Subterranean termites are a potent threat in Ventura

Subterranean termites are a potent threat in Ventura

Subterranean termites are a potent threat in Ventura because they are often well hidden and don’t leave behind the characteristic “pellets” that drywood termites do. Their mud tubes are often hidden from sight in wall voids, crawlspaces, and attics. Many newer homes in Ventura have slab foundations that many homeowners think are keeping subterranean termites out of their house but this is not the case. Foundations have holes through them for utility lines and termites get in around the pipes and up the walls. Just last week a homeowner called me out to handle an ant problem and I turned over a rock in her yard and founds subs crawling underneath. So I scheduled a free termite evaluation with her and was able to find several infestations. Luckily, the infestations were caught early enough that spot treatment was sufficient to eliminate the problem.

Monitored Using Monitoring Stations

The subterranean termite issue will be monitored using monitoring stations and when termites show up, I’ll introduce a bait that interrupts their growth cycle. Over a period of time this bait will collapse the colony by halting the reproduction of new workers and the maturation of colony members. This method is the most ecologically responsible option, in my opinion because this house has a stream nearby and baiting poses the least threat of offsite contamination as opposed to liquid sub treatments. Sub treatments were the best option 10 years ago but as technology and chemistry advance, Spearhead Pest Control will continue our commitment to do no harm to non-target species, like bees, fish, birds, and pets. We feel the baiting system is a more modern solution and the only time the active ingredient leaves our station is in the bellies of foraging termites. You can’t get any more targeted and precise than that. Once the subterranean termites are gone, the stations are pulled up and no residue is left to clean up.

Subterranean Termites Swarm In The Spring

In March, I was at the Ojai Farmer’s Market with my family and we were standing in the shade across the street. I was enjoying some balsamic vinegar popcorn. There were hundreds of subterraneans swarming from a crack in the sidewalk and mating nearby. It was a large colony by the looks of the sheer numbers of swarmers. The first lesson here is: subterranean termites swarm in the spring. There are also several species of ants that swarm during the spring and look similar so it’s always helpful to save a sample for me to identify or snap a good photo with your smartphone and send it to Rudy@spearheadpestcontrol.com and I’ll personally ID it for free.

How to Identify Subterranean Termites

Another way to identify subterranean termites is by their mud tubes which is actually comprised of their fecal matter and dirt. This can get a little bit tricky because drywood termites can build short tunnels between cellulose materials to bridge gaps and these can sometimes look like sub tunnels. It takes a trained eye to distinguish the two. Last lesson, just because a termite infestation is in close proximity to the ground or low on a house does not mean it’s subterraneans. Termite swarmers, regardless of species tend to be poor fliers. When they leave the nest they’ve never actually used their wings before so they rely on the wind to take them as far as possible. As a result, dry wood termite infestations tend to start low because they crash into walls and start frantically crawling for shelter which they find behind siding, trim, and under patio and fence posts. Then they start eating. This is where Spearhead Pest Control can come in to save your home.

Call Spearhead Pest Control, the best Pest Control Ventura has, today for your free evaluation, prevention plan, and treatment options.

-Rudy A.

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