Welcome to our section on the dreaded termite. Make no mistake, here in Alice Springs as is the case in most of Australia, this little critter can cause you more grief and heartache than you can possibly imagine.

Unfortunately for a lot of people these guys do their job in silence and undetected until it’s too late. In our experience we have found that a lot of home owners, although aware and concerned about termites, do little if anything to prevent their attack.

It seems like termites are put into the ‘I’ll worry about it if it happens to me’ category. In most cases this results in large amounts of damage being caused and as a result a large bill to not only repair, but treat the infestation.


We don’t intend to get technical about what termite species there are and what treatments are available as we would rather help people than confuse them. Having said this we will now explain a few things about this insect and give you tips and ideas on how to reduce the risk of termite attack.

There are over 300 different species of termite but only a few are regarded as dangerous to our property. In Alice Springs the main trouble makers are a species of Coptoterme spp and Scheddorhino termes Spp (that’s as technical as we are going to get).

These guys are in most cases responsible for the hard mud that you see around the base and upper parts of the trees and stumps around town (now there’s a tip). If you have this mud on or at the base of any of your trees, then you should have it inspected by us to ascertain if it is a termite colony. The other type of damage that you might see is to any timber fences or pieces of wood that are in contact with the ground. You might see mud tubes running up them.

In some cases it is the nasty ones having a feed and in others it is a species called Heterotermes Spp or Nasutitermes Spp, known as ‘bush’ termites. These little fellows are prevalent in Alice Springs and are the major cause of minor damage to fences etc. They sometimes enter homes but generally cause only minor damage in most cases. Once again, if you see something like this then please call us so we can come out and identify the species and give you an honest assessment of what is required to treat them.

There is one other species which we will briefly discuss but it only applies to people living on or above the Tropic of Capricorn. (about 30km north of town and above to Darwin). This is the Mastoterme Spp or giant termite. This is a big bloke, roughly ten times the size of what we have in town and can destroy a house within weeks if left untreated and if the colony is large. Thankfully we don’t have these guys in town. If you live in Tennant Creek, Barkly, etc, you will have these guys around somewhere.

In relation to treatments, we offer free quotes, tips and advice for individual problems. We always recommend 6 to 12 monthly termite inspections and will always give you an honest assessment of what needs to be done.

If nests are located in trees, it is a simple and inexpensive process to eliminate them, so don’t worry if you think you have one.


If you think that you may have a problem or would like more advice, please call us on 08- 8953 5562 or email us on redcentre.pestcontrol@rentokil-initial.com