Major Termite Species In Sydney

Major Termite Species In Sydney Termites can be harmful to your property, look out for following species…

Termites mostly feed on dead plant material, generally in the form of wood, leaf litter, soil, or animal dung, and about 10% of the estimated 4,000 species (about 2,600 taxonomically known) are economically significant as pests that can cause serious structural damage to buildings, crops or plantation forests.

Termites are social insects that live in communities just like ants. They have long been known as white ants, however, this is not true. Termites are like ants only in their habitats but they are much smaller in size. Actually, termites have more of a resemblance to grasshoppers and cockroaches. They have evolved over 200 million years. These small insects can cause a lot of damage to your house. There are more than 300 species of termites in Australia and 30 of them are potentially harmful. Termites can be divided into groups called castes – each caste performs different functions.

Some of the primary species of termite include Subterranean, Dampwood and Drywood termites. Subterranean termites dwell in soil while Dampwood termites prefer to live in dead trees. A serious invasion can result in substantial damages and a large amount of money may be spent in repairs. There are many species of termites in Sydney and five of them are particularly harmful, since they infest both old and new homes. These harmful species are generally Subterranean .

Dampwood termites

The second most harmful termites are Dampwood termites. Dampwood termites do not live in centralised nests; they live in much smaller nests in damp areas and parts of standing trees. Their nests are above ground, and they prefer to stay in their nests – although, they are also responsible for destroying a lot of houses and buildings in Sydney.

Drywood termites

The third type is Drywood. Drywood termites live in their nests avoiding ground and moisture unlike their counter parts Dampwood termites. The scientific name of drywood is Incisitermes minor (Hagen). They live in small colonies. A single colony can exist in a small piece of dry timber such as a frame of a picture or a table or a desk which can be in your home and office. If you are facing problems due to termite, try a reliable pest control service.

  • Castle Hill, Dural
  • Epping, Frenchs Forest
  • Leichhardt
  • Manly
  • Marrickville
  • Mosman
  • Maroubra
  • Pearl Beach
  • Rozelle
  • Wahroongah
  • Winston Hills

If you don’t live in one of these Sydney suburbs, it doesn’t mean that your property isn’t at risk, though; so if it’s been a while since your last termite inspection, be sure to schedule one soon.

What Does a Termite Inspection Involve?

When Pink Pest Services is asked to do a termite inspection, we may use several techniques to ensure you get all the answers you need. The first of these methods is generally a visual inspection. During this process, we look for the outward signs of infestation. In addition to a visual termite inspection, we also have very specialised equipment. For example, we may employ the use of a borescope, which is a fiber optic camera that can look inside the walls. Our methods may also include the use of a thermal imaging camera. These tools help us determine the scope of an infestation.

Sometimes in a termite inspection , it is necessary to do what is called an “invasive inspection.” This involves actually removing portions of the house to see what is going on behind the scenes. Because it is so invasive, we look at this as one of our last options in a termite inspection; and it is always carried out by a well-qualified professional to ensure the integrity of the work. The introduction of the thermal imaging cameras has made these types of inspections less necessary.

Does My House Really Need a Termite Inspection?

While many people tend to think of termites in the context of timber houses, the truth is that all types of houses are at risk for an attack. Surprisingly to many, brick houses in the Sydney area are at just as much risk as those framed with softwoods. The explanation for this is that termites attack from the outside in and don’t realize the house isn’t made of tasty wood until they’ve already bored through doors or window frames. Even steel-framed houses need to undergo regular termite inspections for this very reason.

he trained, certified professionals at Pink Pest Services are available to conduct thorough termite inspections throughout the Sydney area. Contact us today for a free quote.

Can a termite sting you? | Coast Pest

Can a Termite Sting You?

One of the most common questions we’re asked is if termites can sting or bite humans. Parents especially worry about the possibility of their children being bitten, and then if they are bitten what kind of disease might be transferred and what kind of symptoms might be suffered.

Termites don’t sting

The answer to the question is that termites can bite humans but they can’t sting as they have no mechanism to do so. They have the equipment to bite: mandibles that are as big as a third of their entire body size and the strength to munch their way through any number of materials to get to their food source of wood.

