One of the worst things for a homeowner is seeing an army of ants marching across your kitchen counters. Ants are one of the most common insects on the planet, and there are plenty of them right here in Arizona. Ants come in all shapes and sizes; some are harmless while others can be quite problematic.
Types of Ants Found In Arizona
There are many ants that call Arizona home but there are a few that are more common and more problematic than others. Here are the three most common ants you could encounter in your yard and home.
Fire ants are an invasive species that was imported here from South America sometime in the 1930s. Now fire ants have spread throughout the American South and Southwest. These ants are notorious for their aggression and painful stings. If you encounter a fire ant colony on your property, it is best to avoid it and call an exterminator that specializes in ant control immediately.
Unlike fire ants, carpenter ants are not aggressive but their size can make them intimidating. Carpenter ants make their nests in dead trees or damp, rotting wood. These ants come into your home because they are attracted to moisture. If there is a leak or a pipe with condensation, they will find it and make their nests deep into the wooden structures of your home. Carpenter ants can cause extensive damage and cost you a lot in repairs. Because they live in wood, carpenter ants are often confused with termites but carpenter ants don’t eat wood like termites, they only carve out extensive galleries for the expanding colony.
Pavement ants are probably the most common ant you will encounter outside and inside the home. You will often see their small brown hills protruding from cracks in sidewalks and driveways. They will also build their nests under stones or flower pots that have sat on the ground for a long time. Pavement ants will eat almost anything within their 30-foot foraging radius including insects, bread, meat, sugar, and cheese.
How Do Ants Get Into Your Home?
Ants are tiny creatures so there is no shortage of ways for them to enter your home. Ant workers find their way inside through holes, cracks, and gaps in the outside of your home. Common areas include:
- Where pipes and wires enter the house
- Tree limbs
- Foundation cracks
- Crawl spaces
- Attic vents
- Cracks in weather stripping
In order to reduce your chances of seeing ants in the home, it is important that you perform a thorough inspection of the outside of your home and seal any cracks or obvious entry points.
What Attracts Ants?
Ants are omnivores which means that they eat pretty much whatever the opportunity presents. Ants eat a wide range of plants, fruit, and other insects. When they get into your house they can detect where food is stored and once they find a viable source of food they will leave a scent trail to let the rest of the colony know that the buffet is open.
Foods Ants Like
- Sugar/Sweet food
- Plant sap
- Pantry items
- Pet food
How To Prevent Ants From Coming Into Your Home?
Trying to prevent ants from getting into you with traditional methods is nearly impossible. Ants are just too small and houses aren’t air-tight. The best we can do is make our homes inhospitable to ants by taking away what attracts them.
- Clean dirty dishes
- Take out the trash regularly
- Put away food
- Store cereal, flour, and pasta in sealed plastic containers.
- Sweep the floor
- Store pet food in a sealed container
Pest Control in Phoenix, Arizona
If you are tired of worrying about ants getting into your home, the most effective way to prevent ants is with a professional pest control service. At SOS Termite, we have been in the pest control service since 1937. If you are having trouble with ants or any other pest invading your home, call us today at 480-571-1437 or leave us a message on our site.