Tag Archives: South Florida Ant Control

Crazy Ant Control Experts

Crazy ants. Named one of the most invasive species of bugs, their sudden explosion in population has brought a large amount of attention to southern states such as Texas, Louisiana, Georgia, Mississippi and Florida. Named for their psychotic behavior, crazy ants often try to get into any space that they’re able to fit. Although the ants do not have a harmful bite to humans, they still cause many problems for homeowners or farmers who often find their homes, appliances or even their bodies to be covered in the small insects. Ants even crowd around animals such as cows or chickens, leading to asphyxiation. This large amount of small bugs is quickly becoming a problem. And so far, there hasn’t been a method found which stops them.

Originally found in Texas in 2002, crazy ants are descendants of Nylanderia pubens, a species of ant which has been in Florida since the 1950s. However, those ants are much more relaxed and less invasive – many scientists at first doubted that such insane ants could be relatives of this calm species.  But as the number of ants quickly multiplied, people knew something must be done. In 1999, the National Invasive Species Council was founded in order to combat the effects that intrusive species. This included 13 federal agencies and departments. Groups such as the Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service all combined in order to work together against these up and coming menaces. As the amount of crazy ants rapidly grew, the attention to the NISC did as well. They summoned a committee of different educational entomologists and state representatives to pool their information. Most concluded that to begin to combat these invaders, a great amount of funding would be needed. But this meeting took place in 2008, when the American economy began to fall. Money would be short on hand, especially for such a minor issue as this. Even now, the government spends over $120 billion a year on intrusive species that take over different environments. The imported red fire ant costs over $1 billion a year – to Texas alone. Crazy ants, which are spreading much faster than fire ants, could quickly become an expensive problem.

What can homeowners do to prevent infestations?

  • Seal points of entry around the house including small openings and cracks around doors and windows.
  • Clean up food spills, keep honeydew in closed containers in the fridge and remove other potential attractants as soon as possible.
  • Remove potential nest sites/debris from around the exterior of the home
  • If you suspect an infestation, call a professional to evaluate the best course of treatment.

‘Crazy’ ants invade electronics at businesses, homes in Florida

‘Crazy’ ants invade electronics at businesses, homes in Florida

PALM BEACH COUNTY, Fla. — A new type of ant is terrorizing the United States, and they are invading electronics at businesses and homes across parts of Florida. Most recently, they’ve been spotted in Palm Beach County.

CBS12’s Lynn Gordon explains what is being done to get rid of them. Click Here

Invasive Species in South Florida

USA Today recently ran an article highlighting some of the effects invasive species have had on the U.S. landscape. Highlighting the article was the Crazy Ant which has been prominent in the South Florida region. The article also explores other invasive species including the devastating Emerald Ash Borer, Snakehead, Burmese Python, and Nutria. For more specific information on the Crazy Ant check out this post: Crazy Ants.

Florida Ant Control Questions

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE MOST COMMON SPECIES OF ANTS?

There are more than 700 species of ants in the United States. Some of the most common include argentine, carpenter, odorous house, pavement and red imported fire ants.

All ants are social insects that live in colonies. They can be identified by their three distinct body regions: head, thorax, and abdomen. However, the biology and habits of each ant species is different and understanding these differences is necessary to effectively control an infestation.

WHERE AND WHEN ARE YOU MOST LIKELY TO ENCOUNTER ANTS?

It depends on the species, but ants are commonly attracted to the food in a kitchen, especially sweets and protein-containing substances. Ants are most often found on floors, countertops and in food items. Some species prefer to build nests in soil – such as landscaping – or cracks in concrete on your driveway, walkway or in your garage. Carpenter ants build nests in wood. Ants are typically found indoors the spring and summer months as they search for food.

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.

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.

WHAT IS THE MOST EFFECTIVE TYPE OF ANT TREATMENT AND HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?

A trained and licensed pest professional is the best person to make a recommendation based on the proper identification of a particular ant species and the threats they could pose to health and property. Also, homeowners may have a preference as to which treatment is used, so it is important that they have a detailed conversation with their pest control company.  The cost of the treatments can vary depending on the size of the infestation and the property being treated.

WHAT CAN A HOMEOWNER DO TO CONTROL ANT INFESTATIONS?

There are as many ways to control ants as there are species of ants! Different species eat different things – making it almost impossible to inspect a single area and control the ant population.  The best strategy homeowners can employ when attempting to control ants is to clean, clean, clean. Wipe down counters, regularly remove garbage, clean up grease spills, rinse and remove empty soda cans or other recyclables and mop/sweep the floors. Homeowners should also keep food in sealed containers and keep pet food/water dishes clean. Outside the home, eliminate sources of moisture or standing water such as birdbaths or kiddie pools. Finally, seal cracks and holes around the home to close entry points.

ANY OTHER TIPS?

If homeowners are worried that they have an ant problem, they should call Hulett Pest professionals to identify the species and recommend a course of action.