Latin Name: Formicidae
With over 12,000 different species of ant all over the world, they are by far the most common pest to invade private and commercial properties. Each colony can consist of hundreds of ants.
With the exception of Antarctica, ants can be found in every region of the globe. Coloration and size vary between each species, but all ants have a segmented body, consisting of a head, thorax and abdomen. While worker ants are wingless, winged ants are commonly mistaken for termites. Winged ants can be recognized by their pointed heads, small waists, and jointed antennae.
Ants live in colonies that vary in complexity. Some are small and simple, while others are large with a complex social order. At the head of any new colony is a queen. Below the queen, there is a clear division of labor between worker ants and guard ants. Different members of the colony have different functions, such as protecting the young, feeding, and breaking down organic material.
Ants communicate through giving off pheromones. If an ant finds food in a home, it will leave a pheromone trail for its fellow workers. That trail will lead the rest of the colony to the food source. Pheromone trails make navigation easier for the entire colony.
How to Get Rid of Ants
Ants pose many problems for homeowners, and can even cause structural damage to buildings. Here are some ways to get rid of ants and prevent future damage.
- Identify the species. Each type of ant has a slightly different method of control, so it is important to know which species is infesting the building. You can identify the species by their size, their color, where they live, what foods they life, and how many nodes they have on their backs (one or two). Using your own reference tools or a pest control company, you must first correctly identify the species.
- Seal the house. North American ants are particularly small in size. This makes it very easy for them to enter a home through the smallest cracks. CedarCide’s Best Yet will prevent ants and other insects from entering your home when sprayed at entry points. Using caulk and weather stripping to seal potential entryways will make it difficult for the ants to invade your home.
- Hide food. Most ant species love sweet food. When storing such food, make sure to seal it in bags or airtight containers rather than keeping things in their original packaging. Also make sure to seal all cracks in and around your cabinets and storage. If the ants don’t have access to food, then they aren’t likely to take up residence in your home.
- Clean all surfaces. By keeping floors and counters clean and disinfected, you can remove the pheromone trails left by the worker ants. This will not only be disorienting for the colony, but also prevent ants from further exploring your home.