Updated: Dec 18, 2020
What are ants?
There are over 12,000 different species of ants, but most common home-invading ants display similar behaviors and habits. Ants are small social insects that are usually dark brown, black, or reddish-brown in color. Ant colonies may have 1,000 or more individual ants all working together to provide for, take care of, and protect each other. Most ant colonies are made up of female workers, reproductive males, and either one or several queens.
In nature, ants are beneficial for the environment, as they break down decaying matter and animal remains. When ants move from nature into your home, however, they become a nuisance. Common types of home-invading ants include sugar ants, pharaoh ants, raspberry crazy ants, odorous house ants, and carpenter ants.
Are ants dangerous?
When it comes to most ant species, they can do little to no harm to you or the structural integrity of your home. However, some ants, like pharaoh ants, are known to spread harmful bacteria that cause diseases, such as Staphylococcus, Streptococcus, Clostridium, and Salmonella. These diseases are spread through the contamination of food sources, water sources, and counter surfaces. Carpenter ants are an ant species that may be “dangerous,” in the sense that they can cost you hundreds or thousands of dollars in repairs if they damage the structure of your home. Carpenter ants chew through the wood they tunnel through, but they do not eat it the way termites do. Instead, they use wooden structures to create a massive network of tunnels and nesting galleries.
Why do I have an ant problem?
Across all species of ants, the main reason ant colonies choose to invade homes is for food. Odorous house ants, pharaoh ants, raspberry crazy ants, and even carpenter ants, are all after the food sources they can find in your home. However, in the case of carpenter ants, they also invade the shelter your home can provide for them. If food is left in an area where ants can find and bring it back to their colony, it won’t be long until the whole colony moves closer to that available food source.
Where will I find ants?
Ants are always found in large colonies. If you see one ant, there’s a good chance that several more are somewhere nearby. Carpenter ants like to nest in wooden elements, such as structural beams, stumps, logs, and trees. Other species of ants may choose to nest in the ground or underneath piles of soil. Yet others like to build their colonies under sheds, porches, floorboards, and other warm, damp areas.
How do I get rid of ants?
Because of the large colonies that ants tend to live in, eliminating a dozen or more ants as you see them isn’t going to do you much good. The best way to have ants removed from your home is with a comprehensive pest control program from It’s Bugs Or Us®. We do pest control the right way – with advanced treatment methods and high-quality products. If ants are invading your home this year, trust the pest technicians here at It’s Bugs Or Us®. We’ll give you just what you need to protect your home all year round.
How can I prevent ants in the future?
As with other pests, you may face on your property, there is no true way to keep ants away without the help of a trusted pest control provider. There is good news, though! There are a few exclusionary methods you can try that may deter ants from entering your property in the first place:
Trim tree branches and large bushes away from the exterior walls of your home. Pests often use these natural bridges to get inside.
Eliminate sources of standing water. Pests such as termites, ants, and mosquitoes depend on moisture to survive.
Install door sweeps and seal any cracks around your foundation and walls that ants may be able to crawl in through.
Keep your property clean by sweeping, mopping, and wiping your countertops regularly.
Store all food items in sealed plastic containers or in the refrigerator.
At It's Bugs Or Us®, we provide a wide variety of solutions and treatment options for homes afflicted with ants or other pests. To schedule your free inspection, contact us!