Many a picnic has been ruined by pesky ants attacking their new food source in your pie, casserole, coleslaw, or hamburgers. However, most of us expect ants when we are cooking out. But when we walk into the kitchen for the morning coffee ritual and see a plate left in the sink under siege by hundreds of ants it is quite unsettling. Immediately you begin to scour the kitchen counters, cabinets, and drawers to see if there are more of them trying to eat your food and disrupt your life. Ants can be annoying, destructive, and unhealthy. They need a food and water source to survive.
In South Carolina there are three pervasive types of ants:
1) Fire ants
2) Carpenter ants
3) Pavement ants
Fire ants thrive in warm climates like South Carolina. These little red devils are among the smallest (1/16th to 3/16ths of an inch) of the ant species. Fire ants are mainly outside and make their home, or colony in the soil. A mature colony can have as many as 400,000 sterile female worker ants. They love to build their nests in sunny spots. They are fairly easy to spot because of their mounds that stick above the ground. However, the colony can actually go as much as 1-3 ft. deep. Fire ants are aggressive and while a single bite can make you scratch, stepping on a colony can cause pain and for some a serious allergic reaction.
Carpenter ants are among the largest of the ant species. They are ⅝-½” in size. Their food source is wood and structures. They can be very destructive in homes, porches anything with wood. They like damp, humid, and dark places. They swarm in the spring as they develop their wings.
Pavement ants are red and black. They are small ants between 1/16 and ⅛ inches. Pavement ants are the ants you see on your driveway, porches, concrete, and asphalt surfaces. These ants eat any food source and love kitchens which are loaded with potential food sources.
Many homeowners report ants in their home after a heavy period of rain. Suddenly homes that didn’t have ants are finding them everywhere. When it rains for extended periods and the ground is saturated ants come to the surface from their colony. They move their eggs and head for the surface to keep from drowning. As they seek warm dry places to survive your home is the perfect residence for them because there are food and water resources.
This is why it’s important to make sure there are no openings to your home. Cracks and crevices are points of entry for ants. Seal up any cracks, or gaps in siding, door jams, and along your foundation. Cut back any vegetation growing by the foundation. Make sure windows and doors seal properly. Practice cleaning up any crumbs, or spills from food, sweeteners, etc., in the kitchen and elsewhere. A night of snacking on the couch is like a smorgasbord for ants.
At Apex Termite & Pest Control we have three generations of experience in termite and pest control business. We understand termites and offer inspections and lifetime control and treatment bonds for your home. We are in the business of providing peace of mind for homeowners.
Contact us today for more information on termite bonds, treatment, and inspections.
General Manager Apex Termite & Pest Control