While there are more than a thousand different kinds of termites in the world, only a small percentage actually cause damage to human property and only three of those types of termites live in Canada. Termites’ natural habitat in Canada are forests, where they live off dead and rotting vegetation such as trees, leaves and other foliage.
Termites can build tunnels of mud to protect their passageways around their territory, and a telltale sign that you have termites, are these termite highways along the foundation of your home. Keeping termites away from your home is the first step to preventing a termite infestation. That means removing rotting wood or firewood in your yard. Killing termites can be challenging for the average homeowner, so you should consider consulting a professional if you are using chemicals.
Killing termites is a major undertaking — they cause about $2.2 billion in damage in the US. each year. Finding out what kind of termite is eating you literally out of house and home is half the battle.
Here are the types of termites located in Canada:
Eastern Subterranean Termite
Termites divide themselves into different castes for different jobs but the majority of the types of termites you will see will be the worker caste of the Eastern Subterranean Termite. They are about 3 mm long, blind, wingless, have soft-bodies and are creamy white to grayish-white with a round head.
The Eastern Subterranean Termite commonly feeds on rotting organic soil which means leaves, branches and the trunks of trees in its natural habitat and, within your home, your damp wooden foundations, walls, floors and panels. One they are inside your home, it is difficult to kill termites.
Western Subterranean Termite
the western subterranean termite lives only in British Columbia in Canada, but is found the Pacific coast states in the U.S. Like its eastern counterpart, the western subterranean termite worker is small, soft-bodied and white in colour. The western subterranean termite worker does most of the work for the larger termite colony and most of the damage if it gets into your home.
Also know as the Western Drywood Termite, this pest can deceptively eat into the wood of your house and honeycomb it with holes and tunnels yet leave the outside of the wood untouched. This gives the impression a home is not infected, giving the insect time to continue its damaging behaviour.
Pacific Dampwood Termite
As the name suggests, this termite is located on the western coast of Canada and the United States and survives living off wood with high amounts of moisture. While the Pacific dampwood termite can cause damage to homes, the impact of this termite is not so great as the Eastern Subterranean Termite.
Need help with pest control or extermination? Magical Pest Control is based in Toronto, but services Southern Ontario, from Niagara Falls to Ottawa. If you have a problem with any type of termite, or questions about termite removal, please contact us.