Category Archives: Ant Control

Crazy Ants Explained!

What are crazy, hairy ants? Are they referred to as Rasberry Crazy Ants or Caribbean Crazy Ants?

  • These are probably all one and the same species Nylanderia pubens with multiple common names.
  • Rasberry crazy ants were first found in Texas in 2002. They are believed to be related to a species from the Caribbean.
  • Caribbean crazy ants are found in Florida – have likely been there since the 1950’s but pest professionals have been receiving more and more reports since 2000.
  • The more common Crazy ant (Paratrechina longicornis) looks similar to the Rasberry and Caribbean crazy ants, but have marked differences. Their antennae and legs are significantly longer and their bodies are slightly larger. Their populations are also more spread out around the U.S.

 

10 Steps to Stay Pest Free in South Florida

Hulett Environmental Services recommends the following steps to pest proof your home:

  1. Seal up any cracks and holes on the outside of your home including areas where South Florida Pest Controlutilities and pipes enter your home. Frequent vacuuming can help to eliminate tiny pests that other pests feed on.
  2. Make sure vents are screened and gaps around windows and doors are sealed.
  3. Keep tree branches and shrubbery well trimmed and away from the house.
  4. Inspect boxes, grocery bags and other packaging thoroughly to curb hitchhiking insects.
  5. Keep basements, attics, and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry.
  6. Store garbage in sealed containers and dispose of it regularly.
  7. Store fire wood at least 20 feet away from the house and five inches off of the ground.
  8. Repair fascia and soffits and rotted roof shingles; some insects are drawn to deteriorating wood.
  9. Replace weather-stripping and repair loose mortar around the basement foundation and windows.
  10. A licensed and qualified pest control professional is your best resource to ensure these steps are completed properly.

Hulett Environmental encourages homeowners to take proactive steps to eliminate ants

Hulett Environmental encourages homeowners to take proactive steps to eliminate ants

Florida Ant Control
Florida Ant Control

There is one houseguest that no one wants, but nearly everyone gets – ants. And as the weather continues to warm, this pest will begin marching one-by-one indoors. Hulett Environmental encourages homeowners to take the necessary steps to prevent ants from ruining their summer fun.

A recent study of pest professionals, conducted by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) has revealed that ants are the No. 1 nuisance pest in the United States and often become a problem during the warmer months as they venture indoors to look for food.

Unfortunately, ants are more than just a household annoyance. This pest can pose health risks and cause extensive property damage once inside the home.

Odorous ants are known to contaminate food sources and carpenter ants can tunnel through wood to build nests inside structures. Luckily, a mixture of IPM tactics can effectively prevent and manage most infestations.

Experts from Hulett Environmental recommend the following tips to avoid ant infestations:

  • Eliminate sources of moisture or standing water near a home.
  • Keep tree branches and other shrubbery well trimmed and away from the house.
  • Seal cracks and holes on the outside of the home.
  • Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house and five inches from the ground.
  • Keep food in sealed containers and dispose of garbage regularly.
  • Keep pet food and water dishes clean and remove any spilled food.

If you suspect an ant infestation, contact a licensed pest professional to identify the species and recommend a course of treatment. For more information, please visit www.bugs.com

Pest Control Pros in Fort Pierce, Florida Discuss Argentine Ants

Pest Control in Fort PierceArgentine ants are one of the many remarkable creatures that our pest control pros in Fort Pierce, Florida encounter. Perhaps you’ve read about the ants’ super colonies in periodicals like Scientific American and Molecular Ecology. The creatures have received such press over the years for several reasons, including those related to their behavior. It is that behavior that has categorically made them one of Fort Pierce, Florida’s most inexhaustible, defiant invaders to date.

The ants are believed to have migrated here from South America in the first half of the 20th century. Since their arrival, they have adapted to North America’s weather, landscape, food sources and pesticides in an amazing manner. They’ve also managed to run off their competitors and decimate populations of other animals (i.e. lizards). As such, they have truly established a reputation for being a tiny pest capable of creating problems of larger-than-life proportions. That’s why any encounter with them warrants immediate pest control in Fort Pierce, Florida.

The Argentine ants multiply quickly, can travel great distances and tend to grow up to 1/10-inch in length. They’ll also eat just about any human or pet food imaginable. In some instances, they’ve even been known to feed on sewage, carrion, household and industrial refuse.

When it comes to nesting sites, they tend to like setting up shop in the damp soil located underneath of stilt houses. However, other areas are fair game as well. Common places that our Fort Pierce pest control pros have found Argentine ant nests include unkempt flower beds, water damaged wood and household water closets. The pests often enter those areas by following electrical lines, plumbing fixtures and pipes.

To learn more about pest control in Fort Pierce, Florida, please contact us at (866) 611-2847. We help Floridians evict Argentine ants and other pests from their homes year round.

A Closer Look at Ant Species

Argentine Ants: Colonies of Argentine ants are found throughout the southeastern parts of the U.S. and California usually in wet environments near a food source. Argentine ants do not pose a health threat, but they can contaminate food and give off a musty odor when crushed.

