Ants

What are ants?

Ants are small but mighty insects. Their ability to work together for the greater good of the colony is unparalleled. Members of an ant colony divide members into different groups (queen(s), workers, and males), each group with specific jobs to help the colony succeed.

The queen(s) and males are the only winged members of an ant colony; their jobs are to mate and produce new colony members. A colony can have just one queen or many.

The workers are sterile females and wear many hats. Workers gather food for the colony, defend the colony and nest, maintain the nest, and help raise the young ants. Worker ants are the ants we see regularly; they are the ants wandering through our lawns, gardens, and kitchens. 

close up of black ant

With more than 12,000 different ant species worldwide, there are many variations in size, color, habitat, food preferences, and behaviors. However, a few things all ants have in common include:

  • Three distinct body parts: head, abdomen, and thorax
  • A pronounced constriction, or “waist,” between the abdomen and thorax
  • Six legs, with each of the legs having three joints
  • Elbowed antennae
  • Strong, powerful jaws used for chewing or biting
  • Unparalleled strength (ants can lift 20 times their body weight)

Are ants dangerous?

Ants don’t just ruin picnics; they can cause damage to our lawn and homes. Ants create nesting mounds of dirt in our lawns, which are not only unsightly to look at but make mowing difficult. In addition, some ant species bite, sting and are aggressive; just walking past a nest may cause a painful attack.

Before traveling through your home, ants were outside searching for food in piles of trash, around drains, food debris, and other less than sanitary places. After finding a way inside, they introduce the bacteria they come into contact with to our food, food prep areas, and other surfaces.

When ants invade our indoor and outdoor spaces, they tend to do so in large numbers, making them very difficult to deal with and eliminate. Also, if ants are in your home, it means other pests can move inside through the same entry points.

Another reason to keep ants out of your home is that some can cause structural damage by tunneling through and nesting inside structural wood.

Why do I have an ant problem?

Ants are social and live together in large colonies. Feeding colony members is a huge undertaking; when ants find a suitable food source, they alert the other colony members by leaving a pheromone trail. If ants have discovered food in your yard or home, they won’t leave without a fight.

Ants are omnivores and feed on many of the same food we do, which is why they are attracted to crumbs and spilled liquids in trash cans and recycling bins, gardens, and kitchen and pantry areas.

The warm weather found in Alabama and Florida allows ants and other pests to be active for most of the year, making them a constant source of frustration.

Where will I find ants?

Ants typically create multiple nesting areas to house the colony’s many members. They build their main nest somewhere outside, and then numerous satellite nests are constructed in both outdoor and indoor locations.

Ants often move indoors while foraging for food, or if the weather becomes unsuitable for them to live comfortably. Ants build outdoor nesting locations in various locations, including in or under fallen trees and tree stumps, in woodpiles, under mulch or landscaping ties, or in open spaces like lawns or fields.

Inside our homes, ants often like to nest in areas where there is excess moisture, such as in wall voids near leaky pipes, around air conditioners, near windows or doors, and in crawlspaces.

How do I get rid of ants?

At EnSec, we provide our customers with exceptional residential and commercial pest control services. We make getting rid of pests easy! We take pride in working closely with our customers to treat current pest problems and implement the preventative measures necessary to avoid future issues with ants and other pests. If you would like to learn more about our comprehensive ant control solutions, contact us today!

How can I prevent ants in the future?

Take steps to help prevent ants from becoming a problem on your Florida or Alabama property using our prevention tips. Some of the easiest things you can do to guard your home against ants include:

  • Replace loose weatherstripping and install door sweeps on exterior doors to help keep ants out of your home.
  • Regularly inspect the outside of your house, sealing any openings you find in exterior walls, foundation, and roofline.
  • Eliminate water sources by repairing leaky pipes, fixing drippy fixtures, and using dehumidifiers to rid your home of excess moisture.
  • Keep your sink free of dirty dishes, your counter free of crumbs, and regularly sweep and wash floors.
  • Keep lids on trash cans, recycling bins, and compost bins.
  • Pick up uneaten pet food and regularly clean out their bowls.

Learn about our home pest control and lawn care services.

 

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