IDENTIFY WOODWORM BEETLES
It might surprise you to learn that woodworm is not caused by just one type of woodworm beetle. There are actually several different types of woodworm beetles that can be found within the UK.
Below is a short summary of the typical woodworm beetles and areas where you can typically find them. Alternatively, if you suspect you might have a woodworm issue you can also visit our woodworm tell tale signs web page to help you determine if the beetles are present in your property.
COMMON FURNITURE BEETLE
The most common form of woodworm beetle is the Common Furniture Beetle. The Common Furniture Beetle (Anobium punctatum) is a wood boring beetle measuring 2.7-4.5mm in length and has a brown ellipsoidal body with a pronotum resembling a monk’s cowl. This woodworm beetle attacks softwood species of timber leaving 1-2 mm exit holes. It generally prefers damp, rather than dry wood and the grub will head for, and stays in, plywood for longer than any other timber.
WHERE IS COMMON FURNITURE BEETLE FOUND?
Damp floorboards, damp loft timbers and old furniture where the polished finish has worn off, are ideal for the Common Furniture Beetle. The common furniture beetle lays its eggs on the timber and the grubs do the damage. Common Furniture Beetles are found all across the UK.
The Powderpost beetle is typically only found in timber containing adequate starch with pores large enough for the female beetle to lay her eggs in .The Powderpost beetle is very small (approx 1 to 7mm) and ranges in colour from reddish brown to black and in size from 1 to 7 mm (up to 0.3 inch). The larvae bore through seasoned wood such as ash, elm and oak.
WHERE IS THE POWDERPOST BEETLE FOUND?
Damage almost always originates in timber yards, stockyards or storerooms however, the Powderpost beetle can also cause considerable damage to furniture, sports equipment, wood block floors and joinery made of wide pored hardwoods. They do not tend to lay eggs in varnished, painted, or treated wood.
DEATH WATCH BEETLE
The Death Watch beetle is a wood boring beetle approximately 7 mm long with larvae growing up to 11mm long. To attract mates, these wood borers create a tapping or ticking sound that can be heard in old building rafters during quiet summer nights. They are therefore associated with quiet, sleepless nights and are named for the vigil (watch) keeping beside the dying or dead with the superstitious therefore naming it the Death Watch beetle. The Death Watch beetle much prefers very damp conditions which are improved when there is some kind of fungal decay such as wet rot in the timbers. The beetle needs these conditions to develop rapidly.
WHERE IS THE DEATH WATCH BEETLE FOUND?
Death Watch beetles are often found in timbers that have been “softened” with dry rot or wet rot. The larvae tend to tunnel towards the centre of the timber resulting in damage that may be more extensive than is apparent from the exterior. In the UK, this species is concentrated mainly in southern/central England.
HOUSE LONGHORN BEETLE
The House Longhorn beetle is a wood boring beetle approximately 7 mm long with Originating in Europe, the House Longhorn beetle is now found around the world. Unlike other woodworm beetles, only the larvae of the House Longhorn beetle feed on wood. The woodworm larvae usually matures in the spring and the mature adults then cut holes 6-10mm in diameter to exit the wood. They have shiny spots that resemble eyes and are typically black or brown with greyish hair on their upper bodies and wing cases.
WHERE IS THE HOUSE LONGHORN BEETLE FOUND?
Not common in this country, the House Longhorn is generally found outside of the UK. However, they have been found within areas in Surrey, England. It is principally found in roof timbers where it attacks the sapwood of exclusively softwood species often resulting in severe structural weakness. The holes and tunnels of the House Longhorn beetle are significantly larger than the Common Furniture beetle.
CONTACT US FOR WOODWORM ADVICE
If you want to speak to someone regarding woodworm treatment, contact Wise Property Care today or, alternatively, use our online contact form and we will organise one of our specialists to call and speak to you at a time convenient for yourself.