While it is true that odorous house ants are typically considered to be a nuisance pest, that does not mean that they will not cause issues for you. It simply means that they do not bite and transmit serious diseases to humans the way dangerous pests like mice, cockroaches, and mosquitoes do. And while these ants do not transmit dangerous diseases to people, that is not to say that they don’t contaminate food sources, because they certainly can.
Whenever odorous house ants enter homes they are searching to meet their three basic needs of food, water, and shelter. While they roam through your home looking for an area high in moisture to nest in such as behind the walls of the bathroom or under the floorboards beneath the leaking kitchen sink, they will also take note of any food sources. Once they are settled, they will go into your kitchen pantry, into cupboards, across counter tops, or under stoves and refrigerators to feast. As they walk through food stores and across food preparation areas, they can contaminate these with germs and chemicals that they produce and emit. These resourceful little creatures will lay down ‘trails’ to help guide other ants to sources of food such as sweets, meats, grease, dairy products, pastries, vegetables, or fruit. Thus contaminating any food they come in contact with.
The odorous house ant is tiny, about 2 - 3 ½ mm in length. They are dark brown to black and emit a disgusting odor when they are crushed that resembles the smell of rotten coconut. These ants live in large colonies sometimes numbering in the thousands. These nests are typically located in shallow soil under large rocks, logs, mulch, and other debris. Once established inside a home or other building they will nest behind walls near hot water pipes, under heaters and sinks, behind cabinets, and under floors.
Once odorous house ants have discovered your home, the only way to completely eradicate them is with professional help. DIY treatments may kill some of the ants that happen to come in contact with the materials you laid down, but they are incapable of penetrating deep into the hidden recesses of your home where the majority of these ants are nesting. You may even notice a reduction in ant traffic for a short time, but their numbers will swell again and the headache will continue.
If you live here in Tennessee, your best choice when odorous house ants invade is to contact the ant specialists here at Russell’s Pest Control. Our specialists are armed with the latest products, protocols, and technologies that are effective in eliminating odorous house ants quickly and safely.
To learn more about our ant control solutions or to learn about or effective year-round services that will keep ants and other pests from accessing your home all year long, simply give us a call today.