The Science Of Ant Control: Understanding Ant Behavior To Prevent And Control Ants In Katy

The Science Of Ant Control: Understanding Ant Behavior To Prevent And Control Ants In Katy

Ants are pests that everyone is familiar with but that are largely ignored. You can’t go outside on a summer’s day without seeing them crawling along the pavement, but unless they’re doing something interesting as they walk, like carrying a piece of food three times as big as them, you probably don’t pay attention. If they show up to your picnic in the park, you may get irritated, but other than covering up your food and flicking them away when they get too close, they remain a minor annoyance.

If you haven’t given much thought to ants before, it may be time to get to know a little bit about them. The fact is that living in Katy means that there’s a fairly high likelihood that ants will end up inside your house at one point or another. If you don’t know anything about ants and start seeing them in your house, there's a good chance that you’ll either overreact or underreact. Although you don’t have to completely freak out when you find ants in your house, you also shouldn’t just assume they’ll go away on their own.

Your best course of action when it comes to ants is to learn some basic facts about them, including how they behave, the problems they can cause, how you can prevent them, and what to do for ant control in Katy. Then, when ants start showing up in your house, you’ll know exactly how to proceed in order to get them out of your house as easily and efficiently as possible. Modern Pest Control has the information you need to know about the science of ant control.

Ant Behavior: Social Hierarchy And Communication

There are over 12,000 different species of ants in the world. Each species has its own set of unique characteristics, but all types of ants share many common characteristics between them. When it comes to ant behavior, these pests are quite fascinating to learn about. Their social hierarchy and the way they communicate with each other make them extremely smart insects with highly organized family structures.

Ants form colonies that are made up of several different groups. There is typically one queen per colony, although some ant species have several queens per colony. The queen’s job is to reproduce. The males in the colony also have the job of reproduction, but unlike the queen, they die shortly after mating. If the queen dies in a colony with several queens, the other queens continue to work. If the queen dies in a colony with only one queen, some ant colonies have other female reproductive members that can continue the breeding cycle, but none of their offspring will have reproductive capabilities.

In addition to the queens and males, the rest of the ants in the colony are female worker ants. The worker ants have a variety of jobs that include staying in the nest to take care of the young, removing trash from the nest and tunnels, defending the colony from predators and intruders, and foraging for food for the colony. Young ants typically start out working in the nest, but their jobs may change as they get older, allowing them to move farther from the nest as they take on jobs such as foraging.

Ant colonies can be made up of a small number of ants or can grow into millions of members. Regardless of how small or big, an ant colony is highly organized and unified in purpose. All ants work together for the betterment of the colony as a whole. They do this in part by being able to communicate well with each other.

Ant communication is primarily done through the release of pheromones. Different pheromones give off different scents, each containing their own unique messages. An ant can communicate that they’ve found a good food source or that there is a potential danger ahead all through the release of pheromones. They can also communicate through touch and vibrations.

Although ants get along extremely well with the members of their own colony, it’s often a different story with other colonies. Ants can be very aggressive towards ants that don’t belong to their own family group. However, in some instances, different ant colonies will join together to form a “supercolony” made up of more than one colony. These ants will typically retain their own nests but will work together with the other colonies instead of fighting with each other.

Assessing The Risks: The Problems Created By Ant Infestations

Ants are fascinating creatures that we can learn a lot from, but they can also be bothersome creatures that cause issues for Katy homeowners when they get inside. Because they work so well together and move as a group, if ants decide your house is a good place to live, you’re going to end up with an ant infestation that can lead to a variety of problems.

Not all ant species cause the same issues when they get into homes. Most ants are mainly just a nuisance. They aren’t particularly dangerous, and they won’t cause any major problems, but they will become an annoyance. It’s rare to only find a singular ant in your house. If you do see an ant inside, there’s a high likelihood that you’ll start seeing many others before too long. It can be very frustrating to get rid of one ant only to find two or three more in its place, but that’s usually what happens. That’s because of how ants communicate. The first ant to get into your house will tell the others how to follow, and they won’t be far behind.

Not all ants try to move into your house. Some simply get inside to forage for food there. If they find a good food source, they will continue to return time and again to get food that they can bring back to their nest. Ants that get into your food supply will contaminate that food. If you realize they’re there, you’ll be able to avoid becoming ill from eating the food, but you’ll lose money on food that you have to throw away. If you don’t realize they’re there, you could get sick from eating the contaminated food.

