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Where Do Formosan Termites Live?

Updated on: May 25, 2022

Formosan termite infestations are some of the more devastating termite species, quickly spreading through your property and any nearby building at a rapid rate. If you have an active termite infestation and its Formosan termites, you must get rid of them as soon as you detect the signs of these termites. Not only does this particular termite species feed on wood, but they're also voracious eaters, which has earned the moniker of "super termite" by pest exterminators.

So where exactly do Formosan termites live? Contrary to their effects above ground, Formosan termite swarms are subterranean termites, which means they make their colonies below ground. Using mud tubes to invade properties from their homes in the soil, identifying their main colony is the key to getting rid of a subterranean termite infestation like this.


Where Do Formosan Termites Live?

Formosan termites live in carton nests underground, using a mixture of soil, wood, saliva, and their own feces to build their home. A mature colony has enough reproductive termites (or queens) that can lay around 1,000 eggs per day. These usually branch off into subterranean termite soldiers that swarm above the surface and Formosan termite workers that stay below the ground and take care of the queens.

By using mud shelter tubes to connect to the surface, Formosan termite soldiers quickly come out of the colony and start chewing through wood. While the main subterranean termite colony may be located underneath your building, it's not unheard of for Formosan termites to create aerial colonies when the infestation has gotten big enough.

In some cases, around half of the Formosan termite colony can be found above ground, especially if there's plenty of damaged wood around the area. An infested structure can often house millions of termites above and below ground since this is a species that feeds on wood of any kind.

How Do Formosan Termites Infest Properties?

Formosan termites are native to Thailand and its surrounding areas, but they've vastly expanded across the United States. Since these termites can also nest in a variety of structures as long as there's enough cellulose material, they can spread almost anywhere as long as there's damp ground and enough building materials for them to use.

Most of the time, Formosan termites make their way onto a property on improperly recycled wood or reclaimed wood that's been used for landscaping. The damage potential of these termites when introduced this way is significant: more often than not they have enough reproductive capacity to create well-established colonies within weeks.

In some other cases, Formosan colonies can actually make their way into properties by invading another termite species already in the area. These colonies of termites will always clash until the native termite colonies win or the Formosan termites get overrun.

How To Remove Formosan Termites From Your Property

So how exactly do you remove these termites from your property? With the population size of your average Formosan termite colony, you need to deal considerable damage to their numbers or limit the ideal conditions for their breeding.

There are three possible ways you can get rid of Formosan termites:

1. Termiticide

This method relies on making sure that the colonies of termites in your area haven't gotten inside your house yet, as this is more of a preventive measure that also happens to kill termites that make their way nearer to your home.

The best way to apply termiticide is to dig a trench around your home, creating a barrier that will prevent termites from making their way into your home. In conjunction with termite poison, this will create an effective chemical moat that can repel a wide variety of termites, not just Formosan termites.

Isolated infestations can also be controlled by surrounding the colony with termiticide, but you should make sure that no swarmers manage to escape the boundary. Otherwise, they would simply establish colonies elsewhere.

2. Wood and Soil Treatment

On the other hand, if you have already detected the presence of termites in your home, it's feasible to treat their food source and foraging area to kill them. Formosan termites are greedy eaters and can easily make their way through several ounces of wood a day, even more, if the colony is big enough.

By applying poison to the wood and soil around your home, you can cover more or less everything the Formosan termite feeds on for more damage to the colony. Other species of termites can also be affected by this method.

Keep in mind that this does not limit the damage that termites may do to your property - expect to get plenty of damaged wood as the colony chews its way through building material. You may need to repair and replace parts of your property when using this method.

3. Bait Systems

Baiting is by far one of the most effective ways to get rid of Formosan termites since their feeding habits make them far more likely to access and fall for the bait. By placing bait around their colonies and other areas of the house, you can ensure that foraging workers will signal the rest of the colony to land on the bait.

Baits work directly on the chitin on these termites, which effectively kill any termite that goes for the bait within hours to days. With a huge amount of bait, you can reasonably control small to moderate infestations without too much difficulty.

Just make sure that you keep the baits until you no longer detect the presence of termites. Make sure that you get the right type of bait to attract Formosan termites, as they're more receptive to some types of baits compared to others.

Get Rid of Subterranean Termites and Other Pests With Permakill Exterminating

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One of the best ways to get rid of subterranean termite species like Formosan termites is to strike at where they live. A single colony of Formosan termites can cause drastic damage to a building, so it's important to bring in pest management professionals to handle the problem before multiple Formosan termite colonies can be established on the surface.

Permakill Exterminating has extensive experience with removing subterranean termites and other destructive termite species, providing our clients with proper identification of colony size, possible damage, and the different ways to get rid of an active infestation. We make sure the entire colony has been removed from your property and nearby structures, drastically reducing the damage to property from the initial infestation.

Contact us today to get a free estimate on any pest removal services you might need.


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