argentine ants up close

What do Argentine ants look like in North Carolina?

Argentine ants are a small species of ant and are usually either shiny dark brown or shiny black in color. These ants live together in extremely large colonies. A single Argentine ant nest has the potential to have hundreds of thousands of workers and hundreds of queens living and working together. These ants are often spotted traveling together in well-defined trails between their nesting sites and food sources. These ants can also be identified by the musty smell they give off after they are crushed.

Are Argentine ants dangerous?

Argentine ants aren’t a dangerous species of ant; they aren’t known to pose any significant health risks to people. Nevertheless, their extremely large colony size allows these ants to enter homes and other buildings in very large numbers, making them extremely difficult to eliminate and giving them the potential to quickly contaminate food sources. If you discover Argentine ants on your property or in your home you should seek professional help immediately.

Where do Argentine ants nest?

Argentine ants like to nest outside in wet soil. Along the edges of sidewalks or under landscaping ties, stones, soil, or mulch are all typical outdoor nesting spots for Argentine ants. Argentine ants often make their way inside homes when the weather outside isn’t to their liking, including during periods of heavy rain or during periods of extremely dry weather. They often find their way inside through cracks found in the foundation or gaps found around exterior windows and doors. Inside, Argentine ants can be found nesting under the floor, behind walls, or inside crawl spaces.

How do you get rid of Argentine ants?

Using DIY ant control solutions found on the internet, or sold at retail stores, to eliminate Argentine ants is not a good idea--for a couple of reasons. First, if mixed incorrectly or not used property, products can be dangerous to people and pets. Second, they can make the problem worse. If you don’t identify and resolve the source of the infestation, the problem will not go away. Oftentimes, these DIY methods only kill the ants you see and not the entire colony. Also, they may cause the ants to scatter, after a colony split, the population in and around your home can actually grow. To get rid of Argentine ants, we recommend contacting a pest control company that has the knowledge and tools to eradicate the entire colony. At A-1 Pest Control, we offer highly effective ant control services in Lenoir and throughout our NC service area. We also encourage homeowners to implement a year-round home pest control program that stops Argentine ants AND other common house-infesting pests. Contact us today to learn more!

How do you prevent Argentine ants?

Preventing problems with Argentine ants on your property can be difficult because of their extremely large colony size. In order to keep Argentine ants out of your home, we recommend implementing the following ant prevention tips:

  • Limit areas of moisture found around your home by ensuring that gutters are free of debris like sticks and birds' nests, and make sure they are working properly to direct water away from your home.
  • Fix any leaky outdoor or indoor faucets, fixtures, and pipes.
  • Reduce moisture levels inside your home by utilizing a dehumidifier.
  • Make sure that outdoor trash cans have tight-fitting or locking lids; place the trash cans up off the ground and away from the exterior of your home
  • Cut back trees, bushes, and other landscaping away from the outside of your home.
  • Inspect your home’s foundation and exterior walls and seal any cracks and crevices found. Caulk spaces that are found around exterior windows and doors; make sure door sweeps are placed on exterior doors.
  • Check screens that are indoors and windows, making sure they are completely intact.
 

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