In Spring, Birds, Bees and … Termites?

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Spring doesn’t just mean flowers and sunshine — it’s also the perfect season for termite infestations.

Warmer temperatures inspire young male and female termites to fly from their colonies in search of ideal places to build new ones. And unfortunately for many Americans, termites often start colonies in human homes. In fact, termites cause $5 billion in property damage each year.

Termites eat more than wood. In addition to destroying housing structures, a termite colony can quickly decimate flooring, carpeting and wallpaper.

“Although social insects, termites are excellent at concealing their presence,” said Greg Baumann, senior scientist of the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). “So often, termites are only discovered once severe property damage is visible.”

Signs of infestation include swarms of winged forms in the fall and spring, evidence of mud tunneling in, over and under wood structures, wood that looks darkened or blistered, and thin wood that a knife or a screwdriver can puncture.

The NPMA offers the following advice to Americans looking to prevent termites from eating them out of house and home:

– Water draws termites, so avoid water accumulation near your home’s foundation. Use downspouts, gutters and splash blocks to divert water. Keep gutters free of leaves and other organic debris. Quickly repair damage from leaks, both indoor and outdoor.

– Never store or bury mulch, wood debris, scrap lumber, sawdust or firewood near your home. If you do keep firewood outside, keep it elevated at least one inch above the ground.

– Eliminate contact between the wooden parts of your home and the soil. Trim shrubs and other plants so that they do not touch your home.

If you suspect termites, speak to a professional. For more information, contact the National Pest Management Association at

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