Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 09-09-2013, 20:34   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 5
Do I have termites on board?

I've recently took possession of a 1986 Catalina 30. I've been cleaning it down.
Behind the dinette seat cover near the top of the storage area there is a perfectly shaped square hole. It looks like it was manufactured that way because behind the settee on the opposite side there is the similar square hole. In one if the holes it looks like a small termite mound. I threw it out. I don't see any termites around or any obvious signs of damage. Is there anyway to verify if termites are somewhere on board?
__________________

__________________
scevrog is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2013, 21:01   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Central California
Boat: Samson C Mist 32
Posts: 484
Re: Do I have termites on board?

I would suggest looking around for little piles of droppings, called frass, in places where they would fall when pushed out of the termite galleries. They look like tiny pellets of wood. If you find some, clean them up and look again after a day or two. Look above the pile to find the hole they were dumped out of.
__________________

__________________
Steve Bean is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-09-2013, 21:08   #3
Registered User
 
Butler's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Los Angeles
Boat: Pearson 281
Posts: 678
Images: 18
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Scevrog,
Keep an eye out just beneath the hole, maybe put down a sheet o white paper. If there are termites present you will find frass, tiny hard pellets expelled from the site where they live and eat. With a very new infestation you can often stop them with localized spray... get the can that has the little WD40 like straw and spray it into the hole.
Where do you live btw as dry termites, the ones most commonly infecting boats have a warm weather range. If it's been going on for awhile you wtll have to have the boat tented and you will have to check for possible structural damage... particularly the deck, or if you have one the mast compression beam or post.
__________________
Butler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 07:43   #4
Registered User
 
CaptTom's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Southern Maine
Boat: Prairie 36 Coastal Cruiser
Posts: 974
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Could it be wasps? Their nests are usually more of a grey color, and not so much a mound as a clump. Just a thought.
__________________
CaptTom is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 09:24   #5
Moderator
 
JPA Cate's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: aboard, cruising in Australia
Boat: Sayer 46' Solent rig sloop
Posts: 10,670
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Any exterminator company should be able to identify the stuff, tell you what it is, and how to get rid of the beasties.
__________________
Ann, with Jim, aboard US s/v Insatiable II, in Oz, very long term cruisers
JPA Cate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 09:40   #6
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 19,355
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Also, There little small "bees" in the south that make more of a mud style nest in small holes.. not big nests. Could be those. The plugged all my tank vents in 3 months in florida.....
__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 09:42   #7
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,769
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Do I have termites on board?

some of those little small bees are huge things that bore into wood--i have seen a picnic table eaten by these in one day---is quite interesting, a slong as they remain away from my boat.
zeehag is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 09:45   #8
Registered User
 
Suijin's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Annapolis MD; currently in Oriental NC
Boat: Valiant 40
Posts: 2,888
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Are you sure it's not just a mound of sawdust that got wet and then solidified? It's not unusual on an older boat to find little piles of sawdust that fell down from a hole drilled or whatever.

I think termites arriving on a fiberglass boat would be beyond unusual, given their lifecycle (larvae burrowing underground to the nearest source of food/wood), but I'm no expert.
__________________
Suijin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 09:53   #9
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 19,355
Re: Do I have termites on board?

My trawler in Florida had some kind of old wood burrowing damage... just a small amount in the floor beams... but obvious a bug that did it.... long gone when I got the boat.
__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 13:41   #10
Senior Cruiser
 
SkiprJohn's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2006
Location: Kea'au, Big Island, Hawaii
Boat: Cascade, Sloop, 42 - "Casual"
Posts: 14,192
Re: Do I have termites on board?

Termites are a pretty common occurance on older ply cabin/deck boats with fiberglass hulls here in Hawaii. They do not have mud nests but tunnel in the wood. The droppings (frass) are very consistent and very round all the same color and will be easily rolled under your finger. They leave a small hole finish nail sized that is sometimes plugged with a mud filler. There are ants and other insects that leave droppings but not consistently round or of the same color. A mud dauber or wasp can leave a paper or mud type nest. Carpenter bees are like bumble bees and make a little finger sized hole in wood. They can devastate ply and other dry wood pretty quickly. The females can sting but only if provoked.

Good luck in sorting it out.
__________________
John
SkiprJohn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 13:50   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: www.peterpowell.ca
Posts: 128
Re: Do I have termites on board?

I have an old Passport 40 with a lot of nice wood inboard. (Steel boat). Thought I had termites, although coming from Canada I'd no idea what their feces looked like or vomit or whatever it is. I cleaned up the little messes, but they reappeared within days. Turned out it was a spice bottle of oregano or some such fine spice that had fallen to the cabin sole without lid and was rolling around in its merry way. So, no termites, and after 7 months on the hard in the Philippines (not living aboard) having the interior redone with all manner of solvents and abusive chemicals my cocka roaches are history. For now.
Pete
__________________
'Soul Upon the Ocean'
blog
rigormortis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 15:14   #12
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,769
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Do I have termites on board?

my ex husbands chris craft had termites behind some cabinetry----fiberglass boat with wood stringers--yes that can happen.
friends westsail 32 had termites under the sprit--- wood sprit. yes fg boats can have termites--i have found evidence of them on this boats coach house--which is gassed over wood. the hull is solid fg.
zeehag is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 10-09-2013, 17:24   #13
Resin Head
 
minaret's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Seattle WA
Boat: Nauticat
Posts: 7,199
Images: 52
Re: Do I have termites on board?

The pics I put on this thread are pretty badly out of focus, but they may give you an idea of what termite frass and termite larvae look like. As well as scaring the hell out of you!



Termites Onboard !
__________________
O you who turn the wheel and look to windward,

Consider Phlebas, who was once handsome and tall as you.
minaret is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 14-09-2013, 19:06   #14
Registered User
 
endoftheroad's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Key West
Boat: Westsail 32 and Herreshoff 28
Posts: 1,159
Re: Do I have termites on board?

I had my boat tented, it cost $950, they can do it at a dock or on the hard, it doesn't matter much.
If you have termites it isn't a forever problem, the problem can be 100% eradicated with fumigation/tenting.
The only real threat is the possible structural damage already done by the bugs should they exist in your boat but even that can be repaired.
So it is what it is but it isn't the end of the world.
__________________
endoftheroad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-09-2013, 10:28   #15
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Andaman
Boat: mono GRP full keel
Posts: 165
Hi

Termites are common here in warm weather. They migrate at night and shed their wings at a new location. Usually their presence bring a musty smell. You can hear them chirping the wood. Best way to kill them is not to disturb the worker termites. The pest control people will bait them with cynide which will be brought to the queen termite. When one dies, the others will eat them and dies. Hopefully the colony is wiped out.

Well at least that is what my friend Matt told me on how he got rid of termites in his boat.

I hope you catch the bugger before they take down all the soft wood, if termites exist in your boat.

Eric
__________________

__________________
ericoh88 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:56.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.