What are ants?
Ants are social and live together in large colonies. They are scavenging opportunistic pests that invade our yards and homes. Their strong sense of teamwork and ability to maintain multiple nests makes these pests difficult to control.
Common home-invading ants in Sacramento include:
- Argentine ants
- Carpenter ants
- Fire ants
- Odorous house ants
- Pavement ants
- Pharaoh ants
The exact appearance of an ant will vary by species, but all ants have six legs, short bent antennae, three body segments, and a distinct waist. Only the reproductive members are winged. When reproductive ants swarm from an ant nest, they find a mate, discard their wings, and create a new nest. Seeing flying ants or discovering piles of their wings should alert you that a mature ant colony is living close to your home.
Are ants dangerous?
In the Sacramento area, fire ants, pharaoh ants, and carpenter ants are the three most dangerous species of ants to find in your home or business.
Fire ants are aggressive ants that can limit people's ability to enjoy their yards. They swarm together in large groups and deliver painful stings as a means of defense. Fire ants stings are no joke, and the venom they inject can trigger life-threatening allergic reactions in some individuals.
Pharaoh ants stand out because they tend to spread bacteria and make people sick with illnesses such as salmonellosis and staphylococcus. These ants have high moisture needs and regularly invade hospitals and contaminate IV lines.
Carpenter ants are less of a threat to people than the above two species but are still dangerous because of their ability to be destructive. Carpenter ants nest inside pieces of wood; if they decide to nest inside a home, over time, their nesting habits cause structural damage that is expensive to repair.
The good news is that most ants are not dangerous, but they are problematic, and no type of ant should be allowed to move in and out of your home as they please.
Why do I have an ant problem?
The fact is that ants are outdoor pests and can choose any of our yards to establish a nest and colony. When ants live outside close to houses, they are more likely to wander inside, attracted by moisture or food odors. Ants are exceptional communicators, and once they discover something that benefits the colony, they will lay down a pheromone trail to alert the rest of their colony to new resources.
Leaky pipes, overwatered gardens, open trash cans, gardens, and outdoor pet feeding stations regularly attract ants. If you are ever concerned about a problem with ants on your property, reach out to us at Explorer Pest Management. We want to help you learn about home pest control for ants.
Where will I find ants?
While ants are a common problem in homes, you should do everything possible to keep them out. The ant's small size means they can enter structures through small spaces. Once inside, if they decide to nest, ants can multiply their numbers quickly.
If ants have become regular visitors in your home or have decided to become permanent members of your household, you will likely notice the following:
- Trails of ants crawling over surfaces or within your home's cabinets or pantries.
- Ant nesting mounds in your yard.
- Rustling sounds behind your home's walls.
Ants usually prefer to build their large central nest outside but often create satellite nests indoors after being attracted inside by food or moving inside to escape harsh weather conditions. Inside homes, you are more likely to find ants and their nests in locations that are out of sight, behind wall voids, baseboards, cabinets, large appliances, and vents.
How do I get rid of ants?
If you don't implement an ongoing pest control solution, ants will continue to plague your property. Ants live all around us and won't hesitate to take advantage of the food and shelter our Sacramento properties offer. One of the most common questions asked about ants is, "how do I get rid of them?" The answer is simple – partner with a professional. At Explorer Pest Management, we strive to exceed our customers' expectations, solve their pest problems, and offer ongoing support to help maintain a pest-free property. Learn more about our quality ant control solutions by reaching out today.
How can I prevent ants in the future?
Prevent problems with ants by taking away their main attractants – food, water, and shelter. Use the following ant prevention tips to defend your home from nuisance and dangerous ants.
- Eliminate excess moisture in and around your home.
- Remove leaf piles, stacks of wood, and leaves that ants can nest under.
- Take away as many food sources as possible – pick up uneaten pet food, keep lids on trash cans, regularly wash dirty dishes, and vacuum and wipe down surfaces to remove food debris.
To help stop ants from easily being able to enter your home, repair cracks and crevices in the foundation, keep mesh covers over vents, install door sweeps, and fix loose or damaged screens. For additional information about pest control in Sacramento, contact us at Explorer Pest Management and speak with one of our friendly professionals.