Ants can be difficult to get rid of once they’ve established a colony, simply based on sheer numbers. However, it’s important to control an infestation if you’ve noticed signs of ants in your home or business in order to prevent any problems.
There are more than 800 species of ants in the United States, with well over 100 types of ants calling South Carolina home. The black carpenter ant, pavement ant, pharaoh ant, odorous house ant, Argentine ant, and thief ant are some of the most common species. Carpenter ants, pavement ants, and pharaoh ants are responsible for most of the problems in American homes.
Ants are pretty easy to recognize. Most are black, dark brown, red, or tan in color, and measure 1.5 mm to 13 mm in length. An ant’s body is divided into three parts: the head, thorax, and abdomen, and an ant has six legs. Only reproductive ants have wings.
Most ant colonies build their nests in soil, but some species will tunnel into wood to create nesting chambers. Ants will leave their nests in search of food, which is readily available in nearby homes.
Why Do I Have an Ant Problem?
Ants leave their nest to forage for food to take back to the colony. Because ants are attracted to the sugary foods, meats, and greasy treats that humans often enjoy, they frequently make their way into nearby homes. Ants may also enter your home in search of a water source, or to seek refuge from the elements.
If ants are entering your home, it’s likely due to cracks in the walls or foundation of your home. There might also be other gaps and small openings that make for an easy point of entry for a nearby ant colony. Scout ants leave a scent trail to mark their path, which makes it easy for worker ants to follow once a food source is detected.
Are Ants Dangerous?
Generally speaking, ants are more of a nuisance than a danger. That said, there are some dangerous ants out there, and some very real concerns to keep in mind. Certain species of ants, such as carpenter ants, can cause damage to your home that could be incredibly dangerous if not dealt with. Some species of ants can transmit diseases, while others inflict a painful bite or sting.
What Sort of Problems Do Ants Cause?
An ant infestation can cause a number of problems in and around your home, including:
- Spoiling of food
- Destruction of wooden structures (carpenter ants)
- Damage to lawns and gardens
- Unstable or weakened foundation (pavement ants)
- Stings or bites
- Release of unpleasant smell (odorous house ants)
- Attracts other pests
How Worried Should I Be About Ants?
While ants are generally little more than a nuisance, colonies can grow exponentially in very little time, making them extremely difficult to get rid of. In order to stop an ant infestation in its tracks, you need a professional pest control service.
Where Do You Find Ants?
Ants frequently establish colonies in highly populated areas, as they’re attracted to easily available sources of food and water. Since they often nest in soil, they’ll take up residence anywhere there’s dirt. Unfortunately, that means that you’ll find ants pretty much everywhere in South Carolina. You may notice a line of ants marching in through a gap around a door or window, or you may spot them enjoying a little snack on your kitchen counter.
How Do I Get Rid of Ants?
There are a number of do-it-yourself methods to get rid of ants, including baits, traps, and pesticides. Not only are most of these products ineffective, some may even be hazardous to your health. If you need to get rid of ants, it’s always best to call a professional pest control company that can safely eliminate the problem for you.
How Do I Prevent Ants From Coming Back?
Once you’ve gotten rid of your unwelcome houseguests it’s important to take steps to make sure they don’t get comfortable and take up residence in your home or business again. Start by making sure that all food items in the pantry are sealed. Remove any sources of wet wood from around the property. Finally, ensuring that the area in and around the trash remains clean will discourage any more ants from invading your home.
At Putman Pest Management, we know ants. We know how to identify them and we know how best to treat an infestation. We also know how to prevent ants from coming back. Even if you’re not sure what type of ant you’re dealing with, we can help. Explore our pest library to learn how to identify common pests like ants, what attracts them to your property, how to get rid of them, and how to keep them out. From common house bugs to tiny pests and crawling insects, our pest control services keep your home or office pest-free. Simple and safe, our treatments offer convenient protection that will treat and prevent ants. Contact us today for your free estimate.