Argentine Ants: What They Do and How to Prevent Them
Argentine ants are one of the most common house invaders in Northern CA. Find out more about what they do, as well as what you can do to get rid of them.
Are you being plagued with Argentine ants? Argentine ants are a highly successful invasive ant species. So successful that their global colonization efforts are rivaled only by those of humans!
One of the reasons is that Argentine ants can multiple and expand their large colonies at rapid rates. Northern California is a particular hot spot for Argentine ants. If you’re starting to see Argentine ants in and around your Northern CA home, you need to act fact.
Otherwise, you might be stuck with them for good.
Keep reading to find out what Argentine ants can do to your home and how you can prevent them from taking over.
What Argentine Ants Do
Unlike many other common pest species, Argentine ants aren’t disease-carrying. They also aren’t aggressive and don’t bite unless in self-defense.
However, this doesn’t mean Argentine ants are harmless. They can still cause you a lot of trouble and be bad news for your home and the environment.
Here are some of the top negative consequences of an Argentine ant infestation.
One of the main problems with Argentine ants is that they multiply rapidly. They can quickly shift their nests, build new ones, and grow their numbers. While most ant species are aggressive towards other colonies, Argentine ants aren’t.
This gives them a unique advantage and helps Argentine ants grow their large colonies to supersonic sizes. The largest known Argentine ant colony spans more than 6,000 kilometers.
The takeaway? If you start seeing Argentine ants around your home, you should take action as soon as possible.
Become Unsightly and Inconvenient in Your Home
As their numbers increase, Argentine ants can become an unsightly and inconvenient pest to have in your home.
Anybody who has battled an ant infestation can relate to how frustrating it can get.
Did you drop a few grains of sugar on the counter while making coffee? Boom! You’ll have ants swarming over them in a flash.
Did you leave a bit of water standing around the sink? You guessed it, the ants will be there in no time.
Besides descending on any food crumbs or standing water, ants can also pop up in the most random places. From marching in thick lines through just about anywhere in your home—to congregating under flower pots and outdoor furniture, you’ll be bound to run into them everywhere.
Promote Plant Pests and Disrupt Ecosystems
Besides being a general nuisance, Argentine ants also promote and actively help certain species of plant pests, such as aphids, mealybugs, and scales. Argentine ants harvest the “honeydew” secretions these pests make.
In return, the ants often guard these pests and even “farm” with them, moving them around to new plants.
If you’re a plant lover or an avid gardener, this farming of pests can wreak havoc on your favorite plants. Just as you think you’re on top of something like an aphid infestation, you realize that the aphids have been moved and are now on a new plant.
Along with promoting plant pests, Argentine ants are also disrupting California’s ecosystems and displacing indigenous ant species.
Compromise Your Foundation
Unlike carpenter ants, Argentine ants aren’t wood-eating and won’t cause damage to things like supporting beams in your home.
However, they can compromise the integrity of your foundation. Argentine ants typically make relatively shallow nests in the soil. However, they can also burrow deep underground, and easily move their nests if they feel like they might be threatened.
What’s more, Argentine ants typically build 20-30 nests that form an ever-evolving nest network.
If Argentine ants start building their nests under your home’s foundation, this can erode the soil stability over time. This can cause cracks in your foundations, which can become a very expensive problem to fix.
How to Get Rid of Argentine Ants
Although Argentine ants aren’t one of the most dangerous house pests, they definitely aren’t something you want to have around your home.
Here are some of the things you can do to keep Argentine ants at bay.
Remove Water Sources
Argentine ants rely on water, so try to remove as many water sources as possible. These include things like standing water, ponds, fountains, etc.
It’s almost impossible to remove their access to water completely, but by eradicating as many water sources as possible you can discourage Argentine ants.
Clean Up Crumbs and Seal up Food
Another best practice is to immediately clean up any food crumbs that fall and seal up open food. This will prevent ants from swarming your counters and floors.
Besides this, the less food there is around the less attractive your home will be to ants, whether they are Argentine ants another ant species.
Tidy Up Your Yard
Another way you can discourage Argentine ants from making nests around your home is by tidying up your yard. If you have any woodpiles close to your house, move these as far away as possible.
You should also trim back any tree branches that might be touching your home, as these can provide a convenient highway for Argentine ants.
Seal up Potential Entry Points Into Your Home
To stop Argentine ants from making their way indoors, make a point to seal up any cracks and holes they might be using as entryways. These include cracks in your siding, around windows and door frames, in your foundation, etc.
Call In a Pest Control Company
Besides these DIY measures, you should also consider calling in a pest control company. Like we said above, Argentine ants can multiply rapidly. Next thing you know, your entire property might become riddled by an Argentine ant colony.
Getting a professional pest service to deal with the first signs of Argentine ants is one of the surest ways you can prevent this from happening.
Here at Fast Action Pest Control, we are experienced at tackling Argentine ant problems. We offer guaranteed results, and our chemical control programs aren’t highly toxic. Most of the products we use are less harmful than the average countertop cleaner.
We have multiple locations in Northern CA and offer free inspections and outstanding customer service.
Do You Need a Professional Pest Service?
Although Argentine ants don’t typically bite or spread disease, they are still a serious pest. They can grow large colonies in short amounts of time. Without pest control efforts they can become a real problem, and even compromise your home’s foundations.
Have you been spotting Argentine ants around your home? If so, the best thing to do is call in a professional pest service.
Anxious to nip your Argentine ant infestation in the bud? We can help. Contact us for a free inspection today.