Formosin Termite USA infestation spread by Indians, Trading Post, mail, Cuba, Everglades Marco Island, Chokoloskee City, US Post Office Box 310, Everglade City, and “Smallwood Store” known as “Ole Indian Trading Post” in early 1900′s. “Cleveland Home Inspector Marko Vovk” traveled to Fort Myers, Marco Island, Naples, Estrus Florida, Everglade City, and Chokoloskee Island. He visited, Alligator Alley, Koreshan Unity Settlement, Dr. Cyrus Teed century home, Watsons Place, Swamp Buggy Race track at the Swamp Buggie Sippy Hole, and it was not until his last stop at the Smallwood Store also known as the Smallwood Trading Post or Ole Indian Trading Post that he discovered where and how the Formosin Termites entered the America.
American Subterranean Termite travel up into the home through mud shelter tubes. “The Formosan Termite” which can have millions of termites only needs humidty, some warmth, and lives in the walls of the home.. The Formosan Termite which originated from China was transported to Formosa Taiwan where it got its name. The termite was then transported to Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and finally Cuba in mid 1800′s. We decided to head to the everglades. We traveled US highway 41 also known as “The Tamiamai Trail” which was constructed in 1928.This Highway which was full of alligators and conveniently called “Alligator Alley, we stopped at Everglade City in a town called Estrus Florida, to check out the “Koreshan Unity Settlement” which was once run by Dr. Cyrus Teed, a cult leader who convinced hundreds of people in late 1800′s, to live in a communistic community. This cult believed that the earth was hollow and that sun, moon, seven planets, and the universe existed on the inside of the earth. We inspected all five of these 100 year old Koreshan structures and only found a few red ant or “flying ant” colonies.
We stopped at the Naples “Swamp Buggy Race Track”. Swamp Buggies are known as “Tumble Bugs” were used in the Everglades in the 1930s because they traveled dry land, shallow mud, sand, shallow water, through dense vegetation, over logs and they floated. This “Mile O Mud” or 7/8 of a mile round tack with one diagonal lane through the middle had three hidden deep mud drops with the largest called the Sippy Hole were some buggies can stall or get stuck. While at the race, one of the Swamp Buggy Beauty Queens said we should charter a boat and travel to the 10,000 everglade islands to look for these termites.
We passed tourist trap Air Boat rides and ended at the furthest boat rental area in the everglades on Chokoloskee Island. Our captain was a 5th generation native named Captain Corey Mac. He took us too several Everglade islands to search for this termite. We did find the famous outlaw Mr. Watson’s Place where a century ago he manufactured sugar cane syrup. Edgar “Bloody” Watson whom now a book about him has called “Killing Mister Watson” would hire transient people to work and when they asked for payment, he killed them. After this serial killer who possibly was one of Jesse James Outlaws that was hiding from the law in the Everglades killed over 50 people, he was gunned down by 33 bullets from locals of Chololoskee Island. We saw endangered species like the “Bald Eagle”, Roseate Spoonbill, several and manatees. Our final stop was famous “Smallwood’s Trading Post”", Ole Indian Trading Post and Museum” which is now a historical site. We noticed a wax figure of the original owner of this trading post named Ted Smallwood. In 1891, Ted Smallwood started the post office box 310 and used the store for the local island gatherings, and mail sorting.
Ted Smallwood would trade with the Indians and with Cuba; He received mail for the locals, and delivered mail to Marco Island and other Gulf Cities. While examining the Post Office area, we noticed it was made of old wood mail and trading crates. Looking more closely, we notice structural damage done by Formosan Termites because of the fecal pellets that were left behind in their destructive galleries. Ted Smallwood may have obtained these Formosan Termites from Cuba in wood crates. These termites were then transported to Marco Island and other Gulf Cities through the mail service. So now, you know the story, China, Taiwan, Japan, Hawaii, and Cuba Ted Smallwood Trading Post, Marco Island, and then the Gulf Cities, with heavy infestation in Baton Rouge Louisiana. Now 100 years later, this Formosan Termite has started to infest the northern states of America. Ohio has already had numerous Formosan termite Infestations. If you think, you have a better story, go ahead, and put in the comment section.
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Formosin Termite USA Infestation Spread by Indians Trading Post Mail Cuba in Everglades Chokoloskee