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Red Imported Fire Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Red Imported Fire Ants

Solenopsis invicta
Color: Dark reddish brown
Legs: 6
Shape: Segmented; oval
Size: 1/8-3/8
Antennae: True
Region: Southern United States, from Maryland to Texas, California and New Mexico

Red imported fire ants nest in soil and build mound nests. They can infest garages.

Habits

These ants will build large mound nests, and will sting humans who come across a nest.

Habitat

Red imported fire ants will build their nest mounds outdoors in landscape areas or near a structural foundation. The ant will gain entry to a building through holes or cracks.

Threats

The sting of a red imported fire ant is painful and often results in a raised welt that becomes a white pustule. Often, a person stung by a red imported fire ant receives multiple painful stings from more than one of the ants. Persons allergic to insect stings will react more severely.

Prevention:

Red imported fire ants and their telltale mound nests should be actively avoided. To prevent entry into a structure, seal all internal and external cracks and crevices.

 

Carpenter Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Carpenter Ants

Camponotus species
Color: Varies depending on species, from red to black or a combination. The two most common species are black.
Legs: 6
Shape: Segmented; oval
Size: 5/8"
Antennae: True
Region: Found throughout U.S.; most common in the Northern half of the country

Carpenter ants get their name because they excavate wood in order to build their nests. Their excavation results in smooth tunnels inside the wood. Carpenter ants range in size from one-quarter inch for a worker ant to up to three-quarters inch for a queen.

Habits

All species mainly attack wood that is or has been wet and damaged by mold. Even though these ants first invade wet, decayed wood, they may soon begin building paths through dry, undamaged wood. They usually come into buildings through cracks around doors, windows, or through holes for wires. They will also crawl along overhead wires, shrubs, or tree limbs that touch the building far above the ground.

Habitat

Carpenter ants build their nests outdoors in various wood sources, including tree stumps, firewood or landscaping. They need a constant water source to survive. They will enter homes through wet, damaged wood.

Threats

Carpenter ants damage wood through their nest building. If they gain entry to a structure, they pose a property threat.

Prevention:

Because carpenter ants require a water source, eliminate sources of moisture or standing water. Keep tree branches and other plants cut back from the house. Sometimes pests use these branches to get into your home. Make sure that there are no cracks or little openings around the bottom of your house. Sometimes pests use these to get into your home. Make sure that firewood and building materials are not stored next to your home. Pests like to build nests in stacks of wood.

Pharaoh Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Pharaoh Ants

Monomorium pharaonis
Color: Yellow or light brown, almost transparent
Legs: 6
Shape: The antennal segments end in a distinct club with three progressively longer segments.
Size: 1/16"
Antennae:  
Region: The origin of this "tramp" ant is uncertain, although favoured alternatives include West Africa and Indonesia. The Pharaoh ant has been introduced to virtually every area of the world including Europe, the Americas,Austrilasia and Southeast Asia. Pharaoh ants are a tropical species but they thrive in buildings anywhere, even in temperate regions provided central heating is present.

Habits

Pharaoh ants have become a serious pest in hospitals, rest homes, apartment dwellings, hotels, grocery stores, food establishments and other buildings. They feed on a wide variety of foods including jellies, honey, shortening, peanut butter, corn syrup, fruit juices, baked goods, soft drinks, greases, dead insects and even shoe polish. They can also gnaw holes in silk, rayon and rubber goods.

Habitat

Nests can be very small, located between sheets of paper, in clothing or laundry, furniture, foods, etc. Nests usually occur in wall voids, under floors, behind baseboards, in trash containers, under stones, in cement or stone wall voids, in linens, light fixtures, etc. They prefer dark, warm areas near hot water pipes and heating tapes, in bathrooms, kitchens, intensive care units, operating rooms, etc.[1]They are "trail-making" ants and often are found foraging in drains, toilets, washbasins, bedpans and other unsanitary sites as well as in sealed packs of sterile dressing, intravenous drip systems, on surgical wounds, food and medical equipment.[1

Threats]

Pharaoh ants are a major hazard in hospitals, where their small size means they can access wounds, driplines, and instrumentation, causing the spread of infection and electrical interference.

Prevention

You should sponge invaders with soapy water as soon as you see them, plug up ant entryways with caulk or petroleum jelly and clean up food sources such as sugary spills, pet food, or garbage to prevent the spread on Pharaoh Ants.

 

Rover Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Rover Ants

Brachymyrmex patagonicus
Color: Body usually medium to dark brown in color
Legs: 6
Shape:  One segmented petiole, node inclined, usually concealed by base of gaster. No sting.
Size: 3mm
Antennae: 9 Segmented
Region: South American species, has been working its way under the radar across the southern United States.

Rover Ants were introduced to southern Arizona around 2003

Habits

They tend hemipterous insects for honeydew and visit nectaries.

Habitat

Colonies nest in soil and leaf litter, often under covering objects such as stones.

Threats

These ants are usually found dead floating in pools. Males much smaller than female alates and may not even look like ants because of their size and straight antennae. Males are small enough to penetrate patio screening. Foragers are common on outdoor furniture and structures.

Prevention

Controlling Rover Ants is challenging.  Landscape mulch should be less than 2 inches thick and at least 10-12 inches from the foundation.  Direct insecticide applications to the nest sites are the most effective means of control.