Fortunately, though, termites do not like to come out into the open. They travel through tunnels, mud tubes and hollowed out wood, always taking care to be well concealed as they need moisture at all times. The majority of human ‘termite bites’ are actually caused by ants, mites, fleas, or bedbugs.

Termites are non-aggressive

In the event that you discover active termites, it is important to leave them alone and contact a pest control professional to deal with them.

However if you come across termites, they will not bite a human unless they are handled or feel threatened (such as putting your hand into a termite nest). If you are accidentally bitten by one, you’ll find the sensation is like any normal insect bite – there will be a little irritation for a few days, which will then subside and disappear. This irritation might include a very slight burning from the termite saliva that is used to break down the wood they eat through. It is a minor irritation and nothing to be alarmed about.

If you’re worried about any insect bite you’ve received, and you’re not sure what caused it, then it may be worth seeking medical advice in case the bite is from a poisonous insect. When it comes to termites, though, the most damaging bite they’ll give is the chunk they can take out of your wallet.

The financial termite bite

The real damage that termites do with their bite is to your home. If left unchecked, a termite colony will eat its way through your joists, ceilings, floors… in fact, anything wooden. The average cost of termite damage to property in Australia is more than $7,000. If you see any signs of termite infestation in or near your home, then you don’t need to worry about getting bitten on your hand or leg. You need to protect your pocket and call a professional to inspect and protect your home.

Make sure you keep a close eye on the area surrounding your home, your garden fence, shed, and under your building. At the first sign of termites make that emergency call, before the damage caused becomes a real emergency.

How subfloors increase your termite risk & what to do about it | Coast Pest

How Subfloors Increase Your Termite Risk And What To Do About It

Subterranean termites come up from underground to attack homes, meaning the first signs of damage can usually be seen in the subfloor. If you’re buying a home and can’t get to inspect the subfloor (or currently live in a property with a subfloor), the likelihood is that there has been no termite inspection for some years.

This is exactly what happened to Martin, who bought his dream home in Sydney in 2000. A timber pest inspection at the time told him there were no termites. Last year Martin decided to undertake some renovations, and what he found horrified him. The windowsill literally fell away in his hands (dry rot, and a warning sign of a termite friendly environment). When he began removing gyprock from the walls, the extensive termite damage was clear to see.

On inspection, Martin’s subfloor was found to be riddled with termites. Termite leads ploughed a path from the soil to the floor joists. The damage was estimated at many thousands of dollars in materials, plus labour.

How is a subfloor built?

A floor consists of three layers: the joists, the subfloor, and the top-floor. The joists support the subfloor and the subfloor is attached to the top-floor (tiles, hardwood, or carpet). The subfloor is usually made of plywood or pine: termite food.

Termites make their way up supporting joists to the subfloor, where they can cause extensive damage before then attacking the rest of the house.

How to spot termite damage to subfloors

There are a number of signs that indicated termite damage to the subfloor:

  • Squeaking floors
  • Sagging floors
  • A top floor layer that is detached from the subfloor
  • Loose floor tiles

How to handle termite infestation in your subfloor

If you notice any of the signs above, you should have your home inspected for termites . A plan of action to remove the termites and repair the damage should then be create. Damaged areas will need to be removed and replaced, with particular attention paid to nearby wooden structural timbers, including adjacent floor joists.

Work should be undertaken in this order:

  • Inspection
  • Infestation treatment
  • Preventative measures taken
  • Second Inspection to determine eradication and control
  • Repair work

How to protect your subfloor from termites?

Of course, the best way to tackle termites is to be prepared: prevention is always better (and cheaper) than cure. Here are five things to do to ensure your subfloor remains termite free:

  • Regularly inspect for termites (with a maximum of 12 months between inspections)
  • Ensure the subfloor is well ventilated, to prevent moisture build-up
  • Ensure adequate drainage
  • Treat timbers against termite attack

If you would like to better protect your most valuable investment – your home – and help it to increase in value then contact us today.

What Happens When You Spray a Termite Nest with Fly Spray

What Happens When You Spray a Termite Nest with Fly Spray

Here is an announcement that you may not have expected to see on this website: household fly spray, at just a few dollars per can, will kill termites.

