Is there a need for re-sealing cut ends of envelope-treated softwood framing timber to protect against attack from Coptotermes spp. (Isoptera)?

IRG/WP 04-10524

M Lenz, J W Creffield, S Runko

The claim that Australian Coptotermes acinaciformis (Froggatt) do not appear to initiate attack on timber from the end grain, thereby negating the need for treating exposed cut ends of softwood framing material (35 x 90mm) which has a Tanalith™ T envelope, was investigated. Specimens of commercial Pinus radiata framing timber (untreated) and Pinus elliottii (untreated, envelope-treated) were partially enclosed in fine stainless steel mesh. Either cut ends (cuts at angles from 90° to 15º) or the sides of specimens were exposed to termites at three field sites in Australia: northern tropics (Darwin, NT), subtropical southeast coast (Brisbane, QLD) and temperate south-eastern inland (Griffith, NSW). C. acinaciformis is common at all sites. Results to date showed that this species of termite readily attacks timber from the end grain, including exposed cut ends of envelope-treated material. The patterns of attack observed for Coptotermes are similar to those of a number of other pest species of termites.

Keywords: Coptotermes, softwoods, envelope treatment

Conference: 04-06-06/10 Ljubljana, Slovenia

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