The most common wood destroying beetle found in British buildings today is the Common Furniture Beetle Anobium Punctatum. This insect commonly occurs outdoors infesting dead tree trunks, branches and other forms of exposed timber but, the main cause for concern is its ability to infest indoor timbers in a variety of situations.
Adult beetles emerge from timber in the spring and summer. Very soon after mating the female beetle lays approximately 30 eggs, often into cracks and crevices in the timber she has just vacated. Usually within a month the eggs hatch and the young grubs begin burrowing into the timber. Here they remain for between two and four years slowly eating and burrowing beneath the surface of the wood. Eventually the mature lava excavates a pupation chamber just beneath the surface of the wood. Following the pupation process the adult beetle cuts a hole in the surface of the timber and emerges to start the process once more. It is the appearance of new emergence holes and the dust (frass) that falls from them that often indicates the presence of an active infestation of woodworm.
The woodworm beetle is significant because given the right conditions it can infest a wide variety of timber products including structural building timbers, furniture and wooden ornaments. If left unchecked infestations can lead to severe structural weakening and eventually total collapse.
Insect Infestation Solutions
In preparation for the application of preservatives the timbers should be cleaned down to remove any excessive dust and debris. Treatments using water based insecticides are very common and are generally successful and cost effective. Chemicals are often applied by low pressure spraying but some insecticides can be applied by “fogging” or are brushed on.
Other wood destroying insects
Death Watch Beetle Xestobium rufovillosum. This insect is often associated with historic buildings and usually affects the sapwood of hardwoods that are damp or have been affected by fungal decay.
House Long Horn Beetle Hylotrupes bajulus. This relatively large insect affects sapwood and is predominantly associated with roofing timbers. They are limited in range to a small part of south east England. Infestations if left unchecked can lead to severe structural weakening in a relatively short period of time.
When infestations by the Death Watch Beetle and House longhorn beetle are discovered, treatments will always be dictated by site conditions and formulated by an experienced specialist.
Sussex Damp Proofing are proudly approved contractors of Triton Chemicals Ltd (for more info see www.triton-chemicals.com) and offer guarantees on all our work for a period of 10-30 years on all our preservation, damp-proofing, structural waterproofing and basement contracts with the T.U.G Triton Users Guarantee Company. As well as the Triton Manufacturers Guarantee on all our products used, we offer total peace of mind to all our clients.
Sussex Damp Proofing will provide you with a very friendly professional service which produces the highest standards of workmanship one would expect from the leading preservation treatments company.
For further information on insect infestation – woodworm, or to arrange a survey or quotation please contact us:
Direct Tel: 07909 528 342
Tel: 01273 557 932
Email: Sussex Damp Proofing