Ants as pests


Why ants are considered pests.
Ants are often regarded as nuisance pests in and around buildings. Small mounds resulting from their excavations may be considered unsightly along garden paths, on balconies, and around skirting boards. Occasionally such excavations under paths may be sufficiently extensive to cause crack in older paths. Trailing of ants themselves, in and around buildings are considered unsightly by some. Swarming may occur within the premises, and this may prove particularly annoying to some occupants.

Ant control
Effective control of ants often relies on a knowledge of their foraging and nesting habits. At the broad level, a knowledge of nesting habits and feeding habits of important ant species can be helpful. More specifically, where a given infestation is being treated, a thorough survey and inspection should be carried out. By following trails – particularly, where possible, those of workers loaded with food – the location of the nest, either approximately or precisley, may be determined. The best way to get rid of ants is to locate the nest. Then apply ant treatments to the nest and kill as many ants as possible so the population of ants die out.

Ant trailsAnt identification.
Small brown ant – adult body length 1.5-3.0 mm – Light brown to brown. Eyes close to base of antennae. Will walk over hand if placed on trail.
Brown house ant – adult body length 2-3-mm – Uniformly brown. 1 node on pedicel. Distinct odour of formic acid odour when crushed.
Black house ant – adult body length 2.5-3 mm – Black.
Greenhead ants – adult body length 5-6 mm – Black with metallic green head. Distinctive appearance and odour.

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