How are nematodes a remedy against termites?
- Effective at killing termites
- Beneficial for the environment
- Safe for humans and pets
- Easy to apply
A termite infestation is a common problem among many households. Any wood parts are vulnerable, and some houses are made entirely of wood. The traditional solution nowadays is the use of chemical pesticides. But what if there’s a better, cleaner, and safer alternative?
Nematodes are microscopic, unsegmented roundworms that can prey on insects we consider pests. Beneficial nematodes are some species of nematodes that kill our pests and are not harmful to us. The following benefits prove that the use of nematodes is a remedy against termites.
Effective at killing termites
Termites are part of what beneficial nematodes consider prey. These roundworms are known to effectively kill termites after application. They are parasites who enter the termite’s body and kill them from the inside. They lay eggs inside the termite’s body to reproduce.
Their effectiveness on pest killing is so well-known, that you can find bags of beneficial nematodes in various gardening and home shops. These pack enough nematodes to take care of the pest problem of a single household.
But why would you want to use parasites instead of pesticides?
In fact, at least one study has claimed that beneficial nematodes can be alternatives to chemical pesticides. These pesticides can kill all termites exposed to them immediately. Meanwhile, nematodes prey on termites from the inside. They’ll bring the nematodes to the colony and soon enough, they will be wiped out. The nematodes will spread across the members of the colony, even the queen.
While termites can develop resistance against chemicals, they can’t develop anything against nematodes. Repeated exposure to chemical pesticides will make the termites naturally stronger against the chemicals. The more you use it, the less effective it will be. Beneficial nematodes do not have this problem.
Beneficial to the environment
Most pesticides have negative effects on the environment. The chemicals can easily spread from where you spray to nearby habitats and ecosystems. The air can carry the chemicals you spray in your home to water sources or the soil. It can affect the local wildlife population and even get into our drinking water.
Nematodes exist naturally in the soil. When you use beneficial nematodes as pesticides, you would only be promoting biodiversity to the soil.
Nematode sprays don’t contain harmful chemicals, which means they’re also not destructive to the soil, wood, or other plants in the vicinity. Because of their targeted attacks, everything else besides their prey will remain untouched.
Safe for humans and pets
As opposed to chemical pesticides, beneficial nematodes are safe to use around people and pets. Pesticides spread dangerous chemicals in the air when sprayed at an area. Nearby people, even children and pets, inhale these chemicals. There are many different kinds of chemicals in a pesticide, but they’ve been proven to have negative effects on a person’s health. They have been linked to diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and ADHD.
On the other hand, beneficial nematodes are safe to use around people. They only attack pests such as termites when sprayed. They are not a health risk to people because they have no interest in causing harm to us. They would most likely focus on what they consider prey, and then they usually die out once the termites are gone.
Also, they are sprayed straight on the wood or soil, lowering the chances of getting inhaled.
Easy to apply
In addition to being effective, environmentally friendly, and safe, nematodes are also easy to apply. You can buy bags of these parasites in your local gardening store. Depending on the severity of the infestation, you should prepare enough.
You simply need to mix the nematodes in a gallon of water then stir. After a while, let the mixture sit for a few more minutes. Then transfer the water into the spray bottles and apply to affected surfaces. Spraying them at least once a day should keep the nematode infestation in the termite colony going.
You may also apply it to surfaces that you want termites to avoid. This can be done to keep important, load-bearing or foundational lumber from getting damaged. This simple procedure can be done by any homeowner.
Beneficial nematodes have the effectiveness of chemical pesticides but without all the health and environmental risks. The use of nematodes as a remedy against termites instead of commercial pesticides should be done more often. As homeowners or gardeners, it is our duty to both prevent pest infestations and keep the environment safe as well.
These natural pesticides termite killers can definitely handle an infestation well. But sometimes, the spread of the termites is too severe for even nematodes to exterminate. A pest control professional should be contacted in these cases. In the Philippines, the best pest control service is only a call and a click away. Send us a message here to get help for your infestations!