With thousands upon thousands of species in the world, ants are no stranger. Most are familiar with the ants that terrorize picnics, BBQs, even homes and businesses. There are countless ants that roam throughout San Antonio, TX, and fire ants are among the most common types of ants in the area. Today, we at A Five Star Termite and Pest Control would like to further elaborate on fire ants.
How to Identify Red Imported Fire Ants
Red imported fire ants are notorious for inflicting painful stings and bites. These ants are not only common in San Antonio but heavily populate the southern part of the United States. These ants are a dark reddish brown that scurry around on six legs that extend from segmented, oval bodies. They range from 1/8” to 3/8” long and feature typical antennae.
Fire Ant Mounds
Fire ants can have over 200,000 ant members in a colony, which generally comprises of the 1 queen and workers. There nests can feature underground tunnels that extend up to 25 feet away from the mound. Averaging between two and four square feet in size, these red ants build large mound nests that are flattened, irregular in shape. Through potted plants, shrubs and trees, fire ants are commonly introduced into new areas. The soil in close proximity to structural foundations or in landscaping is often where the red imported fire ants usually nest. These ants commonly gain access to buildings through HVAC systems and AC units, though they typically prefer to remain outdoors.
Fire Ant Stings
Generally, people that disturb the fire ants nest are often stung relentlessly. A raised welt that becomes a white pustule is frequently the result of a red imported fire ant’s sting. Also, many people will usually receive multiple stings from more than one of the ants when they become victims of the red imported fire ants sting. A more severe reaction may emerge if the person stung is allergic to their attacks.
Home Sealing to Keep Fire Ants Out of Your House
Red imported fire ants can be prevented with a little dedication. Actively avoid red imported fire ants and their signature mound nests. You can earn a painful welt from interfering with a fire ant nest that then motivates them to sting. To help prevent their infiltration into a structure, ensure that all internal and external cracks and crevices are properly sealed along with ventilation and utility lines.
Where Do Fire Ants Come From?
Red imported fire ants were accidentally introduced to America from a cargo boat that came from South America. Though they remain primarily in the southern states, they have spread aggressively since their arrival in Alabama and do not tend to be abundant north as it is very challenging for them to survive the winters in cold temperature soil.
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There are four stages to the fire ant’s life cycle that include the egg, larvae, pupae, and adults. Fire ants include honeydew, plant nectar, seeds, dead animals, Fruits and are especially attracted to fatty foods. They often work on ant mounds for months before they are big enough to be seen.To effectively and safely get rid of fire ants, call in the experts of A Five Star Termite and Pest Control and let us do the rest.