Most people don’t consider selective eating when they think about termites. It would seem that termites want to eat everything in their path until there is nothing left. Since they eat continually and process their food as they go, it doesn’t matter if they are small. Some colonies can number over 2 million, and they all eat.

Still, there are termites who only want certain parts of wood or, as we all well know, our homes. The dampwood termite is a brownish colored member of this insect family, and it selects the delicacies it wants.

dampwood termite

The chief characteristic of the dampwood termite is its close attachment to water. To survive and thrive, it must stay in close contact with water. Colonies are deep underground and the pests only come up when there is wood to eat that offers a good water source.

When you have leaky plumbing pipes that constantly soak wood joists or flooring material, you might as well send out a news bulletin for the dampwood termite. If your roof has a leak that keeps any area of your home wet, guess who is moving in?

There is some solace that the dampwood termite only eats wet wood. If you don’t have water leaks, you may never have to meet it. The problem is that its cousins that are not as picky about their food will take its place if you don’t have your home defenses in place. Ask your local exterminator to explain what termites you should be concerned about and the preventative measures that can be taken to protect your home.

Gary Dobert

Gary is the co-owner of Varsity Termite and Pest Control, a family owned and operated company in Arizona with over 21 years of experience. They specialize in termite and scorpion control services.

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