All posts in “fungi”

Termite video

Termite video

Termites are small and white, and are termed social insects like ants. Colonies have males and females in the colony at all times. In Africa and Australia mounds are often built and can be 20 or more feet high. In nature termite take wood, break it down and redistribute back into the ground. Termites look for wood/food 24/7/365, constantly looking for a food source. Here is the Southwest or Arizona a termite infestation is not a cause for immediate panic. The infestation needs attention, but due I think to the lack of water the damage isn’t going to happen overnight. So you have some time, contact a Pest Management Professional like ProBest Pest Management 480-831-9328 to discuss options. So as I said it takes time, compare options – use Termidor and look at the reputation and reviews of the company.


Termite video

Wood rot

Wood rot and your home.

Wood rot = wood decaying fungus as a type of fungus that digests wet/moist wood causing it to rot. Often times the mere correction of the wood is enough to salvage the wood. Is the wood in contact with the dirt? Is there a water leak and the wood is getting wet or staying wet for extended periods of time? Obviously if you see a fungus growing in the wood, it would be a dead giveaway (in the picture above). If you’ve read any of my blogs you know that I highly recommend performing a monthly home inspection. What should the homeowner look for?

  • Any water leaks, no matter how insignificant should be investigated.
  • Lingering moisture around the foundation of your home, correct sprinklers and/or flood irrigation.
  • Some times bushes can hold the water close to the house, avoid vines.
  • Inspect window sills, door frames and underneath sinks.
  • Painting or resealing wood really helps to prevent the water from getting in.
  • Decks need to be checked often.
  • Roofs should be checked.
  • Caulking can also help, but make sure you’re not covering up a problem.

Problems and Issues

The key is to find the problems and issues before they become major catastrophes. An ounce of prevention may save you $1000s of dollars and a real headache. Homeowners can simply get screens fixed and may keep the bugs out and in the same way a simple fix of a gutter leak may save you hours of time to rebuild a section of your house. Did you know that its usually a moisture content of over 20% that causes the problem, and I know you’re thinking we don’t have that kind of moisture in Arizona. Remember that thing we call monsoon?  That fungus really needs good temps, oxygen and a food source and that could be your home.



wood rot


Water can cause a problem

Water rot

Water rot





Water in wood can become an issue within  a home or structure. No fungus among us, why yes there is. That little bit of moisture can cause a few problems if not caught in time. Notice the wood splitting and since there is enough moisture the fungus can grow. What if the house has a pipe leaking or rain enters the house, it will take the path of least resistance, so always conduct a thorough investigation if you notice something like wood damage or wood splitting. As it meets the ground it might also continue to wash away any termiticide that was there. So termites might be on the way next.

Science discoveries continue


Fire ant venom as a Fungicide

In their experiments, the researchers used sophisticated extraction techniques to obtain purified amounts of piperdeine and piperidine from the venom glands of both red and black imported fire ants.

In this case they are testing the venom, several ant species use different techniques to tend gardens of fungi so I wonder how this would work?

HYA10_02 Photo provided by Univar PPS

Water damage to your wood home.

Water damage can occur and ruin your wood home.

water damage

water damage

Water can be the life blood or it can even cause issues with the way we build homes in the way it causes water damage. When flashing on a roof allows water to seep in, the wood gets wet and then dries. Chimneys are often the cause if incorrectly fitted with flashing. This interaction causes brown cubicle rot, this rot looks like a wood burnt piece of wood. It is really important to understand this action and take precautions against it. When water does enter a home it takes the path of least resistance and often follows a path straight down. This often causes the water to seep through the termiticide in the ground and could allow termites to enter that area. The more water through a termiticide barrier, breaks down the termiticide and may allow termites into the structure.

This fungus also would generally fail a (WDIIR) Wood Destroying Insect Infestation Report, bear in mind that this report doesn’t get into a lengthy discussion on water and fungus but typically relates to termites and other insects. Letting mold grow unchecked in your home can have negative consequences both for your checkbook and your health. Mold spores thrive on moisture. Mold spores can quickly grow into colonies when exposed to water. These colonies may produce allergens and irritants. Before mold remediation can begin, any sources of water or moisture must be addressed. Otherwise, the mold may return. Typically in Arizona we don’t have to worry about moisture levels but if there is a water leak it needs to corrected immediately. Just remember mold is present almost everywhere, indoors and outdoors. As always if you find that you have wood rot please give us a call at 480-831-9328 ProBest Pest Management.

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