Ceilings that dip down. As of 2019, Formosan subterranean termite is found in almost all major urban areas of Florida (Figure 3). Formosan termites are known as “super termites” in comparison to the nearly 2,000 other termite species, because of their ability to rapidly consume wood and cause massive damage. The technology was incorporated into the Sentricon® subterranean termite colony elimination system, which reached the consumer market in 1995 and has now protected more than 3 million homes in 18 countries and pre-empted the use of 9,000 metric tons of insecticide. Take care not to disturb the termite treatment around your foundation. Asian and Formosan Subterranean Termites Exploding in S. Florida. Bradenton FL. The species was brought to Japan when the U.S. was still a British colony, and it arrived in Hawaii shortly before 1900. Swarms are quite large with up to tens of thousands of alates. How It’s Currently Addressed: Subterranean termite treatment should be handled by pest-management professionals, it is not an undertaking for do-it-yourselfers. Florida is also home to several native subterranean termites that infest structures. Sarasota FL. By proper taxonomic convention, the older name, Coptotermes gestroi, must be recognized. In Florida, Formosan termite swarms usually occur from April through July on calm, warm, and humid evenings. After selecting a keyword you will be taken to our online payment center where you will be required to log in before entering any payments. From a pest-management standpoint, workers are the caste that people worry about most. Like other termites, subterranean species feed on woody plant materials, to obtain a compound called cellulose, a key component of plant cell walls. Formosan Termites Appearance . Su and his post-doctoral associate, Thomas Chouvenc, continue to research subterranean termites in South Florida, and are particularly focused on the hybrid Asian/Formosan termite that was identified recently, and may pose a serious threat to structures in South Florida. This species will start its swarming activity in late April to early May, and has now spread to many other locations across the state. When foraging workers locate wood that’s suitable to consume they leave a pheromone trail to lead others back to the find. A single colony of Formosan subterranean termite may contain several million termites that forage up to 300 feet in soil. As its name indicates, the Formosan subterranean termite is a subterranean termite species characterized by large populations that share interconnected foraging galleries in soil. Lakewood Ranch FL. All other things being equal, termites that forage over larger areas are more likely to encounter structures. First, this species forms larger colonies than most subterranean termites. They are an invasive pest, native to Asia, that entered Southern ports in the 1950s. Before the 1960's, there was no such thing as a Formosan subterranean termite in the United States. In: Tamashiro M, Su NY, eds. Biology and Habits: Formosan termites are subterranean termites that typically live in the ground and a large mature nest will periodically emit swarmers in large numbers over a wide area to find a mate from another colony nest to start up a new colony. They also proposed that Coptotermes gestroi be given the common name of "Asian subterranean termite." They live and invade from underground, thriving on. However, since the 2010s, their geographic distribution and their mating … The system is only available through licensed pest-management providers; when used properly, it poses no threat to people, pets, wildlife or water quality. After swarming and landing on the ground, the … But it was probably introduced there at least five to 10 years previously. The Life of a Formosan Subterranean Termite. Service areas. Department of Entomology and Nematology at the University of Florida titled Subterranean Termites: Understanding Your Options and a slide set titled Termites, Pretreatments and the Termite Protection Code, which was written by the Florida Pest Management Association. The Formosan termite acquired its name because it was first described in Taiwan in the early 20th century, but C. formosanus is probably endemic to southern China. Venice FL. Swarms are quite large with up to tens of thousands of alates. Where It’s Found in Florida: The Formosan subterranean termite can tolerate moderately cold temperatures and is established in every major metropolitan area of Florida. This destructive species was apparently transported to Japan prior to the 17th century and to Hawaii in the late 19th century. What is a Formosan or Asian Termite? When these termites invade a house above-ground, foraging tubes of ca. Description and Identification As its name indicates, the Formosan subterranean termite is a subterranean termite species characterized by large populations that share interconnected foraging galleries in soil. Estimated Management Costs in Florida: A large but undetermined fraction of the estimated $3.3 billion spent nationwide annually on management efforts for all termite species. Of the subterranean termite species that can be found in the Palm Beach