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Insect Infestation

Common Furniture Beetle Woodworm / Anobium Punctatum

The most common wood destroying beetle found in British buildings today is the Common Furniture Beetle Anobium punctatum. This insect commonly occurs outdoors infesting dead tree trunks, branches and other forms of exposed timber but, the main cause for concern is its ability to infest indoor timbers in a variety of situations.

Adult beetles emerge from timber in the spring and summer (May-September). Very soon after mating the female beetle lays approximately 30 eggs, often into cracks and crevices in the timber she has just vacated. Usually within a month the eggs hatch and the young grubs begin burrowing into the timber. Here they remain for between two and four years slowly eating and burrowing beneath the surface of the wood. Eventually the mature lava excavates a pupation chamber just beneath the surface of the wood. Following the pupation process the adult beetle cuts a hole in the surface of the timber and emerges to start the process once more. It is the appearance of new emergence holes and the dust (frass) that falls from them that often indicates the presence of an active infestation of woodworm.

The woodworm beetle is significant because given the right conditions it can infest a wide variety of timber products including structural building timbers, furniture and wooden ornaments. If left unchecked infestations can lead to severe structural weakening and eventually total collapse.


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