How Do I Know If The Ants Around My Hattiesburg Home Are Dangerous?

Serving Families Throughout Hattiesburg
ants covering sugar cubes on a kitchen table

“The ants go marching one by one! Hurrah! Hurrah!” You might be familiar with this fun children’s song about ants trying to get out of the rain. It’s a cute song, but it becomes much less fun when ants are marching into your home. And in real life, the ants don’t stop at ten. Ants can live in colonies of thousands, and if they find food in your home, they can appear in unfathomable numbers. Here’s a guide to get you started on effective ant control.

What’s Up With Ants?

Ants are insects commonly known for getting into kitchens. There are many, many species of ants around the world and in the United States. Some are dangerous, some can cause property damage, and others are just a nuisance. All can contaminate food sources. Ants typically eat grease, sugar, and proteins. They live in large colonies and forage for food. They can be tan, brown, or black. Here’s some information about common ants in the Hattiesburg area, divided by their level of danger.

Nuisance Ants

Nuisance ants are those that aren’t dangerous to humans and don’t cause significant property damage. This doesn’t mean they aren’t problematic, though. They can still appear in large numbers, contaminate food, and are difficult to get rid of. Here are some of the most common.

  • Argentine ants. Dark brown or black in color and about 1/4" long, argentine ants often form wide trails and give off a musty odor when crushed.
  • Little black ants. These ants are only 1/16” long and can also be brown or black. They mostly live outside under logs and stones but may be found inside around wood and in moist areas.
  • Odorous house ants. Odorous house ants are most often black and about 1/8” long. When crushed, they give off a foul odor that can linger in the air.
  • Pavement ants. These ants get their name from their tendency to build nests along the cracks in sidewalks and driveways. They are brown and grow to be about 1/8” long.
  • Sugar ants. This term applies to a few species of ants, brown or black in color. Sugar ants are any ants that are primarily attracted to sugar.

Dangerous Ants

Some are more problematic. Here are a few of the more dangerous and damaging ant species in the area.

  • Carpenter ants. These ants are about 5/8” long and can be red of black. Carpenter ants build their nests inside wood. They often get into homes and cause property damage as they chew through the wooden structures of a home. They may also chew through wires, possibly ruining electronics and/or causing electric fires.
  • Fire ants. Fire ants are reddish-brown ants that are only 1/8” long. They build large, distinctive mounds outdoors. Fire ants are dangerous because they are extremely aggressive. If they feel threatened, they will sting their victim. Fire ant stings are painful and can be especially dangerous for people who are allergic.
  • Pharaoh ants. These ants are only 1/16” long and yellow or tan in color. Pharaoh ants often exist in large numbers. A single colony can hold thousands of ants. Pharaoh ants have been linked to the spread of diseases such as salmonella.

How To Get Rid Of Ants

What should you do if ants get into your home? We recommend getting in touch with Havard Pest Control. We have years of experience with ant control in Hattiesburg. We know how to identify each species and determine the danger of their presence. We’ll create a treatment plan to keep your family safe, minimize attracting factors, and install preventative measures so you can help ants out of your home, whether they’re dangerous or just a nuisance.