Posts tagged: Fire ant

Getting Rid Of Fire Ants

Red Imported Fire AntIf you’ve had more-than-preferable experiences with fire ants, you might know that their bites can really pack a punch. They are very aggressive foragers, have exceedingly high reproduction rates, and build unsightly mounds around the yard. Their painful poison and aggressive nature make their presence a danger especially to children playing in the yard. As a common sight and problem in homeowner’s lawns and yards, there are many urban legends and old wives tales surrounding the issue of dealing with and getting rid of fire ant mounds. Well, we’ve tested them all, and here are the sure-fire methods of controlling fire ant populations in your lawn:

Bucketing

Dig up the mound and dump it into large buckets. Once “bucketed,” you can proceed to drown the ants or move them somewhere else, where they won’t bother you or your property. Tips: before you dig up the mound, cover the sides of the bucket with baby powder or cornstarch to prevent the ants from crawling out of the bucket; dig up the mounds quickly; tuck your pants into your socks; if drowning the ants, add dish soap to the water to drown them faster.

Fire Ant SignBoiling Water

This is one of the most common ways of dealing with fire ant mounds. The water doesn’t actually need to be boiling, just scalding hot. It might take three or four applications to totally kill the mound. Tips: use about four gallons of hot water per application; be careful about your application, as hot water can kill surrounding grass and plants.

Granular Baits

This option may be preferable if your lawn has a large number of fire ant mounds. These baits contain small amounts of insecticide that release slowly enough to get to the queen without the workers discovering that it’s poison. Spread these throughout your yard with a spreader, and you should see results in, typically, around five weeks (depending on the bait you use). Tips: slower acting insecticides typically provide longer control; you only need two pounds per acre; use a handheld spreader and not a lawn fertilizer, which would apply way too much.

Individual Mound Treatments

Fire Ant Mounds

These insecticides are also available for treating single mounds. Unlike the baits, these contain fast acting insecticides (since they don’t rely on the workers to carry them home to the mound). For controlling fire ants specifically, the treatments are typically in dry form rather than liquid. Liquid treatments, however, are typically faster, though they require more work and are more expensive. Tips: don’t disturb the mounds before application, as the workers might evacuate the queen to a safer location; use a watering can when mixing and applying treatments; first apply the treatment around the outside of the mound to trap any escapees and then proceed to drench the mound in it.

Fire Ant Stings

If you get stung by fire ants, stay calm. Elevate the infected areas, clean the area with soap and water, and apply antihistamine or use a hydrocortisone cream. Don’t pop the blisters and be patient as the stings heal. Unless you have an allergic reaction, fire ant stings should not pose a threat to your health or life. If you find yourself having trouble breathing or feeling your throat tightening up, seek professional medical care immediately.

Mike Piwonka is the CEO of The Grass Outlet, a Texas sod provider. He and his family-run business are dedicated to making Texas green, one lawn at a time, and providing top quality grass in a time-efficient manner.

5 Problems Fire Ants Cause Homeowners

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One of the most problematic, destructive, and malicious, property pests that homeowners in the San Antonio, TX area battle; is the Red Imported Fire Ant. Here are five problems these ants cause:

1. Fire Ants Sting!

If you’ve ever been stung by an ant (not bitten), the culprit was a fire ant. They are the only stinging ant in Texas. These stings hurt. If you stumble across one of the fire ant’s notorious mounds, their bites may come in bunches. Once you experience the first bite, there may be dozens of other ants crawling up your legs—ready to sting!

After a victim has been stung by a fire ant, the sting site will feel like it’s on fire! The area will become red and eventually blister. An itchy rash may develop. If you have insect allergies you may begin to feel dizzy and vomit. If this is the case, seek medical attention.

2. Fire Ant Mounds Destroy Property

Fire Ants

Fire Ants (Photo credit: NatalieMaynor)

One of the biggest problems fire ants impose on homeowners is the destruction of property. Fire ants build huge mounds that burrow almost eight feet deep. These mounds destroy trees and plants, not to mention they are an eyesore—reaching up to three feet in diameter.

