What Makes The Fire Ants In Jacksonville So Hard To Get Rid Of?

September 23, 2020

If there's one insect every Jacksonville resident should fear, it's the fire ant. Fire ants are dangerous and relentless. Unfortunately, they are extremely difficult to eliminate. Find out what makes them so hard to get rid of and learn the secret to keeping them away.

fire ants crawling on a ant hill

About Jacksonville Fire Ants

Fire ants don't only bother Jacksonville residents; they're a nuisance throughout much of the United States. Typically, fire ants are red and have a stinger on their abdomens. They only grow to approximately five millimeters long.

Sadly, most people don't see fire ants until they are stung by one. When an ant senses a threat, it uses its stinger to immobilize or scare away the threat. Although their venom is intended to take down small critters, it's still potent enough to impact humans. The sting from a fire ant is often accompanied by pain, itching, and swelling. If you have an allergic reaction to the venom, you may need immediate medical attention.

When one fire ant attacks, there are more to follow. Fire ants signal for the others in their colony to come and help when they attack. For that reason, you are likely to be stung countless times. The many stings increase your chances of having a negative reaction to the venom.

Why You Can't Get Rid Of Them

In addition to being dangerous, fire ants are also difficult to eliminate. There are a few reasons for this.

For one, they have extremely large colonies. There may be more than 500,000 ants in a single colony. Even if you remove all the mounds from your yard, there are probably some in your neighbors' yards. The ants will just make their way back onto your property.

Typically, a fire ant colony has more than one queen. So, killing the queen isn't a solution to your problem. A new queen will move in and start reproducing.

Another challenge with fire ant removal is the danger. If you aren't careful, you could end up being stung by a swarm of fire ants. Trying to handle the problem on your own is dangerous.

Ineffective DIY Methods

If you're still tempted to take care of the issue on your own, you should know that DIY methods of fire ant removal are often ineffective.

Some property owners turn to chemical treatments to remove ants. However, the chemicals sold in hardware stores and garden centers don't always work. It's rare for DIY chemical applications to kill all of the ants. Additionally, these chemicals can be dangerous if you don't follow the necessary precautions when you apply them.

Other methods are just myths or gimmicks. For instance, some people believe that fire ants explode when they eat grits. There is no truth to this, and pouring grits in your yard does nothing but attract more pests.

If you think that soap or ashes will keep ants away, you're mistaken. This is just another myth with no truth to it.

Are There Any Effective DIY Methods?

By taking a few preventative measures, you can try to keep ants away. These methods are somewhat useful, but won't guarantee that you'll continue to be ant-free.

  • Regularly mow your lawn
  • Remove piles of debris
  • Trim shrubs and trees
  • Seal garbage cans

Doing any of the above suggestions makes your property less appealing to ants. But there's only one effective way of completely eliminating and deterring fire ants. The only tried and tested method to keep them away for good is with professional assistance. When you work with an expert, you can safely and effectively protect your property from ants. Call Havard Pest Control to learn more.

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