Fire Ant Infestations: Dealing With Them in the House

When you think of fire ants, you probably think of the large mounds outside in the sand. While fire ants are known for this, what most people don't realize is that they can also infest houses. If you've been seeing ants inside that resemble fire ants, that may be what you have. Here's a look at what you need to know about fire ant infestations in your home.

When Are Fire Ants Likely to Come Inside?

In most cases, fire ants are content to be outside. However, during periods of severe droughts, excessive heat, or flooding, they may seek refuge inside. They'll often come in and seek water, food, and shelter. Things like indoor plants, pet foods, and pantry storage will attract them.

Why Are Fire Ants a Problem?

If you aren't familiar with them, you may not understand why having fire ants in the house can be problematic. They're often attracted to electronics, and when they swarm inside them, they can actually cause electrical shorts and potential fires. Another common problem is the risk of stings. Since fire ants are sensitive to movement, all it takes is a small movement to trigger a fire ant's sting. If a fire ant stings you, it releases a pheromone that will draw other fire ants. This can lead to multiple stings, which can be painful.

How Can You Keep Fire Ants Out of Your House?

The most effective way to keep fire ants out of your home is to have the entire perimeter of the house treated with a barrier product early in the warm season. The sooner you have it treated, the smaller chance you'll have an infestation because the barrier product will deter them from breaching your house.

How Do You Deal With Fire Ants Inside Your House?

If you have an infestation of fire ants in your house, the first thing you should do is trace the ants to the nesting site. You have to treat the nest to effectively eliminate them from the house. While you're at it, you should also locate their point of entry into the house. This is an important step because you'll need to seal that point of entry to keep them from coming back into the house. Then, a local pest control service like Tri-County Termite & Pest Control, Inc. can treat the nest and the rest of the house with bait products that will kill the ants and help to eliminate them from the house.