Ant Control 101: What Bradenton Homeowners Need To Know

Bradenton is a great place to live and raise a family. It is refreshing to take a stroll on the Riverwalk or take an afternoon to watch the Pittsburgh Pirates' practice training sessions. With access to great Florida beaches on Anna Marie Island, fine dining, and the Bradenton Blues Festival, this is truly a wonderful place to build a home and enjoy life.

Humans enjoy living in this part of Florida, and ants like to live here too. We don't mind ants working around our homes because we intuitively know they play a role in the ecosystem. We have all had moments when we stared blankly at the ground in amazement as ants carried objects around. Ants are no problem when they keep to themselves, but when they cross the line and enter our homes, we have a problem. 

If ants are in your house, you need the best pest control in Bradenton from Keller's Pest Control. For over 25 years, we have removed ants from homes in the area and provided relief and peace of mind to residents of our fine community. Our family-owned company strives to deliver friendly, professional service to our customers in a dependable manner. We want you to be informed about ants in Bradenton, the problems they cause, and the steps you can take to keep them out of your house. 

Species Of Ants That Commonly Invade Bradenton Homes

ants on leaves outside home

There are thousands of ant species worldwide, and we have our share of these pests. Ants are insects and therefore have the characteristics of six legs, a three-segmented body, paired antennae, and compound eyes. 

It is not possible to review every ant species in our state, but these are the ones Bradenton residents are most like to encounter that require ant pest control:

  • Red imported fire ants: If you have spent time outdoors walking barefoot in the grass, you've probably had an unpleasant encounter with this stinging ant. These reddish-brown ants are 1/8 to 3/8 inches long and build large two to four feet irregular mounds alongside foundations, trees, landscaping timbers, and underneath the mulch. 
  • Pharaoh ants: Ths pale yellowish to reddish ants have a tiny 1/16 inch body. They are the only ant known to spread disease; they reside in crawl spaces, wall voids, and behind baseboards. 
  • Carpenter ants: As their name suggests, this 1/2 to 5/8-inch, dark red and black ant species likes wood. When they initially invade properties, they create nests in rotting tree stumps and moist wood scraps. Later, they build satellite nests inside the house where wood has softened due to moisture (i.e., the crawlspace or underneath porches). 
  • Ghost ants: This 1/16-inch tiny, multi-colored ant species has a dark brown head and thorax with a pale yellowish abdomen and legs. These ants enjoy sweet food and often nest in wall voids near water sources in wall voids, cabinets, baseboards, and in potted plants. 
  • Bigheaded ants: Nominated in 2006 as one of the top 100 "World's Worst" home invaders, this pervasive species displaces the painful red imported fire ants and overtakes properties. Major and minor workers are part of a bigheaded ant colony, and the name reflects the large head of the reddish 1/8 to 5/32-inch major worker ants. Bigheaded ants prefer the outdoors, but if they migrate into your Bradenton home, you will find them under carpeting and behind baseboards. 
  • Caribbean crazy ants: The name of this reddish-brown ant derives from its erratic behavior. Unlike the bigheaded ant, which displaces imported fire ants in yards, Caribbean crazy ants (or tawny crazy ants) are prey for the fire ants. Because these ants create large colonies and removing them is a challenge. Caribbean crazy ants are in cement cracks, house soffits, and underneath landscaping timbers and rocks. 
  • Thief ants: This 5/16 inch pale yellowish to light or dark brown ant species with an unevenly rounded body uses wiring in walls as a guide as they travel through homes. These ants are thief ants because they raid the nests of nearby ants for food! Thief ants feed on dead rats and mice and may transmit pathogens from those rodents to humans. Thief ants are near other ant nests inside walls and along baseboards. 
  • Argentine ants: This species has a shiny brown to black 1/16 to 1/4 inch segmented, oval body. Many species produce winged ants that swarm from the colonies in the spring and fall to create new nests, but Argentine ants expand their territory through a process known as "budding." When the nest is mature or if they feel threatened, one of many queens will leave with its entourage to form a new colony nearby.
  • White-footed ants: So-named for their white or pale yellowish feet underneath their black to brown 1/8 inch body, this ant species nests near moisture sources in wall voids or potted plants. 