HOWEVER (and it’s a BIG ‘however’) … it will ONLY kill the termites the spray hits.

The remaining termites will flee, alert the rest of the colony, and spread to other areas of your house. The colony will find safer areas to attack, exacerbating the damage already caused.

Doing this will leave you in a much worse (and more costly) position when it comes to getting a full, professional treatment which will actually save your property.


A few hundred termites might be killed by prolonged spraying with fly spray, but with a termite queen laying up to 4,000 eggs per day, it will take just a few hours to replace those termites the fly spray has eradicated.

The problem with using fly spray is that you will only ever kill those termites you can see. The main nest could be metres away, underground, in a nearby tree, and contain hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of termites all ready to replace those you’ve managed to kill.

The first action taken by termites when faced with a bunch of their friends killed on the spot is to seal the tunnel leading to the site of slaughter. Then they dig a new tunnel to a new location. You’ll think you have solved your termite problem, while the termites are busy attacking a new part of your home.

The advantage of termite baiting

Termite baiting works in a completely different way to fly spray.

When termites locate a food source, they take food back and feed other termites in the colony, including soldiers and the queen. Baiting doesn’t kill the termites immediately, but works by causing the workers eating the poison to die slowly. The tunnels leading to the food supply are not sealed off, but with the workers dying the colony is slowly starved of food. Eventually, without food being returned to the nest, the colony starves to death.

Termite baiting is a proven system for the long-term control of termite infestation. It’s safe, targeted and eco-friendly, as well as easy to use.

If you’d like to know more about termite detection and termite baiting, why not ask one of our experts? We’re only an email or phone call away.

Myth busted: concrete slabs won’t protect you from termites | Coast Pest

Myth Busted: Concrete Slabs Will NOT Protect You From Termites

Many people either building a home or looking to protect their existing home from termites mistakenly believe that a concrete slab under the home will be adequate protection. In fact, unless it is used in conjunction with other protective measures, a concrete slab could prove no more than an expensive piece of over-engineering. Termites are able to tunnel through cracks in concrete, and the slab itself is unlikely to eliminate wood to ground contact. But if combined with other protective measures, then a concrete slab can prove to be one of the more effective long term physical termite barriers.

How termites penetrate concrete slabs

Termites will look for any opening they are able to exploit in their search for food. Edges of slabs are particularly at risk, while holes for service pipes may provide the perfect aperture for tunnelling termites. If the concrete slab is at or below ground level, then the risk is increased.

When installing a concrete slab, it must measure up to Australian Standard 2870. Poorly designed slabs are more susceptible to cracking, which will allow easier termite access.

How to ensure concrete slabs protect from termites

For concrete slabs to be effective in the fight against termite attack, they need to be augmented with other protective measures. These include physical and chemical protection.

On top of joists, piles, or stumps, ant caps or termite shields should be used. These help to prevent termites direct access, so although they can still gain entry to the home they can be more easily observed. Crushed granite does a similar job, and both methods can be used underneath the concrete slab.

Chemical treatments include the injection of termiticides at the inner and outer edges of the concrete slab, as well as around the external perimeter and through expansion joints and cracks.

How to install the extra protection needed

To make a concrete slab as termite proof as possible, it is best to use a combination of both physical and chemical barriers to augment its strength. While a builder will be able to put physical barriers in place, chemical barriers can only be installed by licensed pest controllers. In many cases a trench will need to be dug to allow access for the chemical barrier.

Whether you are building a home, extending an existing home, or simply seeking to ensure your home remains termite free, a consultation with a Pink Pest expert will help you to make the right choice for your needs. The sooner you consider your termite protection needs, the better your protection will be.

5 Gardening Habits that Attract Termites and 5 That Fight Them

5 Gardening Habits that Attract Termites and 5 That Fight Them

For many of us, gardening is a much-loved hobby that can be enjoyed all year round due to our beautiful climate. However, while you may be transforming your garden into a tropical paradise, you could also be unsuspectingly creating a paradise for a termite colony. Here are five bad gardening habits that attract termites, and five good gardening habits that will help fight a termite threat.

