12 Apr What to Know about the Non-Native Argentine Ant
There are many different kinds of ants that can become a problem on your SC property, but most of these are native species. Argentine ants are one species that isn’t native to SC. In fact, these ants came over from South America back in the late 1800s. Find out all you can about these ants in case you end up needing South Carolina Argentine ant control for your home.
Introduction of Argentine Ants to SC
Argentine ants are believed to have come to SC via ships carrying coffee from Argentina and Brazil. They originally landed in New Orleans prior to 1891 and made their way to SC on plant and material shipments. They now inhabit many states in the southern U.S., along with California and a few other spots. These non-native species have become a big problem for several different reasons: they’re able to nest in a wide range of environments, they eat a variety of foods, and their colonies have large numbers of members.
What Do Argentine Ants Look Like?
Argentine ants tend to be larger and longer than native ant species, such as pavement ants, which makes them easy to spot. Worker ants can grow to around 1/16 of an inch long, while queens are roughly twice that size. These ants have a light or dark brown color rather than the black coloring of carpenter ants, which are a large native ant species in SC. Argentine ants don’t have stingers, but they’re able to bite if they feel threatened.
How Large Are Argentine Ant Colonies in SC?
Argentine ants are capable of building colonies that can number in the hundreds of thousands. This makes them one of the most difficult ant species to get rid of in SC. Each of these colonies has more than one queen, and each queen can lay thousands of eggs in just one season. This leads to colonies filled with thousands of worker ants that stay busy building their tunnels and expanding their territory. Reproductive ants stay deep inside the colony for the most part. Only some female reproductive ants leave with workers to form a new colony.
How Do Argentine Ants Behave?
Argentine ants travel large distances in search of food sources. These ants can travel 200 feet or more from their nest in order to find food. When they build nests, they look for moist areas with shelter, such as under logs or in debris, such as decaying wood. While they tend to nest outdoors, they’ve also been known to build nests under houses and even inside them. South Carolina Argentine ant control is often needed when this occurs, especially since these colonies grow so large.
What Do Argentine Ants Eat?
Argentine ants feed on a large variety of foods, which makes it easy for them to find nutrition. Their food preferences tend to change during the year, but they typically prefer eating sweeter foods. Their diet also includes fruit, eggs, meat, dairy products and animal waste.
How Do You Control Argentine Ants?
Infestations of these ants can be very difficult to deal with thanks to their large populations. These ants can end up causing one infestation after another in the same home over the years unless all of their nests are found and eliminated. Our technicians at Island Pest Control have the skills and knowledge needed to locate these nests and effectively get rid of infestations through baits, sprays or other methods.
Sealing up cracks, getting rid of wood piles and other clutter outdoors and trimming vegetation away from your home’s exterior helps lower your risk of needing South Carolina Argentine ant control.
If you need reliable South Carolina Argentine ant control for your Hilton Head home, please contact Island Pest Control. Our locally owned company has a team of state-licensed technicians ready to provide you with dependable service.