Insects that Eat Your Home
We all know about the damage that termites cause to homes and outbuildings but these destructive pests are only one name on a long list of insects that eat wood and damage homes. Some are so small that they are hard to see and others are quite large that you might have trouble sleeping at night. They all have one thing in common – they eat wood.
Many of these insects are in the order of coleoptera – Beetles – and some may only be around 1/8 of an inch in length. There are much larger beetles that are well-known as tree boring beetles and they can leave tunnels in wood that are ½ inch wide.
One of the problems – beyond the fact that these insects eat wood – is that unless you know how to look for their presence you might not even know they are there. while the adults can be damaging, it is often the larval stage that does the most damage, especially with beetles.
Yet another problem is that the beetles might not be finding your home, but rather being built into it. Wood boring beetles’ tunnel into trees and then lay eggs. Those trees are harvested, milled, and sold as lumber and then used in building projects. If you have ever noticed that your new deck suddenly has grooves in places or that the posts on your fence or railings have “decorative” carvings, then you are looking at the damaged caused by wood boring beetles and chances are, they came with the lumber.
It is one thing when that occurs on your fence or deck and quite another when it occurs on the beams that support your home or the studs that support your wall.
Things to Look for with Wood Eating Insects
Sometimes the damage caused by wood eating insects is not visible. It may occur on the inside of the wood and the only clue that there is a problem is when structural weakness occurs. There are other clues, much smaller and you have to really pay attention to them to find them. The entrance hole of small beetles may be only the size of a pencil led or large enough to put your finger into it. The exit hole also is a clue. Beetles often emerge from the wood to find mates or another food or nesting site. The exit holes are often much larger. You might also notice small piles of sawdust or sawdust residue around on baseboards or windowsills.
These types of pests are not necessarily because of things that the homeowner has done. Wood eating insects often come with lumber, but they can emerge from a surrounding location and then settle into a house.
These little things add up to big trouble and the longer it goes on the more damage the insects cause. So, what is eating your home? For more information or to schedule a home inspection, just reach out to our team. We provide complete and affordable pest control services, including termite and other wood damage inspections – throughout the greater Bryan area.