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Topical Issues
August

Ants: flying ants are now causing many problems. Easy to control. Give us a call.

Wasps: Season now in full swing. The nests are about the size of a foot ball or more!

If you need help with these or any other pest problem Call us!

Black Ant Ants

Common (Black Ants)
Black Ant

Size:

Workers 5mm overall body length. Queens about 15mm

Markings: 

Varies in colour, usually dark brown/black.

Location:

Numerous habitats -houses gardens, factories, etc.

Detection:

Visual sightings of adults often the first indictation. Some earth excavation around wall edges and paving slabs also a sign. 'Ant eggs' (pupae) under stones etc. shows nest site.

This is one of the commonest British ants, found in almost all parts of the country. A hymenopterous insect, the ant enters properties through cracks in brickwork and around/under windows and doors in search of a meal. It causes annoyance when found feeding on our food, often causing people to throwaway products found to be infested. However, they are not known to carry disease organisms.

The ubiquitous ants make their nest in the soil, on grassland including lawns, at the base of walls, under flat stones and sometimes in hollow trees. Nests are often very numerous near buildings and occasionally may be situated close to or actually in the foundations.

The foraging workers follow fairly well defined trails to their feeding grounds which may be many yards from the nest. They have varied feeding habits. They may enter buildings, often through very narrow crevices, and if food, especially sweet food, is found by one ant there will soon be many others to share the feast. Houses, restaurants and food shops, office buildings and hospitals etc. may be entered this way and the ants may cause a considerable nuisance and some damage but their nests are usually outside the buildings.

Much can be written about their lifecycle, but it is suggested that the reader takes time to seek out more information on these insects.

One of the most annoying stages is the mating period itself. During the summer great numbers of winged females (which are potential queens) and males are reared in the nest and on one or two warm summer afternoons between mid-July and mid-September they swarm out and take to flight often in quite spectacular numbers. This usually happens simultaneously over a wide area of country.

Sometimes, if a nest is situated in the foundations, these winged ants may swarm inside buildings. Sufferers may take comfort in the knowledge that the trouble will soon cease. During the flight, the ants mate. Many thousands are eaten by birds and in about two or three hours it is all over; the survivors return to earth, the males soon die, the queens shed their wings and make themselves a cell, generally in the soil where they pass the winter before attempting to start anew nest the following spring. A few -but enough - succeed. Some may find shelter in existing nests but these will generally only tolerate one queen. Under favourable conditions the queen and therefore her nest, may survive for several years.


 

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