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Carpenter Ants: This aggressive species of ant is found nationwide, especially in the northern region. Carpenter ants attack wood and can cause severe property damage, which is usually not covered by homeowners’ insurance.

Crazy Ants: First found in Texas in 2002, crazy ants have spread to other southern states, nesting in both dry and moist habitats. This species does not pose a health threat, but they can become a nuisance.

Odorous House Ants: This species is found in every region of the U.S. and commonly nests in basements, crawl spaces and adjacent structures. Odorous house ants do not pose a health risk, but they give off a strong, rotten coconut-like smell when crushed.

Pavement Ants: These black ants are found throughout the eastern portion of the U.S., and in California and Washington. They get their name from making nests in or under cracks in pavement. Pavement ants can contaminate food and should be avoided.

Red Imported Fire Ants: These red ants are found in the southeastern U.S., from Virginia to Texas, as well as California and New Mexico. They are commonly introduced to new areas through potted plants, shrubbery and trees. Fire ants will sting humans who disturb a nest, often causing painful welts.

If you suspect an ant infestation, contact a licensed pest professional to identify the species and recommend a course of treatment. For more information on ants, please visit http://site1.das-group.com/bugs_database/ants.asp

West Palm Beach Florida Pest Control Pros Can Send White-Footed Ants Packing

West Palm Beach Florida Pest ControlIn certain parts of the world, some people are strapping on their snow boots right about now and heading for the hills. Of course our West Palm Beach pest control pros know that this is not the case in South Florida. The only creatures that appear to be wearing snow covered boots in the Sunshine State are white-footed ants. Considered to be an Old World species, white-footed ants have been a part of the Sunshine State’s landscape since the 1980s. However, they didn’t make their way to South Florida until the 2000s.

They feature 3mm long, dark colored bodies and strikingly white tarsi. Hence, that’s how they came to be called white-footed ants. They also have one other bizarre feature. They give off a fruit scent when you accidentally step on one. Perhaps that odd odor may be partially attributed to their diet. It typically consists of honeydew melons and plant nectars. At this point, no one knows for certain whether that’s why their corpses smell like fruit or not.

Although it is not unusual, another white-footed ant attribute worth mentioning is their colony demographics. In most instances, the colonies contain a very large number of females that are capable of bearing a substantial amount of offspring. Thus, they can be quiet hard to handle without the aid of a West Palm Beach Florida pest control professional.

Our West Palm Beach pest control team knows that white-footed ants’ nesting sites vary. However, they tend to be particularly fond of wall voids in a kitchen or bathroom area. That’s apparently because it puts them in close proximity to food and water. We should also note that attics, dead vegetation and clogged rain gutter systems have been known to harbor colonies as well.

For more information on white-footed ants and how West Palm Beach Florida pest control pros can help send them packing, please contact us at (866) 611-2847.

Palm Beach Pest Control Pros Reveal Thief Ants’ M.O.

Palm Beach Pest ControlOver the years, Floridians have seen their share of crime dramas. Some have featured nefarious ne’er-do-wells of epic proportions. Others have had casts of characters whose shadows were no bigger than 1/32 of an inch. Those are the ones that our Palm Beach pest control pros have busted on more than one occasion.

Yes, we are referring to South Florida’s little incorrigibles, the thief ants. Known for their tiny frames, these ants have a penchant for home invasions and greasy grub. They’ve also been known to impersonate and steal from their fellow ants. So it’s safe to say that there is no loyalty among multi-legged thieves.

The ants typically sport yellow, two-segmented bodies and a stinger. They also tend to grow no bigger than 1/16-inch in length. So it is not uncommon to find them lurking in areas too small for other creatures to inhabit. Some of the places where they have previously sought refuge from our Palm Beach pest control pros are masonry cracks and the hollow cavities of walls.

It is also worth noting that each year the thieves swarm from early summer to late fall. During that time, they are looking for mates, ill-gotten homes and food. As such, South Floridians should keep a watchful eye out for the diminutive criminals while the weather is still warm. Signs of infestation often include trails of ants near a home’s electrical outlets or grease traps.

Once the thief ants find a good hide out, they tend to stick around awhile. Each nest usually has multiple queens, whose offspring are capable of reaching maturity in approximately two month’s time. When they do reach maturity, they join the others in a life of crime.

Would you like to learn more about the notorious thief ants, including how to end their crime spree? If so, please contact our Palm Beach pest control pros online or toll-free at (866) 611-2847.

SHOULD HOMEOWNERS/RESIDENTS BE CONCERNED IF THEY FIND ANTS IN THEIR HOME?

Most species of ants are considered ‘nuisance pests,’ meaning that they don’t pose a significant threat to health or property, but are an annoyance when found indoors. In fact, ants are the number one nuisance pest in the United States.

09_Carpenter Ant

(Carpenter Ant)

Some species of ants, however, can pose threats to health and property. Carpenter ants, for example, excavate wood in order to build their nests, which can cause extensive damage to a structure. Fire ants, on the other hand, sting when threatened, resulting in painful welts that can be dangerous to allergic persons. These species should always be handled by a professional.

Regardless of the species all ants can contaminate food sources and small infestations can grow quickly, so any sign of an infestation should be dealt with promptly.