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Are Ants Around My Irvine Property Dangerous?

14 / Oct / 2020

What has six legs, lives on every continent except Antarctica, and resides anywhere you work, live, or play? If you guessed ants, you are correct.

 

There are over ten thousand different ant species. These fascinating six-legged creatures can live in virtually any environment. Belonging to the same order as wasps and bees, they are comprised of three parts: a large head, a narrow thorax, and an abdomen. At the end of each of their six legs are claws. Ants are possibly the strongest animals (for their size) on the planet with the ability to lift 50 times their body weight. They have two jaws equipped for gripping and carrying these “heavy” items.

While they don’t have ears, ants have two antennae that house their sense receptors, the most powerful of which are their odor receptors. The odor receptors of ants are exponentially stronger than other insects, which enable them to find food particles even as small as a crumb. When an ant locates a source of food, it communicates using pheromones to provide a type of GPS coordinate to the buffet. But what if that buffet is in your home?

 

Malang Pest Control is your source of information on ants. We provide the service and tools needed in our ant control service to protect your Irvine home against ant invasions.

Nuisance Ants

Ants are considered the number one nuisance pest by the National American Management Association. They are not harmful to your property or your health. But man, there’s nothing more annoying than opening a cupboard to find a single file line of marching ants headed straight for the organic honey. No ant is welcome inside your home.

 

If you have had the experience above, you might have dealt with a variety of ant species collectively called sugar ants. Sugar ants include carpenter ants, odorous house ants, and Argentine ants. Odorous house ants emit a rotten coconut smell when crushed.

 

Odorous and Argentine ants are small dark brown or black ants. Relatively harmless, these two types of ants are highly attracted to sweets. They find a route into your home through cracks and make their way to your kitchen, where they can contaminate food items. Once inside, they build their nests in warm moist areas.

Ants That Are Dangerous To You & Your Home

Carpenter ants are the most dangerous type of ant to your home. Like termites, large colonies of carpenter ants target and damage wood, but not by eating it. They tunnel through the wood to create nests, leaving behind trails of sawdust-like particles. Carpenter ants need moisture to survive, so they look for soft, wet, or rotting wood.

 

Notorious red fire ants can be dangerous to your health. Common in California, the red fire ant nests in mounds above the ground. When their nests are disturbed, often inadvertently by pets or humans, red fire ants sting, injecting venom that can cause painful burning, itching, and swelling in its victims. The venom could be life-threatening for pets or people who have allergies to fire ants. A fire ant sting to a family member with an allergy can cause anaphylaxis shock and potentially death, if untreated. Secondary bacterial infections introduced from the sting are also a cause of concern as victims scratch and scrape at the irritated skin. 


 
The yellow and light brown Pharaoh ant is known to transmit dozens of diseases like staphylococcus and salmonella. Pharaoh ants are a hospital’s worst nightmare as they have been known to enter the mouths and wounds of patients, exposing them to bacteria. In your home, these ants target your cabinet and can track harmful pathogens in and around your food supply. 


 
No matter what type of ants may plague your home, contact the professionals at Malang Pest Control for pest solutions in Irvine, CA.

How good is your sense of smell? Can you pick up the fragrance of a rose from a block away, are you able to tolerate being in the same room with a pet that was sprayed by a skunk, or are you somewhere in between? If your nose is more sensitive than most, you should have no problem smelling the pests we are talking about today.

 

Although not as intense as skunks, odorous house ants are smelly pests that cause more than a stink around the home. The question is, how dangerous are they, and what is the best way to prevent them from invading? We have your answers here.

What You Need To Know About Odorous House Ants

From a distance, odorous house ants look like any other common home-invading ant. They are black or brown, one-eighth to three-sixteenths of an inch long, and have the typical three body segments you are used to seeing. The only significant difference is that their abdomen is uneven and crooked. With close inspection, this one detail will give these smelly pests away.

 

When crushed, odorous house ants produce a scent often likened to rotten coconuts. As infestations grow within a home’s walls, this scent will become much more noticeable, even to those who don’t have a good sense of smell.

