Termite Nests

picture of termite nest

Termite Nesting Locations

Subterranean Termites are tiny, wood-damaging insects that chew through structural beams, furniture, and flooring. They are one of New England’s most destructive pests, causing extensive and costly damage each year.

Termite nests in New England occur in mulch beds or damp soil. The pests live in areas where wooden house frames meet the earth, as this creates easy access to food.

Why Do Termites Nest in Soil?

Termites nest in damp ground for several reasons. First, living near heated foundations helps the insects stay warm. In addition, nesting underground keeps termites out of the open air, as the pests need constant moisture to survive. Their hidden subterranean dwellings also help them avoid detection.

Networks of underground passages can extend for dozens of feet, often containing several active sites near wood. Given the right conditions in a warm, moist, and protected termite nest, a successful queen can live for decades.

Evidence

While homeowners may not be able to see underground termite nests, there are a few visible signs that point to an infestation.

  • Mud tunnels – These pencil-wide tubes connect termite nests in the ground to the pests’ food sources above. Termites often build mud tunnels along home siding or on foundations.
  • Swarmers – During spring, flying reproductive termites, called swarmers, gather near lamps and window frames. They shed their wings upon finding a mate, then go underground to start a new termite nest.
  • Burrows in wood – Exposed wood in the home may also show signs of termite activity. Look for small holes. Wood hollowed out by termite tunnels may also make a dull, empty sound when struck.

Avoiding Termite Nests

Preventing infestations can save on repair costs later. To avoid creating the perfect conditions for a termite nest, repair water-damaged areas in homes and fix any blocked gutters or leaky pipes. Watered plants also increase ground moisture, so be sure to keep vegetation at least three feet away from home siding.

Homeowners with concerns about termite nests can call Waltham Pest Services for professional pest control.

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