3. Fire Ants Damage Electrical Equipment

One of the most interesting and unique fire ant characteristics also makes these ants a menace to homeowners. Fire ants are drawn to electrical equipment. They crawl into electrical wiring and air conditioning units, causing them to short out.

4. Fire Ants Injure Pets

Fire ants play no favorites as to who they’ll sting. If they feel threatened, or are disturbed in any way, they will defend themselves by stinging and biting. Your pets are no exception. In fact, fire ants are drawn to the moisture of your pet’s eyes, nose, and mouth. Fire ant stings around the eyes can cause your pet to go blind. Stings in the nose or mouth can cause them to swell shut, suffocating your pet. Worst case scenario, although rare, is that your pet may die from an allergic reaction to the ant’s venom.

5. Fire Ants Inhibit Outdoor Lifestyle

If you have a fire ant colony in your backyard, it affects your desire to go outside and enjoy your property. No more backyard barbecues or picnics. No more running barefoot through your yard. If you enjoy lying in the grass and watching the clouds go by, forget about it. You will be stung!

San Antonio Fire Ant Extermination

Fire ants can be very challenging to control. Trying to take the job on yourself can actually make the problem worse. Using an aerosol pesticide on a fire ant mound will accelerate the immature queen’s breeding; meaning they will become mature and start new colonies of their own. It will also cause the ants to spread out across your property as they wait for the insecticide to dissipate.

Do not try to take on these nasty pests yourself, and don’t risk a painful sting. Get help controlling the fire ants near your home or property. Get professional ant control!

Bulwark Exterminating
118 Broadway Street
San Antonio, TX 78205
(210) 224-2706
bulwarkpestcontrol.com
 
Orkin Pest & Termite Control
4902 Center Park Boulevard
San Antonio, TX
(866) 713-9979
orkin.com
 
Terminix
10022 N Ih 35
San Antonio, TX 78233
(210) 656-5050
terminix.com

Ants Labeled As Top Nuisance Pest

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Recent Survey Identifies Ants As Nation’s #1 Nuisance Pest

What do jaywalkers, noisy neighbors, and barking dogs have in common with ants? They are all considered nuisance’s we must deal with quite regularly.

Ants recently got the distinction of being labeled America’s top nuisance pest; beating out mosquitoes, house flies, and gnats for the dubious honor. Ants were given this top distinction after a nationwide survey was conducted by the National pest Management Association (NMPA). Pest Control Operators were polled, and 100 percent have treated ant infestations the past year; with nearly 55 percent saying that ant problems are on the rise.

Breaking Down The Nation’s #1 Nuisance

Why Ants Are More Than Just A Nuisance

While ants have always been thought of as a nuisance, they can bite or sting and also cause serious damage to your home or property.

  • Carpenter ants will burrow through wood and nest inside homes, which can compromise a home’s structural integrity.
  • Odorous House ants will infest you home, making their homes inside your walls, looking for sweets in your kitchen.
  • Fire ants can create destructive mounds on your property; and a person can actually receive several hundred painful stings simultaneously when they attack.
  • Argentine ants do not sting, but they will spread rapidly if left untreated.

Controlling These Ant Nuisances

San Antonio, TX is home to the nuisance ants listed above. While exterminating an entire colony is quite challenging, professional ant control will greatly inhibit the ant’s population and destructive tendencies. If you are seeing ants in your home, or around your San Antonio real estate, get pest control.

San Antonio Pest Control

Bulwark Exterminating
118 Broadway Street
San Antonio, TX 78205
(210) 224-2706
bulwarkpestcontrol.com
 
San Antonio Chimney & Wildlife
333 West Olmos Drive #123
San Antonio, TX 78212
(210) 607-0347
texaschimneywildlife.com
 
Orkin Pest & Termite Control
4902 Center Park Boulevard
San Antonio, TX 78218
(866) 713-9979
orkin.com
 

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