Successful treatmentwhen termites are active in buildings & structures, is an extremely important aspect of termite control. It’s not uncommon to complete a termite treatment underneath & around the substructure and exterior of a building but miss live termites or even a subsidiary nest inside the same building structure which continues to damage timber in situ.

The practice of treating subterranean termite activity in buildings and even termite nests remotely, started around 1916, when Bill Flick began dusting termites in timber fences, farm sheds and houses in the mid north coastal area of NSW with Arsenic Trioxide/Pentoxide. This practice continued for decades up until the early 2000’s and beyond.

There was a definite art in applying arsenic dust efficaciously and when done correctly, it was quite rewarding and effective at eradicating termites in buildings and timber structures but didn’t perform as successfully with eliminating termite colonies remotely (from a distance away) when the colony couldn’t be found.

Arsenic, as an inorganic Schedule 7 poison gradually fell out of favour due to health and environmental concerns. However, there are a very small number of Termiticide Dust substitutes available to the professional pest manager now.

Many experienced and knowledgeable ‘pesties’ recognise the benefits of non-repellent transferable Termiticides, along with the flexibility and ease of use associated with a dust formulation.

Sherwood Chemicals are extremely proud and excited to announce the launch of their ‘Fipforce’ Lightweight Dustable Powder Termiticide & Insecticide.

Unlike arsenic powder, this dust can be applied liberally to termite workings. The more termites dusted, the better the results.

The process involves the dust being picked up and progressively passed on from one termite to the next during the termites regular habit of grooming each other via stomodeal & proctodeal trophallaxis, all the way through to the colony queen), resulting ultimately in the gradual decline and eradication of the colony responsible for the infestation.

The dust affects the termite’s central nervous system by way of four different modes of entry.

  • The dust is picked up by the termites on their cuticle (exo-skeleton) as they move through the damaged timber
  • Ingestion of the dust while feeding on the timber & while grooming themselves
  • Transferring the dust from one to another during the termite’s regular habit of grooming each other (called stomodeal & proctodeal trophallaxis), whereby bacteria, proteins, nutrients and the Fipforce Dust are interchanged all the way through to the queen, resulting ultimately, in the decline and eradication of the colony responsible for the infestation.
  • Ingesting more of the dust when cannibalising dead termites which have succumbed to the treatment.

Just like most facets of pest management, there is a right and a wrong way to successfully Apply a transferable dust termiticide. ‘Fipforce’ Lightweight Dustable Powder is no different. To This end, Sherwood will be offering TRAINING in the correct use of Fipforce Dust as product support for their valued pest manager clients.

There are TWO OBJECTS with ‘Fipforce’ Lightweight Dustable Powder:

  1. Eliminate existing termite activity in structures (framing, decking, fencing, poles, wharves, bridges, etc)
  2. Remotely eradicate the termite colony responsible for the activity (which is usually more difficult)

Some CRUCIAL CRITERIA for successful dusting:

  • Excavated timbers (termite damage). Hollowed out or excavations in timber is where dusts should be applied
  • Termites should still be actively feeding
  • Minimal disturbance (as little as possible)
  • Termite leads and galleries should only be dusted as a last resort


  • Fipforce Dust is effective on ALL economically important Australian termite species
  • Fipforce Dust is transferable (termites assist with their own demise)
  • Fipforce Dust is NON-REPELLENT (termites don’t detect it and don’t avoid it)
  • Fipforce Dust can be used where other formulation cannot
  • Fipforce Dust is Ideal for termite tree colonies