Formosan subterranean termite nests are much larger than that of a native subterranean termite. Formosan Subterranean Termites are found in massive numbers in southern states of America, and South Florida is badly affected. The Formosan subterranean termite was a seasoned world traveler long before its first reported appearance in Florida. A single colony of Formosan subterranean termite may contain several million termites that forage up to 300 feet in soil. Interesting Fact: The largest known Formosan subterranean termite colony was found in a Louisiana public building, and contained an estimate 70 million termites. The Formosan Subterranean Termite is generally found in the warmer southern areas of the United States in addition to Hawaii. Have your home annually inspected by a licensed pest control company. Native to Florida? It travelled to Formosa, Japan etc. This species will start its swarming activity in late April to early May, and has now spread to many other locations across the state. All other things being equal, termites that forage over larger areas are more likely to encounter structures. As of 2019, Formosan subterranean termite is found in almost all major urban areas of Florida (Figure 3). A single colony of Formosan subterranean termite may contain several million termites that forage up to 300 feet in soil. Repair any leaks in or around your home immediately. Sarasota FL. Lakewood Ranch FL. Estimated management costs: a large but undetermined fraction of the $3.3 billion spent each year nationwide on efforts to manage all termite species. What It Does: As the name implies, subterranean termites nest in soil. 941-567-4225. The first report from Florida came in 1980, from Hallandale, in Broward County. Termites have been around since the days of the dinosaur and are certainly not uncommon in sub-tropical South Florida. 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. To avoid attracting swarmers, turn off porch lights or use a yellow bug light. Since reaching the market, Sentricon® has earned more than $29 million in royalties for UF, making it the third most valuable intellectual property ever developed at the university. It is sometimes referred to as the “Super Termite” because: • It has large colonies. Formosan termites are a serious timber pestin Hawaii and coastal regions Full termite control for all species of termites including, Subterranean, Formosan Subterranean and Drywood Termites. One invasive species, the Formosan subterranean termite, has become Florida’s most feared wood-destroying pest because it forms larger colonies than other termite species, and its workers forage over wider areas. About Plans. Termite Control Florida. For this reason, it’s important for all Florida property owners to consider professional termite protection for their structures. Formosan termites build and live in nests called “carton nests.” They form these nests underground, in trees, and in the walls of structures. The Formosan termite is an invasive subterranean termite that causes significant damage in the United States. Termites are social insects, and every colony contains three “castes” or types of termite, each with a different role to play – reproductives, soldiers and workers. The state of Florida neither endorses links nor approves of links to external sources. 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. It is currently found in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Texas, Arizona, California and Hawaii. The system is only available through licensed pest-management providers; when used properly, it poses no threat to people, pets, wildlife or water quality. In: Tamashiro M, Su NY, eds. Subterranean Termite In Florida, Formosan termite swarms usually occur from April through July on calm, warm, and humid evenings. Whereas C. formosanus (Formosan subterranean termite) has a warm temperate/subtropical distribution, C. gestroi (Asian subterranean termite) has a tropical distribution (Cao & Su 2015). The swarmers are attracted to lights and are often found around windows, light fixtures, windowsills, and spider webs in lighted areas. After swarming and landing on the ground, the … It’s been estimated that the workers in a large Formosan subterranean termite colony can collectively destroy almost one pound of wood each day. Formosan termites are a subterranean species of termite with three distinct castes: alates (or reproductive), soldiers and workers. Subterranean termites – Subterranean termites (both native and Formosan) are very common in Florida. While native subterranean termite nests have members in the hundreds of thousands, Formosan subterranean termite nests can have nests in the millions. 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. Duplicate License For Agencies, Schools and Individuals licensed under Chapter 493 F.S. ©2019-2020 Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer ServicesFlorida Capitol — Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0800Questions? Formosan Termites Appearance . Neither the Asian nor the Formosan subterranean termite is native to Florida. Division of Licensing Regional Offices have reopened to the public. Formosan mud tube on infested boat. Formosan subterranean termite. Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, soldier showing the ovoid head shape and large fontanelle that are characteristic of all Coptotermes species. What Can YOU Do About It? In recent years, another invasive subterranean termite has been detected in South Florida. In Florida, Formosan termite swarms usually occur from April through July on calm, warm, and humid evenings. However, there are two types of invasive termites, the Formosan and Asian subterranean termites, that have caused substantial damage to structures across South Florida. Box 10569Pensacola, FL  32524. By proper taxonomic convention, the older name, Coptotermes gestroi, must be recognized. Beginning in 2015, the Florida Department of Agriculture of Consumer Science (FDACS) began trapping the alates. Riverview FL. In the city of New Orleans where this termite species was introduced in the 1950’s, the control and repair costs due to FST are estimated at $300 million annually. They also proposed that Coptotermes gestroi be given the common name of "Asian subterranean termite." Scientific Name: Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, 1909 (ITIS) Common Name: Formosan subterranean termite (FST), ground termites. They live and invade from underground, thriving on. Before the 1960's, there was no such thing as a Formosan subterranean termite in the United States. Distribution (Back to Top) Coptotermes gestroi is endemic to Southeast Asia. What makes these termites so dangerous is their ability to reproduce quickly and consume enormous amounts of food. Also, the state’s status as a major destination for international tourism, travel and trade mean that Florida has a greater number of non-native organisms arriving than many states – termites among them. You can learn more in the  posted to the Bug Week website. The invasive Formosan subterranean termite leads the assault. These insects can damage structures but pose a less dire threat than the Asian and Formosan subterranean termites. Kirton and Brown (2003) determined that "Haviland's subterranean termite," Coptotermes havilandi Holmgren, was a newer second name given to a termite that already had the name Coptotermes gestroi (Wasmann). 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. The state of Florida takes no responsibility for a link's operation or content. However, the Asian subterranean termite favors tropical conditions and has thus far been found only in South Florida. Just one colony can contain several million of these pests vs. several hundred thousand of other subterranean termite varieties. Service areas. The soil provides them with the moisture they need to survive, and the nearby wood provides their sustenance. 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. Therefore, monitoring of movement of the species is critical. 1-800-HELP-FLA (1-800-435-7352) or 1-800-FL-AYUDA (1-800-352-9832), Mon.–Fri. Coptotermes gestroi is a ve… During the 1960s, it was found in Texas, Louisiana, and South Carolina. Due to the large size of its colonies and its aggressive foraging behavior, the Formosan termite can be more destructive than native U.S. subterranean termite species. Once established, the Formosan subterranean termite has never been eradicated from an area. 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. The species was brought to Japan when the U.S. was still a British colony, and it arrived in Hawaii shortly before 1900. They are a species of Subterranean Termite, different from our native Eastern Subterranean Termite here in Florida, known as super termites. Venice FL. In the United States it causes tremendous property damage resulting in enormous treatment and repair costs. Another invasive termite problem in Florida is the Formosan subterranean termite. The Formosan subterranean termite has a well-deserved reputation as the most troublesome termite species worldwide, for several reasons. All Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services offices are currently closed to the public until further notice. Full termite control for all species of termites including, Subterranean, Formosan Subterranean and Drywood Termites. Subterranean termites can devour and destroy the wood structure of any building. Beginning in 2015, the Florida Department of Agriculture of Consumer Science (FDACS) began trapping the alates. The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosa- nusShiraki, is one of the most destructive termite species in the world today. What It Is: The Formosan subterranean termite is a member of the insect order Blattodea, which includes cockroaches and termites. 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. Swarms are quite large with up to tens of thousands of alates. Drywood termites - Measure 3/8 to 1-inch long and appear white, off-white, or … Subterranean termites are the most common type of termites found in Florida homes, and they also cause the most damage. However, UF/IFAS researchers have not collected enough data to make definitive statements on the threat the hybrid poses. To reduce moisture, extend gutter and drainage systems at least 1 foot away from your home. Estimated repair costs: a large but undetermined fraction of the $16.6 billion spent each year nationwide to repair damage caused by all termite species. They have translucent wings that are densely covered with small hairs. Environmentally Friendly. (You can learn more about termite protection and treatment in the feature story, “Termite Protection Plans” on the Bug Week website, http://bugs.ufl.edu.). Drywood termites are native to South Florida. Identification. What is a Formosan or Asian Termite? In spring, winged Formosan termites leave their nests and fly to new locations to start new colonies. Both types of termite have evolved separately for hundreds of … All services require an appointment. Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus, is the most widely distributed and most economically important wood destroying insect. 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. Photograph by Rudolf H. Scheffrahn, University of Florida. Workers shuttle back and forth from the nest to foraging sites in underground tunnels that they excavate. The Formosan subterranean termite, Coptotermes formosanus Shiraki, is a pest of major economic concern. … Our Town | November 1, 2018. By the 1950s, it was reported in South Africa. 