Wet Winter Means More Ant Invasions

The Chicago suburbs have had a harsh and wet winter with record amounts of snow, ice and rain. This wet weather will bring out the ant populations this spring. Our pest control team in McHenry and Lake counties typically see an uptick in ant complaints when the weather has been wet.

The three most common small ant that invades homes in our area are:

PAVEMENT ANT (Tetramorium caespitum)

Probably the most common ant in structures, the pavement ant, is so named because it excavates an underground nest and pushes the soil into conical mounds along rocks, concrete slabs, sidewalks and driveways. Nests also can be found in logs, mulch, wall and floor voids, and insulation. Pavement ants are dark brown-black and about 1/6-inch long.

ODOROUS HOUSE ANT (Tapinoma sessile)

This 1/8-inch long, brownish-black ant can be confused with the pavement ant, until the odorous house ant is crushed, releasing an odor like rotten coconut. In recent years it has become an increasingly common household invader. Nests are found under rocks, boards and other debris, and in floor and wall voids. These ants will move indoors during rains and in the fall. They feed on sweets, honeydew, plant and fruit juices, meat and dairy products.

SMALL HONEY ANT (Prenolepis imparis)

When small (to 1/8-inch), dark ants are found indoors, it’s likely they are either pavement ants, odorous house ants or small honey ants. Honey ants nest in voids under concrete slabs, flooring and in walls. They feed on honeydew, honey and other sweet liquids, plant juices, and various foods and beverages. Small honey ants seem to prefer lower temperatures than other ants. They may be the first and the last ants seen each year, disappearing during the heat of summer.

How to Get Rid of Ants in Home or Business

Our treatment plan includes:

  1. Identify ant species
  2. Inspection for conducive conditions like moisture leaks or rotting wood
  3. Treatment targeting nesting sites
  4. Customer education
  5. On going monitoring

Best Time of Year to Treat Ants

Ant problems can pop up any time of year. It’s best to have a professional treat ants because store bought treatments don’t target the nest and over time the ant colony just grows even though you may not see them making it harder to eliminate and causing more damage to structure especially when dealing with carpenter ants.

Contact Us for a Free and Quick Estimate

for your home or business pest control needs.  We will respond by end of business day, typically within 2 hours.

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