What Wood Burrowing Insects Should I Be Worried About in Northern Virginia?


Every house is made of some kind of wooden material. Even brick houses have wood framing and substructure. Wood-destroying pests like termites cause more damage to homes and wood structures each year than fires, floods, and tornadoes combined. If you are looking to sell, buy or refinance a home, Virginia law requires a Wood Destroying Insect inspection. Summit Wildlife Removal offers thorough inspections and all the paperwork required to complete a WDI report. Contact Summit Wildlife Removal today for a free inspection. If you’ve noticed any signs of wood-burrowing insects in or around your home, trust the wildlife experts at Summit Wildlife Removal to remove them, repair any damages, and restore your property.

Termites in Northern Virginia 

If you suspect your home has termites, you have good reason to be concerned. According to the National Pest Management Association, termites cause over 5 billion dollars in property damage annually in the US. These destructive little insects have the greatest potential to reduce the lifespan and value of a property. Termite damage is not covered by homeowner’s insurance most of the time, so it is necessary to act quickly as soon as you see any signs of infestation in your home.

What Kind of Damage Do Termites Cause to a Home?

These pests can cause all kinds of damage by chewing through wood. They are pros at eating wooden house structures, flooring, furniture, various household items, as well as plastics, fabric, and even wallpaper. Extensive termite damage can even cause a house to collapse due to loss of structural integrity. Usually, subterranean termites cause the most damage to the structure of a house which is the top reason that they are the most undesirable pests. The first step in prevention is to be on alert for termites. If you have a termite problem, the second step is calling Summit Wildlife Removal for the quickest and easiest solution.

Termite treatment in Northern Virginia

Termites are drawn to moisture, so it is important to keep the foundation of the home dry by making sure that the soil stays dry with proper drainage systems or gutters and downspouts. It’s also important to fill cracks and openings in the foundation or other areas where the termites might be getting in. 

Carpenter Bees in Northern Virginia


The common name "carpenter bee" derives from their nesting behavior; nearly all species burrow into hard plant material such as dead wood or bamboo. Carpenter bees dig tunnels in wood and they create large nesting chambers. Carpenter bees and bumblebees are commonly mixed up by the untrained eye. One way of telling them apart is that most carpenter bees have a shiny abdomen, whereas bumblebee abdomens are matte since they are completely covered with dense hair.  Carpenter bees prefer untreated wood. If you have untreated wooden items in your yard, like a fence, a shed, a deck, or something similar, carpenter bees will be able to do more damage more quickly. Painting, staining, or treating these items is a good way to resist carpenter bees.

What Kind of Damage Do Carpenter Bees Cause to a Home?

Carpenter bees bore circular tunnels into wood in order to build their nests. One Carpenter bee eating holes won’t cause your deck to collapse. Nor is it, necessarily, the work of a hundred carpenter bees. Instead, it’s the result of constant annual damage that goes unnoticed. A single carpenter bee is only going to make a tunnel that is about 1 foot long. They usually start by flying upward and clinging to a piece of wood. Then they tunnel into the wood a short way in, then make a 90° turn, and go along the grain of the board. As they make these tunnels, they cause the wood to weaken. This weakness spreads to other boards and the frame of the entire structure can begin to warp. When it does, walls can bulge, floors can sink, ceilings can dip, and structures can collapse. The best way to control carpenter bees is with the help of a professional pest control company, like Summit Wildlife Removal. 

Carpenter Bee Treatment in Northern Virginia 

Removing a carpenter bee nest is a very dangerous process and should only be done by a professional pest control company. The treatment can be exceedingly risky and it is not advised that you attempt the removal on your own. Unlike most species of stinging insects, you will not be swarmed by the entire hive since they are solitary, but their stings can be very powerful and cause discomfort. Skilled technicians will first inspect your property for signs of carpenter bees and will devise the appropriate treatment for your unique situation. They may suggest a one-time treatment or a series of treatments depending on the severity of the case. Our skilled pest control technicians will administer the treatment and monitor the situation. Much like other pest treatments, you should not expect immediate results, but rather a decline in the population over time and increased management of the pests.

Emerald Ash Borer in Northern Virginia

The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is a beetle from Asia that feeds on the tissue under the bark of ash trees. This beautiful, invasive insect is also deadly. The EAB is the most destructive forest insect ever to invade the United States and has killed hundreds of millions of ash trees. Just one beetle can lay 40-70 eggs on the bark of its preferred host: ash trees. The Emerald Ash Borer has been located and confirmed in almost every county in Virginia. The insects move naturally to search for new host trees, but the biggest factor in the spread of EAB is the movement of wood by humans, for purposes such as firewood.

How can you treat Emerald Ash Borer Beetle damage?

Treating ash trees for this destructive non-native insect increases the chance of preserving the genetic material of ash trees throughout the entire state. An annual soil drench or bark spray is one less costly, but also less effective, method of treating. The most effective method is a direct trunk injection of insecticide. Companies need special licensure to treat trees directly. While Summit does not offer that service, we can provide a free inspection to help you identify the problem insect. The Virginia Department of Forestry recognizes that treatment for EAB can be a financial burden for landowners and organizations. To help offset the price of treatment, VDOF’s Emerald Ash Borer Cost-Share program can financially assist those who are eligible. 

White Pine Weevil in Virginia

The White Pine Weevil (WPW) is a native insect attacking Eastern White Pine trees. WPWs attack at least 20 different species of trees, including Spruce, but are most well known for their threat to Pine trees. They breed once a year, and eggs are laid in small urn-shaped feeding cavities in the bark of the tree. Females will lay an average of 100 eggs, then after the eggs hatch the larvae feed on the bark of the tree. Groups of larvae will form a “feeding ring” burrowing down into the inner bark first and then between the wood and the bark. While most of the eggs will hatch, their survival to adulthood is dependent on food supply. The adults are brown and covered with white and tan scales, arranged in large and small spots. Take a look at your pine trees, the first sign of infestation in spring are shiny droplets of resin exuding from feeding punctures made by adults the year before. Then a couple of weeks later eggs are laid in new feeding holes that do not produce resin. Circular holes around 2-3 mm in diameter on an infected stem indicate that adults have emerged. 

White Pine Weevil Damage and Treatments 

Each Weevil attack reduces tree height growth by 40-60% in that year. While tree mortality is possible it’s uncommon in mature trees, whereas Weevils pose a serious threat to younger trees. Pruning is one treatment that can save your trees. Chemical control should be considered when 2-5% of trees are weeviled in a single season. Chemical insecticides are only effective against adult weevils. Chemical control measures should be taken in the spring when adults emerge from hibernation, or in the fall after new adults emerge. Chemical control in conjunction with the pruning of infested trees gives the best results. Improperly using pesticides can cause injury to people, animals, and plants. In order to minimize that threat, you should always trust a professional pest control company to properly apply any pesticides. 

Resolving Wood Burrowing Pests with Summit

It’s never a good idea to ignore signs of wood-burrowing insects on your property. The best way to deal with pests that cause a threat to the structural integrity of your home and surrounding trees is to contact a professional pest control service like Summit. Professionals have access to the safety equipment and chemicals necessary to properly treat the root of the problem. Cost varies depending on the severity of the case and how many treatments are needed to take care of the problem. Summit Pest Control offers a free estimate where one of our skilled pest experts will be able to properly identify the problem and devise the best treatment plan. Call us at 703-348-6611.


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