Let's set the stage. You come home from the grocery store, pull a few bags out of the trunk, and haul them to your door. As you adjust your grip to turn the knob on the door, you notice insects crawling on your exterior. You draw back, not wanting to allow the insects into your home or garage, and you notice that they all have white wings. Could they be termites? You set the bags down and get closer to the insects. Up close, you can see that the wings are long on these tiny ⅜-of-an-inch insects, and they extend quite a bit past their abdomens. This, and the fact that they are a stretched-out teardrop shape, makes you certain that these are termites swarmers. What does this mean? Are those swarmers passing through your neighborhood, or is your home infested? In either case, how worried should you be? Are termites as dangerous as you've heard? Here's what you should know if you find termites on your Nassau County property.
Are They Passing Through?
Not likely. When you find lots of termite swarmers on the side of your home, they likely came from a nest of termites that have been feeding on your home. Why?
Because termite swarms don't last for more than about 30 minutes. If they're still in a swarm, they are near the nest that produced them.
Because termite swarmers don't travel far. Their job is to find a mate and establish new nests. They're not looking to make a journey.
Because termite workers travel as far as the length of a football field to find food. If the nest that produced those swarmers is within a hundred yards, your home could be one of the food sources they've been nibbling on.
When you find a swarm of winged termites on the exterior of your home, it is a warning sign of termite damage. While termite swarmers don't feed on wood, the workers from their colony do. And workers feed on more than one source of wood at a time. They can be feeding on a stump in your yard, a tree that has heart rot next to your home, a wood pallet that you've put some yard equipment on, wooden fence posts, wooden deck supports, and your home, all at the same time.
Is Your Home Infested?
There is a strong possibility of a large presence of wood-destroying insects in your property if you've found termites crawling on the outside. Why?
Because it takes years for a colony to begin to produce swarmers. That is years that they have had time to create ground tunnels to your home and bore tunnels up inside the wood of your home.
Because termites are plentiful. A single colony can have a population in the hundreds of thousands, and your property can be attacked by more than one colony at a time.
What It Means When You Find Swarmers Inside
This is the worst place to find swarmers. If swarmers emerge inside your home, there is likely a nest so close to your property that those swarmers accidentally emerged inside instead of outside where they wanted to be. It is also an indication of a severe infestation within your home because the proximity of the nest gives workers faster access to the wood of your home.
What It Means When You Find One Swarmer
If you know what a swarmer looks like and you happen to notice an individual swarmer on the exterior of your home, you could be seeing an infestation before it begins. When swarmers disperse, the swarmers pair off in couples and locate suitable sites to establish nests. You could be seeing one of those termites before it has had time to shed its wings and tunnel into the ground.
How Should You Respond To The Appearance Of Swarmers
Whether you see one, two, or thousands of swarmers, you should contact Parkway Pest Services to have your property inspected. Over time, termites can do significant damage to your property, eating away at the equity you have in your home. Don't let costly termite damage repairs take you by surprise. Be proactive about protecting your investment. Reach out to us today.