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Historic monsoon brings active termite season

Published: Sep. 28, 2021 at 7:23 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - Monsoon 2021 brought us our third wettest monsoon on record, but it’s also providing life-giving moisture to a certain monsoon pest: termites.

These little bugs can end up costing you thousands of dollars in home repairs.

“October and November are usually the busiest months for us and this year has been extremely busy with the amount of rain that we had. We haven’t seen a year like this in quite awhile,” Josh Tennenbaum, Arizona Pest Control’s operation manager, said.

Experts say the influx of termites was expected this year because of the overactive monsoon. Many people may not know they have a termite problem, but there are ways to deter them.

″Keep moisture, clutter, dead foliage and also try to keep the “J” joint of the structure clear so you can actually inspect physically view those areas where the termites are coming up,” Tennenbaum said.

Arizona Pest Control says now is the time to do a thorough inspection around your house, but, keep in mind, you can only visually inspect about 10% of your home without an expert.

Typically, in Arizona we see two kinds of termites: subterranean and dry-wood.

“Subterranean are the ones that cause the most damage in Arizona. Those are the most problematic species. The dry-wood can also cause significant damage, but they mostly damage wood. They don’t cause damage to structure,” UA entomologist, Dr. Shaku Nair, said.

You may not always see these pests, but you will likely see evidence of them such as mud tubes and wood that is sunken in or puffed up.

″It can easily run into thousands of dollars, like $3,000 to $4,000 worth. If it’s not noticed at the correct time, they will sometimes have to replace whole sections of their building,” Nair said.

Subterranean termites are known to be relentless. So, as the saying goes, you either have termites or you’re going to get them.

Dr. Nair suggests having your home inspected by professionals after monsoon to be proactive in preventing long-term damage.

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