Termite Bait Station Reviews & Buyers Guide
Termites are industrious pests that become harder and harder to eradicate once they infest their chosen wooden structure. Termiticides and dust formulations are no doubt effective at destroying termites, but these chemicals can take long periods of time to address the problem, since termites infest inside of the wood, where the poison has to seep in to reach them.
This buyers guide will present to you with the three best termite bait stations on the market and answer some additional questions you may have regarding how they work and the effectiveness of each product.
In this guide, you will learn:
- Pros/Cons of three termite bait stations and traps
- How far apart termite bait stations should be positioned
- How long termite bait traps last
- Which baits are best for attracting termites
- How effective termite bait stations truly are
Why do we need to get rid of termites?
Termites are attracted to cellulose, which is a sticky, sugary substance found inside of wood. There are many factors that affect how quickly termites eat wood. The type and size of the wood structure in question, the type of termites, dry wood termites take much longer to eat their preferred type of wood, as well as the overall size of the termite colony in question.
Generally, per six-month period, termites can eat about a foot of wood, therefore it is important to take measures to repel and kill them before they infest the wood inside of your home.
How to eradicate termites
Although all of the other types of products designed to kill and repel termites are very effective, termite bait traps are a type of product that can catch and kill termites using an alluring bait.
These contraptions are designed to trap entering termites into a container below the bait where they cannot escape.
It is important to remember to frequently change the bait in these traps, especially if you decide to place them underground.
Termite bait traps can also be placed in areas inside the home where mud holes or exit holes are present. Although monitoring the traps will require a bit of continued observation, these products cut the work in half by trapping the termites with alluring bait, reducing your need to continue spraying or dusting wood.
Not all termite repellent products work as baits and attractants, as there are some products that simply emit poison into the soil to kill any foraging termites in the area.
Best products for killing termites - reviews
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The following three selections are all effective at repelling and killing termites before they can infest and are certain to produce results to protect your home from these destructive insects.
1. Spectracide Termite Detection & Killing Stakes
Spectracide is a company that has long proven that when it comes to repelling termites before they become a problem, they are the gold standard. The standout feature of this product is the pop-up indicators on the tip of the stakes, which alert you when termites are in the vicinity. Each stake should be placed up to ten feet apart and no more than 2-3 feet away from your home.
The stakes work by using sensory chips to detect when termites are present, by which the stakes then emit the chemical hexaflumuron, an insect growth regulator which is fatal to termites as it stops their growth, thereby killing them.
Spectracide comes with 15 stakes and the stakes should be spread out around the immediate soil perimeter of your home. For best results, you will want to place the stakes in areas of soil that is consistently moist, as subterranean termites thrive in moist soil.
This product is cost-effective and works by giving you peace of mind with the pop up indicators and further elimination of termites with the chemical emissions. Investing in this product will ensure that you will not have to worry about termites finding their way into your home.
Spectracide Terminate Stakes last up to twelve months and ensures that you can remain termite-free for a year at a time.
2. Advance Termite Bait Stations
Termite stakes work well to kill termites that happen to forage into them, but termite traps are more effective in how they manage to lure and trap foraging termites, with no possibility of escape.
Advance Termite Bait Stations by BASF Chemical Company utilizes a cellulose-attractant to lure foraging termites in the soil into an entrapment that closes them in with poison. This method is highly effective because it lures termites to poison instead of hoping that foraging termites will find it by accident.
The product should be placed immediately around the home, preferably in moist soil. Once foraging termites smell the cellulose, they will forage into the entrapment unit, where active termiticide will kill them within hours.
What is so great about this product is that you only need to replace the bait with the poison cartridge when termites are trapped inside of the entrapment, which eliminates wasteful poison applications.
3. Hex Pro Termite Baiting System Stations
Hex Pro Termite Baiting Stations work in a similar method to Spectracide stakes in that the stakes emit a poison to kill foraging termites. Use of this system involves monitoring for the presence or activity of termites in and around the target site, and the delivery of a slow acting insect growth regulator when and where the presence or activity of subterranean termites has been detected.
