In recent years ants have become one of the most prolific household pests. Ants are among the most successful of insects – the most challenging to rid from your home. There are approximately 12,000 ant species known worldwide, but only about 40 are known to reside in the United States.
Ants are social insects, living in colonies that may house thousands of members. Each colony member has specific duties and responsibilities that ensure the colony’s success.
Ants have a, “complete metamorphosis,” which means they have a four stage life cycle – egg, larva, pupa and adult.
- Workers – The workers of an ant colony spends their day foraging for food, cleaning the colony and caring for the eggs and pre-adult stages of the colony members. Workers are often discovered by homeowners when they are observed moving back and forth in a straight line once a food source has been found.
- Reproductives – Each ant colony has a Queen and other reproductive members. The reproductive members swarm during mating season to create new colonies. Like termites, the males quickly die after mating and the new Queens are left in charge of the new colony development.
Proper control procedures in and around homes or other structures depend greatly on the species of ant involved. Proper identification is the key to ant control success.
A professional ant control process will include:
- Inspection – The first step in any professional treatment program is, inspection. Where are the ants coming from and where are they going too? What are the nesting sites, food and moisture sources?
- Identification – Before you can treat you must know which species of ant you are dealing with because different ant species will react in different ways to treatment.
- Determination – Once you have identified the ant species you must determine the proper treatment process for that particular species. Which treatments – baits, liquid repellents or exterior granular applications will work best for this infestation?
- Control – Making the correct application of product.
- Communication – The last part of a successful ant control program is communication. Our technician reports, what was found during our inspection, what we did about it and what you can expect from our treatment. He will also discuss if further follow up treatments should be scheduled to make sure the problem is solved.