Do Termites Stay Active in Winter?

January 3, 2022

Termites are some of the most damaging pests there are. The West Indian drywood termite alone causes $100 million in damage in the United States each year—and that’s just one type of termite in one country. The amount of damage is considerably higher throughout the world.

Depending on where you live, you may not be thinking about termites in the winter. You may have even wondered, “Do termites stay active in winter?” The answer, unfortunately, is yes.

This article will cover termites in winter and explain why termites stay active during the winter.

What are termites?

Termites are small insects that are related to cockroaches. They live in eusocial colonies and eat dead plant material like cellulose, which can be found in wood, soil, leaf litter and animal dung. They can live underground or in wooden structures and often travel back and forth between the two locations.

What time of year are termites most active?

Termites prefer weather that is 75°F, so their peak season is the summer. During the warmer months, there will be increased feeding activity, and the queen will be laying eggs at a faster rate than during the chillier months. Because of this, termites can be a year-round problem for areas of the country with warmer winters like the American Southwest and Southeast.

Do termites die when the weather gets cold?

Unfortunately, no. Termites in winter will typically retreat deep into the ground when temperatures plunge. If the weather is still too cold, they’ll go even deeper into the ground, where temperatures are warmer. They’ve even been found as deep as 40 inches underground before.

Could my home be at risk of a termite infestation during the winter?

Do termites stay active in winter? Sadly, yes. Termites are cold-blooded animals, meaning that their bodies’ blood is the same temperature as the air around them. This means that they need to find a warm place when the weather gets cold. Your home is typically a warm place, and it likely has the added bonus of being made of wood, which termites can use as a food source. While termites may not swarm your house during the winter, they could still be present indoors.

Which kinds of termites is my home most vulnerable to during the winter?

Subterranean and drywood termites are the species most likely to make their way inside your home during the winter. This is because they live underground and may come up through your home’s foundation and get into your walls. You’ll want to be on the lookout for these.

What are the signs that I may have termites?

The first and most obvious sign of termites is a mud tube. It’s the thickness of a pencil, and it’s a brown path that usually originates in the ground and travels up to a wooden food source. Termites use the tunnel to travel and feed safely. The second sign is a clicking sound within your home’s walls. Termites will sometimes bang their head on the inside of their tunnels to communicate with each other, and this is a dead giveaway to their presence.

Call for termite relief today

Termites might be integral to the food chain, but no one wants them in their home. If you suspect their presence, call us at Crist Termite and Pest Solutions, Inc., where we’ve been in business for 60 years, and our experienced professionals are experts at eradicating pests from peoples’ homes.

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