Fire ants are common ants in Katy. They are usually found outdoors, but just because they don’t get into your house doesn’t mean they can’t cause problems. If you encounter a fire ant colony in your yard, you are going to have a painful experience. Fire ants are very territorial, and if they sense that something (or someone) is disturbing their nest, they will swarm to defend it. If you accidentally step on a fire ant mound, hundreds of ants will come out to sting you. These stings are extremely painful and can be dangerous for some people.

Some ants aren’t dangerous to your health but are destructive to your property. There are a couple of species of ants in Katy that can damage your home if they get inside. Carpenter ants are the most well-known species of ant that causes damage. Although they don’t eat wood, they do chew through it while building tunnels and nests. If carpenter ants get into your house, they will damage the wooden structures inside. Over time, substantial damage can occur, weakening important structures in your home.

Tawny crazy ants are another destructive ant species in Katy. They have large colonies, and when they get indoors, they tend to nest near electrical equipment. They may then damage the electrical wires nearby, which can cause problems with your lights, TV, and other electronic devices. In some cases, this damage could become a fire hazard, which puts your entire family in danger.

While it would be nice if ants were simply the tiny insects outdoors that we like to ignore, when we do so, we underestimate the issues they can cause. Ants are pests that we have to pay attention to, especially when we start seeing them in our houses.

Ant Prevention Strategies: Using Science To Keep Ants Out

Knowing the various problems ants can cause is good motivation to do what you can to try to keep ants out of your Katy home and off your property. The following ant prevention tips will help you make it less likely that you’ll end up with an ant infestation.

  • Fix moisture issues inside and outside of your house. Ants are usually attracted to moisture and prefer to build their nests in a moist environment. Reducing moisture outside and making sure you don’t have any moisture issues can make your property less attractive to ants. 
    • Fix leaking pipes.
    • Repair dripping faucets.
    • Cut back overgrown foliage that traps moisture underneath. 
    • Make sure your home’s drainage system works well.
    • Reduce humidity in your house.
  • Store firewood away from your house. Some ants, like carpenter ants, will nest in a firewood pile and may end up inside your house eventually. 
  • Cut back vegetation that touches the sides or roof of your house. Ants often use this vegetation as a bridge to gain access to your house.
  • Seal cracks and crevices in your house. The tiniest opening can allow ants inside. 
    • Fill cracks and crevices.
    • Repair gaps around windows and doors.
    • Replace torn screens.
    • Repair holes in your siding.
    • Fill openings around the areas where wiring and plumbing fixtures enter your home.
  • Store food in your house in containers with tightly-fitting lids. Don’t leave food out on the counter.
  • Clean up your dishes, counters, sinks, and floors after each meal so no spills or crumbs are left out for ants to find. 
  • Routinely clean out your pantry and cupboards. Clean up spills and messes. Wipe down the shelves.
  • Take out your trash regularly. If you have outdoor garbage bins, store them away from your house.

Although it can take time to implement all of the ant prevention tips mentioned above, they truly can make a difference in protecting your home from an ant infestation. Many of the tips are also effective at keeping other pests out of your house.

If you’ve done what you can to prevent ants, or even if you haven’t, and you start finding ants in your house, it’s time to call the experts.

Expert Ant Control: Call Us At The First Sign Of Ants In The House

Many Katy homeowners find ants in their homes and think they should try to get rid of them on their own. They may simply take care of the ants they see, or they may set out some ant bait, but the one thing these two DIY methods of ant control have in common is that they’re not very effective.

Because of the way ants communicate with each other, removing only the ants you see will not remove the entire problem. New ants will just show up in their place. Furthermore, setting out bait is also not very effective because it doesn’t take into account the fact that different ant species prefer different types of food. If you set out the wrong type of bait, you won’t see any positive results.

The best ant control for homeowners is done by a pest control company with technicians who are experts in ant biology, behavior, and control. When you choose Modern Pest Control, we’ll come to your home to diagnose the problem before deciding on a treatment method. We’ll identify the species of ants in or around your house and then provide the products and methods that will best meet your home pest control needs.

Ant pest control services from Modern Pest Control are available in Katy. You deserve to live in a home without worrying about an ant infestation and what it can mean for your home and family. Ants can be destructive, dangerous, and annoying, but they don’t have to be when you get them under control with Modern Pest Control. Keep ants out of your home with ant control from Modern Pest Control. Contact us today to get started.

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