 

Acrobat Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Acrobat Ants

Crematogaster ashmeadi
Color: Shiny bodies that are variable in color from light red to brown or black
Legs: 6
Shape: A pair of spines on propodeaum. Two-segmented petiole, first segment wide at front.  Hanging gaster where postpetiole is attached to dorsal surface of gaster base. Gaster more convex ventrally than dorsally and with pointed end.  Sting not always exerted.
Size: 2.6-3.2 mm
Antennae: segmented
Region: Acrobat ants are commonly found throughout Florida and the Southeastern United States

An acrobat ant's most distinguishing characteristic is its heart-shaped gaster that is held up over its thorax when disturbed

Habits

A colony of acrobat ants usually exists in each tree of such coastal plain pine forests, inhabiting the excavated chambers of cossid moth larvae and bark beetles. Acrobat ants are extremely territorial and only one colony exists in each tree, although a large colony may spread to up to three pine trees if trees are in close proximity to each other. Acrobat ants do not damage trees themselves, but rather move into spaces and chambers hollowed out and abandoned by other insects

Habitat

These ants nest in branches and stems and other cavities of trees and shrubs, rotten logs and stumps. In houses they will nest in damaged wood of porches, eaves, etc.

Threats

When compared with other pestiferous ant species, acrobat ants are usually of minimal nuisance to people. Homeowners may complain that these ants are in the yard and foraging outside the home. They are uncommon indoors, but may be observed foraging for sweets or protein inside. When they are found nesting in the home, they infest damp or rotting wood often around windows and drain spouts.

Prevention

Control of acrobat ants can usually be done by reducing access to the home or other structures. Management can be accomplished by sealing exterior cracks through which workers enter. Removing branches or rotten logs and stumps will usually remove the nest site and the problem. Cutting away branches and tree material that touches the home will further remove the ant's access to the home.

 

Crazy Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Crazy Ants

Paratrechina longicornis
Color: Dark brown to blackish, the body often has faint bluish iridescence
Legs: 6 long legs
Shape: All workers in a crazy ant colony are monomorphic and have only one node between the propodeum and the gaster. Legs are extraordinarily long. The petiole is wedge-shaped, with a broad base, and inclined forward. A small round terminal orifice surrounded by a fringe of setae, or hairs, the acedipore serves for the application of venom both in defense and predation. The stinger is lacking but the crazy may bite an intruder and curve its abdomen forward to inject a formic acid secretion onto the wound.
Size: 2.3-3 mm
Antennae: 11 segmented
Region: Crazy Ants orginated from the tropics and are common in Puerto Rico, Florida and other states across the US.

They generally have loose, unorganized trails and when disturbed run erratically with no apparent direction.

Habit

Workers are omnivorous, feeding on live and dead insects, seeds, honeydew, fruits, plant exudates, and many household foods.

Habitat

The crazy ant is highly adaptable, living in both very dry and rather moist habitats. The crazy ant often nests some distance away from its foraging area. It nests in such places as trash, refuse, cavities in plants and trees, rotten wood, in soil under objects and also have been found under debris left standing in buildings for long periods of time. These ants can nest in a variety of locations from dry to moist environments. A crazy ant nest site can be found by looking for workers carrying food back to the nest.

Threats

The crazy ant has achieved pest status across the United States. It has been found on top floors of large apartment buildings in New York, hotels and flats in Boston and in hotel kitchens in San Francisco, California. It can be a significant agricultural pest as it assists in the distribution and/or protection of phloem-feeding Hemiptera, such as mealybugs, scale insects, and plant aphids.

Prevention

Prevention techniques include eliminating piles of lumber, brick, or other debris that could be possible nesting sites. Non-chemical control is based on exclusion through good housekeeping practices and cleanliness eliminating food sources.

 

Argentine Ants

Pest Control Las Vegas Nevada

Argentine Ants

Linepithema humile
Color: Light to dark brown
Legs: 6
Shape: Petiole with one erect node. Thorax in uneven shape when viewed from side
Size: 3 millimetres
Antennae: 12 segmented
Region: Native to northern Argentina, Uruaguay, Paraguay, and southern Brazil. It is an invasive species that has been established in many Mediterranean climate areas ,inadvertently introduced by humans to many places.

Habit

Argentine Ants have the ability to build super colonies with hundreds of queens.  To support such a large population, they will forage for food day and night.  These ants have a diverse diet, but prefer foods high in sugar content such as honey dew, fruit juices, and plant secretions.

Habitat

These ants will set up quarters in the ground, in cracks in concrete walls, in spaces between boards and timbers, even among belongings in human dwellings. In natural areas, they generally nest shallowly in loose leaf litter or beneath small stones, due to their poor ability to dig deeper nests. However, if a deeper nesting ant species abandons their nest, Argentine ant colonies will readily take over the space.

Threats

The ants are ranked among the world's 100 worst animal invaders. In its introduced range, the Argentine ant often displaces most or all native ants. This can, in turn, imperil other species in the ecosystem, such as native plants that depend on native ants for seed dispersal, or lizards that depend on native ants for food. Argentine ants sometimes tend aphid colonies, and their protection of this plant pest can cause problems in agricultural areas by protecting plant pests from predators and parasitoids. In return for this protection the ants receive a food as an excretion, known as Honeydew. Thus, when Argentine ants invade an agricultural area, the population densities of these plant parasites increase and so too does the damage they cause to crops.

Prevention

A thorough inspection must be conducted when dealing with this species of ant.  Sanitation improvements around and inside a structure can go a long way.  Reduction of moisture and harborage areas will greatly assist chemical control.  If possible, identifying nesting sites and treating them directly is very effective.

 

Best Pest Control in Illinois / Best Pest Control Illinois