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When you were growing up, did you lay in the grass and watch the clouds as they danced across the sky? Did you sit in the grass and watch the ants near you? If you observed ants, you probably noticed they were carrying objects as they scurried about in the grass. Although you did not understand what the ants were doing, it appeared they were on a mission in their world. 
 
While we are busy in our own lives, ants are active in a world of their own beneath our feet. While we know that our two worlds must interact to maintain balance in nature, there is a boundary we do not want ants to cross. When ants invade our houses and businesses, when our two worlds collide, we have a problem. 
 
If ants are in your home, secure the Fort Worth pest control team from All-Safe Pest & Termite. We have been removing ants from homes since 1984. We answer common questions about ants in this article so you can learn how they become a problem in our homes and what you can do to stop them.

The Role Ants Play In Our Ecosystem

 

We may not feel ants impact our world because of their size, but they play a significant part in the ecosystem. As a child, you probably had moments when ants crawled on you while having fun in the yard, and you did not worry about it. You have probably swept ants off the picnic table with your bare hands, not fearing a painful bite; it is doubtful you thought of ants as predators! 
 
While we do not think of ants as predators, they are the leading vultures of other insects. Some ant species consume termites, while others enjoy crickets, grasshoppers, cockroaches, flies, mealworms, earwigs, and cute butterflies for dinner. Ants not only eat dead insects, but some ants kill their prey, including other ants. For example, black ants attack other ant colonies; when food is scarce, some ants become cannibalistic! Ants are omnivores, which means they eat about anything from meat and plants to sugary foods. Ants will eat whatever food source is available. 
 
Conversely, ants are prey for other pests. Spiders catch ants in their webs and kill and eat the soft part of the insect. Of course, you have probably heard about anteaters and the weird-looking aardvarks who eat ants. Other animals that consume ants are bears, downy woodpeckers, wild turkeys, and hummingbirds. Last but not least, some humans eat ants because ants are a great source of protein. Ants are both predators and prey in our ecosystem. 
 
Another role ants play is that of environmental cleaners. Ants eat and clear away dead insects and plant materials. Ants fertilize the soil replenishing it with nutrients from their feces. Ants are earth movers transporting seeds and soil and dispersing plants to new locations. Ants loosen the soil and aerate it as they build nests allowing water and air to penetrate the ground. 
 
The downside to ants is that if the population becomes too concentrated and dense, they can negatively impact other insects and animals in the area. Ants will eventually move into your Fort Worth home resulting in the need for ant control from All-Safe Pest & Termite if your property is full of ants. The reason you are reading this article may be because the ant population is out-of-balance around your home. 

All The Problems Ants Can Cause In The House

 

It is possible ants may negatively affect the ecosystem around your Fort Worth home, but if they enter your abode, they certainly will upset the world inside your house. Ant control in your house is necessary for the following reasons: 

 

  • Ants can destroy property: Unlike termites, carpenter ants do not eat wood but use it as a place to build nests by boring holes into the wood. Carpenter ants invade yards with dead tree stumps, rotting landscape timbers, and water-damaged fences or porch posts. When the nest reaches maturity, they send out reproductives who establish new nests in moist areas of the house like the crawlspace. Years of constant boring through the wood eventually results in sagging floors, warped window and door frames, and collapsing structures creating expensive repairs. 
  • Ants can spread disease: Pharaoh ants in your Fort Worth home can expose your family to disease-causing organisms. These light yellow to orange ants transmit pathogens like salmonella, streptococcus, pseudomonas, and clostridium. The bacteria can be spread from their bodies as they travel across surfaces; open wounds on the body attract pharaoh ants, which give access to pathogen spread.
  • Ants can inflict painful stings. Fire ants are a problem in Texas, and a sting from one of these reddish-brown ants is painful and creates a red welt with a white pustule. Unfortunately, this ant species is aggressive, swarming out of the nest en masse to attack pets and humans who disturb their sanctuary.
  • Ants contaminate food. Ants travel over rotting food, animal feces, and other unsanitary areas with bacteria and germs on the surface. As the ants travel over those places, disease-causing organisms attach themselves to the insects. Later, when they crawl over food products, exposed foods, kitchen countertops, inside kitchen drawers, and cooking surfaces, the pathogens contaminate the foods, products, or area. Although ants, other than pharaoh ants, are not known to spread disease, they contaminate foods. 
  • Ants can be a fire hazard. Electrical wires attract some ant species, like tawny crazy ants. When swarms of these ants invade electronic equipment and appliances in the house, they can destroy circuitry and ruin machines. Dead plant material, soil, and other matter ants bring into Fort Worth homes are often laden with moisture. When a massive ant group invades appliances, electronic components, or electrical boxes, water from the imported soil particles can cause a short circuit. Ants chew on the exterior sheath over wires and, over time, will trip circuit breakers and cause wiring damage.

 

All-Safe Pest & Termite provides ant control solutions to protect your family and pets from painful stings, costly repairs, disease, and food contamination. 

How And Why Ants Find Their Way Into Your Home

 

Let's answer the first question, "How do ants get into my house?" Ants enter Fort Worth homes through the following: 

 

  • Foundation cracks and gaps between incoming pipes and wires
  • Joints between window and door frames and masonry or siding
  • Poorly installed or settled outdoor electrical boxes
  • Openings underneath doors without a door sweep
  • Unscreened attic and crawlspace vents
  • Open exterior doors and garage doors
  • Holes in window and door screens
  • Gaps around soffits and skylights

 

Ants are tiny and can fit the smallest of openings. Ant prevention tips include sealing cracks, gaps, and holes with caulk, installing door sweeps, and repairing window and door screens. 
 
The answer to the other question, "Why do ants enter my house?" consists of four parts: food, water, shelter, and warmth. Ants enter Fort Worth homes for protection. Carpenter ants, for example, enter homes when the primary outdoor nest is mature and too large because they need a new location for shelter. 
 
Ants like to live in dark places; they create nests in electrical boxes, wall voids, spaces between door and window frames, crawlspaces, attics, basements, insulation, and other dimly lit areas. Ants enter homes to keep warm. Although the temperatures in Fort Worth are toasty most of the year, we have periods of cold weather in the winter. Ants, like many pests, want to stay warm, and when outdoor temperatures plummet, heat wafting out of houses attracts them. 
 
Food is a primary reason ants enter homes. When a home has crumbs on the floor, exposed pet food, or open indoor garbage cans, ants enter and create nearby nests in walls, under appliances, etc. What if you maintain a clean house and still have ants? A high insect population is another draw for ants since they eat insects. In some cases, ants spread pheromones alerting other ants of food sources in your house, and before long, you have a trail of ants marching into your Fort Worth house to eat dinner. Along with food, ants enter homes to get hydrated. Ants need water for survival and gather near drains, leaky pipes, the soil of potted plants, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and other humid places in the home. 
 
Effective ant control from All-Safe Pest & Termite will stop ants from entering and staying in your Fort Worth home. 

The Secret Weapon To Total Ant Control For Fort Worth Homes

 

All-Safe Pest & Termite provides ant control in Fort Worth. Our technicians will inspect your home to determine hot spots, entry points, and attractions. We will treat your location with care using safe, low-toxicity products to remove ants inside your house and to create a barrier to keep ants from entering. Contact us and get your free estimate today!

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