Formosan Termites Recently Swarmed
Formosan termites have been swarming big time in our area for a few weeks. The swarms have gotten more severe over the last decade as Formosan termites begin to heavily infest the Greater Baton Rouge area. We answered over 70 calls in one day. Calls came in from Ascension, East Baton Rouge, and Livingston Parish as nervous homeowners wanted immediate assistance.
Many of the calls were from homeowners who had seen just a few swarmers inside their homes. These swarmers were getting into the home through vents, or around windows and doors. We provided a thorough inspection of the homes, and found a few homes already infested with Formosan termites. Here is a picture of a mud tunnel where the termites are coming up from the soil and entering the home.
Homeowners Ignore Warning Signs
But what about the homes we inspected that did not show signs of an actual infestation? Once some of the homeowners were told we did not see any evidence of an actual infestation, they chose not to have their homes treated. Many people are becoming numb to the news every spring that our neighborhoods are infested with Formosan termites. This doesn’t even account for Native Subterranean termites causing damage to homes that I see every week.
Waiting until there is an infestation before having your home treated is not very wise! You are more likely to experience a termite infestation at your home than a fire, flood, or tornado. Everyone sees the value of homeowner’s insurance. However, homeowner’s insurance does not cover termite treatment or repair of termite damage.
I really try to explain to homeowners that Formosan termites can eat 1,000 pounds of wood in a year. Seeing swarming Formosan termites near your home means there is a colony in very close proximity. Still, many homeowners stick their heads in the sand and think it won’t happen to them.
This picture is from a home where the owner ignored swarming Formosan termites a year ago. In one year’s time, termites have caused major structural damage to this home in several areas. This horrific damage could have been prevented for less than $1,000 in treatment costs.
Not If, but When
When it comes to Formosan termites, or Native Subterranean termites, it’s not a matter of IF you have an infestation, but WHEN! Leaving your home untreated, unprotected, and un-inspected is like leaving your doors unlocked while on vacation and hoping everything will be okay when you get back.
Call today for a free inspection and treatment estimate.
Joe E. Arceneaux
Board Certified Entomologist