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Termites Sydney – know the enemy

Termites Sydney – they’re probably the greatest concern for any home owner in any Sydney suburb. Termites cause hundreds of thousands of dollars damage to homes every year. They are the silent, hidden menace that gain concealed access to structures and feed on our homes from the inside out; quietly removing timber and cellulose and taking it back to their colony which can be over 100m from the building.

Often the damage that is discovered is like the tip of the iceberg, with much more being hidden from view.   With more damage being caused annually than by bush fires, it is no wonder that we fear termites so much.

Termites are a colony insect, so like bees they have a queen that lays all the eggs for the colony, and workers that go out and collect food for the nest. Solder cast termites protect the colony from other termites that are competing for food and from predators, such as black ants. Termites respond immediately to environmental conditions as they occur and with a colony that may contain a million individuals, they can quickly exploit food while conditions allow.

Termites Sydney

From their colony, which can be hidden in a tree (either at the base or high up in the trunk), in a void or cavity in a building itself, or even just buried in the ground; they construct a network of underground tunnels searching for food. These tunnels can be built quickly up foundations, through joints in concrete slabs or where pipes and services go through slabs, to access timber within the building. They eat the timber, all the while communicating with each other about the amount of food available or the presence of potential threats. The food is taken back to the colony and distributed throughout the nest feeding the larvae, the queen and nursery workers who care for the brood.

In Australia we have over three hundred species of termites, all filling a particular role in the environment, but only about five species are a problem to our buildings. The job of termites in nature is to keep our forests clear of fallen timber and to control our gum trees, and the hollows they make in the trees provide nesting sites for possums and birds. Our gum trees are some of the most hardy timber species in the world and are extremely tough to break down and digest; and without termites our forests would be completely choked with wood and leaf litter. Because of this, our termites have evolved into the most destructive termites in the world. Our pine framed houses are like a delicious soft-serve sweet treat that are quickly and easily consumed.

An individual colony can survive for decades; it can grow and shrink depending on the availability of food and it can use the galleries created by other termite colonies. So when a house has suffered one attack, the probability of it suffering future attacks is greatly increased. Termites are perfectly suited to the urban environment as moisture is more readily available and predators are fewer. Usually from a single nest, several properties can be exploited for food.

Termites not only attack houses from underground, they also produce flights of winged kings and queens every year that leave the original nest in their thousands to establish new colonies wherever they can. These are called “Alates” and we see them every spring and summer. The Alates develop within the nest over the winter months and when the temperature and humidity match that inside the colony, the termites open swarming -cuts in the tree, post or building and release the winged termites. This is usually on a hot evening with an approaching thunderstorm on its way, and the Alates spew from the flight cuts in their thousands like a volcano erupting. They swarm up the tree to gain height and fly off to mate and commence new colonies. We find them in the morning on our car windscreens and window sills where the unsuccessful ones have perished. With so many produced the odds of some pairs being successful are great. They break off their wings and mate then burrow down into some moist area where they find decayed timber to feed on.

In their first year the queen only lays a hand-full of eggs and the colony might be as big as a golf ball. They can survive in a compost heap, a timber retaining wall, a tree or stump, or even in a wall cavity next to a leaky shower. As the colony matures it grows; the time it takes to mature depends on the conditions. If we help them along with warmth from hot water services or moisture from our watering system in the garden, the colony can grow more quickly; or if conditions are harder it can tick along slowly just waiting for an opportunity to arise. When in full production the queen can produce an egg every second and the colony can balloon with growth. Major galleries can appear over night and secondary nests established within buildings to make the food gathering of the workers more efficient.

Termites Sydney

Termites are the biggest single threat to our most valuable asset, our home, and their damage is not covered by standard household insurance. They spread their workings like a cancer and are cryptic, secretive and come and go with the conditions. They fool us by abandoning their galleries for reasons often only known to them, to return and cause more damage later. Management of termites is a specialist job for the professional you trust.

Pest control Sydney - award winning

Why people prefer M&M Pest and Termite Control in Sydney

We take Pest control & Termite control seriously and take great pride in delivering a superior service. We only employ the best of the best; our technicians have at least 16 years experience in the industry.

  • 55% of the pest control industry are uninsured (Statistics from Pacific International Insurance)
  • Some companies take shortcuts by not treating to the manufacturers’ specifications
  • Some quote for a fixed amount but then charge for extras
  • Few companies back up their claims with a money back guarantee
  • We don’t use sub-contractors ( who don’t care about your home )

 

When you engage M & M Pest and Termite Control you can rest easy knowing that we are insured, we don’t take shortcuts, we adhere to Australian Standards, our quotes don’t change and we stand behind our claims with a money back guarantee.