Spring is a wonderful time for so many reasons. But the fire ant is not one of them. It’s around this time of year that the red imported fire ant (AKA RIFA or fire ant) starts making its presence felt. While it is still possible to have an ant infestation in the winter months, typically it’s in the warmer seasons that these annoying critters become most active. And that means that it’s from here until about September that you’re most likely to find them in your home. But why might you find them in your home? How can you keep them out? And what should you do if you do find yourself with an infestation?
Everything You Need to Know About Dealing with Red Fire Ants
Why do I have fire ants in my home?
Firstly, it’s important to remember, that most fire ant infestations will be in your yard. Fire ants don’t really like people. They’d rather avoid contact. But that doesn’t mean that home infestations don’t happen. And there are generally three reasons why you may find yourself with fire ants taking over your home.
- The first, and probably most well-known, is that you’re providing a food source for them. If your kitchen or pantry isn’t quite as well kept as perhaps it might be, then you’re providing easy pickings for all kinds of ants. And while you don’t want any ants around your food because they constitute a disease risk. You doubly don’t want fire ants because they can be aggressive, and their stings can be dangerous.
However, ants aren’t particularly fussy. And you can have an infestation in even the most immaculate of homes. If they can find a way in – and when you’re less than 0.236 inches long, that’s pretty easy – they’ll come in if they need to. Why?
- Ants will enter your home because it provides a place of shelter. If the weather is too hot or too wet, your lovely climate-controlled palace will be akin to ant-heaven.
- You will probably also end up with fire ants in your home if there is a nest nearby. Ant colonies are enormous, and the foragers do just that. But mature colonies also produce a number of winged, fertile males and females, and these guys fly off to start new colonies. If your home is nearby and accessible, it may well provide an attractive target.
How do I keep fire ants out of my home?
Fire ants are small. You already know that. And this makes keeping them out of your home difficult. The best thing that you can do is to check that the seals on your home are intact. Are your windows, doors and screens all fitted correctly and in good condition? Are there any holes around your pipework, walls, crawl space or roof space?
How can I tell if I have fire ants in my home?
The main indication that you might have fire ants in your home is seeing red ants. But not all red ants are RIFA. And not all RIFA are red. Some male fire ants are actually black in color. Regardless, if you are seeing any ants in your home, you need to take action.
Fire ant nests in your yard are easier to identify. They are usually marked by mounds of loose dirt. But unlike other ant hills, they do not usually have a central hole near the top.
What should I do if I have a fire ant infestation?
There are various remedies you can use to tackle fire ant infestations in the home. Most hardware stores will supply them. However, this isn’t always a wise course of action. Especially if you have children or pets at home.
A professional pest management specialist will be able to help you on a number of fronts.
Firstly, we’ll be able to identify the species of ant. This will make finding a remedy far simpler. And ensure that any treatment is effective.
Any treatments will be tailored to your particular needs. We have the tools and the knowledge necessary to ensure that the problem is dealt with, with minimal disruption and inconvenience to you.
And with a professional service, there’s no leaving a job half finished. We give you the time you need to clear your home, regardless of the pest you’re dealing with.
Whether they’re in your kitchen or your yard, fire ants are not nice creatures to have in your home. One bite is painful. Many bites can be really dangerous. So, if you’re at all concerned, seek professional help as soon as possible.
If you’re worried about a fire ant infestation in your home or business in Charlotte, contact Noosa Pest Management today.