How to Prevent & Get Rid of Drywood Termites in Novato, CA; Caste Identification, Signs & More

Typically, the majority of people are familiar with the basics of termites. There are 45 types of termite species in the United States, and they are known throughout the world. They generally fall into one of three categories; subterranean, dampwood and drywood termites. In the Greater California Bay area, drywood termites can be a problem for the locals. We at Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay would like to take the opportunity to share some basics about drywood termites.

Drywood Termite Colony Caste Identification

Having a distinctive forehead that slopes down gradually from the top of the head, drywood soldier termites, and from the side profile, their head appears flattened to slightly rounded. Their third segment on the antennae are enlarged and clublike. When viewed from on top, the top body plate, referenced as the pronotum is wide or wider than the orange to reddish-brown head. The swarmers of drywood termites have dark brown abdomens and have an orange brown head and pronotum. Other characteristics include blackish membrane and pigmented veins and smoky-colored wings. As their name suggests, drywood termites are attracted to dry wood, with the moisture content under 12% and as they tunnel their way through the wood, the eat it. Drywood termites do not require soil, unlike their other types of termite cousins. These termites reside in the wood they consume. Another difference is that drywood termites do not have a worker class like other termite species, and the nymphs do the majority of the work.

Drywood Termite Swarmers

Drywood termites will find the cracks or knotholes in wood to penetrate as they swarm to look for a perspective home. After gnawing a small tunnel, the swarmers will close it off, excavate the chamber and mate. They continue to grow their numbers every year, by the end of the 1st year, they will average 20 nymphs and 1 soldier and by the 4th year, they can have anywhere from 70-700 members. Swarming usually occurs in September through November with drywood termites, however, in cooler areas they may swarm in July as they prefer the sunny weather of around 80 degrees.

Drywood Termite Damage

Like most termites, drywood termites have the potential to cause costly damage to the interior structures of homes and businesses. They are not limited to the wood used in the structure, but can infest pictures frames, lumber, and furniture. Because of this, man is responsible for spreading out the infestation regions as they are commonly shipped to different areas while infesting these products. Drywood termites are very likely to dive into a stack of firewood in addition to any exposed areas like doors, attics, window frames, molding, and so on. They seem to be either forgetful or creatures of habit as the swarmers will re-infest the same places.

Termite Inspections & Treatment

You need a professional that is certified and licensed to inspect, identify, and eliminate termites when it comes to drywood termite infestations. Listing their findings and providing solutions accordingly, you usually receive a written document that was done by the inspector. To eliminate these pests, there are a few effective methods such as heat treatments, other local treatments, and fumigation. Because they compromised the integrity of the wood they are or have infested, you will need to replace the wood as a part of the process. If you suspect drywood, or any other type of termite in the California bay area, call in the certified professionals of Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay for efficient removal.


Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay Inc.
4685 Scotts Valley Rd.
Lakeport, CA 95453
(800) 760-3028

Hydrex Pest Control of the North Bay Inc.
1120 Industrial Ave
#18 Petaluma, CA 94952
(707) 795-6345


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