One common belief about termites is that they only consume wood that is damaged by water, rotting, or in decay; this is not entirely true. Although the most common and destructive species of termites in our area do this, this habit is not true for all termites. Today we will be talking about one species of these pests that have no trouble consuming dry wood. They are aptly named drywood termites, and here is a complete guide to controlling these pests around your Los Angeles home. To request immediate help with controlling drywood termites, contact us today!
What Are Drywood Termites?
Drywood termites are a species of termites that live in our area and exclusively consume dry wood. Unlike subterranean termites that build their nests underground and only enter wood structures to gather food, drywood termites build their nests inside the wood they eat, making them a bit less destructive for two reasons. The first is that expanding colonies inside structures of wood takes longer than expanding underground. The second reason is that drywood termites leave behind more noticeable signs of their presence.
Here are a couple of signs these pests leave behind you should keep an eye out for.
All termites excrete fecal matter. The difference between subterranean and drywood termites is where their excrement is stored. Subterranean termites smear their wet droppings inside tunnels to help retain moisture in their bodies. Drywood termites, on the other hand, have dry, sawdust-like excrement, which they push out from the entrance and exit holes inside structural wood. This excrement (frass) sticks to walls around holes and collects on floors in small piles.
Every year, colonies of drywood termites swarm; this is an event where winged reproductives are produced by nests and released to scout new areas to build. You can identify a swarmer by its cream-colored, ant-like body and its long oval-shaped wings that extend past its body. If you start to notice these pests buzzing around your house, assume that they are inspecting it as a potential meal for hungry termites. If swarmers are inside your home and don't seem to be entering through open doors or windows, chances are drywood termites are already inside your walls, causing trouble.
Why Drywood Termites Are A Problem
Although drywood termites are easier to identify, they are still sneaky pests that regularly stay under the radar. We have found from talking to locals that most people don't know there is a problem until serious damage starts to present itself around their properties. If you don't have the tools to identify these pests through walls and are not giving your property a thorough inspection at least once a month, these pests might also catch you off guard.
The Shortcomings Of DIY Termite Prevention
You can do many things to reduce your chances of finding termites on your property, such as eliminating organic clutter like leaf piles and sticks, storing woodpiles away from your home's exterior, and making sure your structural wood is in good condition. These exclusion tips are not, however, a guaranteed answer to keep termites away. The only way to ensure your property stays safe from termites year-round and that it doesn't have an infestation right now is to get a professional involved.
At A Step Above Pest Control & Termite, we offer detailed inspections to identify termites and assess the risk of future infestations. We also service homes with industrial-grade pest control measures and monitor solutions to make sure they are working to keep destructive termites away year-round.
Call us today to learn more about your pest control options in Los Angeles, and find a time to have your Los Angeles property serviced.