Termite Baits 101

Considering how much damage termites can do, many people do not really understand them or the control methods that can get rid of an infestation. On top of that, termite control methods have evolved rapidly in the last few years, with baits replacing traditional insecticide sprays. So what are termite baiting systems and how are they used?

How baits work

Baits are an alternative to the more traditional liquid barrier. While installing a liquid barrier is a fairly intensive operation, installing a baiting system is much easier. Liquid barriers are basically insecticides that are injected into the ground near the foundation of the home. These insecticides will then prevent termites from gaining access to the building and reducing the threat of an infestation immediately. However, barriers cannot really destroy a colony.

Baits work very differently from liquid barriers. A subterranean termite colony is located somewhere in the ground near the infested building, not inside the building itself, and the colony will constantly send out foragers to look for new sources of food, despite having access to large chunks of wood in the home. Baiting systems work by intercepting these foragers and feeding them cellulose laced with a slow-acting termiticide. This cellulose is placed around the property in containers in the ground. The termites will start dying off in a few weeks, and depending on the active ingredient of the bait, one of several processes occurs which will lead to the complete collapse of the colony.

The bait system itself is a very straightforward contraption. It is basically a hollow plastic cylinder that has slits along the side which will allow the termites to enter and reach the poisoned cellulose. Once they find the bait, the foragers will leave a pheromone trail behind, and workers will start to gather all of the cellulose and take it back to the colony.

Baiting systems can be installed DIY, but you need to be diligent in order to be effective. The bait has to be checked every now and then in order to ensure that the termites have found it. There is also the issue that a baiting system does not really protect the home. If a colony is destroyed and the baiting system is removed, a neighboring colony can easily reinfest the area.

If you would like to find out more about baiting systems, or if you want one professionally installed on your property, contact us today.

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