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How do I know if I have a termite swarm?

Question: How do I know if I have a termite swarm?

Answer: In some cases, homeowners have no idea there is an infestation until they see hundreds to sometimes thousands of winged termite swarmers or they see their discarded wings on windowsills, floors or in spider webs. Another sign a homeowner may notice is the termite damage, such as eaten pieces of wood, or sand-grain like droppings.

Termites Swarming

Termites Swarming

While termite colonies are extremely difficult to see, there are several signs of termite infestation/activity that every homeowner should know.

Subterranean Termites: Mud Tubes – Subterranean termites usually invade the home from the ground. Mud tubes are built above ground so termite workers can reach wood or cellulose areas of a structure from their underground nests. The purposes of the mud tubes are to protect the termites from predators like ants and to prevent them from drying out since they need high relative humidity.

Termite Mud Tubes Image

Termite Mud Tubes on Walls

Drywood Termites: Frass (Termite Droppings) – Drywood termites don’t usually attack from the ground. They invade by the swarmers entering structures through cracks in the structure and then boring directly into the wood, sealing the hole and mating. As they eat their way through wood, they produce frass, or droppings, that are all the same size and shape though they may vary in color from tan to brick red to black depending on the color of the wood.

Drywood Termite Droppings

Drywood Termite Droppings

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