Baiting Systems for Termites
There are several different bait treatments, but how much do you really know about them? If you’ve looked them up, much of the information happens to be biased. At Scout Pest Control, we are dedicated to giving you quality information and the best part is we tell you the truth!
If you want to find out more about the different types of bait treatments, keep reading!
Before we jump right into the different types of baits, it’s important to remember what exactly a termite bait is and what it’s composed of. As mentioned in an earlier post, the bait station consists of plastic, a type of wood that termites really like to eat, and once termites are found a bait is added that will work slowly to destroy the colony. It’s important to remember that most bait products are intended to only be used by a trained pest control technician or professional, but not all of them.
The Sentricon System was the first modern-day termite bait to use the chemical Hexaflumuron. Hexaflumuron is a slow-reacting chemical that, when ingested, prevents termites from properly going through the molting process. The exoskeleton of termites, much like other insects, consist of a substance called Chitin. When this chemical is ingested by the termites, the chemical interferes with the formation of the substance. This, in turn, kills the termites when attempting to shed its skin. Much like other bait products, the Sentricon System is particularly effective and spreads throughout the whole colony of termites because it takes a while for the chemical to reactant inside its host. This has been proven to be an effective bait with some enhancements made over the past few years. One of those being an additional upgrade for the Sentricon System to be an above-ground station, called Recruit AG. Current above-ground stations, however, contain the active ingredient noviflumuron. These stations are stackable and are placed directly on top of an active termite mud tube. Another enhancement made is another station called Recruit HD which utilizes and enhances their “always active” label. Other upgrades have also been made over the years, such as improving the below-ground bait.
Firstline is another trusted bait, first being introduced in 1996 by FMC Corporation and got their federal registration for their above-ground (Firstline) and below-ground (Firstline GT) termite bait stations. Both stations, however, contain cardboard inside the station that is treated with a chemical called Sulfluramid. Sulfluramid is a slow-reacting stomach toxin that prevents the insect (in this case, a termite) from being able to pull out the energy it needs from the food that they ingest. Termites will die within a few days, and sometimes within a few weeks, depending on when they ate the food. Like the Sentricon System, several upgrades have been made to the original station. The Firstline GT Plus station is now able to hold more bait and is larger in diameter. Another upgrade was a monitor and system upgrade to channel the termites into the baits, improving the overall effectiveness of the station. Sulfluramid is highly toxic to termites as proven in multiple laboratory tests, so this is yet another highly effective bait station.
This is one of the few homeowner’s solution to combat termites. The bait was first introduced in 1998 as the first “do-it-yourself” solution for termites. The Terminate product consists of small 4×1 inch plastic stakes and cardboard treated with Sulfluramid. The bait stations are then placed around the home and are advised to be periodically checked by the home’s owner. However, on October 15, 1998, a complaint was filed that deemed this product as false and deceptive advertising, so the company was forced to change its labels and state on the box that the bait station is NOT recommended for active and large infestations and should not be used to solely treat infestations. However, despite its early struggle, it’s still being sold to homeowners today. This is one of few prime examples – yes, there are homeowner solutions to combating termites, but it’s better to hire a trained professional to do the job for you.
In 1998 Ensystex introduced an interception and baiting system called Exterra. The name Exterra means “that which terminates termites”. The bait used in Exterra is called Labyrinth, and the active ingredient inside Labyrinth is called diflubenzuron. This chemical is similar to Hexaflumuron, as both chemicals prevent the termite from properly going through the molting process. The station is a large, cylinder-shaped plastic station installed around the home or building. The company also has an above ground-bait station and a bait bag. Much of the features in the Exterra system were designed to prevent labor and overall reduce disturbance from the termites. There are two types of the Labyrinth bait, one which contains shredded, loosely wadded paper-toweling, and the other (Labyrinth AC) that contains a white flour-like substance that is derived from purified cellulose, which termites love to feed on. In addition with Sentricon, Exterra is also marked as a stand-alone option to termite baiting.
In 2003, the Advance termite baiting station was introduced by Whitmire Micro-Gen. The Advance termite bait system uses Exterra’s diflubenzuron and resembles Sentricon and Exterra, but has different components inside the station. At the bottom of the station are cylinder pieces of wood. Above this consists of a plastic cartridge containing Puricell monitoring tablets, which are a form of compressed cellulose which termites also love. Once there is confirmed existence of termites, the Puricell monitoring tablets are removed and replaced with very similar Puricell tablets containing the chemical diflubenzuron. This bait is recommended to be used as either a stand-alone treatment or in addition to another liquid treatment.
Last but not least, we have the bait station Hex-Pro. In 2006, Dow AgroSciences introduced the Hex-Pro termite baiting system. This station is generally similar to Sentricon in the forms of installation and the monitoring of the station. The only key differences are that this system doesn’t have an above-ground station to install, and the bait uses hexaflumuron instead of noviflumuron. This is also another proven effective way to bait termites.
It’s okay if you have questions about any of these termite bait stations, in fact, we encourage you to ask us! At Scout Pest Control, we aren’t biased and we are dedicated to helping you, the customer! If you have any questions, feel free to call us!