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    Description

    In the natural ecosystem, wood residues are recycled into the nutrient web through the action of wood-degrading fungi, insects, and other organisms. In some circumstances, these same natural recyclers have the potential to degrade wood used in construction. Termites and decay fungi are the most destructive, but other organisms, such as wood boring beetles and carpenter ants, can be important in some regions. Several types of marine organisms can attack wood used in brackish water and saltwater. If conditions are favorable for the survival of one or more of these wood- destroying organisms, wood that has natural durability or that has been treated with preservatives should be employed to ensure the integrity of the structure.

    Publication Notes

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    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.

    Citation

    Lebow, Stan T.; White, Robert H. 2007. Durability of wood in construction. Marks' standard handbook for mechanical engineers. New York : McGraw Hill, c2007: pages 6.129-6.131.

    Keywords

    Wood, flammability, building materials, wood moisture, biodegradation, wood construction, wood preservatives, deterioration, wood-decaying fungi, insect pests, weathering, decay fungi, preservatives, durability, service life, fire resistance

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https://www.fs.usda.gov/treesearch/pubs/34298