How To Determine If You Have An Ant Problem This Spring
Ants like to live where it’s warm and close to food and water. And with that said, spring is the time when ants come out of hibernation and look for a new home to nest in. Here are four signs that you may have an ant problem this Spring.
Signs Of An Ant Infestation
Ants are a common pest that can cause damage to your home and garden. Here are several signs you can look for that will let you know you have an ant problem.
Pathways or trails: When ants see food they will leave a scent trail that other colony members can follow to find it. This will help them locate the food and take it back to their nest.
Mounds or nests: Carpenter ants build their nests in soil or dirt. They may build these nests under firewood piles, in yard debris, or inside decaying tree stumps.
Wood shavings: Carpenter ants will leave small piles of wood shavings behind as they destroy wood. This can be a sign that they have been destroying your wooden structures.
If you see these signs of an ant infestation, it is important to call for a professional to deal with it. A good pest control company will be able to find the nest, seal up entry points, and remove the colony before it grows too large.
Finding The Nest
If you suspect that ants may be invading your home this spring, it’s important to identify the nest so you can begin eliminating it. Ants will hide their nests in many different places, including under piles of firewood, under siding on your house or in decaying tree stumps. They’ll also hide their nests under concrete slabs that air conditioners rest upon or in old termite galleries, and in wall voids inside your home insulation. To find the nest, it helps to look for damage and loss of food. For example, if ants are raiding a fruit tree and are digging up the leaves, you can look for piles of sweet honeydew on or around the tree’s roots. If you’re still unsure where to look for the nest, try placing a pea-sized amount of honey or simple syrup and a pea-sized dab of peanut butter in areas where you have seen ants. This will encourage ants to follow their foraging trails back to the nest.
Where Is The Food?
If you notice ants in your home, you will want to investigate their food sources. Ants are omnivores, meaning they eat both proteins and sugary sweets, but they also rely on honeydew secreted by aphids as a source of nutrients. Some ants, including red imported fire ants, will even take care of their aphid herds to ensure they have a consistent supply of honeydew for themselves. However, ants also consume a lot of dead animals and fly larvae that help decompose them. In order to determine if you have an ant problem this spring, it is important to follow their foraging trails. If you see ants, place some bait near their trail so they can find it and return to the nest.
Looking Out For The Damages
If you have an ant infestation, it’s a good idea to look for the damage it has caused. This includes a weakened structural wood and rotting of the inside of your home, which could result in costly repairs. Carpenter ants, for example, are one of the most common pests in the Pacific Northwest and they will destroy your home’s structure if left unchecked. A good way to tell if you have carpenter ants is by hearing the sounds they make when they are removing wood particles and making nests within your walls or other woodwork. These insects are often hidden from sight, so it can take years before you spot a termite or carpenter ant infestation. This is why it’s important to have a professional inspect your home and help you determine the best course of action to get rid of your problem.