Termite-attracting gardening habits

  • Planting too close to your home. A common gardening scheme includes planting beds which hide the foundation of your home. These create an environment which encourages termites into your foundations, giving the moistness required and creating a natural pathway to the under-build and beyond.
  • Removing treated soil. Soil next to your foundations may have been treated with liquid termiticide. Keen gardeners often mistakenly dig this over in efforts to improve aesthetic qualities, but all that is accomplished is the removal of this protective barrier.
  • Wood products mulches. Many gardeners use mulch for the goodness of their gardens and to control weeds. A wood-product mulch is a termite attractor, and if it is placed right up to the house borders on an open invitation to the local termite colony.
  • Leaf build-up. When leaves fall in the autumn, gardeners begin the never-ending fight to keep their gardens clear of dead foliage. If fallen leaves are left too long, they can clog gutters and drains, and provide the perfect habitat for a thriving termite colony to expand and attack your home.
  • Over-watering. A well-presented garden requires water to thrive. In an effort to maintain correct soil moisture, gardeners will over-water, creating the damp surroundings that termites love.

Termite-fighting gardening habits

  • Keep a safe distance. Add colour to the garden by planting beds away from your home’s foundations, and avoid digging treated ground next to your home’s walls. Clear the garden of leaves and other debris on at least a weekly basis
  • Wood alternatives. Use mulches that are made from non-wood products, such as pine straw, gravel, rocks, and rubber.
  • Water control. Make sure that taps and water pipes are kept in good repair, checking regularly and fixing drips quickly. Seal around pipes and utility lines where water may enter.
  • Pipe maintenance. Maintain gutters and downspouts, clearing all debris as soon as it appears, and divert water away from foundations.
  • Store wood away from your home. If you keep a wood store, make sure it is well away from the home and keep untreated wood away from the soil.

For professional help with termite control services contact the team at pink.

Should you buy a home with termite history? | Coast Pest

What if Your Dream Home has a Termite History: Should You Go Ahead with the Purchase?

When you are buying a home, pre-purchase building and timber pest inspections are a must. Often buyers will skip the pest inspection – and this can be a big and costly mistake.

CSIRO estimates that 1 in 5 Australian homes will be attacked by termites. With termites capable of causing significant damage without being detected, when they are spotted the damage can be extensive. In the worse cases, they can completely destroy a home.

The last thing you want, having bought your dream home, is be unaware that termites are eating away at your investment.

So when you are looking to buy a home, it’s important to know the termite status and history for the property:

  • Are there any active termites in the house or on the property?
  • Has there been any damage in the past?
  • Is there an up-to-date treatment on the property?
  • Are there any conditions that may make the home more likely to suffer a termite attack?

To get this detailed information you need a thorough inspection carried out by a termite specialist.

What will a pre-purchase pest inspection tell you?

A pre-purchase pest inspection is a little more involved than a normal termite inspection as it also looks for other timber pests, such as borers, and signs of wood decay. However, termites are the main pest of concern.

Whether your dream home is a weatherboard, brick or even a metal framed home, termites can find their way in and attack any wood elements. Yes, even metal frame homes are not safe – termites will get in and eat floorboards, door frames and architraves!

A detailed inspection will involve inspecting each room in turn, spending time in the roof void and subfloor (if one exists), checking the garage and any outbuildings, looking at fencing and trees around the building. The inspection is looking for active termites, signs of termite damage, evidence of previous treatments and any construction faults or conditions that may make the property more susceptible to a termite attack.

Such an inspection takes time and a skilled inspector may also use specialised detection equipment to scan areas they cannot physically see. The result is a comprehensive inspection of your potential purchase.

Hopefully, the home is termite free, but as we know, with 1 in 5 homes having a history of termite attack, it is quite possible that the inspection will find some evidence of current or previous termite activity.

The question is: should you buy your dream home if the inspection reveals current termite activity or past termite damage?

Should you buy a home with termite activity or termite damage?

Many people might advise you to avoid buying a property that has a history of termites, and certainly one with a current termite problem. But to dismiss the purchase might be to miss the opportunity of a lifetime. After all, it would be easy to dismiss buying your dream house for any number of reasons – it has evidence of settling, it has a history of flooding, it doesn’t have adequate heating, and so on.

