Why You Need A Pro to Get Rid of the Big Black Ants
Carpenter ants can be hidden behind drywall or some other area inside your house’s structural foundation. That’s why ant extermination by professionals is your best defense against these big black ants.
Carpenter ants are big, black insects and are among the most common pests in New York City. The size of an adult carpenter ranges from a quarter to half of an inch.
The tendency of these insects to make tunnels in wood for nesting made them get their name “carpenter ants.” They usually live in moisture-rich dead or damaged wood. Some of the places that you are likely to see these ants include in tree trunks, hollowed out trees, woodpiles, attics as well as crawlspaces.
Carpenter Ants Behavior
Similarly to the majority of ants, carpenter ants feed on nearly anything that comes their way. Nevertheless, they prefer foods that are rich in protein during the spring. While in summer, they like eating carbohydrate-rich foods.
Although they are in constant search for food, carpenter ants are most active at night since that’s the time they are less likely to be seen by their predators which comprise of lizards and birds. A place with carpenter ants is easy to tell as you will spot tiny sawdust piles with some dead insects and insulation components.
Can Carpenter Ants Bite People?
Some people tend to avoid places with carpenter ants for fear of being bitten. Some just have unfounded paranoia as they are not sure if carpenter ants can bite. By the way, do they actually bite?
The answer is yes; carpenter ants will bite you if you are close to them and they feel threatened. They bite as a way of defending their nests. These insects have powerful mandibles which they mostly use to cut wood, and they will use the same to attack you.
When a carpenter ant is biting you, it can penetrate its mandibles into your skin, leaving behind fairly large bite marks. Bites by these ants are painful and are accompanied by a sharp-pinch sensation since besides wounding your skin and flesh, the ants also release formic acid, similarly to bee stings.
“Carpenter ants will bite you if you are close to them and they feel threatened.”
You’ll also feel slight pain immediately, and then a prolonged burning sensation will follow, thanks to the injected formic acid. The bites are also characterized by red spots which to some people may be inflamed. The marks take approximately seven days to heal completely.
Although bites by carpenter ants are painful, they neither have venom nor do they contribute to the transmission of diseases. In as such, the bites don’t pose any health risk to people.
What to Do After A Carpenter Ant Bite
Once carpenter ants have bitten you, try as much as you can to clean the inflicted wounds using soap and lukewarm or hot water. If the wounds are open, apply antibiotic ointment to them.
You may also bandage the wounds once they are clean if you so wish. The wounds are likely to develop itchy sensation, and you may be tempted to scratch them but don’t fall into that temptation, kindly. Instead, apply some ice packs to the wounds. The ice packs will minimize the itching.
“Once carpenter ants have bitten you, try as much as you can to clean the inflicted wounds using soap and lukewarm or hot water.”
Carpenter Ant Infestation
Carpenter ants like wood. They don’t consume it; they just like to chew on it. They are considered one of the leading causes of damage to wood-based structures in the US.
If you have seen a trail of these ants, you could very well be facing an ant infestation already. And it’s best to be familiar with their habits, so you will be more aware of where to look and when to look for them.
How to Identify Carpenter Ants
First off, these ants like to live in hollow wood. This means that they can create hollow sections in the wooden parts of your structure to have a place to live in.
For these cases, ant removal experts can help you by checking your wooden structure for common signs like sawdust and small holes. They like to live in moist or decaying wood so be on the lookout for those as well. It’s important that you zero-in on their nests so you can completely get rid of the problem.
Generally, ant exterminators will know where to look so you may want to consider getting their services to ensure that every nook and cranny inside the house is thoroughly checked.
“Ant removal experts can help you by checking your wooden structure for common signs like sawdust and small holes.”
Carpenter ants can live outdoors as well. So if you have trees with hollow sections and your home is already infested, you’ll probably see them inside nearby trees as well.
Professional ant removal services will target both indoor and outdoor nests. Once the nests have been identified, pest control experts will know what to do – which pesticide to use to eliminate them and which ones are best for preventing re-infestation, even when there are kids and pets in the home.
If the infestation is massive, it is not recommended for you to handle the problem on your own, particularly if you’ve seen ant trails on and off, and in several different places inside and outside the house. Only professional ant exterminators will know the best approach to get rid of them.
Carpenter ants are known to damage wood-based structures of houses as well, so don’t wait too long before calling for help. The longer you wait, the more damage will be done.
“Professional ant removal services will target both indoor and outdoor nests. Once the nests have been identified, pest control experts will know what to do.”
Targeting the Root of the Problem
You see a trail of ants on the counter, and your first instinct is to grab a can of bug spray to kill them. You think that that’s the end of it, but then you see another trail, this time on the dining table.
While bug sprays can eliminate the pests that you can see, they do not target the root of the problem: destroying their nests. If you’re lucky, the nests can be within eyesight but they usually never are.
They can be hidden behind drywall or some other area inside your house’s structural foundation. Ant extermination by professionals is your best defense against these pests.
“Carpenter ants are known to damage wood-based structures of houses as well, so don’t wait too long before calling for help. The longer you wait, the more damage will be done.”
Do I Really Need A Professional Ant Pest Control?
Carpenter ants can be a serious nuisance if they form a colony in your building or at a place with much human interaction. A place with a carpenter ant infestation has primary and secondary colonies which must be eliminated if you want to keep these pests at bay completely.
Unfortunately, without proper skills and experience, it is tough to find and destroy all these colonies and so, it is advisable that you hire a pest control expert to do it for you. Otherwise, partial removal of the colonies will leave you with a recurrent carpenter ant problem.
If you’ve been doing home remedies to remove ants and spraying these ants with insecticide but they keep coming back, there’s a very big chance that there’s a colony of them somewhere inside the house. And in these cases, a professional ant pest control service should be hired to determine where the colonies are (there could be more than one) with the help of their equipment.
Pest control experts know where to look first since they’ve seen and eliminated a number of them in different houses/structures before. With professional ant extermination, you’re assured that the bug experts will leave no stone unturned until they find the root of the problem and eliminate it once and for all.
They also have proven treatments that can be applied to surfaces to prevent re-infestation. They can likewise give you tips on how to avoid re-infestation, such as proper food storage and eliminating factors inside the house that make your home susceptible to ant infestation.
So if you’ve seen ant trails all over the house, it’s best not to rely only on bug sprays that you can purchase off the rack. Hire professional ant pest control services to get rid of the ants completely.***
Featured Image: Black Carpenter Ant, Mohammed El Damir, Bugwood.org