Wood Destroying Pests
Carpenter bees are large, black and yellow bees frequently seen in spring hovering around the eaves of a house or the underside of a deck or porch rail. They are most often mistaken for bumble bees, but differ in that they have a black shiny tail section. The carpenter bee is so-called because of its habit of excavating tunnels in wood with its strong jaws. The round ½ inch diameter entrance holes are usually found on the underside of a board. An obvious clue of their presence is coarse sawdust found on the surface under the hole. Wooden decks, overhangs and other exposed wood on houses are prime targets. Treated wood is not favored, but is definitely not immune to attack.
Old House borer
The House Borer is approximately 3/4” – 1” long and is a dark-colored elongated beetle which burrows in structural wood. The larvae feed in seasoned softwood for several years. When the larvae are full grown, which usually takes about five years, they emerge through oval holes in the surface of the wood. During the first few years of feeding, the larvae cannot be heard, but when they are about four years old you can actually hear the chewing sounds.
The structural damage caused by these beetles depends on the number of larvae feeding, how long they have been present, and whether there has been a re-infestation. To properly determine the extent of damage and to prevent any additional damage a professional exterminator will be needed to fully control the insects.
While termites only measure approximately one centimeter in length, their feeding habits are capable of causing costly damage to property. House foundations, furniture, shelves, books, even carpets and insulation are all possible feeding sites for termites. All termites require four things to survive: food, moisture, shelter and optimal temperature. With these characteristics in mind, a lot can be done as far as termite control. Prevention of an infestation by eliminating the food and moisture resources in their environment is the best method of control.
Subterranean termite homes are usually formed in soil. Within these mounds, termites build elaborate tunnel systems through which they access food sources above the surface. Drywood termites live within the wood they consume and will often live in furniture and walls.
Powder Post Beetle
Powder Post Beetles get their name from the feeding in the larval stages that can reduce wood to a powder-like consistency. Powder Post Beetles are dark brown to black and only 1/8″ to 1/4″ long. They exist in unsealed wood and harbor the larvae. When larvae hatch, they start tunneling. Sometimes you can see the outline of tunnels near the wood’s surface, following the soft areas of the grain, but in many cases you can’t see any evidence at all that larvae are present at all. The adults will eventually break through the surface, spilling piles of sawdust out of the hole.
Carpenter ants are a very common pest for property owners in the Midwest. They are black in color and about (1/4-1/2 inch) long. They are attracted to damp, moist areas, usually near a dishwasher or sink, or near a leak in the roof. Winged carpenter ants can be distinguished from termites by their larger size, shape of their antennae, and wings. Unlike termites, carpenter ants do not ingest the wood, they simply tunnel through to build their nests. Carpenter ants swarms usually occur in the spring and are a possible sign that a colony is nesting somewhere inside the structure, which may contain thousands of ants.
- Accumulations of sawdust
- Hollowed out wood
- Sounds of rustling behind walls.
Green T will treat these pests by taking out the nest and the having regularly scheduled visits to ensure that the problem has been eliminated.
Termites are very destructible pests and can cause more damage to homes in the United States than fires and storms combined. They not only invade homes constructed of wood, they also attack other materials like plaster, metal siding and more to find their way to wooden cabinets, floors, ceilings and wooden furniture within these homes. Termites will eat their way through any wooden structures and eventually jeopardize the structural integrity of your home.
Evidence of termites:
- Damaged, buckled or Hallow Sounding wood
- mud tunnels near the foundation
- small pinholes in wallpaper or Loose plaster,
- Piles of small, delicate wings shed by reproductive termites
Because termites are not identified until damage is noted, it is advised that homeowners have an inspection done with their regular pest control program and/or immediately after seeing ANY potential evidence of their presence.