Be sure and place Hex Pro Termite Bait Station every 8-10 feet but not more than 20 feet around the outer perimeter of structures and inspect every 30 – 90 days.
This product requires some frequent monitoring, but once the poison is administered, termites spread the poison to the rest of the colony and rapidly die. You will need to buy the poison bait cartridges separately and replace them as soon as active termites are discovered near the original wood attractant cartridges. This product is durable and long-lasting and is sure to eliminate termites consistently and effectively.
How far apart should termite bait stations be?
Termite bait stations work best when they are spread out to cover wide areas of your yard near the perimeter of your home. It is important to keep the stations spread out to avoid cramping of foraging termites, which could cause them to disperse.
The stations are only as effective as the termites that enter into them, so you will want to keep termite traffic ways clear from congestion and chaos.
The toxicant-laced bait in some stations can either be installed initially or substituted after termites have been detected in an untreated monitoring device. The more below ground baits installed, the better the chances of locating termites, so it is advisable to keep the stations at least ten feet apart.
Planning, patience, and persistence are requisites for successfully using below-ground termite baits, so it is essential to keep some space between them to ensure that all termites have an equal distribution to reach the stakes.
How long do they last?
One of the biggest challenges with termite bait stations is getting termites to find the bait. The timetable for discovery varies from property to property, depending on the size, number, and foraging intensity of the colonies, which in turn is influenced by soil moisture and temperature/time of year. This is particularly important in terms of how long a particular bait station’s attractants and poisons will last.
Typically, it can take a few months to even upwards of a year for a termite colony to find termite stakes and a bit less for termites to pick up the scent of an attractant bait station.
Patience is key and it is almost certain that if placed correctly, foraging termites will find their way into the bait stations. This is why pop up indicators are important, as they alert you to termite activity within the soil.
Do bait stations actually attract termites?
Some products, such as Spectracide Terminate, work by emitting poison to the surrounding soil once termite activity is detected in the vicinity of the stakes.
Other types, which utilize traps, use a cellulose attractant within the trap to attract worker termites to take back to the colony. After the worker termites have begun feeding and a solid connection is established through the worker termites within the colony, a growth hormone is placed inside the feeding station.
The termites are continually fed this hormone until the feeding stops. The length of the feeding cycle and the amount of hormone used depends on the termite population and the size of the colony.
Bait stations that use attractants are usually more effective in the long run, as the lure of cellulose is what brings the termites to the traps.
How effective are they?
In the long run, yes, termite bait stations most certainly are effective.
The technology to kill termites using baits is now widely practiced and is proving to be more effective than previously established methods. Instead of injecting chemicals into the soil which will only last a few years and potentially contaminate the environment, termite baits are placed directly into the ground around the outside of a structure.
Wasting chemicals is just not cost-effective, or generally ineffective as a means of termite control in the first place. To blindly inject the soil with chemicals, without even knowing if termites are present, is not a comprehensive method for termite prevention.
Termite baiting is simple and can also be used as a preventive measure to detect termites before they become a problem.
Termite baiting also allows termite control in situations where the structure is untreatable with soil termiticides and is an added benefit when there is concern about pesticide use and/or in structures where soil treatments have failed.
Although patience is essential, termite bait stations represent the best line of defense in terms of termite prevention and are definitely recommended for your home.
The bottom line
Termite bait stations represent one of the most effective ways to treat your surrounding home for foraging termites. These products work by utilizing an attractant, which then either emits a poison, or traps approaching termites inside of a contraption that emits insect growth regulators, permanently stopping the termite growth cycle. These products are usually in the form of stakes or traps.
Termite bait stations are cost-effective forms of termite treatment and find success as preventative measures. It will take some patience to wait for the bait stations to work, but when it comes to prevention, there is no better method in eliminating termites.
Hexaflumuron (General Fact Sheet). (2000). Retrieved from: http://npic.orst.edu/factsheets/hexgen.pdf.