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TERMITES TAKE THE BAIT ON THE SUNNY COAST

Sentricon AlwaysActive proved a good choice of termite management system for a residential property serviced by Sunshine Coast pest manager Chris Nelson.

 

Nambour on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland is one of the oldest established suburbs on the coast. Chris Nelson, termite management system manager for Accurate Pest Management, is familiar with the problem of protecting the area’s old houses from termite attack.

One recent case was a Nambour house that presented a raft of challenges. The property is 50 years old and features a running creek at the rear, as well as dense bushland and nutrient-rich red soil. The property has an under-slab water tank and the house itself has undergone extensive renovations, with multiple add-on concrete slabs.

In March 2020 the homeowners contacted Accurate Pest Management to implement a suitable termite protection strategy. Due to the construction style of the home, a chemical termite management system was not a suitable option. Taking into account the conducive conditions for termite activity – abundant water sources, bushland, and multiple amendments to the house foundations – Accurate Pest Management selected Sentricon AlwaysActive as the preferred option to protect the home from potential termite activity.

Installation of a full Sentricon AlwaysActive System to the perimeter of the house consisted of 25 Sentricon stations being installed in the soil and four through concrete core holes around the perimeter of the dwelling.

No termite activity was found during the first 12 months of quarterly visits to the property.

After the client had renewed the contract with Accurate Pest Management to continue the quarterly checks, the first visit to the site, 15 months after installation, revealed termite activity. The termites were identified as Coptotermes sp. which are common to the area.

Activity was found at one of the Sentricon stations to the front of the house with approximately 75% of the Sentricon termiticide rod having been consumed. To the rear of the house, three more Sentricon rods showed major activity with two of the stations’ rods having been consumed by more than 80% (main picture, above), while another rod had been 100% consumed. All four Sentricon rods were replaced.

“It was a great result and certainly made the homeowner extremely pleased that they continued the contract! Their investment was paying off,” said Mr Nelson. “The technician servicing this site noted that even with the cooler weather, the termites were ferociously consuming the bait.”

A return site visit was scheduled for three weeks later. On the return visit, two of the Sentricon rods to the rear of the property – which had been replaced a few weeks earlier – had been 100% consumed.

“The technician noted that the colour of the termites had changed from an off-white to a chalky white, a notable sign that the hexaflumuron was working,” explained Mr Nelson.

Another site visit was scheduled for three weeks later. During that inspection, only 5% of the replaced Sentricon rods had been consumed.

Mr Nelson added, “The Coptotermes sp. were acting very slow and in a lethargic manner, while looking chalkier white in appearance – a true sign that Sentricon was doing its job. Dead termites were also located on the Sentricon rods and pieces of termite exoskeleton were found. The technician said it was like the termites had exploded.”

After observing lethargy of the termites, and with the build-up of uric acid along with the major reduction in termite activity, the technician was happy to return to the scheduled monitoring of the Sentricon AlwaysActive Bait Stations each quarter.

It is a good reminder about how important it is for clients to continue to renew their termite management contract each year and to engage professional pest control technicians to monitor their termite management system along with regular full inspections of the house.