News Flash

Dania Beach - Community Spotlight

Posted on: August 29, 2018

Report Conehead Termites

Tunnel_on_sea_grape_tree_arrow Conehead Termites

“With residents’ help, spectacular progress has been made in eliminating the conehead termite from Dania Beach. From a total of 75 active properties in Dania Beach since 2012, visible evidence of conehead termites was not found during recent surveys conducted by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS). HOWEVER, you must remain vigilant in watching for the pest because a young, newly developed colony of coneheads can remain hidden on your property for multiple years, feeding only on the wood that it initially infested. 

These young colonies stay hidden until their population becomes large enough that they must seek out new food sources and expand their nest to maintain and house the growing colony. At that point, they build an aboveground brown nest and tunnels to access new food sources, both of which are visible and easy to find. The amount of time that a new colony remains hidden can vary and, therefore, FDACS asks that you continue to monitor your property and surroundings. Contact FDACS (1-888-397-1517) if you see tunnels, a nest, or anything else that you suspect may indicate that conehead termites are present.

Successful removal of this pest from Dania Beach is only possible with residents’ continued vigilance. If you would like additional information on the conehead termite and the FDACS eradication program, please go to their website at www.freshfromflorida.com and search “conehead.” If you have questions, call Sue Alspach at 850-597-3780 or email Sue.Alspach@FreshFromFlorida.com.”

Report Conehead Termites

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) is working diligently to prevent this invasive termite from becoming permanently established and spreading further throughout the state. FDACS asks Floridians to be on the lookout for these invasive pests and to report any suspected sightings.

To report a conehead termite infestation, call 1-888-397-1517 or email DPIHelpline@FreshFromFlorida.com


▶ Be alert for conehead termites.

Watch for the ‘Big 4’ indicators:

  • Tunnel networks.
  • Dark-colored, cone-shaped heads on small beige bugs (1/8”) within those tunnels.
  • Bumpy, brown nests that are generally spherical or ellipsoidal.
  • Termites with charcoal colored wings flying in April - June. 

Help us Eradicate Conehead Termites

The invasive conehead termite has been potentially obliterated from The City of Dania Beach

after years of efforts to find, contain, and control this aggressive pest before it propagates and spreads in Florida and beyond. The past year has been an exciting and promising landmark for this ambitious eradication program: we know of no residual pockets of conehead termite activity in all of Dania Beach! This is a huge victory for protection of the environment on local, state, and national levels.

http://daniabeachfl.gov/coneheadtermites

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and The City of Dania Beach are working together to help eradicate the Conehead Termites once and for all.

The exotic conehead termite, Nasutitermes corniger, has been found in Broward County, Florida. This is the only known occurrence of conehead termites in the United States. It is assumed that conehead termites entered the state in wooden packing material from a boat that had traveled through the termite’s native range, the Caribbean and Central and South America, and docked at a local marina.

Conehead Termite Damage

Coneheads can wreak havoc on structures and landscapes, causing extensive damage. They eagerly consume dead wood from live or dead trees, shrubs, grasses, roots, wood in structures and furniture, and cardboard and other paper products.

Conehead Termite Identification 

Unlike all other termites in South Florida, the soldier form of this termite species has a cone-shaped, dark brown head from which it secretes a pine sap-like chemical to ward off predators, including ants, lizards, and termites from another colony. Soldiers are difficult to identify with the naked eye due to their size, but the above-ground tunnels they construct (see below) are easily seen and may signify the presence of this species.

Conehead swarmers (alates)

Conehead Termites

Nest at the base of an oak tree © B.L. Thorne

Nest_at_Base_of_Oak_tree Conehead Termites

Tunnel on a sea grape tree © B.L. Thorne

Tunnel_on_sea_grape_tree_arrow Conehead Termites

Tunnel on a house wall © B.L. Thorne

Tunnel_on_house_wall_arrow Conehead Termites

Nest in a sabal palm tree © B.L. Thorne

Nest_in_Sabal_Palm_Tree Conehead Termites

Tunnels 

 
Coneheads travel to their feeding sites in narrow (usually 1/2 inch wide or less) brown tunnels, or termite highways, on the sides of trees, houses, fences or other surfaces.

Swarmers

 
In spring, winged termites, called alates or swarmers, leave their nests and fly to a new location to start another colony. This is how the termite infestation spreads. Dark wings distinguish conehead swarmers from other local termite species.

