April?? No way it’s already April! You will be complaining about the heat next month. (Not, us!) But I’m seriously wondering why we even take our Christmas lights down… seems like just yesterday I was taking down the tree. Mom says it’s age… I say its Ozzy, the editor of this wonderful magazine. I didn’t write this much or often in college… according to my mother!
Speaking of complaining… with the April rains and rising temperatures/humidity there is one insect property owners prefer not to see…TERMITES. One day, real soon, many of you will be outside and you will be saying, “it’s to hot for snow flurries or look at all those flying ants.” Well, just like with our spouse, you are right and you are wrong… all at the same time. Yep, to hot for snow flurries and no, those are not flying ants. What you are witnessing is the termite swarm that occurs every year. This is their time to leave the nest, find a mate and begin a whole new colony. Moisture and heat trigger this “flight of the termite.” Generally, we will only experience one swarm per season, but in the years past I have seen multiple swarms especially when we have had a late season cold front right after a period of high temperatures and rain. Additionally, the swarming will usually begin around the coastal areas and proceed inland as the ground and air warms.
Ok Cary, so what do we do about this termite swarming event? Well… hide the wood. Seriously, the only thing you can do is make certain that your property has been treated for termites, with in the past 5-7 years, or have a termite bait system in place to minimize to opportunity for the termites to locate your property once they have established their new colony. The swarm is going to occur and it cannot be stopped. The key is to make certain that your home or office is not inviting them to “set up shop” on your property. Do not allow firewood or other products to be stacked next to the building. Repair leaking faucets and A/C drip lines, to prevent constant moisture next to the slab. Make certain that your soil and mulch levels are 2-4 inches below the top of you slab. Remove the debris collecting in the gutters. Replace moist and damaged wood on the structure. The key thing is not to panic. The majority of these swarming termites will die in a short period of time due to birds, fire ants, heat, lack of moisture, pesticide contact and other causes.
However, on the other hand, should you experience an interior swarm you should strongly consider contacting a pest control company; that performs termite work. (Not all pest control companies perform termite inspections and/or treatments, so be certain to ask.) Furthermore, it is not uncommon to locate termite swarmers around the window seals. The key is to determine if their wings are on the inside. When the termite lands, it sheds its wings. If at all possible, do not clean up this area prior to identifying the location of the discarded wings. Additionally, with an interior swarm you will generally find hundreds of these termites flying to the closest window/light source. Again, please do not panic…Locate the pest control company you feel will best serve your needs at the price you are comfortable. Your property is not going to fall down over the next several days, so do not feel compelled to take the first proposal. But do make the decision, because the destruction caused will continue until the area is treated.
Below is the difference between a swarming ant and swarming termite:
As always, should you have any questions or concerns regarding pest, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 936-441-2847.