and Broward County areas, the Formosan termite is by far the most damaging type of termite. Largely established in Florida and other southern states, Formosan subterranean termites are … 941-567-4225. Second, Formosan subterranean termite workers will forage as far as 100 meters from the nest in search of food, further than the foraging workers from other species. The Formosan Subterranean Termite is generally found in the warmer southern areas of the United States in addition to Hawaii. Floors that begin to sink. The number of active monitoring stations increased for 3 years, from 3 in 04 to 22 in 06, and 55 stations by the end of 07. Coptotermes gestroi is a ve… … The soil provides them with the moisture they need to survive, and the nearby wood provides their sustenance. Formosan termites build and live in nests called “carton nests.” They form these nests underground, in trees, and in the walls of structures. They impact structures and urban tree canopies and have historically swarmed at different times. Estimated Repair Costs in Florida: A large but undetermined fraction of the estimated $16.6 billion spent nationwide annually to repair damage caused by all termite species. They have a long-life cycle, ranging from five to eight years. What Can YOU Do About It? The food might be a fallen log, scrap wood or your home! If the workers need to venture above ground, they construct tubes from a mud-like substance, which conceals the workers from view and provides the warm, moist conditions they need to survive. Distribution (Back to Top) Coptotermes gestroi is endemic to Southeast Asia. They impact structures and urban tree canopies and have historically swarmed at different times. Licensed & Insured. View COVID-19 Information. Florida Cooperative Extension Service Circulation, ENT-51. In urban southeaster… It travelled to Formosa, Japan etc. Like all subterranean termites, Formosan termites feed indiscriminately on wood and other materials such as cardboard, paper, foam insulation boards, thin lead and copper sheeting, asphalt plaster, and some plastics. The Formosan subterranean termite was first reported in Florida in early 1980s in Hallandale, Broward County. Formosan termites are the most destructive species of termites in Florida. It is currently found in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, … As of 2019, the distribution of Formosan subterranean termite in the United States includes Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas (Figure 2). It is sometimes referred to as the “Super Termite” because: • It has large colonies. These dangerous pests typically form their colonies—which can number in the thousands or even millions—in the soil near a wooden structure. The Formosan subterranean termite is native to Southern China and was first detected in Florida in 1980 in Hallandale, in Broward County. Biology and control of the Formosan subterranean termite. Interesting Fact: The largest known Formosan subterranean termite colony was found in a Louisiana public building, and contained an estimate 70 million termites. All other things being equal, a large colony causes damage faster than a small one. As of 2010, Formosan subterranean termite is found in all major urban areas of Florida (Figure 3). Termite Control Florida. Area of Distribution:The Formosan subterranean termite (Coptotermes formosanus) has now become established in Florida and other southern At least one colony has been found In California (1995). 0.25 to 0.5 inch diameter may be found connecting soil tubes and the infested house. All Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services offices are currently closed to the public until further notice. The first report from Florida came in 1980, from Hallandale, in Broward County. 941-567-4225. Most termite species exist in relative harmony with people, feeding on decaying plant matter and facilitating nutrient turnover and soil formation in natural environments. All services require an appointment. Whereas C. formosanus (Formosan subterranean termite) has a warm temperate/subtropical distribution, C. gestroi (Asian subterranean termite) has a tropical distribution (Cao & Su 2015). These insects had not yet reached our shores. Scientists at the University of Florida have confirmed the Asian and Formosan subterranean termites – both formidable non-native species -- are mating in South Florida… Eliminate wood-to-soil and stucco-to-soil contact. Environmentally Friendly. If you own a home or any other structure in Florida, educate yourself about the Formosan subterranean termite, the threat it poses to structures in this state, and options for protecting your investment. It is currently found in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Arizona, California and Hawaii. Repair any leaks in or around your home immediately. About Plans. Formosan subterranean termite nests are much larger than that of a native subterranean termite. Duplicate License For Agencies, Schools and Individuals licensed under Chapter 493 F.S. However, the Asian subterranean termite favors tropical conditions and has thus far been found only in South Florida. Formosans can chew through non-wood