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Re: Termites


However, an article I recently read on these termites (I think in Natural
History) stated that the insects arrived in boxes made of trash lumber sent
back to U.S. when the military returned after WWII.  It wouldn't take many.
In our area there are many who make money "under the radar" so it would
make me rather nervous to buy on the cheap.  You can go to most flea
markets and find things that have been officially removed from the market.
Bonnie ETN Zone 7


> [Original Message]
> From: Kitty <kmrsy@comcast.net>
> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
> Date: 3/5/2006 12:09:54 PM
> Subject: Re: [CHAT] Termites
>
> ah, the voice of reason.  thanks.
> Kitty
> neIN, Zone 5
> ----- Original Message ----- 
> From: <Cersgarden@aol.com>
> To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
> Sent: Sunday, March 05, 2006 11:28 AM
> Subject: [CHAT] Termites
>
>
> > The following is the infor I recd from ISU on termites.
> >     Ceres
> >
> > Termites in Mulch b another urban myth
> >
> > There has been considerable interest in Formosan termites after an
article
> > began circling on the Internet claiming Formosan termites will be
coming 
> > to
> > eat
> > your house if you buy low priced wood-chip mulch from garden centers
this
> > spring.   The theory is that trees blown down in New Orleans by
Hurricane
> > Katrina
> > were infested with termites and that those trees willed be chipped into 
> > mulch
> > and shipped across the country, spreading Formosan termites.
> >
> > In my opinion, this scenario starts with a small ounce of fact but then 
> > adds
> > sensationalism and exaggeration while ignoring other pertinent facts to 
> > come
> > up with an urban legend.
> >
> > Yes, there are Formosan termites in New Orleans and yes, they create 
> > aerial
> > colonies (above ground) in trees, especially in the rainy, humid 
> > environment
> > of
> > New Orleans.   Yes they are extremely destructive to houses and
difficult 
> > to
> > control.   See http://www.agctr.lsu.edu/termites/
> >
> > Yes, there are warnings and quarantines against moving building
materials
> > from damaged homes for use in other structures or areas. Of special 
> > concern
> > are
> > architectural components such as beams, doors and salvaged lumber and 
> > lumber
> > taken from damaged buildings and stored on the ground where it can
become
> > termite-infested.   Railroad ties and landscape timbers installed on the
> > ground are
> > similarly a potential problem, and have a far greater and better 
> > documented
> > risk of moving termites.
> >
> > The state of Louisiana neither encourages nor condones the sale of wood 
> > waste
> > in mulch from the hurricane damaged areas.   If anyone is chipping, 
> > bagging
> > and selling mulch from southern LA it is being done under the radar and 
> > illeg
> > ally.    The same would be true for Texas where there are also large
> > quantities
> > of wood from Hurricane Rita-affected areas that also have Formosan 
> > termites.
> > It is very unlikely that any retailer, especially large retailers 
> > mentioned
> > in the internet article, would buy and distribute mulch from illegal 
> > sources.
> >
> > We do not know for sure that termites will not survive in wood chips
but 
> > we
> > believe that it is highly unlikely that they would survive the
> > mulching/chipping process.   The chipping process is as destructive to 
> > insects
> > as it is to
> > tree limbs and the likelihood is low of transporting a viable colony of
> > Formosan
> > termites in this manner.    Further, any composting that occurs will
raise 
> > the
> > temperature inside a mulch pile to the point that termites will not 
> > survive.
> >
> > In summary, there is no guarantee Formosan termites will not spread,
but 
> > the
> > claims made in the current Internet rumor are overblown and needlessly
> > alarmist for those of us living in the upper Midwest, far away from the 
> > normal
> > range
> > where Formosan termites can survive.
> >
> > ---------------------------------------------------------------------
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