In order to understand where the domestic ants come from, one should first of all clearly imagine their way of life and the requirements to the conditions of existence. Ants in the house can be either accidentally or be permanent residents of it.
Generally speaking, in the conditions of Russia the types of domestic ants are rather few. These include:
- Pharaoh ants - these small ants are among the most common domestic pests . They are not able to live in the wild in the temperate zone, and therefore in our country are found only in the home of man.
- House ants are thieves, adapted more to life in nature than than indoors.
In both these species, workers usually have a yellow color, often with a hint of orange-red. But red ants at home are almost always casual guests who can not harm products. Nevertheless, if such non-domestic ants have appeared in the room, it is necessary to find out where they come from and cover the ways of their penetration, so that even individual insects do not crawl into the house.
On a note
Domestic red ants are not found in Russia. All ants that are able to settle and reproduce in a human dwelling have a yellow or reddish color. Exceptionally rare in wooden houses located in the woods, at the junctions of logs settle red ants, woodworms, but because of such isolated cases, they can not be called domestic ants.
Domestic ants and casual guests
Home ant is quite clearly different from wild, accidentally penetrated into the room.
The photo below shows the house ants, they are pharaohs:
The size of each such working ant is only 2-3 mm. It has a reddish or yellowish body. In most cases, domestic ants refer to this species. And if small ants appeared at home, and the apartment is located above the third floor - this is almost certainly pharaoh ants.
The following photo shows the look of house ants thieves:
Yellow house ant-thieves are usually not as numerous as pharaoh ants. Usually they appear in private homes and in cottages, most often in cellars and ground floors - in nature they settle in the ground next to anthills of other kinds of ants. In multi-unit buildings, these small insects can be settled in rooms on the first two or three floors.
As a result, the owners often wonder where these small ants come from - it turns out that their young females come from the street, find secluded places in the room or next to it and establish a colony from which workers regularly run into the apartment.
In the photo - house ants thieves:
It is interesting
Its name was given to the ant-thief not because of the propensity to steal food. The fact is that in nature these ants parasitize in the anthill of larger species, stealing from the owners food and brood, but escaping in their own holes, which are too small for large ants to penetrate. These small domestic ants are very plastic in the choice of food, and can easily live without access to other anthills, which, in fact, occurs in a person's home.
Red forest ants appear indoors either in the occasional search for food - when it comes to a private house - or are entered by the owners themselves with food and things. Constantly in the house "domestic" red ants can not live, because they do not find enough food here. Accidentally, the apartment can also get other ants - black garden, ants-woodworm, sometimes even reapers.
All of them are much larger than pharaoh ants and never arrange their nests here.
Where do these pests come from?
Pharaoh ants live permanently in heated rooms - they are basically unable to survive the cold season on the street. These house ants appear indoors for several reasons:
- Infestation of neighbor apartments, cellars or attics - from growing colonies, insects simply wander around the new premises in search of food and places to organize new nests. In an apartment building, one colony can have nests on several floors in dozens of apartments, tambours and technical rooms. Often they enter the apartment from ventilation ducts and garbage chutes.
- It is also possible to bring the uterus or a whole nest into a room with furniture, household appliances, food. Actually, it was in this way that these house ants spread all over the world.
On a note
Sometimes it is useful to carefully check whether the ants are wound up in the house, or it is a false alarm. It happens, for example, in a bag of potatoes, dozens of forest ants come to the apartment, which spread all over the premises, but perish for a few days or a week. Talk about the fact that the ants wound up in the house, you can only when they meet regularly for several weeks.
Ants-thieves enter the house only from the street or from the cellars. They do not have the capacity to occupy their colonies with vast spaces and rarely create affiliated families in the premises.
As already noted above, sometimes in the walls of a wooden house can be founded their colony ants-woodworms - this is typical of dilapidated buildings.
What are the dangers of ants in the house?
Home Pharaoh ants do not bite. Their jaws are too small and weak to damage the human skin. Therefore, the bites of house ants - this is more of a fiction, and their photos usually give photos of bites of fleas or bedbugs.
