It is a beautiful early summer evening. You get up from relaxing on the couch to let your dog outside to do his business and you notice what looks like thousands of flies swarming around your floodlights. You find the observation odd, but don't think anything of it until an hour later when you are swatting what feels like at least 50 of these flying nuisances from landing on the dinner you are trying to cook. As you sweep up the dead bodies, you closely inspect one that missed the dust pan and your eyes suddenly get big when you realize that these are now dead termites.
Should I panic when I see Termite Swarms in Ascension Parish and the Greater Baton Rouge Area?
Termite swarms generally occur on South Louisiana evenings between April and June and do not necessarily mean that your home is infested. These Formosan subterranean termites are searching to colonize, but will quickly die unless they have water and food sources such as wood and certain mulches. Swarming termites do not cause damage to your home, but if they are able to find an environment to colonize, they will produce worker termites that cause damage. Entering into a termite treatment contract with a local company is the best protection against a termite infestation, however there are a few other ways to minimize risk from termite swarms.
How to minimize the risk of termites infesting your home from a swarm.
» Turn off exterior lights and limit indoor lights around the outside of your home. Termites are no different from most flying insects in that they are attracted to light. When floodlights are left on, termites will generally swarm around that area. It is highly recommended to leave these lights off as well as any lighting around the outside of your home that would attract termite swarms. Dimming interior lights and turning off lights in unoccupied rooms will also help.
» Keep doors and windows closed as much as possible. Try to limit how much you and your family open doors allowing termites to fly into your home. Doors and windows should not be left open.
» Remove food and water sources. Keep dead wood away from the exterior of your home and fix leaking pipes. Termites can feed on some types of mulches so try to keep mulch from touching your home's foundation. Without food and water, the termites will die.