materials like PVC pipe. Identification. The Formosan termite is an invasive subterranean termite that causes significant damage in the United States. The typical strategy for home and business owners is to engage a company to provide one-time treatment for active infestations, and/or have a company perform yearly inspections and treat when necessary. The swarmers are attracted to lights and are often found around windows, light fixtures, windowsills, and spider webs in lighted areas. This termite is particularly known for its tendency to establish populations in nonendemic areas via maritime vessels as well as human-aided transport of infested materials. The invasive Formosan subterranean termite leads the assault. To reduce moisture, extend gutter and drainage systems at least 1 foot away from your home. Termite Control Florida. However, about 80 termite species worldwide are considered serious pests because they have certain attributes: They infest structures, form large colonies, and have a history of causing substantial economic damage. Established in several tropical and subtropical regions of the world. This species can develop colonies containing several million termites, which relentlessly feed on structural lumber, utility poles and other wooden structures, leading to substantial economic loss. While native subterranean termite nests have members in the hundreds of thousands, Formosan subterranean termite nests can have nests in the millions. Formosan mud tube on infested boat. A Formosan subterranean termite infestation is a serious problem, as these “super termites” cost American homeowners $1 billion a year in property damage, repairs and control methods. What makes these termites so dangerous is their ability to reproduce quickly and consume enormous amounts of food. It is also present throughout much of the Southeast, though it has not advanced north of Tennessee and North Carolina. Workers shuttle back and forth from the nest to foraging sites in underground tunnels that they excavate. Relegated mainly to the south, these termites make large nests underground and reach homes through mud tubes as well. Drywood termites - Measure 3/8 to 1-inch long and appear white, off-white, or … The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, is a pest of major economic concern. Although no formal UF/IFAS studies have been conducted on the issue, anecdotal evidence suggests that, unlike native subterranean termite species, colonies of Formosan subterranean termites can survive liquid insecticide treatment. Honolulu, USA: College of Tropical Agriculture Human Resources, University of Hawaii, 37-42. Contact US. 1-800-HELP-FLA (1-800-435-7352) or 1-800-FL-AYUDA (1-800-352-9832), Mon.–Fri. Native To: East Asia (Lax and Osbrink 2003) Date of U.S. Introduction: 1960s (Messenger et al. Scientific Name: Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, 1909 (ITIS) Common Name: Formosan subterranean termite (FST), ground termites. Photograph by Rudolf H. Scheffrahn, University of Florida. Competitive Prices. Typical “shredded wheat” interior structural damage. While native subterranean termite nests have members in the hundreds of thousands, Formosan subterranean termite nests can have nests in the millions. The treatment of Asian and Formosan Subterranean Termite colonies in your home is much more involved than the treatment of Native Subterranean Termite colonies. To avoid attracting swarmers, turn off porch lights or use a yellow bug light. The Asian subterranean termite and the Formosan subterranean termite are among the two most destructive termite species in the world and both are invasive in Florida. Again, if the foraging workers encounter food, they may start a new infestation. The most commonly used treatment for infestations is application of a liquid insecticide that is poured into the soil close to the exterior of the structure to be protected. Neither the Asian nor the Formosan subterranean termite is native to Florida. The Formosan subterranean termite was first reported in Florida in the early 1980s in Hallandale, Broward County. Since 2000, Formosan and Asian termites have grown significantly in Florida. ©2019-2020 Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer ServicesFlorida Capitol — Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0800Questions? the formosan subterranean termite Most Common Termite To The Area The Formosan contains the largest number of termite pests per colony than any other termite species worldwide, and the Formosan subterranean termite is the most widely distributed and has the most issues in the area. The vast majority of animals cannot obtain nutrients from cellulose, but termites can do so because their digestive systems contain symbiotic micro-organisms that chemically break down cellulose to yield the simpler compound acetate, which termites can digest. The Formosan subterranean termite is often nicknamed the super-termite because of its destructive habits, due to the large size of its colonies and its ability to consume wood at a rapid rate. All detectable Formosan Subterranean Termite (FST) colonies in Armstrong Park were eliminated in 04. “We are