Imagine sipping a cup of morning coffee and then all of a sudden you are being swarmed by hundreds, even thousands of flying insects! This can be a traumatizing experience especially as they may appear to be attempting an attack on you or your home. This mass flight is most likely swarming termites, which, despite their scary appearance, are not going to cause you any harm. For residents in Jacksonville, Tampa, Ocala, Gainesville and other areas of Northern Florida, if you are wondering how to spot a termite swarm, here are some helpful facts from the Florida pest control experts at McCall Service.
What are swarmers?
Swarmers are the name given to the termites that grow wings and fly out of the colony. The swarmers’ sole purpose is to take this flight, so they are not the same termites that are destroying wood. The flying termites usually make their appearance in early spring and are attempting to find a mate and create a new colony, although not many make it. Once the swarmers land, they end up losing their wings and move on to form a new colony.
Are swarming termites harmful?
Although the swarmers are not harmful to people or structures, they are a sign that there are wood destroying termites nearby. Swarmers are nothing more than a big mess to clean up if they have emerged from your home and then lost their wings. Since there could be thousands of them taking flight, you can imagine the mess they will leave behind.
Flying ants vs. swarming termites
At first glance swarmers may look like flying ants. They are winged insects and since there are so many it may be hard to stop and take a close look as they are invading your space. However, there are distinct differences between swarmers and flying ants. Swarmers have two sets of wings that are equal in length and almost double the size of their body. Flying ants have uneven wings and a distinct hour glass shaped body with a pinched midsection.
What to do when you have swarmers?
If you have identified a termite swarm either in or near your home, the first thing you should do is stay calm.
Try to locate where they are emerging from and mark that space with tape.
Go ahead and vacuum up all of the wings that are left behind. But keep in mind that since there could be thousands of swarmers, you may have to vacuum multiple times.
Contact a professional pest control company who can come and identify the source of your termite colony and make sure to eradicate the issue.
Do not try to treat for termites yourself, as any store bought remedies are likely more harmful to you than the termites. Also, do not start pulling apart structures in your home if you notice the swarmers emerging from floor boards or cracks. Just wait for the termite experts to do an inspection.
For property owners in Tallahassee and McCall’s Northern Florida service area, if you have spotted a termite swarm or have heard your neighbors reporting termite activity, contact McCall Service right away! The termite control experts will be able to identify the colony and prevent any future damages to your home caused by the wood destroying insects.