About Termites

family termiteTermites have a very useful role within our environment. But, when they invade and attack your home, they can become a hated enemy, a source of heartache and anxiety. Every problem has a solution, and there is no need for any job turning into a nightmare. There are however, certain practices in the pest control industry that should be adopted for all inspections and treatments, and some "dodgy" operators that should be avoided like the plague! 

In Louisiana and Mississippi, there are only three types of homes; ones with termites, ones that will be infested with termites, and ones that have been professionally treated to prevent termites (Preferable by Family Termite and Environmental). Homes with termite damage are more prevalent than those damaged by fire, storm and flood combined. 

Termite Control 
Control of termites involves identifying the species, locating the nest and choosing the best eradication methods. A combination of doing regular, inspections in termite-prone areas, using naturally resistant or treated timbers in buildings, and installing chemical and physical soil barriers around buildings is necessary to prevent further problems. 

Nearby houses may often have termite nests nearby in trees, stumps, and underground. When termites attack, it should be the main focus of the termite control technician to locate and treat these areas before any home protection. Too often, the technician will "advise" the worried homeowner that termites may be "anywhere within 300 feet" of the property and it’s impossible to pinpoint exactly where they may be coming from. Sometimes this is true, but more often than not the inspection is simply incomplete.

In Family’s opinion, if you don't even try to find out the origin of the problem, your chances of gaining control of the problem dramatically drop. Even if the house is surrounded by dense woodlands, Family thinks it is definitely worth the time and expense of test drilling and treating ALL trees and stumps surrounding the property within a 50-100 feet radius, because that is where most infestations originate. If it means drilling 40-60 trees or investigating all surrounding homes, isn't that a lot better than ignoring a possible source of infestation? 

Most pest control companies will not go to this extra effort, and will try to convince the client that their baiting technique or soil barrier system is designed to protect your home in all circumstances. DON'T BELIEVE THEM! Better investigations and inspections lead to better termite protection and treatments. It is only common sense to take all effort to find out the origin of the attack. 

Termite Inspection 
Termite identification in Mississippi and Louisiana is highly specialized and pest controllers need to thoroughly inspect all areas of the property before any protection or treatment is begun. This may be conducted with the following equipment: 

  • Bright light- this is essential and krypton bulbs give the best light for torches generally available today. LED torches, headlamps and flashlights are the next generation inspection tools and should be used when they come onto the market. 
  • A Moisture Meter- it is designed to pick up high moisture content in walls and timbers. Termites bring up moisture from the soil and into the walls and timbers.
  • Stanley Knife & Tape- if termite infested timber is located, we may cut it with a Stanley knife and expose the interior of timber, identifying the species of termites then seal it back up with tape so as not to disturb the termites. 

Termite Report- a termite building inspection report is designed to:

  • Detect old damage and active termites.
  • Gives you the element of risk of infestation.
  • Gives you tips on reducing the chances of termite infestation.
  • Gives us enough information to accurately quote you on a termite treatment and to use the most appropriate method.
  • Most importantly, educates you about termites.
  • Identifies species of termites.

The Most Destructive Species in Mississippi is Coptotermes. It uses tree stumps, living trees, spaces under buildings and even walls as nesting sites. From the nest site, any wooden structure within a 300-feet radius can be attacked via underground tunnels. Although they usually need contact with soil, some nests of this termite species have even been found several floors up in city buildings or on ferries. 

Note: There is no household insurance that covers you for termite damage.