Tiny Termite House: New Video to Reveal the Secret Life of Termites

The National Pest Management Association aims to capture first-of-its-kind footage of these wood-destroying insects at work

 

FAIRFAX VA. (January 24, 2018) — What happens if you take half a million termites and set them loose in a tiny, built-to-scale dream house? No, it’s not the start of a bad joke. It’s the premise behind the Tiny Termite House, the National Pest Management Association's latest research project. A team of researchers is set to release 500,000 termites, the size of an average colony, free in a custom, miniature house, while capturing all the riveting, non-stop destruction on high-definition video. Anyone wondering what’s going on between the studs in their own home, can wonder no longer, as this first-of-its-kind footage will reveal just how quickly an active termite infestation can destroy Americans’ greatest investments — our homes.

“There is plenty of video out there of termites simply eating through wood, but our goal is to film exactly how the colony socializes and works together within the smallest cracks and crevices of a real-life home to tear it apart,” said Cindy Mannes, vice president of public affairs for NPMA. “Oftentimes, homeowners are completely unaware that termites could be gnawing away at their property’s structural stability until it’s too late. The footage we are gathering demonstrates how these silent destroyers collaborate quietly and quickly to traverse up and down the spaces between our walls, and helps to identify the prime conditions that let them thrive.” 

The tiny, two-story home will have many of the same features as an actual home in Anytown, USA, such as insulation, plumbing and electricity – other amenities include hardwood floors, a beautiful kitchen and a balcony overlooking an in-ground swimming pool. Like most of American homes, the house is being constructed on a cement slab. However, there is one big difference — this house will be fully equipped with cameras throughout to study its 500,000 residents’ progress from introduction to decimation.

In addition to tracking the house’s demise, the project will allow an up-close look at termites with never-before-seen access to the fascinating biology behind these insects, known for their feverish work ethic of all work and no play or rest. The footage will reveal additional insights into the various players within a termite colony and the role that each takes in making sure dinner is served. 

“Most Americans learn about bee colonies in school and how the various types of bees work together to ensure colony success – termites are no different, just as fascinating, albeit more destructive,” added Mannes. “Our cameras are opening doors to information and getting more insight into the important jobs each of the types of termites play – from the queen who lays nearly 2,000 eggs per day, to the soldier termites who protect the colony from danger with their menacing, oversized jaws.”

More details and footage will be available in the coming weeks with an anticipated reveal during Termite Awareness Week, March 11-17, 2018. For more information on termites, visit PestWorld.org.

About the National Pest Management Association

The NPMA, a non-profit organization with more than 5,500 members, was established in 1933 to support the pest management industry's commitment to the protection of public health, food and property from the diseases and dangers of pests. For more information, visit PestWorld.org or follow @PestWorld on FacebookTwitterPinterest and YouTube.

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