25 Aug Do termites eat hardwood?
Do termites eat hardwood?
Do termites eat hardwood?
Looking at termites it’s hard to believe that they can eat away an entire house in a short period of time. But when they become a colony, these menacing pests can cause serious structural damage to your property. Termites are silent destroyers. Every year, termites cause about $5 billion in property damage in Australia alone.
So, do termites eat hardwood? Basically, termites feed on just any wood for cellulose. While termites eat away at softer timber, there are three types of termites that all eat hardwood – Schedorhinotermes, Coptotermes, and Nasturtiums.
These termite species are found in Southeast Queensland and other parts of Australia. Termites prefer softwood because of the nutrients they can get from it. While some hardwoods like cedar wood, teak, and redwood are rarely attacked by termites, it still pays to practice double-safety when it comes to pest infestation. As long as your home has crevices and crawl ways made of wood, you are never really safe from these unwanted visitors.
Put Away Your Assumptions
Australia has a wide variety of hardwoods that are sturdy and strong. It’s no wonder why most homes would have woods as integral parts of the structure. But many property owners are still surprised to find out that certain species of termites can feed on the hardwood.
Now that you know, you can’t just assume that just because you’re using hardwood, your home is already safe from termites. The following are the different types of termites that feed on the hardwood.
Schedorhinotermes – This species of termites are known for being timid. A slight bump on the wood can send them back to their entry point, which is why they seem to reappear in the same location.
Coptotermes – This hardwood-feeding termite has a pear-shaped head with a pointed labrum in the soldier caste. It is slender but sharply pointed. Although they don’t have teeth, they can easily feed on hardwood and would even secrete a whitish fluid as their primary defense against threats.
Nasutitermes – This type of termite is known for its cone-shaped head and is one of the most aggressive termites in Australian homes. It got its name from the soldiers that have a Nasute head. The long and special snout helps with destroying hardwood.
Do termites eat hardwood?
What hardwoods are safe from termites?
Termites are usually afraid of hardwood because they are very hard to chew except for certain species that we’ve mentioned here. Even so, hardwood is a favorite option for builders because of its strong resistance to the ever-changing weather patterns in Australia. On the other hand, pressure-treated hardwoods are absolutely safe from termites.
The following are some hardwoods that termites don’t eat.
- Cheddar wood
- Teak wood
- Tasmanian oak
- Cypress Wood
- Pressure-treat wood
We’ve found most homeowners of hardwood being more complacent about having an annual termite inspection, simply because they believe they are safe from termite infestation. But it’s not true. Termites are notorious pests and their presence can be left undetected until they’ve multiplied into thousands of colonies.
If your home has never been inspected for termites, it is time you should have it inspected. In fact, homes that are more than 5-10 years old will be recommended to be inspected real soon. Earlier detection will save from more expensive repair costs for damages.
Which type of termite does not eat hardwood?
There is a type of termite called Heterotermes, which is easily seen making mud mounds on trees. Since they can only digest softwood, they don’t eat hardwood. These termites look like those of Reticulitermes because they have rectangular-shaped heads. But Heterotermes are smaller, which is the most distinguishing factor.
An important factor to note is that termites can travel a lot of distance in a day. Just because Heterotermes are found amongst the trees in the park, it doesn’t mean they can’t travel to your home and stick around when they find anything that is made of softwood.
What are dry wood termites?
Drywood termites live in dry woods and feed on them. Compared with subterranean termites, they don’t need soil to exist. Some termites come from moist soil and tunnel their way to your home but this particular termite species is born in dry wood.
You can find them in your window frames, trims, wooden frames, and other wooden elements. They can also live in the attics. Every day dry wood termites will feed on the wood until only a thin outer layer is left.
Drywood termites occur in small colonies in isolated wood pieces. But if left undetected, they multiply into multiple colonies and relocate to different parts of your home. Late springs and summer are the peak season for dry wood termites.
Is Your Home at Risk of Termites?
An annual inspection is vital in making sure your home doesn’t suffer an infestation. Don’t wait until it is too late. We have performed various termite inspections in Australian homes. If you need a fast and reliable termite inspection team, feel free to contact us.
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