"I've been bitten by insects for the last week. Tell me how the bites of house ants look and whether they bite a person at all. It seems that there are no fleas or mosquitoes in the house, only ants. On the feet constantly appear red spots, which are very itchy. "
Only wild ants accidentally brought into the room from the street really bite. Typical arboretum ants, red forest ants, reaper ants are all fairly large, and at risk can be sensitive to bite. In general, this happens very rarely, because these kinds of ants rarely find themselves in homes. And certainly they will not bite you at night.
The danger of domestic ants (Pharaohs) is not in their bites, but in other factors related to their livelihoods:
- These ants carry pathogens on the legs of garbage chutes, toilets and technical rooms in the apartment.
- They spoil food in the room.
- They create their own storehouses of food reserves in various places in the residential building, where the products eventually deteriorate and cause the appearance and reproduction of mold fungi and microorganisms.
- In addition, pharaoh ants in different parts of the apartment create their own places of storage of debris and excrement, where they take out all unnecessary nests.
Thus, small yellow ants at home may well be carriers of various microbes for food, although little is known about their epidemiological significance. In any case, if ants appeared in the house, they will only worsen the sanitary situation in the room.
It is interesting
In accordance with popular beliefs ants in the house - a very good sign. These insects are known for their diligence and a tendency to constantly grow and increase the amount of food reserves. Therefore, it is believed that if ants appeared in the house, there will always be prosperity and consent.
A bit of biology: how and where do the domestic ants live
Like all their relatives, domestic ants live in colonies. One colony can combine a large number of nests located in different rooms, apartments and utility rooms.
Pharaoh ants can have several female queens and hundreds, and sometimes thousands of worker ants, in each nest. All the nests of one colony are related to each other: working ants can carry brood and food from one nest to another, and the entire colony operates as a single living organism.
In ants-thieves in one nest, only one queen can live, with the death of which the colony dies out or in rare cases one of the breeding daughters of the lost uterus settles in it. Nest networks ants-thieves do not build, and one colony usually hides in one shelter.
It is interesting
The nest of house ants can be located anywhere - in platbands and plinths, under furniture and inside it, right in food, in home appliances, in sockets, crevices of walls and between ceilings on balconies, sometimes even in hanging clothes. Such a peculiar anthill takes up little space and can fit even in the pocket of the jacket.
The young fertilized uterus bases the nest. To distinguish it from working ants is simple - it is about one and a half times larger than them, in the case of ants-thieves - has a dark brown color with two yellow constrictions on the abdomen. Find the uterus of domestic ants can only be in the nest - it does not come out of it ever.
In the photo - a womb of ant-thieves:
And here - several queens of pharaoh ants in one nest:
Young uterus usually finds a secluded place, convenient for the formation of a new colony, and lays here a few first eggs. It also feeds the larvae with the secret of the salivary glands. The first working ants begin to actively seek food and feed new larvae and the uterus itself, assume the responsibility for caring for the nest, and the uterus becomes simply a generator of new eggs.
When the colony becomes large enough, young females and males begin to appear in it. In Pharaoh ants, they mate immediately, in a nest, and young uterus can stay here, laying eggs with old females, and can crawl and look for places to create new colonies. In ants-thieves, all females leave the nest, and only in rare cases a very large colony is divided into two parts, one of which leaves along with the young uterus.
Completing from the nest in search of a new refuge for females - these are the same ants with wings, which also can sometimes be found in the house. In the middle of summer such young females can come into the house from the street. If they can not be carried back, they will find secluded places and reward hospitable owners of the apartment with a well-formed colony in a few months.
House ants multiply very quickly. In a few months, hundreds of insects already appear in the new nest, and in a year the colony often grows to several thousand ants.
The main food of ants in the house is food that is normal for a person. These insects are omnivorous, and they are suitable as feed for any groceries, bread, vegetables and fruits, confectionery. Especially love the domestic ants sugar and any dry products of animal origin - feed for animals and aquarium fish, mixed fodder, jerky meat and fish.
