Tag Archives: Ants

What Are Ants Eating in My Spotless Kitchen?

Why Are Ants in My Spotless Kitchen?
Why Are Ants in My Spotless Kitchen?3

According to PestWorld.org, ants are America’s number one nuisance pest. They frequently get into your home through the tiniest of crevices, and even though you might be considering calling Freehold exterminators to get rid of them, what you’d really like to know is why are they attracted to your kitchen when you try to keep it so clean. Here’s some useful information that was written for you.

Ants Just Love Your Kitchen

You might think you’re being meticulous about keeping your kitchen clean, but what you might not realize is that even the smallest crumbs can be a feast for them. Sugar ants are attracted to sugar bowls, sticky substances on bottles in your cupboard, and even the dishes that might be left unwashed in your kitchen sink. The best way to prevent them is to do a thorough cleaning.

Water, Anyone?

Just like you would venture into your kitchen to get a glass of water, ants get thirsty too. Your kitchen is a prime resource when they need to get a drink, and if there is water on the counters, floor or sink, it’s the perfect opportunity for them to slake their thirst.

If you spot sugar ants or any other type of ant in your kitchen, your Freehold exterminators can help you get rid of them . It’s important to get to the heart of the infestation, and Allison Pest Control can help.

Nearly 100 Species of Pest May Live in Your Home

It's Shocking How Many Pests Can Live in Your Home
It’s Shocking How Many Pests Can Live in Your Home

How many creepy crawlies are sharing your home? A recent study by of 50 houses in the Raleigh area by researchers from North Carolina State University, the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences, and the California Academy of Sciences is amazing Monmouth County pest control experts.

What did they find?
More than 500 different kinds of arthropods, small invertebrates like flies, ants, gnats, lice, beetles, termites, and spiders. The sneaky stowaways are thought to have made their way in from outside – or accidentally introduced (cut flower, local produce) – getting overly comfy in your hospitable home.

Uncovering the undesirables…
Surprisingly, only five rooms of the 554 examined did not contain any arthropods. The remainder held a broad biodiversity, with each home hosting an average of about 100 species – though this is believed to be an under count as researchers did not check behind walls, in drawers or under heavy furniture. Entomology exposed:

  • Deptera (true flies) – 23%
  • Araneae (spiders) – 19%
  • Coleoptera (beetles) – 16%
  • Hymenoptera (bees, wasps, ants) – 15%

Future fun
The exploratory inventory, the first of its kind, is sure to spur additional studies in efforts to answer some exciting scientific questions, such as what microbes insects host that affect health, and what role pests play in the home ecosystem.

Tired of sharing your space? Give ‘em an eviction notice. Contact Allison Pest Control, your Monmouth County pest control experts, today.

Some Ants Have a More Discriminating Palate

ant
Ants like different things to eat based on the time of the year.

Having a discriminatory palate isn’t just for humans. In the case of ants, it’s good to have a game plan to ensure complete elimination. Allison Pest Control can help you make that happen by asking a few investigative questions.

What Time of Year?

Depending on time of year, ant colonies change their eating habits to better accommodate needs for the season. Spring and beginning summer months are prime breeding times, making protein a must for the ant colony In later summer months, ants’ lean toward carbohydrates, for energy boosters.

Which Species of Ant?

To eliminate ants with accuracy, knowing the species is crucial. While typically ants are meat eaters, different species crave different foods. For example, the Crazy and Pharaoh Ants enjoy sugars, proteins, and other insects–but the Pharaoh also enjoys oils. Understanding what ants are eating helps better treat the area of infestation. Being knowledgeable about the species of ant is how Allison Pest Control has served Monmouth County area for nearly 100 years.

Why Pre-Bait?

Prebaiting is effective in eradicating the colony. Strategically placing food sources (like peanut butter, honey or oil) on such things as index cards or tape can help you determine the favorite foods and actions of the ants, and may even lead you to the source of their breeding ground. Let Allison Pest Control give you answers to your pest problem–because we know how to ask the right questions.

