Ant Control In Ventura County What You Need To Know
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Ant Control In Ventura County: What You Need To Know

You have undoubtedly seen a few war movies in your lifetime, and one image that sticks in our minds is the long lines of soldiers marching into battle. Before modern warfare, the army with the most people marching into battle had a higher likelihood of winning. Sometimes, the sheer number of soldiers marching across a field or into a village would overwhelm the enemy, and they would give up without a fight. 

Argentine ants are like enemy troops marching into your home. You may be reading this article because you went outside and noticed a long line of ants climbing a tree and entering your house. Or, you went into the kitchen for your morning cup of coffee and saw a line of ants traveling along the baseboard. When Argentine ants invade, they can create an overwhelming feeling for the homeowner because the line seems endless. 

The best way to stop an Argentine ant invasion is to secure ant control in Ventura County from Ventura Pest Control. Our family-owned and operated company has removed pests from homes since 1959. In the words of one of our clients, "You consistently wow your customers with your extraordinarily friendly, professional, and competitively priced services!" We offer exceptional customer service with knowledgeable staff and trained service technicians. 

You probably found this article because you've seen a long line of ants entering your house or have encountered them inside your home, so please keep reading to learn why they are there and what you can do to remove them from your home. 

How Can I Tell If It's Argentine Ants On My Property?

Before we get into the specifics, let's start with the basics. Ants are insects with six legs, two compound eyes, antennae, and a three-part segmented body consisting of a head, thorax, and abdomen. As invertebrates, ants do not have a spinal column or backbone, but an outer shell, known as an exoskeleton, holds their bodies together. Ants are distinguished from other insects by their clubbed antennae and narrow waists, like their wasp cousins. 

Some wasps, like mud daubers, are solitary creatures, but ants are social insects, which means they live in groups. Unless they are carpenter ants, they create nests in the soil, but when inside a home, they usually migrate to high-moisture areas. An ant nest consists of tunnels and chambers, which they use to move to and from food sources, store, and raise their offspring. 

An ant nest begins when a fertilized female ant, later known as the queen, burrows into the soil or wood and produces eggs. The first several egg batches consist of sterile worker ants who work to expand the nest, forage for food, and care for the queen and offspring. Sometimes, the queen produces soldier ants that protect the colony, but in all situations, the queen delivers reproductive ants once the nest matures. 

Argentine ants are problematic in Ventura County; they share core ant characteristics and a few unique traits. For example, while ants have clubbed antennae, an Argentine ant's antenna has 12 segments. Whereas many ant species have only one queen in the colony, an Argentine colony may have hundreds of queens. According to one estimate, there are 15 queens for every 1,000 workers in an Argentine ant colony. 

Most ant species create satellite colonies through a process known as swarming. In those scenarios, the queen produces winged, reproductive male and female ants that leave the group in the spring and mate in flight. The males soon die; the fertilized females land to burrow into the soil (or wood) and produce their first egg batch. However, Argentine ants begin satellite colonies a different way, through a process known as budding. 

When the colony matures, the queen produces wingless reproductive male and female ants who mate inside the nest. The founding queen regulates and often prevents egg production by the fertilized queens while they reside in the colony. When the group detects a threat, the fertilized queens and an entourage of sterile workers flee the group to begin a new nest. The budding process results in a series of nests that interconnect to form huge super colonies that consist of millions of ants and multiple queens. Another characteristic of Argentine ants is they are aggressive toward other ants and are known to displace other ant species from their homes. 

To determine if Argentine ants are on your Ventura property, look for ants with 1/16 to 1/4-inch dark brown to black bodies traveling in long lines along utility wires and tree branches that enter the home. Ants communicate through chemicals known as pheromones, which they deposit as they return from their nests. Argentine ants, however, lay these chemicals down as they travel to and from their food sources to ensure efficiency. Thus, when they enter a home, you will notice long lines to and from food sources like sweets and protein-rich foods, especially during the summer when they are reproducing.

Another indicator of Argentine ants is their location in the home. Argentine ants prefer moist areas like water pipes, potted plants, and sinks. Outside, these ants live underneath boards, stones, plants, and sidewalks in high-moisture locations.

When you notice Argentine ant lines invading your home or traveling throughout the house, you need Argentine ant control from Ventura Pest Control. 

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Are Argentine Ants Typically Dangerous?

Whether Argentine or not, all ant species are a nuisance to homeowners. Being greeted by a long line of ants when you walk into the kitchen is not how you want to start your day. It is embarrassing to have guests over for dinner only to have Argentine ants walk across the dining room table. No one wants to open the pantry door and find a group of Argentine ants feasting on stored sweets. Adding to the nuisance factor, Argentine ants produce a musty odor when crushed. 

Another problem with an Argentine ant invasion is contamination. At the base of an ant's feet are tiny claws known as tarsi. These appendages enable the insect to crawl over terrain and gripe surfaces. Argentine ants crawl over sewage, trash, and dead animals ripe with bacteria. As they forage in these locations, surface-level pathogens cling to their tarsi. When they travel through a Ventura County home, the contaminants transfer to surfaces and pollute them. Thus, when ants are inside a house, you must wash anything they contact to prevent bacterial-caused diseases like dysentery. 

Fortunately, Argentine ants do not have stingers like imported red fire ants and seldom bite. However, if an Argentine ant bites you, usually due to handling it, the wound does not pose a health threat. 

Ventura Pest Control removes Argentine ants in Ventura County homes. Our trained service technicians will remove an Argentine ant infestation from your house so you don't have to suffer embarrassment or fear of contamination. 

Simple Tips To Prevent Ants In The House

As previously described, Argentine ants create new colonies through the budding process. Due to their resilience and reproductive method, we recommend the following to discourage a future Argentine ant infestation:

  • Prune tree branches and shrubs away from the structure.
  • Close any gaps between incoming pipes and wires into the house.
  • Seal foundation and roofline cracks.
  • Relocate firewood 20 feet from the home and elevate it.
  • Remove excess stones, wood, and debris from the property.
  • Provide drainage to potted plants.
  • Ensure pool covers and grill covers remain dry.
  • Store food products in tightly sealed containers.
  • Keep indoor and outdoor garbage cans closed.
  • Wipe down cooking and eating surfaces after meals.
  • Suction out corners and cracks in the pantry and kitchen.

Implementing these suggestions and a recurring pest control plan from Ventura Pest Control will deter a future Argentine ant infestation on your property. 

The Key To Successful Ant Control In Ventura County

When seeing ants in the house, the temptation is to purchase a store-bought product and spray the ants. However, when you attack Argentine ants, they produce a pheromone alerting the colony of the threat, and the fertilized queens flee to begin new groups in the home. In other words, unless you know how to treat an Argentine ant infestation, you will have more problems than when you began. Fortunately, our service technicians are trained and have experience eliminating Argentine ant infestations from Ventura County homes. 

Our process begins with a home inspection to determine entry points, attractants, and hot spots. Our certified service technicians will confirm if the offending ant species are Argentine ants through the data we collect and the information you provide. 

To prevent Argentine ants from detecting a threat, we place bait traps in the interior in hot spot locations. Outside, we apply a treatment around the perimeter to prevent additional Argentine ants from entering and to reduce the surrounding population. We will also alert you regarding attractants on your property so you can take appropriate steps to remove them. To alleviate concern that Argentine ants might return, we offer a 30-day guarantee. 

Ventura Pest Control is the ant exterminator in Ventura County that will eliminate Argentine ants in your home. Contact us today to learn more about our pest control options and get your free estimate.

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Ventura Pest Control is proud to serve Newbury Park, California and other surrounding areas in Ventura County:

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