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What Attracts Termites With Wings

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Termites with wings, also known as flying termites or swarmers, have the ability to cause significant damage to structures. Understanding what attracts these winged pests is crucial in developing effective prevention and control strategies.

While it may seem surprising, one of the key factors that attracts termites with wings is the presence of light sources. However, there are other environmental conditions and factors that contribute to their attraction as well.

In this discussion, we will explore the types of wood preferred by flying termites, the environmental conditions that attract them, the difference between flying termites and flying ants, and how to keep these destructive pests at bay.

But before we delve into these details, let's first understand why the presence of light is so appealing to termites with wings.

Types of Wood Preferred by Flying Termites

preferred wood for flying termites

Flying termites have a distinct preference for wood that is damp, soft, and rich in cellulose. These factors make certain types of wood more attractive to flying termites, increasing the risk of potential termite infestation.

Termites are drawn to light sources, which is why they are often found swarming around windows and doors. Identifying and distinguishing flying termites from flying ants is crucial for effective termite treatment and prevention measures.

Termite colonies start when winged termites find a suitable location to start a nest, usually near a source of wood. It is important to protect your home from termites, as they can cause significant damage to the structure. Warning signs of termite activity include piles of wings and swarms of flying termites.

Understanding the preferred types of wood for flying termites can help in preventing termite infestations and implementing effective termite treatment.

Environmental Conditions That Attract Flying Termites

Termites are attracted to specific environmental conditions that provide them with the ideal habitat for colonization and survival. These conditions include:

  • Sources of light: Flying termites are attracted to light sources, such as street lamps or indoor lights. This is especially true after rain showers, when termite swarmers may be more active and visible.
  • Warm and humid environments: Termites thrive in warm and humid conditions. These conditions provide the moisture and temperature necessary for their survival and reproduction.
  • Suitable locations for a new colony: Termites are attracted to areas with wood and cellulose-based materials, as these serve as their primary food source. Damp and soft wood, tree stumps, mulch in direct contact with the foundation, and roof problems like low-hanging branches or clogged gutters can create favorable conditions for termite infestation.

Understanding these environmental conditions can help homeowners take preventive measures to avoid attracting termites and potentially damaging their property.

The Difference Between Flying Termites and Flying Ants

distinguishing flying termites and ants

After discussing the environmental conditions that attract flying termites, it is important to distinguish between flying termites and flying ants, as their physical characteristics and behaviors differ significantly.

Flying termites, also known as winged termites or alates, are sexually developed individuals that emerge from the nest to form new colonies. They are attracted to light sources, especially after rain showers, and often swarm around street lamps or indoor lights.

On the other hand, flying ants are members of various termite species and have distinct physical features that differentiate them from termites, such as elbowed antennae and a constricted waist.

While both flying termites and flying ants are capable of inflicting damage to structures, it is essential to identify them correctly for effective pest control measures. Understanding the difference between the two is crucial in determining the suitable location to start a new colony and recognizing the future kings and queens of termite colonies.

How to Keep Flying Termites Away

To prevent the attraction and infestation of flying termites, it is essential to implement a series of proactive measures. Here are three effective strategies for keeping flying termites away:

  • Turn off lights and limit outdoor lighting: Flying termites are attracted to light, so minimizing light sources can help reduce their presence around your home.
  • Seal cracks and openings: Ensure that your home's exterior is properly sealed to prevent termites from entering. This includes sealing gaps around windows, doors, and foundation walls.
  • Proper firewood storage: Keep firewood stacks away from the main walls of your home and elevate them to deter termite infestation. This will help prevent termites from using the firewood as a bridge to enter your home.

Attraction of Flying Termites to Light

flying termites and light

Flying termites, also known as alates, are highly attracted to sources of light, particularly in the aftermath of rain showers. This attraction to light sources is especially prevalent during the spring and summer months when termites are most active. When termites come across light sources, such as street lamps or indoor lights, they are drawn towards them and may swarm around or inside buildings. This behavior can be alarming for homeowners who may see swarms of flying termites around their homes. To address this issue, it is recommended to turn off lights and open doors and windows to help the flying termites leave the home. However, the best plan of defense against flying termites is to call a trained pest control expert for inspection and barrier installation to prevent the establishment of a new colony inside the property.

FACT KEYWORDS
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About the author

A biotechnologist by profession and a passionate pest researcher. I have been one of those people who used to run away from cockroaches and rats due to their pesky features, but then we all get that turn in life when we have to face something.