at risk of losing our houses. The Formosan subterranean termite. The Asian termite is from tropical Southeast Asia, while the Formosan hails from the more temperate China and Taiwan. They account for a large percentage of the state’s termite-related damage. Have your home annually inspected by a licensed pest control company. It’s been estimated that the workers in a large Formosan subterranean termite colony can collectively destroy almost one pound of wood each day. Concealed Weapon License Renewal - Florida Resident, Concealed Weapon License Renewal - Non Florida Resident, Commercial Telephone Sales Person Registration, Do Not Call - Purchase List (Businesses Only). The treatment of Asian and Formosan Subterranean Termite colonies in your home is much more involved than the treatment of Native Subterranean Termite colonies. Code related sections are from the Florida Building Code (2001). For this reason, it’s important for all Florida property owners to consider professional termite protection for their structures. The non-native Formosan and Asian species arrive fast, in huge numbers, and hit hard. The Asian subterranean termite has made a slow progression up Florida’s east coast from Key West, with colonies now identified in Ft. Lauderdale, Boca Raton and West Palm Beach. They were too busy ravaging China, Japan, South Africa, and other remote countries. For more information about the Formosan subterranean termite, see this “Featured Creatures” document produced by the UF/IFAS Department of Entomology and Nematology. The Asian subterranean termite mimics the Formosan termite in its aggressive methods of attacking wood, but there are subtle physical differences between the two species (see box at right). Some experts have questioned whether the sheer size of the typical Formosan termite colony limits the effectiveness of liquid insecticide barriers, and whether this species is best managed via the use of poison baits. Contact US. Other UF/IFAS termite experts, including Rudolf Scheffrahn, Phil Koehler and Faith Oi, contribute to the UF/IFAS effort to research destructive structural termites of all types, update industry professionals, and educate Florida residents, particularly property owners. Asian termites are very similar to Formosan termites but are better suited for tropical climates. The Formosan subterranean termite is often nicknamed the super-termite because of its destructive habits, due to the large size of its colonies and its ability to consume wood at a rapid rate. The pest was first reported in the continental U.S. in 1960, from three states – Louisiana, South Carolina and Texas. the most recent update of Formosan subterranean termite distribution in Florida. The Formosan subterranean termite (FST) acquired its name because it was first described in Taiwan in the early 1900s, but C. formosanus is … Together with colleagues at Dow AgroSciences, Dr. Su developed a revolutionary approach to management of subterranean termites, which employs underground monitoring stations where foraging termites encounter appealing baits that containing a slow-acting compound that prevents immature termites from molting and kills them. Therefore, monitoring of movement of the species is critical. Just one colony can contain several million of these pests vs. several hundred thousand of other subterranean termite varieties. Formosan termites are a subterranean species of termite with three distinct castes: alates (or reproductive), soldiers and workers. During the 1960s, it was found in Texas, Louisiana, and South Carolina. Drywood termites are native to South Florida. It is known scientifically as Coptotermes formosanus, and commonly as the Formosan subterranean termite. The Formosan termites like the warm temperatures and live in densely populated areas of the Southern states. The Asian subterranean termite mimics the Formosan termite in its aggressive methods of attacking wood, but there are subtle physical differences between the two species (see box at right). South Florida is one of three places on Earth (the other two being Taiwan and Hawaii) where both species exist in the same place, and the situation has led to interbreeding between the termites. Asian and Formosan subterranean termites contribute in large part to the cost associated with termite damage and control globally, the study says. The Formosan contains the largest number of termite pests per colony than any other termite species worldwide, and the Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus, is the most widely distributed and most economically important. Within the Blattodea order, this species is part of the infraorder Isoptera, which includes termites only – about 3,100 species worldwide. In 2013-2015, it was observed that the Asian subterranean termite and the Formosan subterranean termite had simultaneous dispersal flights (see original report), and were able to mate in the field. A   B   C   D  E   F   G   H   I   J  K   L   M   N   O   P   Q   R   S   T  U   V   W  X  Y  Z, Johanna Welch, DPMP.O. Formosan Subterranean Termite is a species that has been transported worldwide. Another invasive termite problem in Florida is the Formosan subterranean termite. