There are two main types of termite management system for protecting existing homes from termites; chemical soil treatments and termite baiting systems. Both systems have their pros and cons, allowing the quality pest professional to choose the best system for the construction type, soil conditions and termite species present at the property. Here, we’ll give you the low down on baiting…
Termite baiting – Frequently asked questions?
How does a termite baiting system work?
Termite baiting systems are actually termite monitoring and baiting systems. Plastic bait stations containing wood attractive to termites are placed in the ground around the property. The principle of a termite monitoring and baiting system is that termites are intercepted at the monitoring stations before getting to your house. The termite activity in these monitoring stations is picked up by the pest professional during one of their regular system inspections and a bait is then added to the station to control the termites.
What stops termites walking past bait stations and into my home?
In theory, nothing. In practice, it is very rare and here’s why. The monitoring stations are placed around 2-3m apart (on average) around the perimeter of the property. Over years of research this has shown to be the optimal distance to virtually eliminate the chances of termites entering your home without attacking a monitoring station.
With the termite monitoring system we commonly use, we also include an attractant to ensure any nearby termites are attracted to the bait station rather than your house. Over all our years of operation we have not had a single case of termites attacking a house protected by a monitoring system.
How often is the monitoring system inspected?
Regular inspections of the termite monitoring system are vital to its success. Depending on the system and termite pressure, inspections are required every 6 weeks – 3 months. Not only do these inspections check the stations for activity but the pest professional will pick up any other termite activity around the perimeter of your home.
Inspections of the monitoring system are not the same as a property inspection, when the property and buildings are inspected inside and out. The complete termite inspections are also required once a year – a recommendation whether you have a termite monitoring system or not.
How long does it take to control termites?
When termites are detected in a monitoring station, termite bait is added. The termite bait is a mixture of cellulose material (similar to that found in wood, but more attractive) and a slow acting termiticide. Termites feed on the bait taking it back to the nest where it is fed to the rest of the colony. It needs to be slow acting so the termites do not detect its effect and stop feeding on the bait.
Depending on the time of year and size of the colony it typically takes 3-6 month to eliminate a colony but can take up to a year on rare occasions. On the face of it, taking several months to gain control is too long for some, but homeowners can rest at ease since the termites feeding on the bait are not attacking their home and by actually eliminating the colony, you are providing lasting protection for your home.
Are the baiting systems obvious?
Some homeowners are worried about having obvious, “ugly” monitoring stations around their home. Once the stations are installed they are flat with the soil surface and often around the perimeter of the home there are hidden in the garden beds. Around many homes the system is very discrete, often only visible in one or two places. For some this can be reassuring as you know there is a termite system in place protecting your home.
Benefits of a termite baiting system?
- Flexible termite protection system – can be applied to a range of different construction types and conditions.
- Unaffected by weather – as there are no chemicals in the ground, baiting systems are not effected by flooding or soil movement
- Safe for children and pets – as there are no chemical applied to the soil, baiting is ideal if you have children and pets, even the termite bait is non-toxic to mammals.
- Environmentally smart – no chemical are being pumped into the ground and the termite bait only targets termites, it’s very specific
Termite monitoring and baiting systems are considered the smart way to protect your home, so ask you pest professional about these options. If you’re in Melbourne you can always give us a call (Specialist Termite Control – Specialist Pest Manager of the Year 2014, 2015 – 1300 69 59 49)