Problems Ants Bring to Virginia Homes
Ants are frustrating pests. When they decide to invade, they can enter your home by the hundreds or even thousands. Most of the time, this is just a nuisance. But there are some threats to consider when it comes to ants. Here are a few common ant pests All Pest Control & Solutions deals with in Virginia homes and what you need to know about them.
No other ant holds a candle to carpenter ants regarding ant problems, especially black carpenter ants. Why are carpenter ants so bad? Because they create galleries in wood to establish their nests. This can cause property damage when they get into a home.
Carpenter ants target moisture-damaged wood. So the presence of carpenter ants in a home is often a warning sign of moisture problems. Sadly, these ants don't make it easy for you to detect them. They prefer to be in dark, secluded locations and are usually only active at night. If you're dealing with an infestation, you may only see one or two scout ants crawling around your home in the evening.
Red Imported Fire Ants
Of all the ants we deal with, these ants are the only ants that inflict a wound. We often call these wounds fire ant bites, but they are more appropriately called fire ant stings. Fire ants only bite to hold on to the skin. A stinger causes those red welts they leave on your skin. On the tip of its abdomen, a fire ant has a stinger that injects an alkaloid venom called solenopsin. They use this venom to subdue small animals.
For most people, the venom administered by fire ants is harmless. But, to the nearly two million Americans who are allergic to insects stings, a fire ant sting can become fatal. Symptoms of fire ant allergy include hives, swelling, itching, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, nausea, difficulty breathing, swelling of the tongue or throat, and difficulty swallowing. There can be a fast drop in blood pressure in severe cases that can lead to cardiac arrest.
Fire ants also present a unique threat to babies, older adults, and the infirm who cannot quickly get away from a nest full of stinging fire ants. This increases the exposure to solenopsin and can be a potentially dangerous situation.
Odorous House Ants
What's in a name? A lot when it comes to these invaders. The smell odorous house ants create when crushed is often described as rotten coconut. This makes them a stinky pest when they invade your garage or closed-in porch.
These ants are attracted to moisture areas and wood damaged by termites or carpenter ants. At only one-eighth of an inch to one-sixteenth of an inch, these little ants can travel through some of the tightest gaps and tunnels to get to where they want to be.
These ants like to crawl around in and under hard objects such as pavement and concrete. You can have trouble with these ants if you have cracks in your foundation wall or around window and door frames.
While pavement ants aren't a health threat, they can contaminate food when they get into food packages. They eat almost anything, so very little is safe when these ants get into your pantry or kitchen cabinets.
It isn't surprising if this is the type of ant driving you crazing in your Virginia home. Argentine ant colonies can be impressively large. A single colony can have several hundred thousand individual ants. If those ants are 1/4 of an inch long, which Argentine ants can sometimes be, you're going to notice when they invade.
If you're dealing with ants in Virginia, All Pest Control & Solutions can help you get to the source of those problems and protect your health and property. Schedule a free, no-obligation pest inspection. We'll send a professional right to your door to have a look. It doesn't get any easier than that.