Ants are well known across the globe and with tens if not hundreds of thousands of species, people are familiar with their intrusions to BBQs, picnics, and especially homes and businesses. Fire ants are among the most common ants found across the country, so it stands to reason that the people in Ohio can recognize an ant when they see one. Today, we at Defense Pest Control Service would like to take the opportunity to elaborate on fire ants who are notorious for their painful stings and bites.
Fire Ant & Mound Identification
Fire ants scurry around on 6 legs that extend from segmented, oval bodies that are a dark reddish brown. Featuring standard antennae and range from 1/8” to 3/8” long, red fire ants are fairly distinguishable. The large flattened irregular shaped mound average between two and four square feet in size. Fire ants are commonly introduced into new areas via the potted plants, shrubs and trees. The red imported fire ants usually nest in soil in that is nearby to structural foundations or in landscaping. Though red fire ants prefer to stay outside, they will infiltrate buildings through HVAC systems and AC units. Generally comprising of the one queen and workers, fire and colonies can easily have over 200,000 ant members in them. Extending up to 25 feet away from the mound, their nests can feature underground tunnels. Within their ant’s life cycle, they experience four stages. The stages include the egg, larvae, pupae, and adults. A fire ant’s diet can consist of seeds, dead animals, honeydew, plant nectar, fruit, and they are partial to fatty foods. Before the mounds are big enough to be seen, they fire ants typically work on them for months.
Fire Ant Stings & Bites
Those who report stings, describe it as relentlessly stinging when the nest is disturbed. The result of a red imported fire ant’s sting is a raised welt that evolves into a white pustule. Victims of the red imported fire ants’ sting will also note they receive multiple stings from more than one of the ants. People must exercise caution people can experience ranging allergic reactions to their stings, from mild to severe.
Fire Ant Prevention
With a little dedication and preventative measures, you can avoid fire ant intrusions. Stay clear from the red fire ants and their signature mound nests to avoid stings. When interfering with a fire ant nest, it then motivates them to sting, where if you stay away, you can avoid earning the painful welts. Ensure that all internal and external cracks and crevices are properly sealed along with ventilation and utility lines in order to avoid their infiltration indoors.
How Did the Fire Ant Get to the United States
From a cargo boat that came from South America, the red imported fire ants where accidentally introduced to America. They have spread aggressively since their arrival in Alabama and do not tend to be too abundant in the north when compared to their numbers in the southern states, but they are still active in our Ohio borders. Since surviving in in cold winter soil is difficult, they often dig further down or escape indoors.
Ant Inspections, Control Treatment, Removal & More in the Greater Cleveland Area | NE & NW Ohio Including Solon, Akron, Middleburg Heights & Medina OH
Where there are so many ants in a colony, and they travel a fairly long distance to forage, they can be a challenge to remove. Call Defense Pest Control Service and let our certified professionals effectively eliminate them!