A Handy Guide To Ghost Ants For Boca Raton Property Owners
January 28, 2021
Do you have a preference for where you would like to live one day? Would you enjoy living in the mountains up north? What about in a house on a lake? If you enjoy temperate weather and endless ocean views, then you are already in the right place. The only downside is that many pests love to live in our area too. One pest that frequently invades homes around Boca Raton are ghost ants. Here is a handy guide for you to use to keep these invasive food-robbers from causing trouble around your house.
What Are Ghost Ants?
Ghost ants, also known as Tapinoma melanocephalum, are an invasive species of “tramp ant” found here in Florida and other temperate climates. Interestingly enough, this pest has been seen as far north as Canada, living inside greenhouses, so they don’t freeze.
Compared to other local ant species, ghost ants are fairly small and only grow to one-sixteenth of an inch long at most. Beyond its small size, a ghost ant is also identifiable by its deep dark brown head and thorax (midsection), and opaque or milky white legs, antennae, and abdomen (hind section).
Where Do Ghost Ants Nest?
It doesn’t really matter to ghost ants where they live; what matters to them is that where they build their nest is warm and has gatherable food sources nearby. During the warmer months, ghost ants primarily live outdoors and build small nests around tufts of dead grass, plant stems, and beneath rock, gravel, or silt. These colonies typically do not last long as they are quick to change when affected by inclement weather conditions.
Indoors, ghost ants build nests within wall voids, in spaces between cabinetry, and behind baseboards. These nests can grow to be large if the space these ants occupy is big enough, and there are plenty of food sources nearby.
Why Ghost Ants Invade Homes
Ghost ants invade homes for one of two reasons, to scavenge for food or to get away from unfavorable weather conditions. Most often, dirty homes and homes that have food left out draw in ants the most. Homes that aren’t properly sealed also have more trouble with these invasive pests.
How To Prevent Ants
Your house doesn’t have to be a hot spot for ant activity. Here are a few prevention tips we recommend to prevent ghost ants and other pests like them from invading your Boca Raton home.
- Use a caulking gun to seal up gaps and cracks in the exterior of your home. Specifically,check its foundation, along the edges of window and door frames, and around utility pipes.
- Make sure your gutters are in good working order.
- Keep your grass cut short.
- Remove clumps of grass, leaf piles, and other organic debris from your property.
- Fix leaky pipes and fixtures around your home.
- Deep clean your house, and do your best to keep it clean.
- Pick up after your pets and clean out their food and water bowls after every meal.
- Make sure your trash cans have tight-fitting lids.
- Repair or replace damaged or improperly installed weatherstripping, door sweeps, and window and door screens.
- Store leftover food inside airtight containers.
For a simpler solution to ghost ants, get the experts at Native Pest Management involved. Using Integrated Pest Management strategies, our team can give your home the best chance to stay pest-free year-round. From thorough inspections to high-quality regular treatments, we make sure that the job gets done right when we fight pests.
Reach out to us today to learn more about our general pest control plans and how with us, you won’t ever have to worry about ghost ants around your Boca Raton property again.