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termites this far North getting under siding?

Posted by cheerpeople 5a (My Page) on
Sun, Dec 17, 06 at 8:50

I just saw a segment on 'Housmarts' discussing termites.
I live in zone 5a and wonder if they could survive over winter this far North?
I see from a web search that there are 4 types in IL. But Il is a long state and the southern part ( zone 6) might be the only place they live?

2 years ago I brought some massive grapevines to my porch from the woods.
They were cut off so as not to take root. I use them to support my clematis.
This last year I noticed little holes bored in the grape vines and little piles of sawdust under them.

I noticed that a clicking sound would occasionally come from the grape vines and finally by the end of the summer I caught one of the pests. It looked like a winged ant. I didn't give it another thought.

Today when I saw the show on 'homesmarts' it made me wonder if this ant could be a termite? I can't find pics of those in IL but I read there are 4 types. The subterranian one with mud tubes is mentioned but I have no mud tubes that I noticed.

My porch is sided.
Do you think this sounds like a termite?
If so-is it a type that would die over the winter? Or could it affect my sided house?

thx Karen



Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: termites this far North getting under siding?

I wouldn't worry about the siding as much as the structure.
If you hear a clicking sound, you might suspect the holes are made from some kind of wood boring beetle like Old House Borer. Here is a link that describes the audible sound of the larvea chewing - like fingernails tapping. You can search on google for the image of the beetles. You can also search "wood borer clicking sound" to see some articles and other opinions.
Here is another link: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IG119

As far as the flying ant, no one can tell you if it was an ant or a termite. Even if it was an ant, it could be a carpenter ant. I think termites swarm in spring mostly but I can't say for sure.

You have dead grapevine wood against your house. This is a food source for many insects. The deadwood provides a path to your house. We can't tell you from here whether or not your house is infested. Perhaps you need to call in an exterminator and get rid of the dead wood.

Here is a link that might be useful: Old House Borer


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