formosan termite in a greenville sc home

Formosan Termites

Pest Guide > Formosan Termites

What do Formosan termites look like?

formosan termite in a greenville home

Formosan termites are a specific species of subterranean termite found living in Hawaii and across the southern United States, including South Carolina.  Like other termite species they work together to maintain their underground colony and are divided into three castes: reproductive (kings, queens, and alates or swarmers) workers, and soldiers. Formosan termites can usually be identified through the alates (swarmers) and soldiers.  Alates grow to about ½ of an inch in length are yellowish-brown in color and have almost transparent wings that are covered in small hairs. The soldiers are off-white in color and have a large orangish-brown oval shaped head. Soldiers are also equipped with a curved mandible that they use to defend themselves and their colony with.

Are Formosan termites dangerous?

Formosan termites are not dangerous to people, however they are very dangerous to the structure of homes and other buildings.  Formosan termites feed on cellulose and once inside a home will quickly and aggressively begin to feed on the structural wood that is found inside.  Their extremely large colony size makes them more dangerous than other termite species because of their ability to cause more damage in a much shorter time frame. Formosan termites can cause severe damage inside a home in as little as 6 months!

Formosan termite damage

Termites do all of their damage to the inside of wood; which makes it very difficult to spot an infestation in the early stages.  Termite damaged wood generally looks fine on the outside, but the inside tells a different story- it can be full of tunnels and almost completely hollow.  Termite damage can greatly reduce the structural integrity of the wood that they are infesting and if left untreated the damage that they inflict on a home may make it unlivable. More so than even carpenter ant damage, repairing termite damage can be very costly.  

Why are Formosan termites in my home?

Formosan termites are attracted to moisture, water that is collecting around your near your home can draw them to your property to create nesting areas. Once on your property they may make their way inside your home at the ground level while foraging for food sources (cellulose from structural wood and live plants).  These termites tend to enter into properties through cracks and crevices found in the foundation and exterior walls.  Since Formosan termites are attracted to moisture they are found invading areas of homes that are high in moisture like basements, laundry rooms, attics, crawl spaces, and the underneath of sinks.

How do you get rid of Formosan termites?

Formosan termites can enter into homes in very large numbers; they hide and nest in the hard to reach areas of your home, making finding and eliminating all of them from your home a very tricky task. At Spencer Pest Services we can get rid of Formosan termites from your property through our highly effective termite control services. Our pest control professionals have the experience, training, and technology needed to eliminate and control Formosan termites in your home and prevent future problems with this aggressive species of termite. Contact us today for specifics about our termites control services.

Formosan termite prevention tips

Along with putting into place a preventative termite control service, there are several things you can do in and around your home to prevent and deter Formosan termites.  Prevention tips include:

  • Limit soil to wood contact for buildings and other structures that are found on your property or near your home.
  • Make sure that gutters are working properly and are not clogged so that they can direct water away from your home.
  • Use dehumidifiers and/or air-conditioners to reduce moisture levels in your home.
  • Remove or replace wood found in your home that has been damaged by water.
  • Seal cracks and crevices found in your home’s foundation and exterior walls.
  • Repair damage siding and/or roof shingles.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet from the outside of your home.

To see how Spencer Pest Services can eliminate Formosan termites from your Greenville, Upstate of South Carolina, or northern Georgia property, call us today.

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