Capricorn beetle treatment

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Treating timber against the Capricorn beetle: interest and steps

The Capricorn beetle, from its Greek name Hylotrupes bajulus (that drills wood) is a xylophagous larva insect of the Cerambycidae family in the order of the coleoptera.  Its larvae especially like resinous timber, especially when it has already been processed (i.e. bark removed and sawed), and therefore readily grows in the timber used in housing. The application of a suitable Capricorn beetle treatment therefore makes it possible to make the timber used in the interior design and the structure of the building better withstand Capricorn beetle larvae attacks.

Growth of Capricorn beetle larvae in timber materials

Once Capricorn larvae have been laid in the timber, they feed on the cellulose, causing damage that can lead to the loss of the mechanical properties of the timber elements under attack. In the case of a roof structure for example, the collapse of the roof can be envisaged.

A Capricorn beetle larva measures from 3 mm to 22mm at the end of its growth cycle. A Capricorn beetle larva remains in its larval state for an average of 3 years. This can extend to 10 years depending on the exposure of the timber element it occupies (damp and surrounding temperature) and of the composition of the wood (nutrient value). It travels at an average of 8 to 10 mm per day inside the timber.
A sign of the presence of Capricorn beetle larvae is sawdust in the form of tiny cylinders and, sometimes, of 8 to 10 mm wide holes at the surface of the timber. A nibbling noise can also be heard.
At the end of its larval phase, Capricorn beetle larvae transform into nymphs, then come out of the timber element through a hole as an adult insect, which means they are ready to reproduce and lay new larvae in the timber. They survives as an adult insect for only about twenty days.

Treating timber against Capricorn beetle larvae

Timber is treated against Capricorn beetle larvae by surface application and, in the case of a serious attack, by injection.
The application of the surface treatment creates an effective barrier on the timber element that will prevent the larvae that are laid from growing. Indeed, Capricorn beetles access the material from the outside and lay their larvae in the grooves or holes at the surface of the timber.

The injection of the treatment into the timber is used when the wood is under attack from Capricorn larvae. Once inside the timber, the treatment will have an insecticide effect on the larvae. It is also preferable to inject the treatment into the different elements that compose a wood or timber structure (roof structure, furniture, etc.). As the larvae move inside the timber, it is not always possible to detect their presence in all timber elements. .

Finally, the application of a treatment against Capricorn beetles by an approved professional guarantees that timber materials will have a performance level to withstand Capricorn beetle larvae for at least 10 years.