 

Odorous house ants live primarily on a diet of protein and sugar; this includes pretty much all of the food inside your cabinet, pantry, and fridge. When searching for food to feed their colony, these pests will look for anything easy to gather like crumbs under your couch, a pie left out on a countertop, or food from your pet’s bowl. Odorous house ants will even search for food inside trash cans.

Problems Odorous House Ants Cause

Thankfully, odorous house ants are not dangerous pests and aren’t known to carry diseases like some of their close relatives. What they are known for is contaminating food. When these pests infest homes, they don’t discriminate on where they go or what food they crawl through. Needless to say, if you enjoy your food without ants on it, these pests are the last creatures you want inside your house.

Why Odorous House Ants Invade Homes

Odorous house ants don’t just invade homes to find food. They will often come inside to avoid inclement weather or to find a reliable source of moisture. If your home has leaky pipes, broken gutters, sources of standing water, left out food, or crumbs around, these pests will be much more likely to invade.

Prevention Tips For Odorous House Ants

Odorous house ants require two things to cause problems around your Irvine home; a way in and a good reason to stick around once inside. The more you limit their access to your home, water, and food, the less like you will be to have a problem with these pests. We recommend starting with a thorough cleaning of your house. Once your home is clean, practice storing leftover food inside airtight containers. You don’t want ants finding anything to eat if they come indoors.

 

To stop odorous house ants from coming inside, make sure to seal up your home’s exterior completely. Use a caulking gun to fill in gaps and cracks in its foundation, repair or replace window and door screens that are damaged, and make sure all of your door sweeps and weatherstripping is in good condition.

 

The most important step in odorous house ant prevention is quality ant control. If you are looking for a reliable pest control provider in your area, look no further than Malang Pest Control. Our expert team has what it takes to guard your home against all sorts of common invasive pests, including odorous house ants.

 

Call us today or reach out to us through our website to find a plan that best suits you and your home’s individual needs. Learn more about our Irvine, CA pest control services.

What is your worst fear when walking outside? Do you fear crossing paths with a bear, or perhaps stepping on a hive of wasps? If you are here today, you might have a fear of fire ants or at least the pain they cause. To help keep these painful pests off your Irvine property, here are a few things you ought to know.

How To Identify Fire Ants

It is not hard to identify fire ants, especially if they are biting and or stinging you. You heard us right; these pests don’t just bite, they sting as well. If you ever find yourself walking outdoors in bare feet and wander too close to a nest of fire ants, you may find out first hand how painful their attacks are.

 

Of course, identifying these pests by the pain they cause alone is not preferable. To tell if your yard has fire ants without stomping on their nest in your bare feet, look at their color and size. Fire ants are one-eighth to three-eighths of an inch long and dark reddish-brown. When building their nest, fire ants gravitate towards hot, sunny, and dry areas, sometimes devoid of grass or vegetation.

Problems Fire Ants Cause

The good news is that fire ants do not spontaneously combust or produce fire in any way. The bad news is that their stings will make your skin feel like it is right up next to a fire. Although a single sting is not terribly painful, several in one location are fairly unpleasant. Upon being stung, the first thing you will notice is a pinprick of pain, followed by an intense pinching or burning sensation. Itching typically follows and can last for a few days. As long as you avoid scratching the wound, no more serious problems will occur. If you are allergic to insect venom, your reaction to a fire ant sting could be more severe. Consult your doctor to understand your risk.

 

Out in nature, when fire ants nest around water sources, they can prevent wildlife from being able to hydrate themselves, sometimes leading to dehydration and even death. In addition, fire ants can fatally damage plants by tunneling through their roots and stems. If you have a garden or value the quality of your grass, these pests are the last creatures you want living on your property.

