Unwanted ten-ANTS in your home or business?
What type of ants am I likely to find in my home?
The main type of ant that you are likely to encounter in Reading, Basingstoke, Newbury and around Berkshire is the common black ant. They can be seen all year round but are most likely to be found in the warmer months of the year; they will be on the lookout for food and resources for their nests and are the definition of the word pest.
Another type of ant commonly found to infest buildings is the pharaoh ant, these are harder to treat and eliminate as the colony can have multiple breeding queens and, if disturbed or stressed, will sometimes separate to form smaller nests elsewhere in your premises. As a result, these colonies can take longer to eradicate and may require more than one visit.
How do I know if I have black ants in my property?
The common black garden ant is black in colour and usually found in the garden, however they will venture indoors if they find a convenient access point in their search for food. The black ants you are likely to see will be the workers, they are typically around 3-5mm in length and a glossy black colour, the worker ants are tasked with looking for food sources for the queen and the nest.
The queen will be 9mm in length and will also be glossy black in colour, however you are unlikely to come across the queen ant as she does not leave the nest and is instead entirely responsible for reproducing and enhancing the colony.
The ants will make their nests in several different places, these will usually be underground, in rotting wood or in a suitable area in your home. They can nest under floors and within walls even burrowing through the mortar in the brick work, coming out into the house looking for a food source. During the warmer months the ants will be most active and you may even see flying ants coming into your home.
Black ants will go through 4 lifecycle changes, these are egg, larvae, pupae, and adult. The eggs are small and white with a smooth sticky surface so they can be carried one by one, once hatched into larvae they will resemble small maggots, these larvae will be fed by the queen. As the larvae grow they will shed their skin up to 3 times, before cocooning themselves to begin the transition to a fully grown black ant.
How do I know if I have pharaoh ants in my property? The pharaoh ant is reddish brown in colour sometimes with a little yellow, they will be lighter in the body and darker in the abdomen and are between 1.5mm – 2mm in length. Male pharaoh ants are around 3mm in length and are black in colour with non-functional wings, whilst the queen is around 3.6mm in length. The queen can lay hundreds of eggs over her lifetime, usually in batches of 10-15 eggs, these eggs will hatch within a week of being produced. The next stage is the larvae stage which lasts between 18-20 days, females them become sexually active from 40-45 days. Pharaoh ants will breed continuously throughout the year usually within a well heated building, the nest will contain multiple queens alongside males, workers eggs and larvae. Pharaoh ants are becoming more of an issue in Reading, Basingstoke, Newbury and around Berkshire, especially within larger apartment complexes, the rate at which they reproduce can mean they can infest a building in a short amount of time and can be difficult to exterminate unless the whole building is treated. When a pharaoh ant nest becomes disturbed or stressed the queens can break off to start another smaller nest which can start the whole process over again, in these smaller nests the ratio between queens and workers can even tip in the queens favour. There are 3 key types of treatment for ants, all of which we are able to offer: - An insecticide spray applied to the affected area - Insecticide powder, this is generally used if the nest site is found - Insecticide gel, this treatment is the most effective in tackling pharaoh ants.
If you have a problem with ants don’t hesitate to contact us here at Abbey Pest Control.
Covering: Reading, Tilehurst, Caversham, Wokingham, Shinfield, Arborfield, Woodley, Earley, Newbury, Chieveley, Thatcham, Basingstoke, Hook, Camberley and surrounding areas. Our price includes a full survey, written report, all labour and materials. All of our operatives are fully trained, experienced members of the NPTA and we have comprehensive public liability insurance.