Working domestic ants live from several weeks to several months, and females - up to a year. The duration of their life depends strongly on temperature (at low temperatures it is higher) and diet. Optimum living conditions for domestic ants are the temperature in the room of about 30 ° C and the relative humidity of air from 50% to 80%.
What to do if there are ants in the house
If ants are in your house, they should be quickly and as carefully as possible. And it is necessary to begin to do this as early as possible in order to fight with one small nest instead of a huge colony throughout the apartment, which can be formed if no measures are taken in time.
Very effective against house ants are special insecticides:
- Aerosol products in cylinders - Raptor, Raid, Combat, Dichlophos of any brand. They are easy to use, relatively inexpensive and work perfectly for the processing of nests found. And if the socket is inaccessible, then you need to process the surfaces around it.
- Concentrates for dilution and subsequent spraying in the form of a spray (Delta Zone, Executioner, Tetrix, Get, Cucaracha, Carbophos, Sinuzan and others). They are usually more effective than aerosols, but are more difficult to apply. Some drugs may be dangerous to humans and have a strong unpleasant odor, so it is better to choose safe products adapted for home use and not having a smell (for example, Lambda Zone, Delta Zone, Get). Very effective is also the treatment of such drugs attics, garbage chutes and cellars.
- Insecticidal powders (dusts) - for example, Pyrethrum powder, Phenaxin, Clean house. They scatter in places of the most frequent occurrence of insects, but work much slower than liquid insecticides. Pencils (crayons, for example, Mashenka) also work well on ants, but resistance to some of them may develop in insects.
- Gels are, perhaps, the best means for breeding ants. They are applied by lines in places of frequent occurrence of insects and near their nests, and the ants drag the drops of poisoned gel into the nest, poison themselves and poison the queens and larvae. The most famous gels are Globol (German remedy), Sturm, Fas, Dohloks and others.
- And, finally, folk remedies. Very effective against drill ants and boric acid, yeast soaked in water or added to the jam. Also, kerosene and turpentine work well when they fill all the nests found in the house (however, it must be remembered that these fluids are highly flammable and smell strongly).
Ants are afraid of some smells and substances. For example, they leave the premises, which constantly smells of garlic. They also avoid places where sunflower oil is spilled. But to use these means for their deduction - the occupation as a whole is ineffective.
When processing rooms from ants, it should be remembered that the more surfaces will be treated with an insecticide, the less chance the ants will have to survive. If an apartment house is infected with ants, fighting with them in one apartment will be temporary - insects will constantly return from their neighbors.
In such cases it is necessary either to fight the pests with the whole house while simultaneously treating the stairwells, the attic and the cellar, or to call the pest control services. The latter are also effective for cleaning one apartment: if ants appeared at home, after calling the disinsectors, the owners almost do not need to do anything - all the work will be done by professionals. But usually this pleasure is more expensive than the option of independent struggle.
Ultrasonic and electromagnetic repellers are useless against ants. Of course, prayer and conspiracy from domestic ants, which, as practice shows (and this is surprising), still sometimes are practiced by the villagers.
To prevent ants from appearing in the house (including repeatedly, after a successful destruction procedure), it is necessary to block the ways of their penetration here and organize preventive protection of the premises. For this:
- All joints of pipes and their entrances into walls, ceilings and floors in the kitchen and in the bathroom are sealed.
- The walls on the balconies are diligently shpatlyuyutsya.
- The apartment maintains cleanliness, regularly removes the remnants of food from the table, wet cleaning is carried out in all rooms without exception.
- Near the windows, doors and ventilation ducts hang sections from insects with the smell of citrus.
It is also useful to periodically communicate with neighbors. If one of them fights against or complains with ants, one should always be alert and be ready for quick action at the first penetration of insects into the house. So the problem of contaminating the apartment can be completely solved at an early stage.