How To Prevent Fire Ants

Because fire ants primarily live outdoors and rarely invade homes, prevention is often difficult. That said, here are a few tips our experts recommend you try:

  • Trim back bushes and tree branches from the exterior of your home.
  • Rake mulch, pine straw, and other landscape bedding at least six inches from your home’s exterior.
  • Turn the mulch or bedding material around your property every couple of weeks.
  • Mow your lawn regularly at a low setting.
  • Keep your yard free of grass clippings, leaf piles, and other organic debris.
  • Store woodpiles at least 30 feet from your home’s exterior.
  • Pick up ripe fruit as it falls from trees into your yard.
  • Make sure your trash cans have tight-fitting lids and clean them out regularly.

For the best results, pair the steps above with a professional treatment plan courtesy of Malang Pest Control. Our team provides quality, friendly service, and reliability. If you are looking for a long-term solution to fire ants causing trouble around your yard, we are your best choice.

Reach out to us today to discuss your ant treatment options or to schedule your Irvine property for a thorough inspection. We promise you will not be disappointed. Find out more about our Irvine, CA pest management offerings.

It’s that time of year again! As summer comes to a close, ants can continue marching in for all that your Irvine home offers. Ants, arguably, have the easiest time entering the home as they can squeeze through the tiniest cracks. However, there’s no need to give up on the joys of California living. There are several ways to keep these ants at bay, and we can help!

Types of Irvine Ants

First, it’s important to understand the types of ants that are common in Irvine.

  • Argentine ants can range from tan to black and tend to dominate space, pushing out other types of ants. In extreme conditions, Argentine ants move their outside nests near the exterior of buildings.
  • Pharaoh ants are smaller and lighter, traveling far to search for food. They are more hazardous to human health, more apt to enter homes, and are generally eliminated by baiting.
  • Crazy ants, dubbed “crazy” because of their erratic movements, are roughly the size of Argentine ants and are also black. They prefer to make their nests within buildings and feed on insects.
  • Odorous ants are similar in size to Argentine and crazy ants and have a shiny black color. When smashed, they emit a strong rotten smell. These ants like sweet things and are commonly found in households.
  • Fire ants can be yellow, red, or black, and prefer nests in the dirt, decayed wood, and below boards and pavement. Fire ants are on the US Department of Agriculture list of invading pests. They get their name from their aggressive nature and painful stings.

What Attracts Ants to the Home?

As ants come into homes looking for shelter, food, and water, it’s no surprise that they are common in kitchens and bathrooms. They prefer sweet foods, but even small spills or other fragrant substances are attractive to ants. Once an ant locates a food source it will mark the location with pheromones for other ants to follow. If possible, it’s a great idea to eliminate that initial unwanted house guest!

Repelling Household Ants

An essential first step in repelling ants in the home is to identify entry points. These can be torn or broken screens, door sweeps, windows, etc. Any crevice is an invitation for ants. Seal up any gaps, especially in windows and doors, to prevent entry. Caulking cracks in the foundation and walls is another great way to ensure that your home is adequately sealed.
 
Beyond limiting entry points, it is also important to limit factors that might attract ants in the first place. Be sure to regularly conduct a deep cleaning of household surfaces, especially in the kitchen and bathroom nooks and crannies. Wipe down surfaces around furniture and appliances. Clean floors. Seal up any access to food in the home in airtight containers, including pet food. Empty trash cans. Treat the war against ants as one of attrition by eliminating their food sources. This is crucial as ant colonies generate and spread quickly!
 
Aside from limiting food sources, there are a few other ways to repel ants. Ants are always searching for water. Clean any moist areas and take care of spills quickly. You can also invest in DIY ant repellant techniques and over the counter remedies at the first sign of ants on your property.

Call a Professional

Ants are invasive, and it’s often the case, especially when infestations are large, that they can get out of control! Not to worry! Malang Pest Control has you covered with our team of professionals. We can help you get rid of pesty ants quickly and easily with safe products, year-round treatments, and a service guarantee. Our professionals will help get you back to enjoying your home. Want to know more about our process? Check out our FAQs page!
 
Give us a call today at (949) 398-2525 or schedule an appointment online. Our goal is to provide the best pest control you’ve ever had!

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