Remember that evidence of current or previous termite damage could be a big bargaining chip to reduce the sale price. However, in addition to getting any reduction in price, there are steps you can take before signing a contract to reduce your risk:

  • If the property has active termites ensure that the costs of treatments and repairs will be paid by the seller before the purchase goes through
  • Make sure they use a reputable termite treatment company that carries out a complete treatment and provides a guarantee, which will pass on to you (as the new owner). Sellers will often employ the cheapest pest controller to do the cheapest job, telling them, “Just squirt a bit of chemical to kill the termites you can see.” Without a comprehensive treatment, the termites will come back.
  • If a previous treatment has been carried out, understand whether it is still under guarantee and whether such an agreement can be transferred to you
  • If the home is a new build, establish that timbers have been pre-treated and ask what type of termite protection has been included in the construction. Ensure there are termite warranties on the property.

Termites are common in Sydney, and so a history of termite attack is not uncommon, and neither are repairs. So try not to be too emotional when dealing with a ‘scary’ termite problem. If seen as a maintenance problem, termites are suddenly seen in a different light.

The bottom line is that buying a home with a history of termites does not have to lead to future problems, with the risk of seeing your investment being eaten away (literally). Knowledge is power and a comprehensive pest inspection is key. Termites can be controlled and eradicated, and a termite history could prove strong leverage when it comes to negotiating your purchase price.

Contact us for your professional building and termite inspection today.

Once you have bought your home

Termites are a fact of life in Australia, so protecting your home with regular termite inspections and installing a termite management system should really be considered a standard part of maintaining your home.

Indeed, your home is more likely to be attacked by termites than be affected by fire, flood or other natural disaster. However, termite attack is not covered by your standard home insurance, and so a small annual investment in termite inspections will help to stay termite free and maintain value in your home.

If you need a home inspection carried out by a experienced inspector feel free to contact us or give us a call on 1300 132 062. Book your termite inspection and protect your home today.

8 Most Common Household Pests in Sydney

8 Most Common Household Pests in Sydney

Sydney’s heat and humidity is a perfect breeding ground for a multitude of bugs and other pests. And, as we all know, finding an infestation of pests in your home and the process of getting rid of them can be a major problem requiring professional help.

Here’s some information on the most common household pests and what you can do to remove them.

  1. Spiders – Certainly one of the more cringe-worthy critters that pop-up, spiders will appear from time to time especially in raining periods. Fortunately, most spiders don’t pose an on-going problem like other pests (except for the initial scare) except in rare instances. With that said, spiders can pose a serious threat to children, pets and adults alike and should be treated with extreme caution. Fortunately, over the counter bug spray will often do the trick (unless the problem occurs repetitively).
  2. Flies – Flies in Australia are notorious, especially in warmer months, but in many cases they’re easily managed with practical solutions. Make sure all food scraps are wrapped before tossing them in the bin and keep all door and window fly wires shut at all times.
  3. Cockroaches – Cockroaches are another unfortunate consequence of the Australian climate. The best roach prevention is to keep waste and food containers totally sealed. Roach sprays, bombs and bait traps can be effective if the problem is treated early enough, but if roaches become uncontrollable, call the team here at Pink . Don’t leave it too late otherwise you will find German cockroaches can be extremely difficult to eradicate completely.
  4. Ants – A few ants in your home is not a problem, but when an army marches in looking for food you could be in for a lot of trouble. Unfortunately, it’s rare to see just a few ants. Most DIY methods can temporarily eliminate ants but cannot destroy the nest. Our ant baiting methods stop the problem at the root cause for quick, effective removal. Find out more here.
  5. Termites – Commonly found throughout Australia, termites (or white ants) will chomp on any wood they can find and are able to destroy entire wooden homes pretty quickly. Termites are serious pests that should be exterminated as quickly as possible by termite control experts. Thermal pest inspection is particularly useful for finding termite infestations in walls without causing any interior damage.
  6. Fleas – Fleas thrive both indoors and out and are most comfortable in warm, humid situations. They’re most likely carried indoors on household pets, such as dogs or cats, but are also found on indoor birds. A female flea can lay several hundred eggs during her short life, so flea infestations can get out of hand very quickly. Professional flea pest control is the fastest way to remove fleas, but future prevention consists of cleaning pets and their bedding with an approved flea wash.
  7. Birds – Birds can nest in very small places and tend to like the sheltered areas that a commercial building or residential home provides. While that may not appear harmful at first glance, nesting birds also means bird droppings and the possibility of bird mites. There are many do-it-yourself remedies to prevent nesting, however once the birds have established themselves, you should seek professional assistance to remove them.
  8. Possums – In developed areas where trees have been cleared, Possums have lost most of their nesting sites and natural habitat. As a result, these nocturnal animals have taken up residence in roofs and other sheltered areas around homes. They may damage household electrical wires, destroy insulation and leave behind urine and fecal materials. As a protected species, you must have a permit to remove a possum, so this task is best left to a pest control professional.

