Everything to Know About Ants in Miami, Florida.

South Florida’s subtropical climate is home to an extremely diverse population of insects. One of the most annoying pests are the ants. Most ant colonies are populated by hundreds and sometimes thousands of ants which can make them difficult to control without proper training. Luckily for you, we’ve been perfecting our ant control service since 1986 so you don’t have to waste time and money trying doing it yourself.

Three types of ants live in the colony:

• Queen: The queen is the largest ant in the colony. Her role is to reproduce, laying thousands of eggs over the course of her lifetime. Depending on its size, a colony can have one or multiple queens.

• Female ants: Also known as worker ants, females are responsible for finding food, caring for the queen’s offspring, and maintaining and protecting the colony. Other than the queen, female ants do not reproduce.

• Male ants: The singular role of the male, also called a drone, is to mate with the queen.

What do ants look like?

Ants are generally red, dark brown, or black. They range in size from 1/8” to 1/2”, though some species can grow as large as an inch. Their bodies consist of a head, thorax, abdomen, six legs, bent antennae, compound eyes, and strong jaws known as mandibles. The ant’s anatomy resembles a figure-eight, with a constriction between the thorax and abdomen.

Queen and male ants have wings, though most common varieties do not usually fly. Ants don’t have ears, and “hear” through vibrations. They also lack lungs and instead process oxygen through holes called spiracles. Ants have two stomachs — one for food they consume and another to hold food to take to the colony.

Ants mature quickly, going from egg to larva to pupa to adult in a matter of weeks. Males typically live less than a month, dying shortly after mating. Worker ants live for up to 3 years and the queen can survive as long as 30 years. Once the queen dies, the colony is unable to survive because it is unable to replace her.

What are the unique characteristics of ants?

Ants are omnivores, feeding on anything from seeds to other animals. They are very organized, often working together in large groups to build their nest and gather and transport food. Depending on the type, an ant can carry 10 – 50 times its own body weight. Ants communicate by emitting chemicals that warn of danger and potential food sources. As they travel, they discharge pheromones to mark their trail, which is why you often see ants marching in a line.

What are the habits of ants?

Ants prefer warmer temperature and are most active in the spring, summer, and fall.

Where are ants commonly found? Outdoors, ants generally make their homes beneath the ground, in mounds built at ground-level, trees or plants, or wood. Indoors ants build nests in various places, and the habitats of some of the most common ants found in North America vary.

What Types of Ants Are in South Florida?

The most common ants in Miami and throughout South Florida are:

• Ghost Ants
• Florida Carpenter Ants
• Big Headed Ants
• Pharaoh Ants
• Argentine Ants
• Tawny Crazy Ants
• Acrobat Ants
• White Footed Ants
• Crazy Ants
• Imported Fire Ants

Ghost Ants

Ghost ants are one of the most common ants found in Miami homes. They are typically found in kitchens as bathrooms where they forage water and sweets. They love nesting behind cabinets, in potted plants, in window and door frames but can also be found grouped up anywhere they feel safe. Ghost ants are known to have multiple nests close to where they are foraging food and water, making them quite difficult to control. We use a combination of essential oils to kill them on contact and disrupt their pheromone trails. We also use all-natural bait that they will forage and share with their friends and family.

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants are most commonly found in Miami landscapes. They love nesting in the bases of trees, rotting tree notches, in piles of wood debris, under tarps, and sometimes even in your home. Although carpenter ants love to live in and around wood, they do not eat it. These ants can cause damage but typically only when there is moisture present. Carpenter ants prefer to nest in soft, damp wood usually present around leaky roofs, windows, and door frames. When our pest control technicians treat carpenter ants, they will do their best to locate nests and advise the homeowner of any possible moisture issues around the home. Our combination of essential oil-based insecticide and bacteria-based bait will safely rid your home and landscape of these unwanted pests.

Pharaoh Ants

Pharaoh ants are one of the most difficult household ants to control in South Florida. They prefer nesting where it is warm, like in your attic, ceiling, electrical outlets, or around hot water pipes. We’ll typically find them trailing down from an a/c vent, light fixture, or wall outlet to a kitchen or pantry where sweet and fatty foods are stored. These ants are very slender and move slowly in comparison to other household ants.

Argentine Ants

Argentine Ants typically nest in leaf debris and mulch beds outside homes. These ants feed on dead insects, insect larvae, small reptile eggs, and honeydew secreted from aphids, mealybugs, and scale insects found on various plants throughout Florida landscapes. During the rainy season, it is common for these ants to scale the walls of homes and nest inside attics to escape flooding. Our non-toxic lawn and perimeter pest control and bacteria-based bait applications control Argentine Ant populations in Miami lawns.

Tawny Crazy Ants

Tawny Crazy Ants are another complicated ant to control. They can have multiple colonies spread across multiple properties. Treatment on one lot will usually only control them for a short time before surrounding colonies reinfest previously treated landscapes. Our implementation of multiple control methods will significantly reduce Tawny Crazy Ant populations’ longer durations, giving your South Florida landscape relief for longer periods of time.

