I saw one termite, should I be worried? Well, even though this is not usually common, there could be a possibility that it’s just one roach hence you shouldn’t be worried. If your environment is clean and there are no possible entry points, then you can just be on the lookout.
There are a lot of factors that could have possibly led to the presence of that one termite and so let’s find out about them.
Can a Termite Exist Alone?
It’s highly unlikely that the lone termite you have seen is the only one that’s in your home. You need to understand insects that love to live in groups. They are social creatures that exist in colonies. So, if you see a lone termite, there are high chances that there are others nearby.
Are Termites Dangerous
I know you have come across a wide array of bugs in your home. However, termites are among the most dangerous pests. While termites may not sting or bite or even contaminate your food, these are highly dangerous insects.
They are known to cause silent damage and by the time you know about it the damage is usually extensive. Some of the dangerous effects that could be probably caused by termites include:
Wood damage inside your house
If they are not eradicated earlier on, termites that start eating the wood under your house will eventually move and start eating the wood inside your walls. Some of them will even go ahead and eat away your furniture and wardrobes if you are not keen.
Generally, the dry wood termite is known for this. This species of termite doesn’t need moisture because it’s not the subterranean termite.
Damage to the wood around doors and windows
These are their common entry points hence they are most likely to destroy them first. Understand that you are likely not to inspect these areas as often as other places. If you have seen a lone termite, one of the places that you should rush to check is your wooden parts of windows and doors.
The fact that they take time to crawl through such areas means that they cause damage there before you even notice. On the other hand, builders are more likely to use wood frames to install doors and windows in most houses.
Possible signs of a damaged door or window include cracks, chipped wood, and wavy wood that has been made weak with voids.
Structural design damage
In the case of the subterranean termite, then you may end with a damaged foundation or house structure. This type of termite species usually loves to nest in areas with moisture in order to survive. That’s why they are likely to attack your building’s foundation because the soil is rich in moisture. They even build their colonies in areas such as the soil.
So, by the time you notice a termite, in this case, there is a big chance that your structure has been damaged if it’s made of wood. You will definitely spend a significant amount of money on repairs because structural damage usually affects other parts of the house.
Generally, these are destructive insects that usually result in extensive damage silently. So, if you notice one of it, then you need to watch out and carry out an easement of your property. Understand that unless you kill a termite, it won’t cease in carrying out its trail of destruction.
Are all termites harmful?
For starters, you need to understand that there are more than 3100 species of termites. Besides that, there are a few more hundreds that have not been described yet. In some instances, they are usually just referred to as white ants even though they are not.
We can describe termites as “colonizers”. Well, they are among the most successful groups of insects in the world and they have colonized all the landmasses except in Antarctica.
To make things clear, termites are generally harmless to human beings. However, they are detrimental when it comes to homes. Even though these pests are common, there are less likely to cause diseases and allergic reactions unlike their counterparts such as cockroaches. If you are worried about your wellness when it comes to these insects, then know that you have nothing to lose Healthwise.
What are some of the Possible Signs That There is More Than One Roach in Your Home?
If you are thinking that there is probably more than one termite in your home, then you should look for the signs of its infestation. They include:
If the infestation is caused by swarmer’s (swarmers are the reproductive featuring male and female-winged termites) then you will see discarded wings. This usually happens in the springtime, just right after the freezing period when they emerge from their nests in order to mate and build new colonies.
Well, new colonies can be built in your home and that’s why you are likely to see the discarded wings. Some of the places you are highly likely to find them include near the doors and windowsills.
These insects are labeled as silent destroyers because, by the time you notice their presence, they would have caused extensive damage. The insects usually eat from the inside going out. If you feel like wood is hollow when you tap it, this may signify an infestation. As a homeowner, always look for wood blistering.
Drywood termites usually produce droppings that resemble wood as they eat their way through the wood material. If you are a homeowner, check out for small piles of waste that look like pellets either outside or inside your home. You may soon realize that this is a big sign of Drywood termite infestation.
Even when wood material is effectively covered, termites will still find their way inside it. So, check for wood places that have the bubbling or uneven paint. It could be a sign of a buildup of moisture and this could mean that either the wood material has been damaged by water or there are termites there.
Known to be the most destructive species of termites, the subterranean termites are known to build mud tubes. Ideally, this is supposed to help them preserve more moisture content as they travel in between their food sources and colony. In case they have infested your property, you will find mud tubes near your property’s foundation.
