Fire ants are a well known pest found throughout Greater Austin, Texas. There are many issues when a fire ant colony is near or in your yard. One major problem is how aggressive they can be when an intruder comes too close to their nest. Whether it’s a child or a pet, fire ants will sting an intruder repeatedly. Not only can the fire ant’s stings or bites be painful, there can be other negative affects. A-Tex Pest Management will share how to identify fire ants, the dangers they pose, and how to protect your home and yards form these rather large ants.
Fire Ant Size & Identification
Fire ants are easily identified. They are one of the largest ant species in the state. They can reach up to 1/16 of an inch which may not sound vary large, but for an ant, that is huge. They are also red or dark orange in color, a fact that gives them their name. A single hive or nest of a fire ant colony can have up to 250,000 members and they work needlessly to protect, and feed the queen and her babies or “little fire ants.” While a fire ant nest is being built, you may notice a mound of dirt that is several inches wide. You can easily see fire ants coming and going from their nest. The workers search for food and since fire ants are omnivorous they will eat just about anything.
Bites from Aggressive Fire Ants
Fire ants are also extremely territorial. They won’t abide having any other ant or termite colonies too close. They will go to war and attack any other neighboring ants or termites. They will also bite or sting pets and people if they intrude on or disturb their nest. Fire ants do have venom, so when they sting it can hurt. However their venom is composed mostly of alkaloids which many people can be allergic to. In some cases medical treatment is necessary especially if a person or child has been stung more than once.
How to Prevent Fire Ants in House & Yard
To prevent fire ants, first remove any food source. However that may prove tricky since they can eat just about anything. However it does help to keep the yard clean and free of bird seed or pet food. To help keep these ants out of your home, you will want to seal up any cracks or gaps that a fire ant can crawl through. However that too can prove difficult because even though they are a rather large species of ant, they are still small enough to find their way inside homes, especially when they are motivated by food. That is why the next step is to keep food within the home sealed and stored in air tight containers. This will help prevent the scent from calling the ant and help keep them out. Once ants find a food source they will continue to return until there is no more food. Lastly, you should use pesticides to spray the outside and inside of your home and especially where the fire ant seems to be entering your home.
Why is Fall a Good Time for Fire Ants to Be Managed?
Fall is a great time to treat fire ants on your property for a couple of reasons. In the cooler weather of fall, fire ants aren’t nesting too deep in the ground which makes them easier to reach. Also, fall is followed by winter, and extreme cold is tough on fire ants which makes baits even more effective during the fall months.
Ant Pest Inspections, Treatment & More in Round Rock, Leander, Pflugerville, Cedar Park & Austin Texas
It is important to maintain a proper home pest control program especially when ants become a major problem. Ants will continue to return and most especially when they become desperate in search for food. A-Tex Pest Management can help maintain your home’s pest control program. We can help protect your home from ants and any other pest that threatens your home. Contact A-Tex Pest Management today.