Why do house ants, Virginia’s number one ant pest, love your Alexandria home?

Why do house ants, Virginia’s number one ant pest, love your Alexandria home?

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Are you noticing tiny ants around your Alexandria home? There is likely a reason they are sticking around.

There are over 13,000 ant species throughout the world, but none quite wrinkle the nose as much as odorous house ants. As the name suggests, these ants release a strange odor when they are crushed. The smell is often described as like the scent of blue cheese, rancid butter or rotten coconuts.

Do not let these ants rent out a room in your beautiful Alexandria home. Instead, read this guide to learn more about how to get rid of odorous ants.

How do I get odorous ants?

Odorous house ants are native to the United States. They live in colonies of up to 100,000 ants. These ants are characterized by: a size between 1/16” to 1/8”; brown or black in color; a segmented, oval body shape and six legs

These ants eat dead insects, sugary sweets and meats. You might find odorous ants around your home after a party. Leaving food out can attract these critters into your household.

These ants also make their homes under stones and in exposed soil, logs, mulch and debris. They often nest in wall and floor cracks as well.

These ants often target kitchen pantries and cupboards. Make sure you are keeping these areas clean and crumb-free. Otherwise, you are bound to find these ants in your Alexandria home.

How serious are they?

Odorous house ants do not pose a threat to your health. However, they can contaminate the food or waste you leave around your house. They also stink when they are crushed.

Odorous ants often invade kitchen storage areas, including your cupboards. This gives them the chance to ruin your food, which could cause frustration and wasted money.

These pests also bite. While it will not cause much pain, it can become irritating.

How do I get rid of them?

Using “over the counter” liquid or aerosol insecticide may cause more of a problem than a solution for these ants. These products will kill the ants they touch but will often cause the main colony of ants to scatter and create new nests. The best way to get rid of odorous house ants is to call a professional. Specialists utilize product-chemistries specific for these ants and can develop a custom plan to keep your home bug-free.

You can also prevent odorous house ants from crawling around your home in the future.

First, make sure you eliminate standing water around your home. Ants are attracted to moisture. Look for any puddles or leaking sources of water near your house.

Next, make sure to cut back any tree branches or plants that are near your home. Sometimes, ants use these branches to get inside. They might also use cracks or little openings to crawl into your home, so close those gaps.

Check that any firewood, yard debris or building materials near your home is stored away. Pests, including odorous house ants, build their nests in these materials.

Remember, if you ever need a helping hand, with these or other pests, we are here to help.