There are some things you may already know about fire ants. These pests are quite common in Auburn. You may even know the sting of a fire ant. These are also common in Auburn. But, when fire ants come into your yard, you may have questions. Hopefully, we can answer your questions today. Take a look below at some of the common questions we get about fire ants.

fire ant in a tree
fire ant in yard

What fire ants do we have in Auburn?

There are six fire ant species in Alabama. The one that is considered to be the greatest threat is the red imported fire ant, known scientifically as Solenopsis invicta (Buren). This species of ant has workers of varying sizes between 2.4 and 6 mm in length. It has a red to brown coloration with a blackened abdomen. If you have good eyes, you may see that it has two nodes between its abdomen and thorax.

How do I know the ants in my yard are fire ants?

Apart from being able to visually identify them, or having one sting you, you may be able to tell that you have a fire ant problem by the mounds they leave in your yard. They'll create these in open, sunny areas. They tend to be around 10 inches high and 15 inches in diameter.

How dangerous are fire ants?

Most stings from fire ants will do nothing more than leave an itchy red wound on the skin. A wound left by a fire ant is likely to have a pustule in the center. Each individual ant can sting multiple times without losing its stinger. This can lead to several wounds in one area. The concern with fire ants is that the venom can cause an allergic reaction. This reaction can be severe and life-threatening. Another point to consider is that fire ant allergies can appear later in life. You can be bitten by fire ants without a reaction but then have a much worse reaction with subsequent encounters.

These ants are a particular threat to anyone who can't get away from them. A baby left on the ground in a car carrier isn't going to be able to move away from these ants when they start stinging. Keep this in mind if you start seeing these ants in your yard.

Do fire ants get inside?

Yes. They can get into your home and establish a nest inside your wall, floor, and ceiling voids. When they get inside, they can find their way into electrical boxes and cause a short. They can also get into pantry foods.

What attracts fire ants?

These ants encroach upon properties. While they can be attracted by available water resources and food sources, they often enter a yard for no other reason than that it is the next yard to conquer. They also come into yards when they are driven out of other areas by construction, droughts, floods, heavy rains, and other conditions.

How many fire ants are there in a colony?

There can be 100,000 individual ants in most colonies. Under certain circumstances, a colony can approach half a million. These ants can quickly become a serious issue then they come into your yard.

How do you get rid of fire ants?

It is difficult to exterminate fire ants because fire ant colonies have multiple queens. If you attempt to kill these ants, and fail, you could make your problem worse as the colony could split into more than one colony. They're also frustrating to track as they can get into every nook and cranny around your home. They get into concrete cracks, gardens, landscaping, utility housing, electrical equipment, and cracks in pavement. We recommend having a licensed pest management professional select appropriate ant control products and devices and administer them in an effective manner.

If you live in the Auburn area, we can assist you with your fire ant issues. Our experienced and highly-trained pest control technicians know what works to get control of fire ants. For advice about fire ants, or to schedule a service visit, speak with one of our agents. Fire ants can present a medical threat and should be dealt with appropriately. Get immediate assistance today.


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