Did you know that ants are found almost everywhere on Earth, and that there are more than 12,000 species of ants?
Despite how intriguing these tiny creatures can be, they’re also very annoying and invasive when in your home. Florida homeowners need to know which type of ants are invading their home, what’s attracting them, and how to get rid of the infestation.
Ants are very social creatures, which means they often appear in large numbers. Homeowners often find ants gathering in areas where there’s moisture like kitchens or bathrooms. While there are thousands of species of ants, there are 3 types that Florida homeowners commonly find in their homes.
So, what are they?
3 Types of Ants that Homeowners May Find in Their Home
Carpenter ants are the largest ant species and live up to their wood-excavating names. While these types of ants don’t eat wood like termites, they do excavate space for nesting. They’re structurally damaging for homeowners and often target homes with leaks or moisture problems. These large, often black, pests can be found climbing on everything from tree branches to windows.
Pharaoh ants are the species that enter homes to claim all the crumbs and spills. You often find this type of ant around sugary food, sweet drinks, and grease stains. However, they also infest areas where there’s no food source. For example, moisture-locking locations like pipes and window seals. These ants are so small (2mm long) that they can easily slide through outdoor siding, cracks in the foundation and walls.
Ghost ants are smaller than pharaoh ants and have pale legs and belly’s, making them hard to spot. When crushed, you’ll often smell an odor like coconut. Like pharaoh ants, these ants are attracted to sweet foods and can easily build nests in small areas and cracks.
What Attracts Ants to Your home
Ants are one of the most common pests found because there are so many different ways they can enter your home. And understanding what attracts ants to your home is key to prevention and maintenance.
Ants are always looking for a food and water source. Whether it’s sweet and sugary, bread that was left out, or even pet food, ants will always come searching for whatever food they can find.
Also, all types of ants are attracted to moisture. So, if you have a small gap in the window or door seal, leaky pipes, or any source of moisture– you can guarantee there’s an ant ready to investigate!
What to Do If You Have Ants in Your Home
Ant infestations are near impossible to eliminate without the help of a professional. However, there are a few initial things you can do on a daily basis to help:
- Eliminate standing water around windows, sinks, and drains.
- Store fruit in the refrigerator.
- Keep breads and cereals in plastic containers.
- Regularly wipe down cabinets and countertops.
- Sweep or vacuum crumbs from the floor.
- Clean up messes as soon as possible.
- Block and seal common entries.
- Place bay leaves around moist areas and food containers.
While these tips are helpful at preventing ants in your home, they aren’t a long term solution. The best way to prevent and eliminate ants is with the help of a pest control company. Ant colonies are known to house thousands of ants. This makes it hard to stop an invasion once it begins.
If the ants go marching one by one in your home, Impact Pest Elimination professionals can help develop an expert strategy to prevent and eliminate them. Give us a call today!