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THE CHALLENGE OF TERMITE CONTROL

Bayer’s Agenda Termite Baiting System comprises three components, designed to work together to control active termites. 

 

Controlling termite infestations can be challenging at the best of times. Termites can tunnel 50 metres or more from their nest in search of a food source, such as timber floorboards or other susceptible timber.

They can also enter through wood in direct contact with soil or build mud tunnels from the ground to the lowest accessible timber. From there they can access the rest of the property, whether a residential home or a commercial building, including the structural timbers in the walls and the roof.

Termites are one of the most destructive timber pests, so when dealing with active termites, whether it’s a homeowner or the owner of a commercial building, everybody wants to bring the termites under control quickly to minimise damage.

As pest managers, it’s our duty of care to offer a range of options which may include a chemical barrier, termite dusting or foaming, or a termite baiting system.

A liquid chemical application creates a continuous treated zone around the structure. For the application to be effective, the treatment will involve trenching and drilling to create a treated-zone. This method can be quite labour intensive, and in some circumstances due to the construction of the building, is not always possible. Of course, a soil treatment should only be carried out once any active termites inside the building have been eliminated.

Dusts are generally applied directly to termite activity and are intended as a curative treatment to eliminate the activity which is present at the time. Foams are generally applied when termite activity is inaccessible or where a liquid termiticide may be difficult to apply. Dusting and foaming however, do not offer any long-term protection, and can be detrimental to a long-term treatment plan when using a baiting system.

“A termite baiting system such as Agenda Termite Baiting System from Bayer, can offer colony elimination as well as long-term ongoing protection,” explained Wendell Arnett, territory business development manager (NSW/ACT/WA) at Bayer. “It offers three different components; the In-Ground Station, the On-Ground Station and the Above-Ground station.”

“The In-Ground station has a diameter of 150 mm and a depth of 160 mm which is a shorter depth than other In-Ground stations, for easier installation. It contains two types of timber, Tasmanian oak and radiata pine, plus an aerial for easy location identification.”

According to Mr Arnett, the On-Ground Station (main picture, above) can be installed effectively with minimal impact; no need for digging or concrete core-drilling and it can be easily removed if required. “Trials carried out in the US indicate that stations on or above the ground are found much sooner than stations placed in the ground,” said Mr Arnett. “Agenda comes ready to use in a foil pouch containing a self-mixing bait, chlorfluazuron, which is easy to use and negates the requirement to mix or handle the bait, therefore removing any chance of contamination.”

Each pouch has 170 g of bait, simply add 600 ml of water and the bait mixes itself. The foil pouch doubles as an above-ground station which can be added directly to the termite activity. The bait can also be added directly to In-Ground or On-Ground stations. “The Agenda system is so versatile that all the componentry can be bought separately, making it very easy to create a custom-made individual treatment plan regardless of the situation,” explained Mr Arnett.

 

The foil packaging of Agenda bait helps prevent contamination of the bait and keeps the moisture in

 

Nick Lambos, from Global Pest Solutions, contacted Mr Arnett recently for advice on a treatment plan for a veterinary clinic which was being attacked by termites. The vet was concerned about the use of chemicals around the animals and staff.

“Mr Arnett was able to reassure our client that the bait we were using was non-toxic to animals and humans, and was contained within the foil pouch, so should the bait get damaged or tampered with after the installation, the risk of any adverse effects to humans or animals would be minimal,” explained Mr Lambos.

“Several above-ground bait stations were placed within the termite activity around different parts of the building. We monitored the termite activity and replenished the baits as required over the coming months and eliminated the termite colony. I’m pleased to say it has now been 12 months since the initial Agenda baiting treatment was carried out and there has been no termite activity since.”

“Controlling termites is always challenging and it is important for pest managers to consider all available treatment options according to the particular circumstances i.e. the type of building; accessibility; infestation etc,” said Mr Arnett. “A liquid termiticide application such as Premise Termiticide, is ideal around buildings to create a treated zone, as long as the building construction allows access. Dusting and foaming options can also be used in particular situations but it must be remembered that these options do not offer long-term protection, so a termite baiting system such as Agenda from Bayer is an excellent option for long-term protection and eventual elimination of the termite colony,” added Mr Arnett.

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