The termite control range of products from Sherwood Chemicals is suitable for use against the wide range of termite species found across Australasia.
Between 1975 and 2000, researchers discovered most of the active ingredients that are used in pest control today, namely bifenthrin, imidacloprid, fipronil and chlorantraniliprole. From 2000, the industry entered an exciting period of formulation innovation. Recognising the opportunity, John Ralph of Sherwood Australasia led a team of formulation chemists in the development of a wide portfolio of termite control formulations for the Australasian and Southeast Asian markets.
Unlike most multinationals that are restricted by the actives they have discovered, at Sherwood the strategy has been to select proven off-patent actives and incorporate these actives into three innovative termite control formulations – a dust, a foam and a baiting system – that deliver excellent efficacy and value.
FipForce Dust Termiticide and Insecticide
Developed by Rhône-Poulenc between 1985-87, fipronil disrupts the insect central nervous system by blocking GABA-gated chloride channels and glutamate-gated chloride (GluCl) channels. Target species are affected by ingestion or contact, meaning particle size and carrier type play a part in designing an effective dust that will flow and not clog. Fipronil also has one of the longest residuals, which makes it effective when placed in dark areas protected from the elements.
Termite dusting takes time and patience. However, the benefits are a faster kill time compared with baiting and a lower level of disturbance compared with foaming. Dusting is a skilled art, with small, light puffs having to be applied to multiple areas. Best results are achieved when a sufficient number of termites (up to 10,000) can be dusted. Understanding the termites’ movements and locations is key to achieving a good result.
Trial data shows that FipForce Dust kills termites slowly within 4-8 hours, which is a critical factor in achieving a transfer kill. The dust has been formulated with a mineral carrier, which is more effective in hot and humid locations. Trials in Thailand and northern areas of Australia confirmed that FipForce Dust flowed further and did not clog applicators as much as cellulose carriers, which have a much larger particle size.
Shieldrite Crawling Insect Foam
Invented in 1986 by Nihon Tokushu Noyaku Seizo K.K. of Tokyo, Japan, imidacloprid was commercialised by Bayer and is still a widely used chemical for treating insects today. By blocking nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, imidacloprid prevents acetylcholine from transmitting impulses between nerves, resulting in the insect’s paralysis and eventual death. It is effective on contact and via ingestion. Imidacloprid is used in a number of high-performance formulations to control crawling insects such as ants, cockroaches, bed bugs, European wasps and termites.
In 2014, Sherwood Chemicals developed Shieldrite imidacloprid foam in an aerosol can for use against subterranean termites (e.g. Coptotermes spp., Schedorhinotermes spp.) and drywood termites, as well as ants, wasps and cockroaches. The foam formulation was designed to break down quickly to limit termite disturbance whilst leaving a non-repellent residual.
As with dusting, foaming termites is a skill that should be learned by every termite technician. Foam should be applied in small, one-second bursts to many small areas of the affected timbers, which are best identified using a moisture meter and termite tracking equipment. The aim of the treatment is to leave a residue on the surface, not to suffocate the termites.
Inexperienced technicians may assume that more product equals better results, but this is not the case. Foaming can be very invasive when applied in large amounts to one area, disturbing the termites and decreasing the effectiveness of the treatment. Less product applied strategically will deliver better results.
If the entry point entry point can be located, technicians can monitor the effectiveness of the treatment. Termites should be observed coming and going on the day of application, with termite activity visibly decreasing over the following 4-6 weeks if the treatment has been successful. Always follow up with an external treatment zone of FipForce HP 100 g/L fipronil for long-term protection.
Termatrix AG Termite Bait
Several chitin synthesis inhibitors (CSIs) are available to formulate into termite baits, however chlorfluazuron at 1 g/kg has been proven to deliver reliable results. Other actives deliver good results but these have a higher active ingredient (AI) loading of between 1-5 g/kg.
Sherwood Chemicals uses chlorfluazuron in its Termatrix Above-ground Termite Bait. Choosing to use a less premium active at a lower AI loading level of 1 g/kg has allowed Sherwood to create a high performing yet cost-effective termite bait. The proprietary formulation process ensures each batch has an even distribution of the AI. The second critical part of the formulation is the cellulose used to hold the AI. This needs to be palatable and consistent to encourage feeding. Since its launch in 2012, Sherwood Chemicals has invested heavily in refining its bait matrix, using an in-house termite testing lab to benchmark it against others in the market. It also offers Termatrix Above-ground Pre-baited (100 g bait) Stations, which can be purchased individually.
For successful termite baiting, bait stations should be installed in each affected area to maximise the chance of a ‘hit’. Placing stations at each feeding site accounts for the possibility of multiple nests at the property. Stations should be monitored every two weeks.
Baiting termites can be rewarding and frustrating depending on the client’s expectations and the time of year; during the cooler months the bait will take longer to act, even though the termites often take more bait. Of the 200 or so species of termites in Thailand, only a handful cause major damage to buildings. Coptotermes travians, Coptotermes curvignathus, Coptotermes havilandi, Coptotermes kalshoven, and Coptotermes sepangensis are the most aggressive and pose the biggest threat in built-up areas. Macrotermes, Globitermes and Odontotermes do not respond well to baits with paper-based matrices. For these species, dusts or foams should be used.
Although baiting is typically the slowest option in eliminating active termites from a property, it has the benefit of being the only proven technique to deliver consistent colony control. Progress can be assessed through diminishing bait uptake as the workers die off and the ratio of soldiers to workers increases (the soldiers also subsequently die).
Sherwood Chemicals is continuously improving and updating its formulations to offer quality termite control products that give pest managers the best chance of achieving total colony elimination.