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Formosan Termite Program is here to provide outreach and education on this economically important, structural pest, the Formosan termite (Coptotermes formosanus). This can lead to the following damage: Bulging walls that look like they've been damaged by water. The Formosan subterranean termite is part of the genus Coptotermes, which includes 28 species – 18 of which are considered serious pests. Florida is home to a variety of invasive species, and the Formosan subterranean termite is one of the worst. Competitive Prices. The $16.6 billion figure is an estimate developed from 2010 data on pesticide sales; the actual figure in 2016 is probably slightly higher. The state of Florida neither endorses links nor approves of links to external sources. The first report from Florida came in 1980, from Hallandale, in Broward County. In spring, winged Formosan termites leave their nests and fly to new locations to start new colonies. In Florida, Formosan termite swarms usually occur from April through July on calm, warm, and humid evenings. The Formosan subterranean termite has a well-deserved reputation as the most troublesome termite species worldwide, for several reasons. The Asian subterranean termite and the Formosan subterranean termite are among the two most destructive termite species in the world and both are invasive in Florida. A suitable location for nesting should provide a constant moisture source and a readily available timber food source close by. The Formosan subterranean termite was a seasoned world traveler long before its first reported appearance in Florida. Termites have been around since the days of the dinosaur and are certainly not uncommon in sub-tropical South Florida. Both types of termite have evolved separately for hundreds of … Florida Pest Control Experts. Unless checked, the damage will lead to extensive repair work costing thousands of dollars. Known as the Asian subterranean termite, or Philippine milk termite, this species has the scientific name Coptotermes gestroi, and is closely related to the Formosan subterranean termite. Repair cracks in your foundation and around your home’s exterior. In the New World, C. formosanus has invaded most of the southeastern United States, whereas C. gestroi has invaded areas of Brazil, most of the Caribbean, and more recently, parts of south Florida … Formosan Subterranean Termites are found in massive numbers in southern states of America, and South Florida is badly affected. As pest management professionals know, the Asian subterranean termite and the Formosan subterranean termite are among the two most destructive termite species in the world and both are invasive in the state of Florida. In 08, however, the number of active stations increased rapidly and reached the peak of 122 by September. Part of the Asian subterranean termite’s range actually overlaps with the range of the Formosan subterranean termite, which prefers sub-tropical and temperate conditions. Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, soldier showing the ovoid head shape and large fontanelle that are characteristic of all Coptotermes species. Alates, or swarmers, are about 5/16 inch (14-15mm) in overall length, including their wings. Subterranean termites are being studied at the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences lab in Davie. Therefore, monitoring of movement of the species is critical. The $3.3 billion figure is an estimate developed from 2010 data on pesticide sales; the actual figure in 2016 is probably slightly higher. Finally, this species is resilient – there have been no reported instances of the Formosan subterranean termite being eradicated from any location it invaded and became established. Termite infestations rank among the most serious arthropod-related concerns for Florida property owners, and most homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover termite damage. Worker termites are blind but they communicate effectively with one another, using pheromones, vibrations and other means. 8 a.m.–5 p.m. EST | LIVE CHAT, Aerial Application of Seed, Pesticides and Fertilizer, Certified Florida Farm Wineries and Vineyards, FDACS Report: The Impacts of Mexico's Ag Exports on Florida Agriculture, Fertilizer Licensing and Tonnage Reporting, Florida Agriculture Overview and Statistics, Florida Seafood and Aquaculture Overview and Statistics, Florida Young Farmer and Rancher Resources, Concealed Weapon License Forms and Publications, Concealed Weapon License Service Locations, Public Records Exemption for Concealed Weapons, "Fresh From Florida" Resources for Parents, Teachers and Students, "Planet Ag" Agricultural Topics for Science Fair Projects, Florida Advisory Council on Climate and Energy, Agricultural Permit Exemption Determinations, Administrative Fine - Business Opportunities, Administrative Fine - Motor Vehicle Repair, Administrative Fine - Petroleum Inspections, Administrative Fine - Solicitation of Contributions, Administrative Fine - Surveyors and Mappers, Administrative Fine - Weights and Measure. 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