If you have noticed an increasing presence of termites on your property in the Western Cape, we can assure you it is not just your imagination. The South African Pest Control Association has confirmed a noticeable growth in the populations of Harvester Termites.
This problem began back in 2015, and the population growth was exacerbated by the drought which plagued the province in recent years and forced the termite populations to move closer to residents’ homes.
Almost 100% of all damage done to vegetation and wood structures is caused by harvester termites.
“They need to be in constant contact with moist soil and when you have a leaking gutter, a downpipe or an aircon pipe dripping it will certainly attract them,” said Johan Fourie, Chairperson of South African Pest Control Association on CapeTalk.
Homeowners are advised to be on the lookout for this tiny destructive creature because they can easily cause high volumes of structural damage to homes before residents are even aware of their presence.
Although these ant-like insects are not wood eaters they often destroy wood, which they identify as an obstruction.
How to prevent a Harvester termite infestation in your home:
– Ensure all your leaking pipes are fixed
– Remove all vegetation and wood that is lying near walls
– Do not make holes in the garden soil with pegs, mole spikes or otherwise if possible
– Plant chilli peppers in your garden and around your home to deter termites.
If you already notice termites on your property, some effective detergents include Orange Oil or Pyrethrin, which can be applied to wood that termites are already eating to repel them. It is to be noted that as these deterrents are more natural methods they need to be applied often and are not as effective in severe infestations.
Picture: Flick Pest Control