What are Wood Damaging Insects?
What are wood damaging insects?
What are wood-damaging insects? Well, in the core of its name, wood damaging insects are insects that damage wood by tunneling through it to live, nest, or feed. The result of their work can create enough damage to your home that it can lead to costly repairs and unsafe structures. At Rosenbloom Pest Control, a Baltimore Pest Control Company, we have identified a list of the types of wood damaging insects that you can find in Maryland.
Types of Wood Damaging Insects
- Termites- Termites are the first pest that comes to mind when discussing wood destroying insects. Termites are by far the most common and costly destructive insects of structures. In fact, termites do more damage to structures than fires, floods, and tornadoes combined! Termites are not the type of pest that most people encounter on a regular basis. They range in size from ¼”-½” long, and range in color from white to light creamy brown. Termite swarmers are black, with a wingspan that is twice as long as the body. The termite swarmers wings are not real wings, but gliders, so they lose them after they swarm.
- Carpenter Ants – Carpenter ants are one of the largest species of household-invading ants. You will mainly see these ants as black in color, but some variations in species can be a combination of black, red, and yellow in color. They mainly like to nest in water-damaged or decaying pieces of wood.
- Carpenter Bees – Carpenter bees are large and have a similar appearance to bumble bees. They both have yellow and black markings, but carpenter bees are mostly black in color. Another significant difference to tell the two apart are that bumble bees are fuzzy all over as oppose to carpenter bees which have a smooth abdomen.
- Wood-Boring Beetles – After termites, wood-boring beetles are the most significant wood-destroying insects. The female beetles lay their eggs on wood that has not been seasoned or processed, but some species will choose seasoned wood as well. When the larvae hatch from their eggs, they burrow into the piece of wood, tunneling through it and feeding on it.
Are wood-damaging insects dangerous?
Wood-damaging insects are not dangerous to people. Carpenter bees do have a stinger, but they are quite docile. Carpenter ants and wood-boring insects do not bite or sting, and are not known to cause health problems in people. However, the opposite can be said of your property where these insects can be very damaging and dangerous. Wood-destroying insects tunnel through, feed on, and nest inside wooden timbers, wooden furniture, and other wooden structures. Their continued presence eventually damages and weakens the structural integrity of the building they have invaded. Over time this can be quite costly to repair.
Why do I have a wood-damaging insect problem?
Actually, most wood-damaging insects like carpenter ants and carpenter bees often enter homes accidentally. While out foraging for food sources, they may gain access through small cracks and crevices in a home’s foundation, or find small spaces found on the exterior of the home. Wood-destroying beetles often enter homes inside timbers, wooden furniture, barn wood, or in other wooden items that are already infested with either eggs or larvae.
Where will I find wood-damaging insects?
Where you are going to find wood-damaging insects depends on each species. Here are some examples:
- Termites live below ground or inside of wall cavities. Sometimes, it is possible to see their mud tunnels on or in structure-related wood-components like floor joists, foundation sill plates, flooring, sub-flooring, walls, and molding or trim. Termites are either found through a thorough inspection, a termite swarm, or occasionally when doing renovations.
- Carpenter ants nest outside in dying trees, fallen trees, tree stumps, under mulch, or in wood piles. When they do nest inside homes or other buildings, they prefer to nest inside structural wood that has been previously damaged by water or that is decaying.
- Carpenter bee females create nests in wooden decks, fence rails, wooden trim, wooden play structures, wooden furniture, overhangs, and windowsills.
- Wood-boring beetles can be found attacking and invading a variety of materials inside, including sub-flooring, hardwood floors, door and window trim, joists, windowsills, and structural beams.
How do I get rid of wood-damaging insects?
To eliminate destructive wood-damaging insects from your home or property, and prevent a re-infestation, partner with a knowledgeable professional. At Rosenbloom Pest Control, we are committed to protecting the health, property, and environment in the communities in which we live and work. We are dedicated to providing outstanding customer service, each and every time, and believe our people make the difference!