Buddhist monks dropped their ban on killing and called in exterminators to squash an onslaught of termites that devoured half of their mountaintop temple in eastern China, a Shanghai newspaper said Wednesday.

The pesky wood-munchers gnawed through 60 percent of the ancient wood of the Putuo Palace, a Buddhist temple near the lakeside resort of Hangzhou, the Xinmin Evening News said."The followers of Buddhism, who are normally charitable, are unable to bear the continued harassment of the termites," Xinmin said.