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Tis the season for swarming termites.

If you own a home you should be concerned about termites.  This time of the year, moisture and warmer days, make conditions ideal for termites to swarm.

So what are the signs of a termite problem in the home?

The most common sign that your home might have a problem, is the sudden appearance, out of nowhere, a few to hundreds of small, black winged insects. These are termite swarmers, the reproductive caste of the termite colony. Once a year, swarmers leave the underground nest to fly and find mates–preferably mates from a different colony.  When swarmers show up indoors, it’s almost a sure thing that worker termites are active somewhere in the house.
Identifying swarming termites can be a bit tricky.  They are small (about a quarter of an inch-long), with a black-brown body and wings that extend beyond the tail.  They are sometimes confused with ants but lack the pinched abdomen of an ant.

The other sign to look for inside your home is dirt in odd places, like in a window frame, doorjamb or on a sheetrock wall.  Prior to swarming in a home, termites often build a small mud castle in the area that they will swarm from.  The tubes may be small (less than an inch across), or relatively large (up to a foot long), but they usually have a similar consistency and look similar to a mud dauber wasp nest.  Remember, you will not likely see the small white worker termites in your home unless you break open a wall or one of these swarmer tubes.  Worker termites don’t willingly expose themselves to light, or dry air, and usually stay well hidden inside walls or underground.

If you find termite swarmers or suspicious mud tubes on the walls of your home, please call to set up a time for us to come and identify the problem.  It is much easier if you leave the swarmers just like you find them.  It will be very tempting to vacuum and clean up all of the evidence, but it will make it much harder to identify and find where they originated from if you do.  Once identified we will put together a treatment plan. You can count on Rusty’s Bug Stop for an honest and affordable solution.