What are ants?
Ants are some of the most common pests to cause problems for homeowners. These pests are social insects that live and work together in large groups. Ants vary in color and size depending on their specific species and only the reproductive members are winged. In our area, two species of ants that property owners need to be especially aware of are carpenter ants and fire ants. Of all the ants found in our area of Texas, these two are by far the most dangerous species, but in very different ways.
Carpenter ants are some of the largest species of household invading ants, and are most often black in color, but some species can be a combination of black, red, and yellow in color. Carpenter ants like to nest in water-damaged or decaying pieces of wood, aiding in the decomposition of dead or decaying trees and organic matter.
Fire ants are a small species of ant, and are dark brown to red in color. These ants are commonly known for being invasive and for their aggressive behavior.
Are ants dangerous?
Many ant species are considered nuisance pests and pose no significant dangers to people or property, while other species are a danger to both. For example, carpenter ants pose no danger to people, but they pose a significant threat to the structures of homes and other buildings with their wood-destroying habits. These ants create their main nests outside, but often find their way inside homes while foraging for food. Once inside, they are drawn to structural wood that has been damaged by water, tunneling through it and create satellite nests near food sources (kitchen and pantry areas). Over time, these nesting habits can damage the structure of a home.
Fire ants, on the other hand, don’t pose a real threat to structures, but are a major threat to the health and safety of people and pets. These ants are aggressive and will attack anything they view as a threat to their colony. Simply walking by their nest could lead them to attack! Fire ants attack in groups, repeatedly stinging their victims. These stings are painful and the venom they inject is strong enough to cause serious allergic reactions in people including triggering anaphylaxis which will require immediate medical attention.
Why do I have an ant problem?
Ants are attracted to properties that offer them easy access to food, water, and shelter sources. Attractants such as trash cans, compost piles, tree stumps, fallen trees, leaf litter, gardens, moist soil, and clogged gutters can all draw invading ants to your property. When living outside, ants often find their way inside homes through cracks and crevices in foundations and exterior walls while foraging for food. In addition, they may also be inclined to move inside if the weather outside becomes too hot, dry, or wet.
Where are ants commonly found?
Ants can be found nesting in a variety of different locations and where they choose to nest will depend on their exact species. Fire ants typically create their nests in sunny, wide open areas, and they avoid building nests in wooded areas or areas with a lot of shade. These ants commonly build their nesting mounds in the middle of lawns and are rarely found inside homes. If they do move inside, they usually do so through heating and air-conditioning systems.
When living outdoors, carpenter ants can be found nesting in damp areas such as underneath fallen trees, in trees stumps, or underneath wood piles. When living inside homes, these ants will tunnel into the home's structural wood, commonly nesting in the moist wood found behind walls, under floors, and above ceilings.
How do I get rid of ants?
The easiest way to completely eliminate ants and prevent re-infestation is with the help of a highly-trained pest control professional. Here at Bug Head Pest Control, our experienced professionals provide the comprehensive services needed to find and eliminate all the ants living on your property or inside your home as well as prevent them from returning. If you are looking for exceptional ant control services in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, reach out to us at Bug Head Pest Control!
How can I prevent ants in the future?
Want to avoid ant problems on your property? The following tips can help to reduce your chances of attracting ants into your yard:
Inspect the exterior of your home, foundation, siding, windows, doors, and areas where utilities are entering your home and seal any gaps found.
Use dehumidifiers or air-conditioners to reduce the humidity levels in your home.
Repair leaky outdoor or indoor faucets, fixtures, and pipes to reduce excess moisture build-up.
Remove structural wood from your home that has been damaged by water.
Make sure that outdoor trash cans have tight-fitting or locking lids on them.
Trim back trees, bushes, and other landscaping away from the outside of your home.
Remove fallen trees, trees stumps, and other organic debris from your property.
Create a stone or crushed rock barrier between mulch or grass and the foundation of your home.
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