The southeastern Gulf Coast states see the greatest amount of termite-related property damage of all regions in the United States. This is largely due to the fact that the wet and humid climate in the southeast allows subterranean termite workers to both forage and consume wood at relatively rapid rates. Also, subterranean termite colonies mature at a relatively fast rate within tropical and subtropical conditions. Several subterranean termite species that are known for infesting structural wood can be found in Georgia, but the most widespread and destructive species in the state include eastern, dark southeastern and light southeastern subterranean termites, the first of which is the most economically costly termite species in the US. Although the ravenous Formosan subterranean termite has expanded its invasive habitat into Georgia, this species is not abundant in urban and suburban areas. Multiple drywood termite species can also be found in Georgia, but these pests are not nearly as destructive as their subterranean counterparts. Since subterranean termites dwell below the ground, homes can be protected from these pests with underground barriers.
The most common and effective type of termite barrier is known as a termiticide barrier, and pest control professionals apply termiticide barriers below the ground along the perimeter of homes. Termiticide barriers degrade overtime, and applications become necessary every 10 years or so. Several physical termite barrier systems have also been developed, and while these barrier systems have become common in many countries, such as Australia, they are rarely applied around US properties. Physical termite barriers are made of metal and are often referred to as termite shields, but experts say physical barriers are largely ineffective for preventing termites from encroaching upon a home. However, experts also say that physical termite barriers fail to deflect subterranean termites because they are often installed improperly. That being said, even when properly installed, subterranean termites can bypass physical barriers by constructing mud tubes over the ground where they are located. Subterranean termites do not bypass termiticide barriers via mud tubes, as the toxic effects of termiticides either repel or kill the destructive pests on contact.
Is your home protected by a termiticide barrier system?