Ants

argentine_antsArgentine – The workers which are all female are about 1/16″ long and they are monomorphic, meaning they are all similar in size. Queens are twice as long or longer. Argentine ants are light to dark brown in color. Argentine ants are one of the trailing ants and may travel 200 feet or more with thousands of ants following each other from the nest to a food source. They prefer sweets and often tend honeydew producing insects. Their diet changes throughout the year. They feed on a number of items and are not considered “picky,” since they are reported to feed on sweets, meats, fruits, dairy products, eggs, animal fats and waste, and vegetable oils.

carpenter_antCarpenter – Carpenter ants belong to the largest of all ant groups. Although carpenter ants are usually more of a problem in the Northwest and Northeast, they can be both a nuisance and a serious structural pest across the southeastern United States. A carpenter ant colony is started by a single queen. The nest does not have to be in wood. It can be in the soil or under rocks. The queen’s first set of eggs hatch into small workers called minims. These small workers feed the queen and as more eggs are produced, the young grow into larger workers, called majors. These larger workers can be from 1/4 to 5/8 inch in length.

Fire AntFire – Fire ants are a problem because their sting can cause medical problems, they harm wildlife, and interfere with outdoor activities. The mounds are unsightly and cause problems with land use. The winged males and females fly into the air as high as 2000 ft. After mating the males promptly die having fulfilled their only purpose. The newly mated females can fly as far as 2 -3 miles before landing. Once they land, they tear their wings off and search for a suitable nesting site in the soil. The new workers break out of the chamber and begin foraging for food. They care for the queen and the young. From this point on the queen does only one thing – lay eggs to the tune of 100,000 – 300,000 per year. She may live 6-7 years. Fire ants forage when the surface soil temperature is between 70˚ and 95˚F. In the summer months this is primarily at night. They may travel up to 100 yards from their mound in search of food.