If ants are in your home, we hope they’re your invited relatives and not the annoying household pest!
Ants are considered the worst pest in the world by homeowners who rank them above cockroaches, spiders and bed bugs as most annoying. Their colonies are massive – their sheer volume outnumbers any other insect, with queens that can lay up to 1,000 eggs a day. In fact, due to their massive population, all the ants of the world weigh as much as all the people in the world, which is pretty impressive considering the average ant is about one-millionth the size of a human being. That tells you there’s a crazy number of ants in the world!
Southern California is home to about 270 species of ants, with a few in particular that are most common and troublesome:
- Argentine ant – Argentine ants are small, dark brown, and smell musty when crushed , which is why they are often confused with the Odorous House Ant. They eat a wide variety of foods but prefer sugary things as well as oils. They nest in soil, logs, mulch, shrubs and trees, and travel in trailing fashion.
- Pharoh ant – Very small with light yellow bodies, pharaoh ants are very distinct. They are drawn inside in the winter for warmth and prefer areas with lots of food, especially sweets. While these ants don’t bite, they do present a real threat to your health. Not only do they love eating your food, but they’re also known to carry a host of problematic pathogens that can make you ill.
- Odorous house ant – These ants are dark brown or black and only grow to 1/8 of an inch. They can be further identified by the strong odor they emit when crushed, described as rotten coconuts. They also have a sweet tooth and their indoor nests are commonly found in wall voids or around water pipes or heaters.
Inside your home, ants feed sweets and protein – sugar, syrup, honey, fruit juice, fats and meat. They are also in seasrch of water, so you’ll often find them around toilets, trashcans and the kitchen sink. If you discover long trails of thousands of ants leading from nests to food or water sources, that is considerable cause for concern. If they nest in your trash, bathroom, or any other untidy space, they can make your life miserable by contaminating your food supply with Salmonella, Escherichia Coli or Shigella. Some species of ants are prone to carrying Streptococcus, Staphylococcus, and Clostrodum bacteria.
So even if you see just one or two ants every day, don’t dismiss it. You can be certain that there are hundreds more hiding somewhere within your home. Therefore, it’s important to begin treatment quickly; by the time your ants become a visible problem, the colony could have doubled or even tripled in size.
Being ANTigonized by ants? Get help from a Ant control expert right away.