There are many different types of ants that can invade your home and leave you with a pest problem. Some are simply a nuisance to have around, but others can cause serious damage to your home, like carpenter ants. If you notice any ants in your home, it is best to get the problem taken care of right away by a professional. Contact The Bugman Pest Control for carpenter ant removal in Kelowna, Penticton & Vernon.
General Ant Identifying Features
The body of an ant is clearly divided into three sections: the head, the thorax, and the gaster.
Ants are social insects living in colonies comprised of one or a few queens and many workers. The queen generally stays deep and safe within a nest. Most ants that you see are workers and these are all females. Depending on species, workers may be similar in size, or come in a range of sizes. Ants tend to come in dark or earth tones. Different species are black, earth-tone reds, pale tans and basic browns.
Most ants eat a variety of small insects that they capture, dead insects they happen to find, nectar or honeydew. They need a balance of carbohydrates and protein. Protein is especially needed for the queen to make eggs and for the larvae to grow.
Most ant species live in the soil. Some, like the carpenter ants, also live in wood (they excavate, but do not actually eat the wood). Some ants live in cavities made inside plants, such as acorns, twigs and galls.
A variety of reptiles or amphibians (particularly toads and lizards), spiders, other insects such as assassin bugs, and other ants may prey on workers. Bats, birds, and occasionally, people capture and kill or eat the flying males and females.
A few ant species are considered pests because they live in and protect the territory that we consider ours, or because they want to consume resources that we need. For example, leafcutter ants compete with us for crop plants in the American tropics. Fire ants colonize damp grasslands (including lawns!) with alarming ease. Carpenter ants, adapted for living in deadwood, consider the deadwood (lumber) in houses fair game, especially if it is damp. A number of opportunistic ant species can overrun kitchens, pantries and pet food areas in search of suitable food items. Also, some ants (like their relatives - wasps and bees) have a potent sting. As with bees, some people can become hypersensitive to ant stings.
Thatching Ants: Thatching or “mound ants” get their name because they construct mounds from small sticks, grass stems, leaves and pine or fir needles. They may also nest in decayed logs. Under most circumstances, thatching ants should be considered beneficial since they are fierce predators of other insects. However, when they occur in lawns, rockeries, picnic areas and other areas of human habitation, they can become a severe annoyance. Be sure thatching ants are indeed a threat if you find their mounds on your property. Frequently, they do not pose a serious problem and no control is recommended.
Odourous House Ant: This is a very difficult ant to control because of their polymorphic behaviours, and it is highly recommended to use the services of a pest control professional.
Carpenter Ants: They are one of the most valuable insects we have on earth. They chew up tons of wood and turn it into fine sawdust that rots and provides compost for new growth. But when they enter manmade structures, like our homes and businesses, carpenter ants are considered the most destructive common insect pest we have in Canada. A carpenter ant infestation needs to be eradicated as soon as possible to prevent further damage to the structure they inhabit.
If you find any of the above ants infesting your home or property, give us a call.
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