Tight-fitting doors and windows
If your door or window is difficult to open, then this could be another possible sign of termite infestation. This normally happens as a result of dampness that causes warped doors and stiff windows. While weather changes may result in this, it could also mean that your property is infested.
Well, this happens because termites usually produce moisture content as they eat their way through the wood near the door and window frames. This consequentially leads to the warping of the wood material. The result is usually doors and windows that are tough to open.
What Should You Do Immediately You Realize there is an Infestation?
You are probably thinking that you should get an insecticide right away, right? Well, the first step should be to determine the magnitude of the infestation. These insects exist in colonies and therefore you might be dealing with thousands of them or just a few hundreds.
Some of the natural ways of eliminating termites include:
- Creating a termite trap: these insects love moisture content a lot. So, you can use wet cardboard as the best bait. Simply leave it near their nest and wait for them to approach it. You will definitely be surprised by the number of termites killed by the trap.
- Boric acid: it’s one of the most commonly used solutions. Simply mix sodium borate with water and then go ahead and spray the solution on the affected area. This is usually a versatile solution because you can also use it to treat your lawn.
- Orange oil: this product contains d-limonene, a compound that’s usually deadly to pests. You can extract orange oil from orange peels. Alternatively, you can buy orange oil from a local department store.
- Expose the nest to sunlight: since termites thrive in damp places, these means that they most likely build in their nests in areas with shade. So, if you want to drive them away naturally, then expose the area to sunlight in order to evaporate the moisture. The only problem you might experience with this is that if it’s a rainy season.
- Garlic/clove/canola oil: a combination of all these oils in addition to something like aloe vera oil will create something that’s toxic to these insects. Simply mix the potent blend with water and then spray it in all the areas where the termites are likely to move or live.
Understand that it’s important you avoid using harsh and toxic chemicals, especially in kitchen areas and the bathroom. You may end up causing additional health issues due to the ingestion of these chemical compounds. If the infestation is serious, then you might be forced to seek the services of an exterminator.
If you’re interested in reading more about termites, then here’s some hand picked articles you should read after this one:
How Can Your Prevent Future Termite Infestation?
It’s possible for you to effectively eliminate a termite colony but only for a new one to come back. So, it’s important that you implement effective mechanisms to minimize the chances of future infestation. They include:
Routine Foundation Inspection
Consistently inspecting your property’s foundation and repairing any damage to eliminate possible entry points.
Maintaining proper ventilation and sealing
It’s important to effectively maintain the ventilation and sealing system in your house. This is essential in moisture control. Ensure that the basement areas are sealed but also well-ventilated. This is because if there is condensation, the high moisture content will easily seep into the wood. This creates the perfect breeding ground for termites.
Note: besides attracting termites, condensation will also cause rot and mildew.
Keep piles of wood away from your house
In case you have piles of woods, then keep them away from your house. This is because termites are adventurous and if the wood is near your house, the trip to your siding will be short and sooner. If you have piles of wood, ensure that they are at least 20 feet away from the house.
Maintain the trees and shrub in your garden and lawn
If your house is surrounded by vegetation then make it a habit to trim them. The shrubs surrounding your house need to be well-tended and neat. Avoid pushing or collecting mulch and other leaves close to the walls of your house after taking care of the bushes.
Protect Woods with Repellents
In order to create a safe wood structure, use a repellent termiticide. This will help you to protect your wood if the termites have not yet located them. Make sure that you use the repellent termiticide on decks, fences, sheds, and other wooden areas to prevent possible termite infestation in the future.
Use plastic storage outdoors
Wood storage can easily become the nesting area for these insects. To minimize the chances of infestation in the future, avoid using products such as cardboards for storage since they will quickly draw termites to them.
For instance, if you are storing materials in a garage, then you can go ahead and use durable plastic bins. They are more ideal than cardboard and you can even recycle them.
Conclusion: I Saw One Termite, Should I Be Worried?
The truth is that all this depends on the circumstances. If your home is clean and there is no pileup of wood material in the vicinity, then there’s probably nothing to worry about. It could be a swarmer that’s looking for food.
However, we shouldn’t forget that termites are social animals and they live and search for food together. . It could mean that the infection close to your property, and you have to act in order to protect your property. Try to locate the colony and eliminate it before the termites eventually move to your property.
If you want to learn more about various insects, then checkout our site categories, we have a bunch of articles there that are totally worth reading:
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All the best
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