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Beware of the Wood Pile (Part 2)

firewood and bugsAfter hearing that firewood can be the reason for a possible infestation in a home, it is beneficial to know what types of insects tend to live in firewood as well as a few more tips to prevent them from inhabiting your woodpile.

Beetles are one of the most common insects found in wood and they can be spotted both under the bark and in the wood. The larvae from Longhorned Beetles usually live under the bark in irregular tunnels that are filled will sawdust-like material. Certain beetles, specifically Bark and Ambrosia beetles, like to inhabit freshly cut wood. If the wood is damp and/or kept in contact with the ground when stored, then carpenter ants, termites, sowbugs, millipedes, centipedes, pillbugs, springtails, and bark lice may also care to inhabit the wood. Other insects, such as carpenter bees and horntail wasps, prefer dry firewood.

Even though these insects are a nuisance when found in the home, it is important to note that most (aside from carpenter ants) will not cause structural damage.

To prevent these animals from inhabiting a wood supply, it is important to follow a few steps:

  1. Harvest firewood when insects are least active
    Insects are least active in the colder months, from November-March.
  1. Remove wood from the forest as soon as it is cut
    The longer that the wood remains in the forest, the more time insects have to inhabit it.
  1. Keep wood in small logs
    This enables the wood to cure faster, and once the moisture is gone, there is less of a chance that insects will inhabit it.
  1. Dry firewood quickly
    Insects are drawn to environments with moisture, so keeping firewood dry is imperative.
  1. Store firewood properly
    This includes stacking the wood off of the ground and away from homes/buildings (see the previous article for more details).
  1. Cover your firewood
    Keep a cover over your firewood to ensure that moisture is kept out. Be sure to leave a space between the wood and the cover for airflow.
  1. Do NOT use pesticides on wood
    Since the beetles are typically located deeper inside the wood, these treatments will be ineffective as they only treat the surface of the logs. In addition, this poses a serious health hazard; these toxic fumes will be released once the log begins to burn.

Don’t hesitate to contact Quest Pest at 860-490-5186 for assistance with all Pest Control issues!