Spring and ants go hand-in-hand – and no one likes finding ants inside their home or in areas where we spend time outdoors. If you spy a single ant, it’s likely that more are close by.
Different species of ants can be attracted to different conditions in and around your home. Now that spring has arrived, it’s time to learn more about these pests so you can keep your defenses up.
In areas of the Western U.S., rains in March and April can drive ants inside houses and buildings. Ants can also seek out your home for food, moisture, or warmth. Luckily, there are a number of steps that you can take today to help keep these pests from becoming a problem inside your home.
- Seal cracks and crevices. Don’t forget about gaps around pipes.
- Clean up food and beverage spills immediately.
- Store highly-attractive foods in sealed containers: cereals, sugars, dried fruits, etc.
- Clean up and put away pet food after pets are done eating.
- Correct leaks or moisture problems immediately.
- Replace any moisture-damaged wood.
- Clean out gutters so that they are free-flowing.
- Do not overwater indoor plants.
- Ensure that automatic sprinkler systems are not causing ponding or puddling, especially in beds close to the house.
You likely won’t be able to identify an ant’s species just by looking at it. Your Western Exterminator Pest Specialist is an expert and will do this before taking any action. This is a critical step, because different species require different control measures.
Here are the top 7 types of ants you may encounter this year, and areas where you’re likely to spot them in your home.
Problem ant species
There are ant species that can cause more problems than others, whether it be harming people or your home. If you think you might have a problem with any of these ants, give us a call right away.
- Carpenter ants, covered under Western’s pestfree365 plan, seek out softened wood; in homes, this is often wood that has suffered moisture damage. Carpenter ants, like termites, hollow out wood, which can impact the structural integrity of your home, decks and patios, or other wooden structures. These ants can produce satellite colonies within structural voids, setting up the potential for further problems.
- Several species of fire ants have begun to spread and could become a problem for areas that haven’t seen them before. When they sting, these vicious ants can cause pain and even result in a serious allergic reaction for some people. When they attack in large groups, they can inflict dozens or even hundreds of stings at one time. Stings can be serious for those who are allergic, children, the elderly, and even small pets – and in some cases, they can be fatal.
Don’t go it alone: Call your local ant control experts
For a quick but temporary fix if you see ants inside, use a warm, soapy sponge to wipe the entire area where you saw them. This will eliminate the pheromone trail that ants have left behind for others to follow.
Although you may be tempted to treat an ant problem with over-the-counter products you can buy at your local store, this can actually cause an ant problem to move to other areas of your home. It’s best to contact a professional who can properly identify the ant and put the right elimination and prevention plan into action.
Don’t wait too long to contact Western if you suspect you have an ant issue. We’ll send an ant expert out to take a look right away. We are here to help you with any type of ant problem you encounter.