Pavement Ants

Pavement ants are one of the most common species in the United States. They get their name because of their ability to dig under sidewalks, driveways and building slabs, leading to piles on top of the pavement. Pavement ants also live in the lower parts of bricks, stones, patio blocks, and slabs. Pavement Ants can also nest under mulch or open ground near the foundations of buildings.

The pavement ants range in sizes of about 18 "inches in length. The coloring of the ant worker can vary from light brown to a darker shade of blackish-brown color. Despite their differences; however, these are the distinctive characteristics of pavement ant: A pair of spines on the back, two nodes on the petiole, Grooves on the head and thorax, 12-segmented antennae with a three-segmented club, Stinger in the last abdominal segment, Queens and swarmers (reproductive ants) have wings and are twice as large as the workers.

Pavement ants invade buildings while in search of food. Nests are under stones, along curbs or paving cracks. They can be nested inside walls and under the floor. Pavement ants are absolutely omnivorous, they eat both live and dead insects, seeds, the juice of many plants, and the honeydew. Like most ants, they tend to protect the aphids. In addition, they eat various household products, such as meat, fat, nuts, chips, cheese, bread and honey. They, however, show a preference for meat and fat. They also feed on the pollen collected by the bees nesting. They are especially harmful to the pollination of bees nesting like alkaline bees and to kill active adult bees to get the bee larvae and pollen. In their attempt to acquire juice from plants, pavement ants can gird and kill plants such as tomatoes, cabbage, carrots, etc.

Pavement ants pass through the stages of egg, larva, and pupa before becoming adults. A typical colony of pavement ants includes several queens and many workers. Queen sets new colony of pavement ants laying eggs. Pavement worker ants then take care of the queen larvae, until they turn into adults. During their developmental stages, broods are carried from place to place in order to protect them from moisture and temperature variations. Nests can be found in open ground under a rock or sidewalk, in rotting wood, and sometimes even in homes. The reproductive swarms that are, flying males and new queen can be noticed throughout the year, usually in the month June and July. Having wings is not an unmistakable way to find out if the queen has mate. While the queen is far from the nest, she has some chance of being mated. Ants tend to only mate during their mating flight. The unfertilized queens still lay, but she would be able to produce a male which would not only maintain the colony.

Pavement Ants are very common in the New Jersey area, and it is not unusual to find their invasion of your home. They do not bite, but they have the ability to sting. Pavement ants are not aggressive, they prefer to avoid confrontation, not stinging to protect themselves. They are harmless to you and your home, but they are seen as a nuisance or small pest to the detriment of vegetables in the garden. In addition, the ant pavement is known as an intermediate host of two species of poultry tapeworms.

Because the pavement ants are so numerous, their control can be difficult. Multiple control tactics should be used to remove the colony of the ants and exclude the ant from the house. Below are the steps that need to be taken to reduce or remove the pavement ant and around the building.

NEST LOCATION The most important task is to find the nest of the pavement ants. Worker ants must leave the nest on a regular basis (they are most active at night during the summer) and search for nearby eating areas. You can search inside the perimeter of the house looking for ants on their way back to the nest. Follow the workers patiently, and you will see that all the ants return to the same place. In some cases, there may be more than one nest in the building. Since the pavement ants nests under the stones and under the sidewalks, are found usually in areas with a high level of humidity. In addition, the nests occur under the stones of meadows and other open areas. If you have problems finding the nest, you can try the following steps: 1) Start with high activity areas and follow the ants back to the nest. The ants returning take a more direct path than ants looking for food and their belly is often increased with liquid food. 2) Look at the small mounds of soil being thrown out of the entrance of their nest. These are often close to doors jam and sections of the foundation cracks. 3) Place a source of sweet foods, such as honey or jam and follow the ants from your bait back into your nest.

CONTROL MEASURES: Once the nest has been discovered, the next step is to remove the ants inside. 1) If you find a wood in direct contact with the soil, then pack the soil away from the house, so water does not collect against the wood. 2) Check the gutters for the leaves and accumulated debris, which can be clogging the spout down. Check the down spout to ensure that the water is directed away at the base. All moisture problems should be corrected. 3) After the exact location of the nest is known, many colonies can be removed with the help of a bait labeled for ants control. Baits are very effective when fresh and correctly placed, and it is usually preferable to contact insecticides in many situations. If liquid or soft baits are placed too close to the entrance to the nest, they can be covered with soil, and not consumed by ants. 4) If only the general location of the nest is known, then the nest can still be removed by using ant baits.