Acrobat Ants

Acrobat ants were given their name because they are known to hold their heart-shaped butts into the air when they are disturbed. These ants are known to nest in trees and rotting wood. They are extremely territorial, which makes it common to find only one nest in a tree. Empty galleries abandoned by carpenter ants and termites are where we’ll typically discover their colony. Their diet consists of living and dead insects as well as nectar secreted from sap-sucking insects. Pheromone trails are very evident as it is easy to observe trails of ants traveling to various food sources around trees. Like Carpenter Ants, they will only nest in damp or rotting wood. It is important to keep trees cut away from structures to prevent them from using limbs as a point of access into your home or office. Our all-natural lawn and perimeter application work great at controlling Acrobat Ant colonies located in South Florida landscapes.

White Footed Ants

It is important to note that White Footed Ants do not bite, sting, or cause structural damage. Colony populations can consist of anywhere between 8,000 to 3 million ants. They feed on plant nectars and honeydew secreted by sap-sucking insects such as aphids, mealybugs, and scales. White Footed Ants also feed on dead insects and other proteins. Nests are most commonly located in South Florida landscapes, primarily trees, bushes, tree notches, under organic debris, and mulch beds. Still, they can also be found inside structures when flooded out of their outdoor homes. It is typical to see White Footed Ants trailing up the structure’s sides into soffit vents, which will lead them into attic spaces. We advise customers to cut vegetation away from their structures and keep gutters clean to prevent them from nesting in the leaves. These ants are easy to control with our all-natural lawn and perimeter applications.

Crazy Ants

Crazy Ants get their name from their quick erratic movement. Aside from their behavior, their long legs and antennae make them quite easy to identify. We usually find Crazy Ants outside on sidewalks, walls, and anywhere close to a food source such as outdoor garbage cans or plants containing sap-sucking pests such as aphids, mealybugs, and scale. These ants are generally very easy to control with our all-natural outdoor essential oil-based insecticide application.

Imported Fire Ants

The Red Imported Fire Ant is sometimes confused with the Tropical or Native Fire Ant. We distinguish between the two by observing the square-shaped heads larger than their body of Red Imported Fire Ant workers versus the workers of the Tropical Fire Ant with heads more proportionate to their bodies. These ants frequently invade South Florida lawns, schoolyards, and recreational areas. We apply a nontoxic ant bait to individual mounds to keep South Florida lawns safe from fire ants.

What are the risks of having an ant infestation?

While most ants don’t pose a threat, they are a nuisance, contaminating food and producing unpleasant odors. Ants that nest in wood may also affect the integrity of a structure, especially if their nest is allowed to grow. Fire ants will attack humans or animals when threatened, injecting their victims with venom which causes pain and, sometimes, more serious consequences. Acrobat and pavement ants may also bite when they feel under attack.

How to Get Rid of Ants in the Home

There are several ways to rid your home of various ant species. Some simple things you can do is keep your home tidy, reducing the amount of feed available for them to forage. Trim trees and other foliage away from the house to prevent ants from using these plants to access the structure. Locate entry points such as holes that need grout or windows and doors that may need to be caulked. If treatment is required, make sure to correctly identify the ant you are dealing with before purchasing anything over the counter.

It is important to use the correct kind of bait based on the ant’s preferred diet. If you purchase a spray, make sure it’s safe for you and your family and that you wear proper protective equipment when applying. When in doubt, wear a mask, gloves, and protective eyewear.

Ant & Pest Control in Miami

If your home remedies aren’t doing the trick, we’re here for you. Our licensed professionals are trained to eliminate unwanted pests using the safest pest control practices in the industry. We’ve been working diligently on creating new and innovative pest control processes that are safe for your home, business, and our little blue planet. What can you expect from Natural Resources Organic Pest Control?

Free inspections: Are you seeing pest activity but are unsure of what you’re dealing with? We’ll be able to correctly identify and provide solutions for any general home or lawn pest control problems!

Accommodating Scheduling Options: Our office staff will do their absolute best to schedule your appointment at your convenience.

Non-toxic Pest Control Products: Say goodbye to nasty conventional pest control products. No more foul-smelling toxic chemicals. We’ll leave your home smelling like the spa of a 5-star hotel with a combination of essential oils.

No Contracts: Don’t want to be bound to an annual contract? No problem. We offer monthly, bimonthly, and quarterly service plans that can be adjusted to suit your needs. Do you head out to Bora Bora for the summer with the fam? We’ll postpone service for you until you return.

30-day pest-free guarantee: If you still see those annoying pests within 30 days of an application, give us a call and we’ll come out to take care of it for you at no additional cost!

Natural Resources Organic Pest Control doesn’t only treat ants. We can also keep your office, home, or lawn free of mosquitoes, roaches, silverfish, millipedes, roaches, and more! Call us today for pricing and availability. We’re happy to help!

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