5 Signs You May Need Ant Control
Inspection is the first crucial step in ant control. Even if they have not entered your home, ant colonies can be right outside. It is best to keep outdoor ants further away from the perimeter because during rainy days, those colonies of ants will seek shelter in your residence and may never return outside where they belong. Here are some signs you can look for that may indicate that you need ant control. If you see any of these signs give us a call to see how we can help.
If you leave a crumb on the floor, are there ants around it within the hour? If dropped food or produce on the counter is quickly overrun by ants – you have an ant problem. Be sure to store food in airtight containers or sealed in the refrigerator.
Note: Check Your Pet’s Food Dish
Most people are neat and tidy, and don’t leave food out and keep food sealed tight, but many forget about their pet’s food dish. You may not realize an ant problem until you look around their pet’s food bowl and find tiny ants eating leftover pet food.
- Visible Ants
The most obvious sign of ants, is seeing them. While one ant sneaking inside you home on your shoe is harmless, more than one may indicate a colony somewhere in the interior of your home. A single ant colony can be a large as a 500,000 ants.
Specific species of ants emit a strong odor. Odorous House Ants, to no surprise, smell pungent like blue cheese. While other think they smell like turpentine. On the other hand, if thousands of ants are inside your walls and under floorboards, then you may detect the smell of death as colonies of ants perish and decay.
- Saw Dust
If you see what looks like saw dust along the outside of wood furniture or windowsills you may not have termites, but ants. Carpenter Ants will burrow in wood just like dirt, pushing leftovers from their tunnels. If you have any damaged wood from wood boring insects, A-1 can help with wood repair as well with our team of licensed, expert craftsmen.
- Ant “Pathways”
Ants have astonishingly organized colonies. To gather food, they leave scent trails to guide worker ants to collect food. They also leave scent trails when migrating to new nests. Ants migrate often because they prefer to stay clean. If their nest becomes to overrun with waste, they move to a new nest. This makes them harder to track and eliminate as they often have multiple nests. Along these scented ant pathways you may see ant waste that look tiny crumbs of dirt. On the upside, these pathways can be traced back to the nests, helping us find the source of the problem.
Odds are, you won’t find an ant nest in your home. Ants prefer to burrow, so most likely, you will find their nests within the dirt around the perimeter of your home with a main ant-entrance to your interior: a crack, or a gap in siding, space under a door or crevice beside a window.
Ant Control: Types of Ants
Acrobat ants get their name because they can raise their abdomen over their thorax and head, like an acrobat. They are known to strip the insulation from electrical or telephone wires, which can cause short circuits. Acrobat ants have stingers and will bite with their mandibles. The initial sting or bite causes instant pain followed by itching and skin irritation (but not as bad as the fire ant.) Still do not try and pick them up and keep them away from your pets if seen.
More about Acrobat Ants
Carpenter ants will leave discarded wood shavings where they have burrowed. These ants will live off wood, not by eating it, but by eating fungi growing from within the moistened wood. Carpenter ants will do a lot of damage in a very short time.
More About Carpenter Ants
Pavement Ants are found anywhere underneath cement. They prefer to be outside, but a garage leading into a house makes it easy for pavement ants to become an interior nuisance. Check for cracks around the foundation of the property so you don’t let pavement ants into your home or business. They are not a harmful threat, but they are a nuisance pest. They colonize in large numbers and leave nowhere for the children to play on the ground. Call A-1 to have them cleared away for a better outdoor experience.
More About Pavement Ants
Fire Ants are aggressive and will bite and inject their venom with little to no threat. Their bite is known to cause an extreme burning pain and usually sends their victims to the emergency room. Their bite is even more dangerous and may be lethal to dogs, cats, and other companion animals.
More About Fire Ants
Seasonal ongoing treatments can be placed around the perimeter of the property to maintain ant control of all the above ants. It is much easier to treat the property before it is attacked. Call A-1 Bonded to help with ant control at the first sign of an infestation.