Summer’s here, and you might just see flying ants in your home. They are scary, and one could get right to your mouth or hair if you aren’t careful.
What do you do?
First off, don’t panic. Sure, these winged ants are a pain to deal with. They also multiply in number. At first, you might confuse them with termites. Fortunately, they are not as formidable. Having them as your house guest, though, is not ideal.
In this article, we’ll discuss more about these winged ants, know how to get rid of these, and find out which professional pest exterminator you should go for.
What are flying ants?
Flying ants are just regular ants with wings. They grow their wings during a developmental stage for mating. All types of ants, starting from the black garden ants, are used to see the carpenter ants grow wings during this particular time.
They are known as “alates,” and they are sexually mature. During the summers, mature male and female ants fly out of their colonies with the purpose of mating to expand their ant colonies.
Are flying ants dangerous?
They can be intimidating. However, they are harmless and do not pose a serious threat. Unlike many other insects, these ants are unlikely to bite when winged unless they feel threatened.
Occasionally, carpenter ants and fire ants may sting as a form of self-defense, but they are not poisonous. Take the necessary precautions and avoid going near the swarm.
Flying ants come in swarms to protect themselves and might consider you to be a threat, causing them to attack.
How is it different from termites?
Carpenter ants are extremely common and are often confused with termites. But, there are notable differences between the two.
Physical characteristics of carpenter ants:
- Elbowed, or bent antennae
- Dark-colored bodies
- Narrow waist
- Hind wings are shorter than front wings
Termites are characterized by:
- Straight antennae
- Lighter bodies
- Broader waist
- Larger wings
Termites are destructive to homes and gnaw on the wood where they tunnel, unlike carpenter ants who nest in it.
When do winged ants enter houses?
You are probably asking yourself, “Why do I have flying ants in my house”? Here’s what causes flying ants in your house:
They are attracted to light.
Like termites, flying ants are highly attracted to lights. Think about the nearby streetlight, which always seems to be swarming with insects. Due to this, you are likely to find these ants crawl on the inside of your windows for sunlight.
Draw the curtains and minimize your usage of lights.
They are attracted to high places.
Insects nesting on treetops, chimneys, towers, or windows of multi-storeyed houses are a common sight. Similarly, flying ants take an affinity towards high places. Cracks and crevices around those areas make it the ideal resting place for them.
They are attracted to sweets.
Leave a sweet treat outside for a while, and within no time, you will see a battalion of ants swarming that area.
Getting rid of flying ants
If you want to know how to kill flying ants or get rid of them, you can either take matters into your own hands to fight the infestation or seek professional help.
Here’s how you should go about the process:
This is by far the easiest remedy to instantly get rid of a large swarm of flying ants. Use the vacuum to suck up the insects. You can opt for a full-sized or handheld vacuum with a hose attachment. Make sure you remove the vacuum bag immediately and get it out of the house. This will prevent the flying ants from finding their way back inside.
Spraying pesticides will help get rid of visible ants, both crawling and flying. However, this is not an effective way to cause damage to the hidden colonies.
Here are some pesticides you can use:
Be cautious while spraying pesticides indoors as they are poisonous.
DIY soap and peppermint spray
Making a simple spray with peppermint oil and dish soap will go a long way, especially for scattered ants that you can’t reach with a vacuum.
- Fill a spray bottle using one part liquid dish soap with two parts water.
- Add several drops of peppermint oil and shake the solution thoroughly.
- Spray it on the ants and cover the surrounding areas.
The soap will stick to the ants and dehydrate them, making it hard for them to fly or move. The peppermint acts by causing suffocation.
Use ant baits
The methods mentioned above cause damage to the swarm or scattered ants, but the root of your problem lies in the hidden colonies.
Ant baits are one of the most effective ways to deal with flying ants. It might be slower, but it is the safest method. The flying ants take the baits back to their colonies, where the queen consumes them and dies. The days of the colony are numbered after the death of its queen, so this prevents recurring incidents.
The baits come in the form of granules, gels, and stations and are safe to use around pets and children. However, you should still put it out of their reach for safety.
Remove food source
Keep your floors and kitchen counters clean and free of crumbs. Without a food source, the flying ants will be less attracted to your house and may rest elsewhere for food.
Hire a professional exterminator for your flying ants’ problems
Ants are resilient and stealthy creatures.
After you’ve vacuumed around the house, used pesticides, DIY sprays, baits, and removed their sources of food, you might still have many more of these pests lurking around the corners. You need to eliminate each source of the colony once and for all to make your house infestation-free and prevent future invasions.
Professional exterminators have the expertise and equipment necessary to solve your problem once and for all. Since some of the means required to exterminate ants are hazardous, it is best to leave this in the hands of a professional.
Say goodbye to the flying ants by calling Bug Guys Pest Control. We service the entire Coachella Valley, California. Contact us now for a FREE estimate.