termite soldier in knoxville tn

How To Identify Termites

The most common species of termite found across most of the United States is the Eastern subterranean termite. Their colonies are divided into three castes; workers, soldiers and the reproductives.

Workers- The workers of the colony are creamy blind, white in color and have a soft body.

Soldiers- The soldiers have a similar appearance as the workers except they have an elongated yellow head and a large strong jaws that they use to defend the nest.

Reproductives- The reproductive are the kings and queens of the colony. They are bigger in size than the other members, and are dark brown or black in color with two pairs of translucent wings.  They are responsible for starting new termite colonies and the ones homeowners often see swarming out of walls and around windows or outside.  

Why Do I Have A Termite Problem?

Termites build underground nests. The workers leave the nest in the search for food. Termites feed on cellulose which is found in wood, leaves, and soil. As the termites look for food they may accidentally come into your home through cracks and crevices in the foundation. Once inside your home they travel behind walls and underneath flooring and begin to feed on the structural wood of your home. Termites prefer to feed on moist or water damaged wood.  Termite swarms are another reason  you could be dealing with termites.  A swarm is when the reproductive members of the termite colony, leave to find a mate and start a new colony.  They may leave the home of your neighbor and start a new colony on your property.  

Are Termites Dangerous?

Termites are not dangerous to people or pets, but they are extremely dangerous to the structure of buildings. Termites live, feed and travel underground or on the inside of wood. Because they are hidden so well, it can take weeks, months,  or even years for a homeowner to discover they have a termite infestation. Termites live in very large colonies and can cause extensive damage to structural wood that can be very costly and time consuming to repair.

How Do I Control Termites?

Do-It-Yourself termite control should never be attempted. Eliminating termites is very difficult and should only be done by professionals. At Russell’s Pest Control, we are Authorized Operators of the effective, non-invasive and environmentally friendly Sentricon® Termite Colony Elimination System and offer comprehensive termite control services that resolve active termite infestations and prevent future termite activity.  We also offer traditional liquid termite treatments.

Termite Prevention Tips

To prevent termites, you must first correct any conditions that attract these structural pests.  That means replacing any damaged wood, fixing any leaks, correcting moisture and ventilation problems and making sure water drains away from your home.  You should also avoid wood to soil contact, and used crushed rock rather than mulch or wood chips.   Even with all the prevention tips mentioned above, you are still at risk for developing a termite problem.  If you're concerned about termites or simply want to know how Russell's can help you prevent these wood destroying insects, please contact us.  

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