There are three primary steps to keep ants out of your Plano home permanently. You must address conducive conditions, seal entry points, and apply deterrents. Let's look at common ant pests in Plano and discuss the dangers of having ants in your home. Then, let's look at DIY ant prevention tips, how to apply outdoor ant control, and what effective ant control looks like in Plano. If you have questions about ant pest control and prevention, you will find some helpful tips here! As always, remember that you can jump to our contact page or call us for ant control and general pest control in Jacksonville. Our knowledgeable and helpful service team members look forward to helping you find the best solutions.
The Many Types Of Ants That Can Invade Your Home
Ants come in many shapes and sizes. It is often hard to tell them apart because they're all relatively small, and most are dark brown or black. Let's take a quick look at each ant pests in our area and some quick ways to differentiate them.
Acrobat Ants: These little pests are known for ability to acrobatically raise their abdomen over their thorax and head, especially when disturbed. They are incredibly annoying and hard to control. Acrobat ant workers are about 1/8 of an inch long and range in color from light yellow-brown to black and some are muti-colored. Acrobat Ants may emit a foul odor if they feel threatened.
Carpenter Ants: You may not see these ants because they are typically nocturnal. If you do, take notice of their size. A carpenter ant worker is the largest worker ant you'll see. They range from 1/4 to 1/2 of an inch long. They are black or reddish with black abdomens. Certain species will look like fire ant alates after they've shed their wings because alates are typically twice the size of the workers. Keep this in mind.
Crazy Ants: These are tiny ants that invade in large (and somewhat scary) numbers. If you see a bunch of swarming ants and the first thing you think is, "Wow. That's crazy." You're probably looking at crazy ants. Watch how they move if you need more help telling these ants from other ants. The movement pattern of crazy ants is erratic. If you see tiny, erratic-moving ants or a clump of ants in a large biomass, you probably have crazy ants.
Fire Ants: These ants are reddish-colored and may have a dark brown abdomen, depending on the species. You can also tell that you have fire ants when you see their mounds in sunny areas of your yard and find red ants crawling around on the ground.
Odorous House Ants: We could tell you that odorous house ants are 1/16 to 1/8 of an inch long or that they are dark brown or black, but you won't need a description. Crush a few of these ants, and you'll know you have odorous house ants. They give off a scent of rotten coconut when crushed.
Pharaoh Ants: These ants are shades of light yellow and red. They are tiny. At only 1/12 of an inch in length, one pharaoh ant isn't much to look at, but you aren't likely to see one. They enter in large numbers.
Rover Ants: A rover ant worker are between 1/12th and 1/16th of an inch long and range in color from pale yellow to a darker blackish-brown. Rover ants thrive in urban environments; they like to take advantage of the food and shelter people provide.
These are the ants you can expect to find in your yard or home. Now that you know how to identify ants, let's turn our attention to what you can expect from these ants.
How Dangerous Is It To Have Ants In My House?
Most of the time, it isn't dangerous to have ants in the house. They're just a nuisance. Whether or not they're dangerous depends on the type of ants that enter your home and how long you have the infestation.
- Fire ants are a nuisance to most people. But it only takes one sting from a fire ant to present a threat to an individual with a stinging insect allergy. Unfortunately, many people don't realize they are allergic to fire ant stings. An allergy can develop later in life after repeated exposure to fire ant venom. While rare, it is a threat to consider.
- Pharaoh ants present a serious concern in a hospital environment due to their ability to enter wounds and spread pathogens, but they are a minimal threat in homes. The secret to minimizing the health risks associated with pharaoh ants is to keep your home clean and monitor the wounds on dogs, cats, and children.
- Carpenter ants damage the wood when they excavate galleries inside. But they may present little threat to structures as they can nest in voids rather than inside wood. Over time, there is a greater concern for wood damage as more nests are created. It is best to arrest carpenter ant infestations early.
- It is extremely rare, but crazy ants are a fire hazard and may cause a structural fire when they chew through wire shielding. One reason it is rare for crazy ants to cause fires is that they are incredibly annoying, and property owners must deal with them before they have a chance to burn anything down.
These general reasons are what can make ant problems a danger. All are rare, particularly in Plano. In most cases, ants will just annoy you. The secret to preventing annoying ant problems is to consider what attracts ants to your property and what factors lead to an ant infestation.
What Is Attracting Ants To My Property?
Ants typically go where food is found. If they come into your yard and establish a colony, they've likely found a food source. While removing all the food sources that ants eat is impossible, you can deter ants if you understand their relationship to food.
- Ants eat nectar. Flowers provide a source of nectar. Before ants find flowers in your landscaping, they'll feed on flowering weeds in your lawn. You may deter ant problems by addressing weeds.
- Ants eat bugs, both alive and dead. If you have lots of bugs in your yard, you'll have ants. You can reduce bugs by addressing moisture problems. You can reduce insects by replacing white lights with lights cast in the yellow spectrum. Insects can't detect yellow light.
- Ants love honeydew. When aphids attack the plants in your landscaping, ant problems aren't far behind. Carpenter ants are particularly fond of this sweet food source created by aphids. Deter aphids by maintaining healthy plants. If you continue to see aphids, try putting yellow sticky traps in your landscaping to capture aphids.
- Many ant pests are attracted to rotting organic material. Dirty trash receptacles will attract these ants and inspire them to develop nests near your home. It pays to take the time to wash and disinfect your containers, particularly on the outside. Once you've done this, do your best to get your receptacles to the curb weekly to prevent the trash from sitting and stinking up your receptacles.
- Ants eat nuts, fruit, seeds, and other natural food sources. Cleaning nuts and fruits up and moving bird feeders away from your exterior are helpful ways to deter ants.
Once you've addressed the things that attract pest ants to your exterior, take time to seal entry points. It isn't possible to completely seal ants out of your home, but addressing entry points reduces indoor ant infestations. Use some expanding foam for messy fixes and a caulking gun to make things look nice. Also, consider weatherstripping, door sweeps, and door frames. These are common entry points.
What Should I Do To Remove The Ants Around My House?
If you're in Plano, contact All-Safe Pest & Termite for ant control. We provide solutions to address indoor infestations and also give residents ongoing protection against ant infestations. Our year-round pest control service plans are based on Integrated Pest Management. That means we seal tiny entry points and apply other all-natural solutions before using control materials. We will apply routine liquid treatments to your exterior to reduce insect activity and keep pests out of your home. Professional pest control service provides layers of protection and directly addresses ant problems when ants invade your yard.
Do you have any ant questions that were not addressed in this article, or would you like help identifying the ants you're finding in your home? We're happy to help. Contact All-Safe Pest & Termite today for a free estimate or to find the answers to your questions. Our service team members are highly trained and super friendly. We're here to help you find the right solutions for your ant control and general pest control needs.