Do You Have Carpenter Ants? How to Know and ID Them

Do you know how to recognize a carpenter ant?
Do you know how to recognize a carpenter ant?

Did you know that there are more than 12,000 species of ants in the world? But one of the most destructive is the carpenter ant. If you know what to look for, you can get an idea on what ant species may be doing damage to your house, home or property.

Giant Ants

The first thing to look for is size. Compared to the smaller red ants and common black ants, carpenter ants are considerably larger, with some reaching 1/2-inch to an inch in size. As kids, we always used to call them “giant ants,” and that description from our youth still sums it up.

Three Key Features

Carpenter ants have three key visual features that set them apart. Look for heart shaped heads, large jaws and bent antenna that point downwards. Those three plus an overall larger size makes for a positive identification.

Signs

The biggest sign of carpenter ant infestation are discarded wood shavings. You will generally find cone-shaped piles of sawdust where they have pushed out wood waste while making tunnels, generally on the ground around wooden siding, posts, supports, wall studs or any other wood applications or wooden additions in or around your property.

If you believe you have a carpenter ant problem, or just want more information on carpenter ants and other insect pests, please contact us at Allison Pest Control. Serving Monmouth and Ocean County for nearly 100 years.

Three More Things We Bet You Didn’t Know About Ants in New Jersey

team of ants measures with ruler and carries
More things you may not have known about ant.

With our last post about ants, we talked about three colony facts. This time, we want you to know about Myrmica rubra Linnaeus, also known as the European red or fire ant.

A lot of insect pests have found their way into New Jersey from other areas of the world. Although many people think that this ant species has always been in the state, the European red ant is a foreign species.

European Fire Ant Facts

  1. As the University of Florida Institute of Food & Agricultural Studies notes, Myrmica rubra is dangerous and invasive. These fire ants sting and release a toxic venom that causes some people to experience anaphylaxis. They also densely infest an area — up to 1 1/2 nests per every square meter — and one colony can have several nests.
  2. Unlike many ant species, European red ants have multiple queens per colony. Finding and destroying every queen and her eggs is difficult without professional help.
  3. Humans help spread these ants to new locations. Red ants don’t always sting and they can be nesting in or traveling through/across the soil, mulch and plants you use for landscaping and gardening. They also nest around construction materials like logs, wood boards and stone.

For more information about these and other red ant species, call us today. Allison Pest Control provides a wide variety of Holmdel pest control solutions. Look no further for a Monmouth County pest expert!

Zombie Ants? Really?

Zombies
Zombies

A staple of horror films, zombies have never been so popular. Hollywood seems fascinated by a zombie apocalypse while AMC’s The Walking Dead brings the flesh-eating undead into our living rooms. Of course, in the human world zombies don’t actually exist. But in the animal world it’s a different story.

Evil Fungi

In Thailand’s rainforest canopy a parasitic fungus turns carpenter ants into zombie ants and forces them to do its bidding. When ants walk across a fungus-coated leaf, fungal spores adhere to its body. Piercing the insect’s tough outer cuticle, spores enter the ant’s brain, causing it to act erratically.

Instead of industriously marching with its nest mates, zombie ants meander about, convulsing and falling to the forest floor. The fungus forces the ant to walk to an area ideal for fungal reproduction.

Jaws of Death

As if all this were not spooky enough, as the sun reaches high noon the fungus forces the ant to bite into the main vein of a leaf and then locks the insect’s powerful mandibles so it cannot release its grip. Hanging from its locked jaws, the ant dies.

The fungus continues to grow inside the insect’s body until a spore head erupts from the ant’s head to spew fungal spores into the air and restart the cycle. (Click to watch a Penn State video of zombie ants in action.)

Fortunately, the lives of New Jersey carpenter ants are not nearly so dramatic, but the damage these wood-destroying ants can do to your Monmouth County home can be just as disastrous. If carpenter ants attack, protect your home and call the ant extermination experts at Allison Pest Control.