An ant problem can appear suddenly and without warning. You walk into a room and realize ants are everywhere. They're on the floor, walls, and even the ceiling. They're clumped together in a biomass that looks like something out of a science fiction horror movie! We don't need to tell you that this is bad for business. The best option for ant pest control in Western Massachusetts is to prevent ant problems before they begin. Identify ant pests around your business. Consider what problems they may create. Target and eliminate colonies before they explore your landscaping and exterior. And apply a barrier to the exterior of your business that ants can't penetrate. Join us as we look at everything you need to know about common ant pests in Western Massachusetts and what is required to achieve effective ant control.
How To Identify The Type Of Ant Infesting Your Business
We have a long list of pest ants in Western Massachusetts. Fortunately, it isn't necessary to know how to identify them all. There are unique issues presented by certain ants. These are the ants you need to be able to identify.
Nuisance Ants: Most ants that get into Massachusetts businesses are considered a minor health concern. Ants have the potential to spread germs. They climb in dumpsters, trash receptacles, compost, mop buckets, drains, and other unsanitary places. Pavement ants, little black ants, and odorous house ants are examples of this type of ant pest. Sanitation is essential for limiting the dangers that nuisance ants present and it can also help control them. These are tiny ants and are typically black or dark brown.
Diseases-Spreading Ants: An ant that stands out from the rest is the pharaoh ant. While these light yellow to red insects are only 1/12 of an inch long, they should not be underestimated. They are attracted to the open wounds on livestock, wildlife, pets, and humans. When exposed to wounds, they pick up pathogens that have serious implications for human health.
Stinging Ants: While there are several ants that sting, only one has a potent venom that is considered a medical threat. It is likely that you've heard of this ant species. It is the European fire ant (Myrmica rubra). It is reddish-brown in color and workers of this species are about ⅙ of an inch long. They're known to swarm and deliver painful stings. In most cases, the sting of a fire ant won't amount to more than an itchy wound with a blister at the center. In rare cases, the venom of a fire ant can trigger an allergic reaction and may present a severe health risk.
Property-Damaging Ants: Of all the ants that get into Western Massachusetts businesses, this one is the only ant that presents a double threat. It not only presents a low-level health concern by spreading bacteria, but it also excavates galleries in wood. These are the largest pest ants in our area, ranging from ¼ to ½ of an inch in length. The worst carpenter ant species is the black carpenter ant, which is entirely black.
The Problems Ants Can Cause On Your Property
We don't know what business you are in but we can say for certain that ants will present a problem for you. You can count on it. We touched on four general ways ants present a threat. Now, let's look at a few specific examples.
- In a clinic or health care facility, ants can spread illness to compromised individuals and disturb your guests.
- Ants present serious headaches for property managers when they get into apartments and rental units. Routine ant problems can lead good tenants to move out because good tenants have higher standards than poor tenants.
- Carpenter ants can take the bite out of your equity if you own real estate. They are particularly troublesome when tenants don't report them and are allowed to damage your property for years.
- When ants get into restaurants, they can find their way onto a plate that is going out to a customer or they can interrupt a meal by showing up at the table.
- Fire ants are a serious concern in outdoor recreation and dining areas and can lead to litigation if these ants sting an individual who is allergic to the venom of stinging insects.
- Fire ants present a unique threat in assisted living environments. Unhealthy seniors may not be able to quickly get away from the tormenting stings of fire ants.
- When nuisance ants keep showing up in breakrooms, it can demoralize your staff and reduce productivity.
Ants can impact your bottom line, no matter what your business, and no matter which ant species it is. The good news is that ants can be cleaned up and controlled. You may even have some experience doing this—after all, ant problems are common. A vacuum and some soapy water can get rid of ants when they invade. Unfortunately, addressing ants that have already gotten into your business is not the best ant pest control. You need to get in front of ant problems and stop them "before" they get inside. Let's look at how to keep ants away with natural prevention.
Natural Ant-Prevention Tips For Western Massachusetts Business Owners
There are reasons why ants come onto your property and get into your business. You can alter these conditions and remove the attractants that lead to ant infestations. Here are a few of our best recommendations for outdoor ant control.
- Address flowering lawn weeds. Ants eat nectar. It is a desirable food source for several pest ant species.
- Address aphids and other plant-damaging pests that create honeydew. Carpenter ants and several other pest ants can't pass up this food source.
- Remove leaves and other organic debris. Certain ants eat insects, both alive and dead. Insects are attracted to moist and shaded habitats and organic decay.
- Keep trash receptacles clean and remove trash routinely to avoid the scent of rotting organic matter.
- Use a caulking gun or expanding foam to seal entry points around pipes and wire conduits.
- Replace weatherstripping where necessary.
- Install door sweeps.
- Repair rotted wood or fill in rotted wood holes.
- Repair or replace damaged screens.
Along with outdoor ant control, you need to consider food sources on the inside of your business. Scout ants can travel quite a distance in search of food. When a food source is discovered indoors, that scout ant can recruit an army to invade. What do ants eat? Here are a few examples:
- Grease and oil on surfaces or the sides of ovens
- Food debris that falls to the floor or into gaps
- Juice spills that are not cleaned up quickly
- Juices in the bottom of a trash bin
- Decaying organic juices left on a floor by a trash bag
- Organic sludge inside drains
- Unprotect food in cardboard or paper containers
- Food left on plates and other dishes
- Dog and cat food in pet dishes on the floor
- A rotting apple in a wastepaper basket
Sanitation is the key to successfully keeping scout ants from mobilizing the troops. Keep floors and surfaces clean and take measures to protect potential food sources by storing items in sealed plastic containers. It is a lot of work but well worth the effort.
How To Get Rid Of Ants For Good
You can deter ants and prevent ant problems by altering conditions around your business, sealing potential entry points, and staying on top of sanitation. But the best solution for ant problems is to have layers of protection applied to your business, and if you want the best pest control company for ants in Western Massachusetts, American Pest Solutions is the right choice. What does it mean to have layers of ant protection?
- We apply baits and treatments to target ant colonies and eliminate them.
- We spot treat with water-activated granular products to address ants and other insects as they crawl around on your property.
- We spot treat landscaping to prevent ants from living near your business.
- We apply a liquid treatment to make it hard for ants to get into your business if they come near your exterior walls.
- Dust applications may be applied in wall voids and junctions or under the siding to stop ants during times when liquid treatments may be weakened by weather conditions between visits.
- In the highly unlikely event that ants find their way into your business, we can apply repellents to the interior of your business to drive ants and other insects out.
- On top of all this protection, your American Pest Solutions commercial specialist will also use caulk and other exclusion products to create physical barriers that deter ants.
There is no better way to stop ants and other common commercial pests from getting into your Western Massachusetts business. If there were, we'd be using it. When you're ready to say goodbye to ant and pest infestations, reach out to American Pest Solutions. We have the solutions for all your pest concerns. Schedule your consultation and pest evaluation today.