Nests

 
These termites build large, dark brown nests with a hard, bumpy surface. Nests can be on, in or by trees or structures, on open ground, or hidden within vegetation.
  1. Conehead Termites
  2. Conehead Termites

Reduce the Risk of a Conehead Termite Infestation

▶ Be alert for conehead termites.

Watch for the ‘Big 4’ indicators:
  • Tunnel networks.
  • Dark-colored, cone-shaped heads on small beige bugs (1/8”) within those tunnels.
  • Bumpy, brown nests that are generally spherical or ellipsoidal.
  • Termites with charcoal colored wings flying in April - June.
If you find or think you have found conehead termites, call the Division of Plant Inspection Helpline at 1-888-397-1517.

▶ Maintain your yard.

  • Keep the lawn mowed.
  • Cut back shrubs, branches, and fronds so vegetation is not too thick or overgrown.
  • Remove dead plant debris to reduce termite food and hiding places.
  • Dispose of yard waste through curbside bulk trash pickups or call your city for the nearest Residential Yard and Bulk Waste Drop-Off Location.

▶ Prune back all vegetation surrounding your house, garage, shed, or other structure.

  • Leaves, branches, visible roots, or trunks should not be closer than 18” (3’ preferred) from any part of the building, including tree branches and palm fronds near the eaves or roof.
  • Plants touching a structure can serve as bridges to introduce wandering termites to the structure.

▶ Avoid mulch or thick leaf litter accumulation adjacent to the house.

  • Rake and weed around the entire perimeter to expose the soil surface out 18” away from the structure. This helps to discourage termites by drying out the soil immediately adjacent to the structure.
  • Coneheads like to travel within thick litter and mulch layers, so removing that condition – particularly near a building – makes it less hospitable. If they build a tunnel across the exposed soil to travel to the house, it will be far easier to see them than if they are hidden in debris.

 ▶ Reduce moisture around your house.

  • Termites are more likely to infest a building if they find water conveniently located near a structure.
  • Keep gutters clean, maintain downspouts and attach outlet extenders to direct rain water well away from the structure.
  • Slope the soil surrounding your house to eliminate water puddling near or against the structure.
  • Condensation from window or central home air conditioning units should be directed away (several feet if possible) from the house.
  • Direct lawn water sprinklers away from the walls of your house.

▶ Move stored wood and cellulose products away from buildings

  • Move all stacked fire wood or loose boards, wooden products with substantial ground contact such as palettes or crates, as well as paper and cardboard materials located outdoors (or stored under a porch or crawl space) to a distance of at least 20 feet away, or as far as possible, from any structure.
  • Also, it is not recommended to store these materials in a garage or nearby shed.
For additional information on protecting your home from termite infestations, visit FreshFromFlorida.com and search “Conehead” and/or “Florida Termite Help” or call the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Bureau of Scientific Evaluation and Technical Assistance at (850) 617-7917.
poster_what_conehead_termites_attack Conehead Termites  Opens in new window
Conehead Termites  Opens in new window
Conehead Termites
Conehead Termites  Opens in new window

Report Conehead Termites

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) is working diligently to prevent this invasive termite from becoming permanently established and spreading further throughout the state. FDACS asks Floridians to be on the lookout for these invasive pests and to report any suspected sightings.

To report a conehead termite infestation, call 1-888-397-1517 or email DPIHelpline@FreshFromFlorida.com

Additional Info...
Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Dania Beach - Community Spotlight

Dania Beach Marina

Dania Beach Marina

Posted on: January 3, 2018
CGI Community Videos Dania Beach

Community Video Tour

Posted on: June 18, 2018
Dania Beach Easy Permit Search

Easy Permit Search

Posted on: December 28, 2018
CW Thomas Park Dania Beach

Recreational Activities

Posted on: September 20, 2017
Calling Volunteer Coaches for year-round youth athletic league. Dania Beach

Calling Volunteer Coaches

Posted on: January 16, 2019
Dania Beach Now Hiring Career Opportunities Human resources

Dania Beach Career Opportunities

Posted on: February 16, 2018
Bicycles must yield to pedestrians, Dania Beach Safety

Bicycles Must Yield to Pedestrians

Posted on: August 30, 2018
GAB letter

How to GREEN Dania Beach

Posted on: April 4, 2019
Dania Beach Calendar 2018

Dania Beach Events

Posted on: February 17, 2017