If you have a problem with ants, it can be stressful and annoying to deal with.
Depending on what kinds of ant you are dealing will determine exactly what treatments are best to approach them with.
Here is a list of some of the most common types of ants people may see around or in their home:
Fire ants will typically build their mounds in almost any kind of soil, although they prefer sunny locations, like lawns, fields, and pastures. Fire ants also like to build mounds near driveways and sidewalks that absorb and give off heat. People have also spotted their mounds in rotting logs, near trees, and even beneath buildings.
Fire ants also create an intricate underground tunnel system that can extend up to 25 feet away from a mound. A large colony can have as many as 250,000 worker ants that are well known for their active and aggressive natures; however, the average fire ant colony typically consists of 80,000 workers.
Acrobat ants are wood-nesting pests, like termites. Moisture damage can attract acrobat ants, so it is important to keep an eye out for peeling paint, mold or fungal growth, or deteriorating wood along soffits and around window frames. They also stay in higher areas such as trees and eaves of homes
You can identify a crazy ant by its erratic and “crazy” movement when disturbed. These ants seem to run aimlessly around. Another distinguishing feature is that their legs and antennae are longer in proportion to their bodies, compared to other types of ants. They do not burrow or form mounds. They have a reputation of damaging electrical and computer equipment. They can also be easily transported and are common in shipping containers and other commerce. They may be found indoors, where they can survive all year, evenin the northern states.
Crazy ants can also be found under or in many objects. Each colony may contain millions of ants, as multiple queens lay hundreds of eggs. Inside, Crazy ants can nest in small cracks and crevices and voids, particularly moist areas. Once inside a building, they wander searching for food. Outside, they may be found in damp soil, under rocks, stumps, timbers, compost, garbage and potted plants. These ants can adapt to dry conditions, as well.
Argentine Ants (Sugar Ants)
Argentine ants are an invasive species originally native to Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Bolivia and southern Brazil. They can now be found in many places around the world, including South Africa, New Zealand, Japan, Australia, the United States and Europe. Argentine Ants are believed to have been originally introduced to the continental U.S. in New Orleans via coffee ships from Brazil in the late 1800’s.
Today, Argentine ants are widespread throughout the southern states, California and Hawaii. Less widespread infestations are also found in Arizona, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland and the Pacific Northwest.
The are very tiny black ants that are most commonly found indoors in bathrooms and kitchens.
Pharaoh ants enter homes to take advantage of crumbs, spills, moisture and protective habitat sites. Grease stains, dead insects, and sweet drinks attract these pests. In pantries, pharaoh ants infest and eat sugary foods and proteins like honey, peanut butter, and baked goods, but they can also be found infesting locations that have no food sources present.
These pests typically make their way indoors through torn window screens, poorly sealed doors, windows or other entryways. Keeping doors, windows, patio doors and shutters closed and tightly sealed when not in use can limit their access. However, tiny pharaoh ants can also sneak in through cracks in walls, foundations and outdoor siding.
Carpenter ants are indigenous to many parts of the world. Like acrobat ants, they nest outside in dead, damp wood, building smooth, distinctive-looking nests. They remove wood to create passageways through wood grain to provide access to various nest areas known as galleries. Indoors, carpenter ants nest in any natural hollow, such as window sills and wall voids.
Unlike termites, carpenter ants do not eat wood; however, they damage wood, from hollowing out trees to damaging the materials used in the construction of buildings. Sometimes you can find their nesting location by observing the very fine sawdust they leave behind when constructing nests.