If you've ever had an ant infestation, you know how frustrating they can be. But ants in Richmond can be more than nuisance pests, they can impact your life in some surprising ways. Take a moment to look at the following facts about ants. Some of them may surprise you.

a carpenter ant in a kitchen
a carpenter ant on a wall of a house

Ants Can Be Destructive

In Richmond, we have ants that damage man-made structures. They're called carpenter ants. When carpenter ants come onto your property, they may not pay much attention to your home at first. They'll feed on nectar, honeydew, and dead insects, and live in a tree stump, log, or under a branch pile. You won't even know they're there.

These ants are typically nocturnal. They'll come out at night to crawl around in places you might not have seen them during the day, like on the boards of your back deck. When they start damaging your deck, you might take notice of the damage and wonder whether or not you have a carpenter ant infestation. But once they get inside your home, they're likely to leave little doubt. Carpenter ants can go from eating sweets and meats outside to feeding on sweets and meats in your kitchen and pantry. This can inspire them to create a nest inside the structural timbers of your home.

How Bad Is Carpenter Ant Damage?

It isn't enough to say that carpenter ants get into wood and tunnel galleries inside. You probably already know this. What may surprise you are the following facts:

  • Carpenter ants can find a crack in your exterior and get inside your home. They might not damage your exterior deck and give you a warning sign that they are damaging interior studs, trusses, and other structural wood.

  • Carpenter ants can live in your home without feeding on the food in your kitchen or pantry. This makes them more difficult to detect.

  • Carpenter ants can be sneaky. While there are a few warning signs that can give these ants away, such as frass, winged ants, and chewing sounds, when these ants find the right place to live inside your home, they can damage your property for years without being detected. 

  • Carpenter ants prefer to tunnel in softwood that is rotting, but they are not limited to only damaging this kind of wood. When these ants find a plentiful food source, they can grow a population that demands more space. This will encourage the workers to tunnel into sound wood they may not have considered tunneling into before.

Ants Can Bite

In our Richmond service area, we're seeing more and more fire ants. Most of the time, these ants stay in the yard, but on occasion, they find their way into man-made structures. When they do, they present a unique and troubling threat. We don't have to tell you that fire ants sting. These ants are common enough that most Richmond residents know to avoid these ants.

Here are a few things you might not know:

  • Flood conditions and oversaturation of perimeter ground can drive these ants into a home.

  • When fire ants get inside, they present a stinging hazard for everyone on the first floor of your home.

  • Babies can't communicate when fire ants are stinging them. If you have a baby that is colicky, he or she might cry a lot. If fire ants bite your baby, you may not realize it. This is a compound problem because babies have a greater risk from insect stings because they have immature immune systems.

  • Elderly and infirm family members can be at risk when fire ants sting. A fire ant allergy can develop with subsequent bites, through the years.

Ants Spread Bacteria

The last threat we're going to take a look at is a threat that all pest ants present. When ants get into your home, they can spread harmful bacteria to stored foods, food-prep surfaces, dishes, and other sensitive locations. This contamination can lead to flu-like symptoms and ongoing sickness within your home.

If you're battling ants and illness, it is important to understand that the two could be related. In most cases, sickness caused by ants will not be a medical concern, but with all bacterial illnesses, there can be complications. The first step when dealing with an ant infestation is to clean your kitchen and pantry thoroughly and pay close attention to sanitizing trash receptacles.

You Don't Have To Live With Ant Problems

At Go-Forth Pest Control, we have many solutions for ants. If you are currently battling an ant infestation, or you'd like to prevent ant problems before they happen, we can help. Reach out to us today and request an ant control inspection for your Richmond home. We'll guide you in finding the right answers for your specific needs.


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