a home or structure. Most homes in Central Florida will be exposed to termites at one time or another. The buildings treated with professional termite control will fare best in the end.

You may be familiar with some termite control treatments, namely the large brightly colored fumigation tents that top homes around town each spring. But we’re always amazed that many of our clients know very little about termites. Today we’ll outline six essential facts you need to know about termites. Some may be interesting, others a little gross, but they all remind us just how dangerous these bugs can be and the importance of treating them professionally.

1. They Eat Non-Stop

Termites have voracious appetites. Twenty-four hours a day, a colony of termites will gnaw away at any cellulose they can get their hands on. Most often, that cellulose is in the form of wood and even drywall, and you can imagine how dangerous it is to have a colony of hungry termites eating away at the materials of your home.

2. Ants Are Termites Biggest Predators

One thing that surprises many people is that where there are termites, ants are also usually present. It’s not uncommon for ants to move in to make a meal of dead termites after your home has been fumigated. If you’ve noticed a recent uptick in ant activity, you may want to have your home looked at for termites.

3. Termites Communicate Through Vibration

One interesting fact you might not know about termites is that they communicate using sound. Of course, they’re not shouting instructions to one another, but there are some cases during severe infestations when you can hear them through the walls. What you hear with a bad termite infestation sounds like soft clicking noises.

4. Termite Queens Lay Tons of Eggs

Let’s say that termites are pretty prolific when it comes to procreating. Some queens can lay up to twenty-five eggs per minute, which at face value sounds like a bizarre fact. But, the vital thing to bear in mind is that the rate at which termites can reproduce means they are adding to their very hungry numbers by the minute. If your home’s termite infestation isn’t dealt with quickly and efficiently, you’re leaving the door open to a hostile takeover by a very productive queen.

5. Long Live The Termite Queens 

Of all the bugs in the world, termite queens have the longest lifespan. To add to the list of termite concerns we’ve given you so far, those same termite colonies that eat incessantly and reproduce constantly have queens that can live up to fifty years. 

6. Termites Have A Distinct Smell

Not only can you hear a severe termite infestation, but there’s the potential to smell one. If you’ve ever walked into a house and smelled mold or mildew, it may come from the termite colony in the walls. Since termites live in search of dark, damp spaces, it only makes sense they would carry the smell of mildew with them. Perhaps treating your home for termites will make the whole place smell better!

Termites are known for causing billions of dollars in damage yearly in the United States. While that’s something to be feared, it’s also pretty incredible to learn more about the unique traits that make them such a dangerous adversary to the American homeowner. Perhaps we should think of termites the way we do wild animals, they’re interesting to learn about, but that doesn’t mean we want them living in our house.

If you’re a homeowner in Central Florida, the chances are good that you’ll encounter a termite colony at some point. Consistent professional termite control services are the best way to protect your home against a termite infestation. At Holder, we’ve been treating homes in your area for decades, and we look forward to helping keep your home safe. Contact our office to get started.