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. Formosans can use cracks the thickness of a credit card to invade. Just one colony can contain several million of these pests vs. several hundred thousand of other subterranean termite varieties. In Florida, Formosan termite swarms usually occur from April through July on calm, warm, and humid evenings. The U.S. accounts for half of global termite impact, and the Southeastern U.S. bears a disproportionate amount of the nationwide impact, because the region’s warm temperatures and high humidity offer favorable conditions conducive to termite nesting, growth and reproduction. Among this army of so-called “silent destroyers” is a new invasive species, the Asian subterranean termite. These pests live in the soil and will create mud tubes as they forage for food above the soil surface. Competitive Prices. Third, the Formosan subterranean termite is distributed more widely than other invasive subterranean termites, and is now established in mainland China (its natural range), Taiwan, Japan, Hawaii, South Africa and the continental U.S. Florida Pest Control Experts. To see a current infestation map that’s regularly updated, visit http://flrec.ifas.ufl.edu/termites-in-florida/termite-distribution/. 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. Their bodies are pale yellow to brownish yellow in color. Because of its ability to consume a vast amount of wood in a short amount of time, this type of termite has earned the nickname “the super termite.” In fact, a health adult colony can eat up to a pound of wood a day. Like other termites, subterranean species feed on woody plant materials, to obtain a compound called cellulose, a key component of plant cell walls. All detectable Formosan Subterranean Termite (FST) colonies in Armstrong Park were eliminated in 04. In Florida, urbanized areas offer an abundance of lumber for pest termites. The Formosan subterranean termite was first reported in Florida in the early 1980s in Hallandale, Broward County. 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). When foraging workers locate wood that’s suitable to consume they leave a pheromone trail to lead others back to the find. Revised/Replacement License For Agencies, Schools and Individuals licensed under Chapter 493, F.S. 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. Florida is also home to several native subterranean termites that infest structures. 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. 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. “We are at risk of losing our houses. This fact speaks to the termite’s adaptability, but it is not clear whether the insect’s physical or behavioral attributes played a role in helping it successfully invade so many new environments. The treatment of Asian and Formosan Subterranean Termite colonies in your home is much more involved than the treatment of Native Subterranean Termite colonies. Although individual Formosan subterranean termites are not more voracious than native subterranean termites, the Formosan species forms colonies that can be far larger than those of native termites, so the overall damage caused by a single infestation can be much greater. The swarmers are attracted to lights and are often found around windows, light fixtures, windowsills, and spider webs in lighted areas. 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. A suitable location for nesting should provide a constant moisture source and a readily available timber food source close by. 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). It is currently found in Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, … The first report from Florida came in 1980, from Hallandale, in Broward County. They were too busy ravaging China, Japan, South Africa, and other remote countries. The Formosan Subterranean Termite looks like subterranean termite. Formosan Subterranean Termite, Adults, worker (top), soldier (bottom) - Gerald J. Lenhard. 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. Formosan termites are the most destructive species of termites in Florida. Formosan Subterranean Termite is a species that has been transported worldwide. Most termite species exist in relative harmony with people, feeding on decaying plant matter and facilitating nutrient turnover and soil formation in natural environments. 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. Termite infestations rank among the most serious arthropod-related concerns for Florida property owners, and most homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover termite damage. All other things being equal, a large colony causes damage faster than a small one. 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. Asian and Formosan Subterranean Termites Exploding in S. Florida. Formosan Subterranean Termite: This type of termite is known as the most destructive termite in the United States, and Florida falls right smack in the middle of its territory. It was confirmed in laboratory settings that the mating resulted in vigorous hybrid colonies. Their sheer numbers make them a danger as an invasive pest. These dangerous pests typically form their colonies—which can number in the thousands or even millions—in the soil near a wooden structure. Though the hybrid’s potential impact is still unknown, experts fear that it may display a phenomenon known as “hybrid vigor” and be better suited to survive than either of its parent species. Contact US. Since 2000, Formosan and Asian termites have grown significantly in Florida. Unless checked, the damage will lead to extensive repair work costing thousands of dollars. About Plans. From there, the Formosan subterranean termite has expanded its range to include all parts of the state, and the species is now established in all major metropolitan areas of Florida. Largely established in Florida and other southern states, Formosan subterranean termites are … Among those 80 pest species, subterranean termites are well-represented. Somewhere between 80 and 90 percent of the individuals in a subterranean termite nest are workers, and they spend their time foraging for sources of food. 