When these ants are in your Bradenton house, you need ant control in Brandenton from Keller's Pest Control. Our experienced technicians will inspect your home and identify the ant species infesting your house. 

All The Problems Ants Can Create In Your Home

Ants may appear harmless at best or a nuisance at worst, but they can cause problems in many different ways. Some ants, like carpenter ants, are not only a nuisance when they swarm in your house or outdoors but can destroy a home's structure. Carpenter ants seek out soft, often moisture-ridden wood to create their nests. 

In the spring and fall, reproductives swarm out of nearby nests, looking for softened wood and old, rotting tree stumps or half-buried wood scraps that provide the perfect venue. Once the outdoor nest matures, they dispatch winged reproductives, and some find entry points into the crawl space or underneath wood porches to create new satellite nests. Carpenter ants don't eat wood but bore smooth tunnels deep in moisture-ridden wood structures for their homes. When a mature colony of 10,000 carpenter ants is chewing through the wood structures in your house, you will eventually experience sagging floors, collapsing structures, and warping window and door frames. If you see winged swarms of ants in the window sills or notice discarded wings in spider webs, you need carpenter ant control in your house. 

Pharaoh ants are tiny, but don't let their size fool you because these little ants spread disease-causing bacteria in homes and hospitals. Open wounds attract these ants and provide the perfect entry point for the bacteria they carry. Most ants do not spread disease, but pharaoh ants spread salmonellosis, staphylococcus, clostridium, and streptococcus. Argentine ants are not as threatening as pharaoh ants but are known to forage in sewage and trash. Due to their scavenging on filthy surfaces, they may carry bacteria that cause dysentery. 

Imported red fire ants are problematic for many Bradenton homeowners due to their aggressive behavior and painful stings. When a fire ant nest is disturbed by humans or animals, the ants quickly swarm the intruder and inflict painful stings. The stings create white pustules resulting in several days of pain. In cases where people are sensitive to venom, anaphylactic shock may occur from the venom the ants inject into the victim. Large mounds in your yard indicate fire ants and the need for fire ant control services before someone gets injured. 

All ants on this list are a nuisance for homeowners in Bradenton homes because they contaminate food. Ants travel over dirty, bacteria-laden surfaces picking up the disease-causing organisms. When they walk on kitchen countertops, cooking surfaces, exposed foods, and inside kitchen drawers, they contaminate the foods, products, or area. Some ants, like the thief ant, can penetrate some packaged food items due to their small size. Ghost ants add to the nuisance they cause by producing a coconut-like odor when crushed. 

Electrical wires attract the Caribbean crazy ants, and when they infest electronic equipment and appliances in the house, they can destroy circuitry and ruin machines. Other ants in our area chew on electrical wires in appliances and electrical boxes and expose them to moisture from the material transported by the ants into houses.

Keller's Pest Control supplies ant control solutions for the Bradenton area; we work with you to protect your family from painful stings, structural damage, disease, contamination, and costly repairs.

Six No-Sweat Tips To Keep Ants Out Of Your House

Ants enter our homes to search for food, water, and shelter. Here are six easy solutions to stop ants from infesting your Bradenton house:

  • Seal cracks in the foundation, along the roofline, around door and window frames, and at the points where wires and pipes enter the house
  • Cover the attic, crawl space, and chimney openings with wire mesh screens
  • Repair holes in window and door screens
  • Install door sweeps on all exterior doors
  • Prune bushes and trees away from the house
  • Remove pet food, bird seed feeders, rotten fruit, and other food sources from the yard.

Maintaining a clean house by regularly vacuuming floors, wiping down cooking and eating surfaces, and keeping trash cans closed, will deter any ants who find an entry point into the house. Keller's Pest Control provides ant pest control near you.

The Secret To The Best Ant Control For Your Home

When ants invade your Bradenton location, they quickly create nests in wall voids, behind baseboards, inside potted plants, underneath the carpet, and in other areas of the house. When you contact Keller's Pest Control to provide ant control in your house, our technicians will inspect your property and home to determine attractants, entry points, and hot spots. Our licensed pet control technician will treat your house with safe and effective products to kill the ants while creating a barrier around the home. Contact us today to learn more and for your free estimate.