Olympic Construction » Woodworm Lifecycle

Woodworm Lifecycle

Wood worm is a general term for many wood boring beetles that can infest and damage structural timber
in a buildings, floorboards, roof purling’s and paneling.

Does all wood work require treatment, the straight answer to this is NO, there are many insects which do not require treatment with insecticides.

The evidence of holes in the surface of the timber is normally what alert people to them having a wood worm problem, but the holes are infact where the insect has left the timber, as an adult.

The life cycle of a wood boring beetle.

woodworm lifecycle

The solution
As already stated not all insect infestations need insecticidal treatment, our surveyors are trained to establish the nature of the infestation, and if the insect is still active or historical. Insect infestations fall into three categories
A – Insecticidal treatment usually required.
B – Treatment necessary only to control associated wood rot.
C – No treatment required.
The surveyor will be able to provide you with the correct advice, which may be, in the case of ‘Ernobius mollis’ or bark borer beetle, no treatment required as this is a category C insect, and is only found in timbers where the bark is present, and causes little damage to the structure of the timbers.
All of them will leave some signs if you have an active woodworm infestation:
Fresh exit holes in timber – round or oval in shape with sharp edges, the holes will appear clean and fresh
Tunnels in the wood – also known as ‘galleries’ which are often hidden
Bore dust (also known as frass) – caused by emerging adult beetles, usually visible below the infested timber
Weak and damaged floorboards – in extreme cases a foot or chair leg going through the floor can indicate a more serious problem
Crumbly corners or edges – to roof joists or floorboards
Dead beetles – usually found near the infested timber or around nearby windowsills.


Our surveyors can assess the extent of any woodworm problem and offer tailored solutions to quickly and effectively solve the problem, with all our specialist woodworm treatments including long-term guarantees.
If left untreated woodworm can seriously weaken timber – which can eventually lead to structural failure of the timbers within a building.

Below are some of the most common wood boring insects which attack the timbers within our homes.


The adult and larva of the common furniture beetle ‘Anobium punctatum’ A category A insect.

Adult wood boring weevils ‘Euphryum confine’ A category B insect.