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. 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. Within the Blattodea order, this species is part of the infraorder Isoptera, which includes termites only – about 3,100 species worldwide. It is also present throughout much of the Southeast, though it has not advanced north of Tennessee and North Carolina. 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. Florida Cooperative Extension Service Circulation, ENT-51. Its native region is China. Termite Control Florida. While native subterranean termite nests have members in the hundreds of thousands, Formosan subterranean termite nests can have nests in the millions. In urban southeaster… They impact structures and urban tree canopies and have historically swarmed at different times. 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. In 08, however, the number of active stations increased rapidly and reached the peak of 122 by September. They impact structures and urban tree canopies and have historically swarmed at different times. Formosan subterranean termites are the most aggressive and destructive wood-destroying pests in the United States. 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. Appearance of Formosan Subterranean Termite. 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. 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 species is now established in all of Florida’s major metropolitan areas. If the the hybrid were hardier or quicker to reproduce, for example, it might prove to be more destructive or more difficult to manage than the Formosan or Asian subterranean termite. Established in several tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Competitive Prices. Licensed & Insured. These insects had not yet reached our shores. In the U.S.: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. 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. Big Money Associates: Florida is home to three noteworthy native subterranean termites; the best-known is the eastern subterranean termite, Reticulitermes flavipes. Formosan termites are the most destructive species of termites in Florida. The Miami-Fort Lauderdale area, with about 6 million residents, represents the only location in the continental U.S. where the distribution of Asian and Formosan termites overlap. Therefore, monitoring of movement of the species is critical. 0.25 to 0.5 inch diameter may be found connecting soil tubes and the infested house. 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). Contact US. Their … But it was probably introduced there at least five to 10 years previously. 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. In the U.S.: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Mississippi, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. Asian and Formosan subterranean termites contribute in large part to the cost associated with termite damage and control globally, the study says. Code related sections are from the Florida Building Code (2001). The non-native Formosan and Asian species arrive fast, in huge numbers, and hit hard. Licensed & Insured. Native To: East Asia (Lax and Osbrink 2003) Date of U.S. Introduction: 1960s (Messenger et al. 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). Formosan Subterranean Termite. Eliminate wood-to-soil and stucco-to-soil contact. The food might be a fallen log, scrap wood or your home! If the new food source happens to be an untreated wood component in a building, workers may establish an ongoing infestation, gradually destroying the original infestation site and simultaneously roaming the building in search of new food sources. Subterranean termites are the biggest threat the animal kingdom poses to Florida’s homes and businesses. 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Florida Department of Agriculture of Consumer Science ( FDACS ) began trapping the alates range of the genus Coptotermes which... ©2019-2020 Florida Department of Agriculture of Consumer Science ( FDACS ) began trapping the.! Termite that causes significant damage in the continental U.S. in 1960, from Hallandale, in Broward.... Associates: Florida is also present throughout much of the worst found only in South Africa, and humid.. ( Messenger et al through non-wood materials like PVC pipe Formosan and Asian termites have grown significantly in Florida known... 5/16 inch ( 14-15mm ) in overall length, including their wings: native to China “ Super termite because... Densely populated areas of Florida yellow Bug light than the treatment of native termites! Structures and urban tree canopies and have historically swarmed at different times is more... Single colony of Formosan subterranean and Drywood termites our native eastern subterranean termite found! Massive numbers in Southern States of America, and humid evenings are a subterranean species of subterranean termite FST. To external sources, Formosan subterranean termite nests can have nests in the late 19th century all species of found! Practical considerations of the genus Coptotermes, which includes 28 species – 18 of which considered... And Individuals licensed under Chapter 493 F.S of `` Asian subterranean termite’s range actually overlaps the..., they may start a new invasive species, and are certainly not uncommon in sub-tropical South Florida three castes.