Fire Ants

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Visual Description:  Reddish brown with dark back end or abdomen.  Fire ants will bite to attach to their object when sting with their stinger at the base of the abdomen.  Adult fire ants consist of winged males, reproductive and worker ants. Males will fly with the queen to establish a new colony then die shortly after.  Each colony usually consists of one queen but can have multiple queens. Fire ant stings can be painful and feel like a burning sensation. The bite may develop into a white pustule within 24-36 hours but try to avoid scratching.  This can cause infections.

Habitat:  Fire ants will make a round dirt mound in sunny areas such as open grass, cement pavers, mulch beds, tree trunks and other similar locations.  They like drip systems in planters or around trees for a constant source of water. Fire ants will migrate from yard to yard and especially after a heavy rain.

Size:  1/16 – 1/4 long

Food:  Most fire ants feed on plants or seeds.

Life Cycle:  Larva stage is usually 6 to 12 days while the pupal stage is 9-16 days.  These stages are usually white in color.

How did they get into my house?:  The most popular point of entry is the weep holes.  Fire ants will look for cracks in foundations, pipes, siding. poor weather-stripping or poorly sealed doors as entry points.  Once inside the walls it is very common to see ants utilize light sockets to gain entrance to the inside of your home.

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