As a home owner, it is important to know that whether your home is made of bricks or it’s covered with vinyl siding, termites, insects and bugs will always find a way to cause damage. What pest control experts have been able to discover is that termites can find access to your home even through the tiniest of cracks. This is why it’s wise to know what types of termites are common around Grand Rapids, Michigan area thus coming up with ways to protect your home.
Types of termites
Scientists and bugs prevention experts have been able to discover that there are several types of termites. They include dry wood termites, damp wood termites, Formosan termites and subterranean termites. In Grand Rapids, Michigan subterranean termites are the only species found in the area. According to pest control experts, termites have resulted in over $5 billion in damages and that is why it’s is important to have your home inspected thus eliminating these pesky pests.
How to identify termites
Subterranean termites belong to the Rhinotermitidae family and as a result, they require contact with soil in order to survive. Soil provides the optimal environment and temperature plus moisture for the termites’ survival.
In a colony, you will find workers who measure 6 mm long, are light colored and wingless. The next group includes soldiers who are characterized by their elongated heads with mandibles, no wings, creamy white body and brownish colored heads. The alates or swarmers are dark brown to black in color. They measure ¼ to ½ an inch long plus they have two pairs of wings.
The queen is an egg laying termite and is characterized by an enormous body that allows her to lay more than 2,000 eggs in a day. She has a life span of 25 years. The king is much smaller than the queen but much bigger than the workers. Both the king and queen reside in the central chamber and are tended to by the workers.
What do they eat?
Subterranean termites are known to be highly destructive especially to building timber. Not only can they eat out the internal sections of structural timber but they leave a thin shell with a honey comb of layered hollow sections.
They nest under the ground just like their name suggests. There are circumstances when the nest maybe found above ground especially when the colony is old and well established. In the ground, they build tunnels as they search for food plus new mud tubes when building new nests.
Apart from wood, termites have been found to consume cellulose materials especially old books and packing cartons. They consume wood and cellulose materials by using symbiotic protozoa found in their gut.
Where do they thrive?
As said earlier, subterranean termites reside under the ground where they build tunnels that enable them to search for food and chambers to house the eggs, the queen and king. A colony contains several million termites making it possible for them to forage over an area that measures over 12,000 square feet. They actively feed on timber, trees and free standing poles located in buildings and other timber structures.
In Grand Rapids, Michigan they thrive well in temperatures that range between 75 to 95F in the central colony.