Termites are very similar to other insects and animals and to some level, even humans. Therefore, like humans, their most basic components of survival are food, water, and shelter. Termites, however, have adapted to sourcing water from wood and other materials that they feed on in case the going gets tough especially where water is very limited but where there is plenty they flourish to the point of being a nuisance. Termites feed largely on wood. There are different species of termites that can survive in different habitats. For instance, unlike the dry wood termites, the subterranean termites need moisture to thrive. Subterranean termites build their colonies in soil to obtain moisture, and they also nest in wet wood. So the answer to the above question is yes in the sense that termites, especially subterranean, require dampness and moisture to survive.
Another example is the damp woods termites; they like feeding on very moist wood, therefore, their most preferred habitat is damp, dying wood. These species of termite rarely invade buildings because of lack of enough water in the wood, but houses that have leaking plumbing that keep the wood wet are exceptional. Therefore, to prevent this, ensure that water drains away from the building, damp or damaged wood outside the building are replaced or removed completely and the leaking plumbing is repaired.
Termites are very interesting, and while you may wonder at how they build huge mounds with their tiny stature and marvel at how hardworking they think they are just harmless little creatures, termites are in fact very destructive. In the United States, alone termites account for approximately $5 billion in damages to homes every year. With this fact in mind, owning a home can actually be very expensive if proper maintenance measures are not taken. Moisture tops the list of things that cause the most damage. There are a lot of problems that comes with moisture such as mildew, decaying, and rotting of wood, mold and damage to painted surfaces. This problem caused by moisture creates health issues, bad appearances, and structural damages. But the most annoying of these all could be the invasion of termites which find water-damaged woods very attractive.
Since termites are very destructive and a huge concern to home owners, it is important for preventive measures to be taken. This is because there are plenty of small regular water supplies around the homes which include dripping taps and leaking air conditioners as well as disconnected down pipes. These preventive measures should majorly involve reducing or completely eliminating water and moisture near house foundations. Termites live in soil but eat wood so they build tubes along the woods that they use to climb into the house’ structure, and these tubes are made of mud and should be moist at all times, therefore, eliminating excess moisture is important so as to avoid termite invasion.
The important thing is to avoid contact with wood and the ground by removing them or constructing a concrete footing since wood will tend to absorb runoff water from the ground or moisture and this attracts these destructive insects. The next step to reducing water is by digging in a slope to allow the water to flow away from the building.
The bad news is homeowners usually end up failing to recognize the damage that water and moisture cause to their homes. Usually they may find a colony of termites and eradicate them but fail to know the real cause as to why they made a colony there in the first place. This way, they end up not solving the problem and in the long run, the termites may come back again.