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TAKING BACK CONTROL (AND PROFIT) WITH TERMITE BAITING

Pest manager Barry Clare learns some tips and tricks about termite baiting using the Agenda system from Bayer. 

The construction and design of many houses in Australia make it difficult to achieve a complete and continuous chemical treated zone in accordance with Australian Standards. Subsequent treatment applications then become very important as they act as the first line of defence against termites in areas where the treated zone is compromised.

I find a lot of pest managers calling Bayer for treatment advice on tricky jobs, such as re-infestations after a previous termite treatment has failed and an alternative solution is needed. One such pest manager, Barry Clare from AllProPest Control in QLD, reached out for advice after experiencing difficulties with chemically treated areas and their limitations.

I suggested the approach of termite baiting, which Mr Clare admitted he ‘had never been a fan’ of. I invited him to come along to a Bayer Agenda Termite Baiting System training workshop and he agreed to give it a try.

During the training workshop Mr Clare was shown why termite baiting with chitin synthesis inhibitors (CSI) such as Agenda can be such an effective option for perimeter monitoring as opposed to other treatments. A recent laboratory study has shown that termite colony elimination is achieved using CSI baits, whereas termite activity treated with fipronil results in exclusion of the termites from the treated area without achieving colony elimination. Termites are therefore likely to remain foraging in untreated workings and conducive areas, posing an ongoing threat to the house after the treatment has taken place.1

During the workshop, Mr Clare was informed about the importance of using clean bait and water, and also of taking time to install the bait station properly. It must be secure, sealed to retain moisture and protected from predators, in a way that gives a professional-looking end result. “Anybody can go and just chuck a bait on there and it just won’t work,” said Mr Clare in hindsight looking back on his baiting journey so far. “It’s important to take your time and follow the method to get the results.”

The importance of using a complete termite baiting system was also emphasised. A system that offers componentry such as in-ground and on-ground stations can cater for any external environment.

Flexibility of installation: the bait pouch is protected inside the bait housing

After taking part in the Agenda training workshop, Mr Clare started to use, and gain respect for, the use of termite monitoring systems. He knows that by using Agenda around a premises, it ensures he has a better chance of finding foraging termites and eliminating them, when the situation arises. Systems that offer the benefit of both in-ground and on-ground monitors, as well also the option of above-ground baiting pouches, are the best choice for total and reliable termite management and control.

The final session in the workshop helped Mr Clare with pricing up a job. I have found that a lot of pest managers new to termite baiting struggle with how to structure a baiting treatment and how much to charge. This results in many unpaid site visits and a poor baiting experience. “Working out how much it is going to cost you so you can make money out of it and be profitable is really important. I found that if you don’t do it right, you’re not going like it and you won’t be profitable,” said Mr Clare.

Since taking part in the workshop late last year, Mr Clare has gone on to successfully use the Agenda system on five jobs – and counting.

“I would definitely recommend Agenda and termite baiting to any other pestie and I will continue to use it myself,” said Mr Clare.

Termite monitoring and baiting is an extremely effective way to protect structures against termite attack. It takes perseverance and patience, there is a method to follow, but if followed correctly termite managers will be successful. Look out for more Agenda training workshops in your area soon, which will be advertised through Bayer’s monthly Amplify emails.

Chris Mills, Territory Sales Manager, Bayer

1 Chouvenc, T. (2018). Comparative Impact of Chitin Synthesis Inhibitor Baits and Non-repellent Liquid Termiticides on Subterranean Termite Colonies over Foraging Distances: Colony Elimination versus Localized Termite Exclusion. Journal of Economic Entomology, 111(5), 2317-2328. DOI: 10.1093/jee/toy210.