The good news is most household pests can be either easily prevented or eliminated with simple solutions and professional advice.

How to protect your home with termite resistant timbers | Coast Pest

Termite Resistant Timbers

Just the mere mention of termites is able to quickly spread fear into anyone who owns their own home. Termite infestations are currently on the rise, making the fear of these tiny little pests that can literally eat away your home very real. And it doesn’t take as long as you may think, making it necessary to take immediate action if any signs of termite infestation are found in your home.

The good news for homeowners is that there are some timbers that are proven to be resistant to termite infestations. These timbers can be used when building a home, or when adding onto the home, decreasing the probability of a termite infestation.

Termite Resistant Timber types

Although there are a few species of timber that are known to contain natural properties that can ward off termites, there simply aren’t any timbers that are completely resistant to the threat of termites. Nevertheless, it’s a really good idea to do everything in your power to deter these home-destroying pests, especially if you live in an area that has a lot of trees.

The native cypress trees is the type of timber that’s most commonly chosen, and is one of the species of timber that can really help make your home resistant to termites. The narrow-leaved red ironbark tree, the broad-leaved red ironbark, the turpentine and the satinay are all also considered to be timbers that will all naturally resist termites.

Preparing Fish Tanks For Your Pest Control Appointment

Preparing Fish Tanks For Your Pest Control Appointment

The importance of protecting our homes from pests cannot be over emphasised. One way we keep our families and cherished pets safe is by having regular pest control inspections and appropriate management systems in place.

Sometimes, a pest inspection may reveal a problem – perhaps there are cockroaches in the kitchen or fleas in the upstairs bedrooms. In such cases, a treatment will need to be carried out at home.

Preparing for treatment

On treatment day some of us are off to work, some to school, and the pooch and kittens are in the garden – but wait! What about the exotic fish in the aquarium, or Fluffy the tarantula and Judy the bearded dragon in your son’s room? These friends of the family must also be protected on treatment day.

There are some pest control companies who may tell you the chemicals used are safe for humans (which is true) so are therefore safe for fish and other tank-dwelling pets. Not so. We humans have little in common with cold-blooded creatures, so we cannot say for certain how they might be affected.

To begin, cover the aquarium or tank, including the filter, with a towel or sheet and double up if the fabric you are using appears permeable. Seal the fabric to the outside of the tank leaving no gaps for a flow of air to enter the filter. The treatment spray can waft up into the filter and ultimately enter the tank water, which is why covering the filter is so important. However, be very careful when covering the aquarium filter; if the power is on, the heat from the covered motor may be a fire hazard.

Secondly, be certain to remove all food from the area being treated. If you’ve purchased six-legged delicacies for Judy’s midday snack, place them somewhere out of the treatment zone.

Along with moving pet food from the area being treated, be sure to also remove water buckets, filter equipment, tubes, nets, and feeding utensils – anything that comes into contact with the tank for cleaning or maintenance purposes.

Trusted advice

Once the treatment has finished, talk to your pest manager about when it will be safe to re-enter the treated zone. In some cases it may be straightaway, others an hour or more. When it comes to the safety of your family and pets, it’s essential to work with a pest manager you trust. If you have a pest problem, give Pink Pest Services a call today.