Termites coming out of the woodwork all over East Texas

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Spring is here and with warm temperatures on the rise, exterminators say it's time to seek help. If you have seen little holes inside structures of your home, it could mean you have termites.

"Termites consume wood. They eat it, they live upon it and your house is your most valuable, for mostly everybody, it's their most valuable possession and biggest investment and this is no time when we find termites in and around the home to be playing or trying to do it yourself," said Cary Sims, the county extension agent for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension in Lufkin.

It's also mating season for termites, and when we see termite swarms that could mean that damage is nearby, Sims said.

"They pair up and they only swarm for about an hour, but when they do there's thousands of them and that's what causes alarm for homeowners. It doesn't necessarily mean that you have them because of mother nature they are going to swarm every year," said Charlene Warren, the owner of A.R.A. Exterminating in Lufkin.

There are many termites to worry about, but the one we typically see is the winged one that sometimes can look like a carpenter ant, Warren said.

"In this area, your subterranean termite is the one most here in our area. We do also have Formosan termites here and they work rapidly. I mean, they are the ones if someone says they have them you need to get on it and have it treated," said Warren.

Termites are seen mostly in the bathrooms, and plumbing areas where there might be a 1/64th inch crack for them to travel through. Another indication that termites might be infesting your home is if you see them flying around your window, Sims said.

"If you see bugs flying around the windows, then you can identify them as termites. They will be flying toward the light. If you see holes that have shown up in your sheet rock that weren't there before, that's a big signal as well," said Sims.

Warren says a lot of people in Lufkin like to treat termite infestation on their own, but she says it is a laboring process.

"You have to inject so many gallons of chemicals into that trench so the homeowner is not going to have probably the large amount tank to mix the chemicals. However, you can use a five-gallon bucket to do it, but it's going to be a very laboring, intense process for us. So, it's going to be twice as long for the homeowner," said Warren.

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