Appearance and Size Facts
- Red Imported Fire ants have reddish brown body and a darker abdomen
- Have a stinger and can deliver a very painful sting
- Size: Range from 1/16 inch to 1/4 inch in length
- Typically nest outdoors in sunny areas of exposed soil
- Prefer high-protein foods, but will feed on both plants and animal matter
Behavior and Habitat of Fire Ants
The Red Imported Fire ant has spread to more than 13 southern and western states and continues to expand its range. These ants can cause serious medical, agricultural, and property damage. They are very aggressive and will sting repeatedly, especially when their colony/mound is disturbed. Fire ants typically nest outdoors in sunny areas of exposed soil or lawns. Fire ant infestations may reach 30 to 100 single-queen mounds per acre, containing up to 80,000 ants, and even more when multiple-queen mounds are located. They prefer high-protein and lipid-based foods, but will feed on almost any plant or animal matter, as well as sugary substances.
Signs of Infestation of Fire Ants
Look for fire ant workers and swarmers and sandy earthen mounds (most visible after recent rainfall). Fire ant swarmers are also attracted to shiny and/or reflective objects, such as vehicles and swimming pools. Although swarmers cannot physically sting, these can lead to finding nesting areas in the vicinity.
Tips for Prevention of Fire Ants
Keep food items secured and pet food off of the floors. Keep bushes and shrubs trimmed 2 foot from the home. Caulk any visible cracks around windows and doors.
Fire Ant Gallery
Latest Pest & Termite Control News
If you have seen small silver insects that exhibit almost fish-like movement around your home, you may be wondering how to get rid of silverfish. Most of us remember the first time we saw these distinctive creepy crawlies scurrying around. When these prehistoric-looking insects show up in your...Read More ›
If you see rats or mice in your home, you will want to use a professional pest control company to trap the interior, bait the exterior, and complete a rodent exclusion on your home to prevent rodent entry as soon as possible. The telltale signs of a rodent infestation can send shivers down your...Read More ›
Want to know how to get rid of ghost ants in South Florida? If you have little white ants or clear ants crawling around your kitchen, you probably have ghost ants. These adaptable white ants in Florida are a common household invader that homeowners struggle to eliminate on their own. With the right...Read More ›