We're not saying you're a dummy. It just seemed appropriate to use this well-known descriptor to better convey the purpose of this article. This isn't a thesis on the habits and habitats of ant societies in Florida--though our on-staff entomologists could write such a paper. Our goal is to give you only what you need to know to prevent these insects from threatening your health and the health of your pets, children, and home.
"What pest ants do we have in Florida?"
Here are the four ants you will most likely deal with in and around your Florida home in order from greatest to least threatening: red imported fire ants, carpenter ants, Pharaoh ants, and pavement ants.
"What ant in Florida is a physical threat?"
Fire ants are listed first because they are the most dangerous ant you will deal with, and the problem is growing. As you know, these ants sting, and for those who are allergic, the sting from a fire ant can produce anaphylactic shock. If a mound is disturbed, thousands of ants can mobilize in seconds. This is particularly dangerous for invalids and babies who can't get away.
"What ant in Florida is a threat to my home?"
If you are finding black ants walking around inside your home, you may want to snatch one up to find out if it is a carpenter ant. Carpenter ants are responsible for billions of dollars in damages each year in the United States. These ants nest in wall voids and chew large galleries in wood to make their homes. If you've seen more than a couple of ant swarmers on your inside windows, they did not come from the outside. Ant swarmers are a sign of a mature nest inside your home and a warning that new nests are about to be established.
"What ants in Florida will get into my pantry?"
All ants in Florida will love your pantry, but those little yellow pharaoh ants are the most likely culprit. What you need to know most about any ant being inside your food storage areas or on your food prep surfaces is that ants also crawl in garbage. If any of those ants were just in your trash, the harmful bacteria from your trash could now be in places that could pose a danger for your family. Pharaoh ants build their nests in a variety of places inside a home.
"What ant in Florida is just a nuisance?"
Those little brownish black pavement ants aren't going to be much of a problem for you unless they find a food source. If you keep trash sealed and food contained, you're not likely to have these ants entering your home. But pet food left out on the floor, or something similar, can draw these ants into a home.
"How do I protect myself, my family, my pets, and my home from Florida ants?"
If you have ant colonies around and inside your home call McCall Service to have them destroyed--and always keep an eye out for fire ant mounds and groups, especially after flooding. Fire ants build "living rafts" to escape rising flood waters. This can give thousands of these ants quick access to attack. We have the experience and technology to attack your pest problem – and safely eliminate it. Then we will identify any areas of concern that could attract pests or allow them entrance into your home, and help prevent any future problems.